I like to use this festive peppermint cheesecake as a dramatic centerpiece on my dinner table. It's a traditional Christmas dessert in my family. —Linda Stemen, Monroeville, Indiana
- 1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/3 cup butter, melted
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 5 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup sour cream
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 5 eggs, lightly beaten
- 30 peppermint candies, crushed
- Red food coloring, optional
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
- Additional crushed peppermint candies
- Place a greased 10-in. springform pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Securely wrap foil around pan. In a small bowl, combine the cracker crumbs, butter and sugar. Press onto the bottom of prepared pan. Place pan on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes or until set. Cool on a wire rack.
- In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in the sour cream, flour and vanilla. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Fold in crushed candies and a few drops of red food coloring if desired. Pour over crust. Place springform pan in a large baking pan; add 1 in. of hot water to larger pan.
- Bake at 350° for 55 to 65 minutes or until center is just set and top appears dull. Remove springform pan from water bath. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Remove sides of pan.
- In a small bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Add confectioners' sugar; beat until stiff peaks form. Pipe around edge of cheesecake and sprinkle with additional crushed candies. Yield: 16 servings.
Originally published as Peppermint Candy Cheesecake in Taste of Home Christmas Annual Annual 2011, p153
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