Having recently discovered a love of baking that rivals only my love of eating, this year's Thanksgiving gave me the opportunity to venture into the world of pie. I've attempted to make no-bake pies and have found that they just don't hold up to the real deal. While this cheesecake doesn't require any fancy water techniques or a flair for the dramatic, it's definitely delicious.
This one came from allrecipe.com's "Double Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake," as found in their cookbook, Tried and True Favorites. I made a few substitutions and changes, but the recipe was so yummy that it didn't really need much tweaking. This is quite possibly my new favorite pumpkin cheesecake.
You will need:
- 16 ounces of softened cream cheese
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 c canned pumpkin
- 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or add extra of the others)
- 1 c Cool-Whip (whipped cream in a spray can will do)
- 9-inch prepared pie crust (graham cracker recommended)
- 1 tbsp of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg combined to your liking (go easy on the cloves)
- Preheat oven to 325 F (165 C).
- Combine softened cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla and mix extremely well. Add your eggs one by one until the mixture is evenly colored and not too runny.
- Take 1 cup of the batter out and spread it over the bottom of your pie crust for Layer #1.
- To the remaining batter, add your pumpkin, 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground cloves, 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg, and 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice. Blend well.
- Carefully pour the pumpkin batter over the plain cheesecake batter. With a spatula, lightly spread the pumpkin until it fills the pie crust evenly. The pie won't be evenly flat; it should probably round a little in the center--that's okay. This is Layer #2.
- I place my pie on a baking sheet to protect it from spill over, but YMMV. Either way, put it in the oven on the top rack and bake for 35 minutes.
- When you take the cheesecake out, it'll still wobble a little but should be slightly golden on the sides. Allow it to cool completely.
- In a bowl, gently mix your whipped topping and the mixture of seasonings at the bottom of the ingredients list. Fold the whipped topping over the top of the cooled pie for Layer #3. Alternatively, you could spray whipped topping or spread Cool Whip and then lightly dust the top with the mixture.
- Allow the pie to sit in the fridge overnight before serving.
The resulting pumpkin pie is sweet but not overly so and has just the right amount of spice. I like that the bottom layer of "plain" cheesecake cuts through with that little bit of bitter you'd expect. Bon appetit!