We love this festive take on cheesecake! The warm, familiar spices of nutmeg and cinnamon make this classic, impressive dessert a little more holiday-forward. Topped with a wonderful, salted, brown sugar whipped cream, each bite feels like a truly spectacular indulgence.
1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 12 full sheets of graham crackers)2 tablespoons granulated sugar1/2 teaspoon cinnamon1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
4 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, softened1-1/2 cups granulated sugar4 large eggs, room temperature1 cup sour cream1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt1-1/4 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for dusting1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Salted, Brown Sugar Whipped Cream Ingredients:
1/4 cup light brown sugar1/2 teaspoon vanilla1 cup heavy whipping cream1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
(1) Preheat the oven to 325F
(2) Make the crust: Using a food processor, pulse the graham crackers into a fine crumb. Add the graham crackers, sugar, cinnamon, and salt to a small bowl and use a fork to incorporate. Add the melted butter and stir until all is coated and a damp crumb is achieved.
(3) Wrap the outside of a 9-inch springform pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil. (This will create a protective barrier from the future water bath). Grease the inside of the pan. Pour the crumb mixture into the pan. Using a measuring cup or glass, press the crumbs evenly across the bottom and up the sides, making the crust as even as possible.
(4) Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then cool completely on a wire rack.
(5) Make the cheesecake filling: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the softened cream cheese and the sugar and beat on medium/high speed until smooth. Scrape down the sides and the bottom halfway through to ensure even mixing.
(6) Add the eggs and beat on low until just combined. Add the sour cream, vanilla, salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon, and mix until combined, about 1 minute. Continue to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
(7) Place the aluminum-wrapped springform pan into a larger baker or roasting pan. Pour the cheesecake filling into the par-baked pie crust and add hot water about 1-1/2″ deep to the roasting pan. Very carefully place the pan on the bottom rack of the oven.
(8) Bake for 60-75 minutes, checking the cheesecake about halfway through. It should be firm, yet jiggly. If it is not, continue baking until it is. Check every additional 5 minutes to ensure it does not overcook. Once this consistency is achieved, turn off the oven and let the cheesecake set in the warm oven for another hour. This allows the cheesecake to slowly cool as the oven cools. This slow cooling step will help prevent cracking.
(9) Once the cheesecake has cooled in the oven, remove and let chill in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.
(10) When ready to serve, combine the brown sugar, vanilla, heavy whipping cream, and salt in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment. Whisk until stiff peaks form, wiping down the sides with a spatula midway through. Do not over whip!
(11) Carefully run a knife around the perimeter of the cheesecake’s crust to help it release from the sides. Release the springform ring. Top with the whipped cream, and a dusting of freshly ground nutmeg. Enjoy immediately!