This Birthday Cheesecake is a celebration captured in every bite. Perfectly textured crust that crumbles with a touch of sweetness and velvety smooth filling creates a creamy birthday dessert! This is based on my very popular Cheesecake Recipe, but this has added rainbow jimmies! (I also have a birthday cake recipe should you want extra desserts at your celebration!)
Ingredients and Substitutions
Crust: Ensure all graham cracker crumbs are coated in melted butter. This is what binds the crust together.
Filling: Be sure the ingredients, specifically the cream cheese, sour cream, and eggs, are at room temperature. This helps prevent lumps in the cheesecake.
Sour Cream: You will need sour cream for the filling and the topping. Sour cream in the filling helps give the cheesecake a smoother texture with just a hint of tartness.
Cheesecake Crust Recipe
An easy cheesecake crust recipe can be made from graham crackers, any cookies, animal crackers, etc. There are cheesecakes with brownie crusts and cookie crusts too, but we’re going to stick to the basic cheesecake crust recipe to keep with our perfect cheesecake theme.
A cheesecake crust recipe is easy and typically only consists of 2 to 3 ingredients. If you’re using a cookie, you can omit the sugar. For this classic cheesecake crust, graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, and melted butter were used.
The butter binds everything together so bits of crust don’t pop up in the cheesecake. The sugar is just to sweeten the deal.
Graham Cracker Crumbs
Pre-Crushed vs Crushing Yourself
The quality of store-bought graham cracker crumbs has changed in the last few years and they seem to be less flavorful and have a different texture. When possible, I recommend the full sheets of honey-flavored graham crackers and crushing them yourself or utilizing a food processor.
I think a shortbread, graham cracker, or vanilla cookie crust would all be really lovely with this cheesecake. I utilize Cool Whip as a topping, but you can certainly use heavy whipped cream and make your own.
How to Make Cheesecake Filling with No Lumps
One of the most important steps in making sure you have no lumps in your cheesecake is making sure your cream cheese is at room temperature all the way through. If you have to heat your cream cheese in a microwave be sure to whisk it smooth before using not only to ensure there aren’t lumps but that there are no “hot spots” throughout. I prefer to let my cream cheese come to room temperature for about 4 hours before using it.
To make the cheesecake filling, grab a hand mixer (or stand mixer with paddle attachment) and beat the cream cheese until it’s creamy, and then just the sugar into the cream cheese. Doing this and scraping down the sides of the bowl after every step will ensure there are no lumps left before adding the ingredients with a looser consistency.
Next, add the vanilla extract and sour cream. Lastly, add the eggs one at a time. Beat just until the egg is mixed and add the next egg. Do not overbeat the cheesecake filling otherwise, it may change the texture of your cheesecake.
Tips for a Cheesecake Water Bath
A water bath for cheesecake is the best way to prevent the edges of the cheesecake from browning in the oven and getting cracks in the top of the cheesecake.
- Place your foil-wrapped springform pan with the cheesecake in it into a slightly larger pan and carefully place it into the oven.
- Pour the water into the larger pan, 3-4 inches deep, OR about halfway up the side of the springform pan. Using a teapot with hot water works very well, as it is easy to pour and the water is already hot.
- To keep the water from getting into the cheesecake, wrap the outside of the pan with 2 layers of heavy-duty tin foil.
How to Store and Freeze Cheesecake
Cheesecake absolutely needs to be refrigerated. I prefer to use an airtight container to store cheesecake. (The less air it is exposed to, the longer it may last.) Cheesecake usually lasts about 3 days when stored correctly. If you do not have an airtight container, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap.
Freezing cheesecake is a great option as it holds up well, but not for long. To freeze, either cut into individual pieces or freeze what is leftover. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and then place it in a freezer-safe plastic bag or wrap it in aluminum foil. Be sure to label and date. It should last about 1 month.
- 1 ½ cups (126 g) graham cracker crumbs
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 4 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- 1 ¼ cups (250 g) granulated sugar
- ½ cup (115 g) sour cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 5 large eggs, room temperature
- ½ cup rainbow jimmies, (or sprinkles)
- 6-8 ounces whipped cream
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter until all the crumbs are coated and the mixture has a coarse sand consistency.
- Press the mixture onto the bottom and ⅔ way up a 9-inch springform pan that is lined with parchment paper.
- Wrap two pieces of heavy-duty aluminum foil around the bottom of the sides of the pan. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the softened cream cheese until smooth.
- Add in the sugar and beat on high, scraping down the sides as needed, until combined.
- Add in the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix until the filling is smooth and creamy, about 30 seconds.
- With the mixer on low, add in the eggs, one at a time, blending well after each addition.
- Remove the bowl from the stand mixer and fold in the rainbow jimmies with a spatula.
- Pour cheesecake filling into the springform pan.
- Place the springform pan into a larger pan and carefully place it in the oven. Pour hot water into the larger pan, about 3-4 inches deep or halfway up the side of the springform pan.
- Bake until the top of the cheesecake turns golden, about 60 – 70 minutes. Remove from oven. Let the cheesecake cool on a wire rack.
- When the cheesecake is cooled pipe dollops of whipped topping on top of the cheesecake. Sprinkle some rainbow jimmies on top of the whipped cream.
Did you make this recipe?
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