Festive Holiday Cheesecake
Total TimePrep: 30 min. Bake: 1-1/2 hours + chilling
- 1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup pecans, toasted and finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 4 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
- 2 cups sour cream
- 1/4 cup sugar
- Optional: chocolate and vanilla star meringues, chocolate shavings, chocolate curls, candied orange peel, chopped pistachios
- Place an ungreased 9-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, pecans and brown sugar; stir in butter. Press onto bottom and 1-1/2 in. up the sides of prepared pan. Place on a baking sheet. Bake at 350° for 5 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.
- In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips. Pour into crust. Place in a larger baking pan; add 1 in. of hot water to larger pan.
- Bake at 325° for 1-1/2 hours or until center is just set and top appears dull. In a small bowl, combine sour cream and sugar until smooth; spoon over hot cheesecake and spread to cover. Bake for 5 minutes longer or until topping is just set.
- 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 can. Garnish with candies.
Nutrition Facts1 slice: 499 calories, 38g fat (20g saturated fat), 122mg cholesterol, 285mg sodium, 36g carbohydrate (29g sugars, 1g fiber), 7g protein.
Every product is independently selected by our editors. If you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Dec 28, 2015
I love cheesecake! I made this for Christmas and my guests were disappointed. So was I. It looked pretty, but it just feel short on overall taste. There are way better recipes.
Dec 21, 2015
Delicious recipe. I make it every year at Christmas for my hubby. I make just a couple changes. Instead of graham cracker crumbs, I use vanilla wafer crumbs. Instead of semi sweet chocolate chip, I use white chocolate chips. For the decorations, we use mini christmas M&Ms, more white chocolate chips and snowflake sprinkles (assorted colors). It's so pretty for Christmas and is absolutely DELICIOUS! Note: if you decorate with M&M's, wait to add the sprinkles and candies until just before serving. The colors tend to run and discolor the cheesecake topping, otherwise!
Dec 22, 2013
Made this for a family Christmas gathering. Wait to put the candies on top. Just used Christmas M&Ms on top. Good flavor and texture. Easy too make. Not overly sweet.
Nov 12, 2013
You could also substitute red ,white and green morsels instead of the chocolate ones.
Oct 19, 2013
This cheesecake has lovely flavor and you can so easily change up the color of the chips to match whatever holiday or event you want. There are so many colored chips out there now. They only complaints I have ever had about this is when I've used larger pieces of candy on top. Guests prefer crushed candy or no candy at all.
Dec 29, 2012
I made this for dessert for Christmas this year & was so impressed! The water bath kept the cheesecake from cracking, something I've never been able to accomplish before, living at a high altitude. However, I will never use M & M's to decorate it again. They melted & "stained" the top of the cheesecake, which I felt made it unattractive. Next time, I will leave the top plain or maybe try some sprinkles. In addition to M & M's, I used gumdrops & peppermint candies to decorate the top, & everyone scraped them off. :(
Dec 26, 2012
I had never made a cheesecake like this before but felt it was too pretty to pass up for Christmas Day 2012! I felt the Oreo crumbs were the better choice and I stand by that. Goes so well with the chocolate-chip cheesecake. It was worth the effort and I was thrilled that it not only looked like a show-stopper, it tasted like one also! Wasn't too heavy and it was a huge hit. You could use this for any holiday. Purple and yellow for Easter, black and orange for Easter. Pink, white, red for Valentine's Day, etc. I had various candies in red and green and then has 3 mini candy canes crushed. While we pulled off the big candies to eat, the crushed candy cane was yummy with it! Nite: used regular white sugar. Awesome!
Dec 24, 2012
Add a few more chocolate chips and no peppermints, just m$m's. My main point is this is GREAT for the holidays very good!
Dec 5, 2012
Made this for a holiday party and recieved rave reviews. The only problem I had was getting the crust loose from the sides of the spring form pan. Still looked great and tasted even better. I used red and green mini M & M's, Andes peppermint bark and green, red & choc. semi-sweet choc. chips. Will make it again for my office Christmas party!
Nov 30, 2012
Yes, granulated sugar is what you want for this recipe.