These creamy and delicious Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes can be made ahead and are the perfect choice for a holiday dessert. Filled with smooth pumpkin cheesecake filling, warm Fall spices and topped with whipped cream, you and your guests won't be able to stop at just one!
As you can see from my other recipes, I am a huge fan of mini cheesecakes. These are the BEST mini pumpkin cheesecakes you won't be able to stop at just one. Before I decided to make these I scoured the internet to research several different recipes. Most cheesecake recipes incorporate so much sugar it gave me a headache just thinking about them. As a result, I cut down the amount of sugar used and am so happy with how they turned out.
Cream cheese needs another ingredient to mix with to make them creamy instead of dry and crumbly. Many other recipes call for sour cream to make them creamier and add some tangy flavor. I really wanted to find a recipe for cheesecake without sour cream so I chose heavy cream instead. The addition of heavy cream created a creamy rich cheesecake with the best flavor best I have ever tasted!
Tips For Mini Creamy Cheesecakes
Simple white cupcake liners are all that is needed to be able to remove the cheesecakes from the pan. Thick metallic liners may look fancy however they tend to leave a metallic taste and smell to food. Here are my favorite white cupcake liners that I love to use. A tip to make the lines crisp is to freeze the cheesecakes for a couple hours before removing the liners. The colder the cheesecake is, the easier the liners will be able to be removed.
- Granulated Sugar - Make sure you are paying attention to the amounts as the recipe calls for ¾ cups granulated sugar however ¼ cup is for the crust and ½ cup is for the cheesecake filling.
- Graham Cracker Crumbs - I use honey flavored graham crackers but these would still be delicious with cinnamon flavored ones as well.
- Melted Butter - Make sure to use unsalted butter as the crust will turn out too salty if you use salted butter. Did you know different brands of salted butter carry dramatically different amounts of salt? Because of this, its best to use unsalted and add salt on your own as needed.
- Cream Cheese - One of the most important components of this recipe is that your cream cheese be at room temperature. It needs to be mixed until it is creamy before adding other ingredients to have a smooth cheesecake. If you find the cream cheese is too cold, microwave it for 10 seconds at a time until it becomes creamy. If you mix it with the other ingredients when it is too cold, you will either have specks of white, a lumpy cheesecake or you will over mix your batter trying to get the lumps out and end up with bubbles. Trust me on this one!
- Pumpkin Puree - Make sure you use canned pumpkin puree which is different than pumpkin pie filling.
- Dark Brown Sugar - Alternatively, you can of course use light brown sugar however dark brown sugar gives these cheesecakes more depth of flavor.
- Heavy Whipping Cream - You can substitute this for sour cream or yogurt however the heavy cream creates an incredibly luxurious creamy texture.
- Eggs - The eggs should be room temperature along with the other ingredients
- Pumpkin Pie Spice - You can make your own pumpkin pie spice with a combination of cinnamon, ginger, allspice, nutmeg and cloves. I personally use it so much I find that pumpkin pie spice already mixed is always great to have on hand.
- Pure Vanilla Extract - It's important to use a product that states "pure vanilla extract". There are several varieties that do not use actual real vanilla. Not all vanilla extract is created equally so make sure to use a quality brand. Here is my favorite brand of pure vanilla extract.
The BEST Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes
- ¾ cup granulated sugar (divided) ¼ cup for crust, ½ cup for filling
- 2 cups finely crushed graham cracker crumbs
- 6 tbsp melted unsalted butter
- 24 oz cream cheese (room temp)
- 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
- ¼ cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees and line two regular sized muffin tins with paper liners (24 total)
- In a medium bowl, thoroughly combine graham cracker crumbs, ¼ cup granulated sugar, and melted butter
- Fill each liner with about 1-2 tablespoons of mixture and then press down firmly with the bottom of a ¼ measuring cup to make the crust
- Bake for 7 minutes, then remove and let cool while making the filling
- With a hand mixer, beat cream cheese until smooth and creamy (if it is still cold you may have to warm it up in the microwave for just a few seconds) then add the ½ cup of granulated sugar, pumpkin puree, brown sugar, heavy whipping cream, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla extract and mix until just combined
- Pour about ¼ cup of mixture into each cup on top of the crust and fill all cups evenly.
- Bake for 20-22 minutes (center should still be slightly jiggly)
- Remove and let trays cool completely on a wire rack, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight
- Top with whipped cream and cinnamon as desired