Idiot-proof Cheesecake

I am not a skilled baker, but I have yet to mess up this recipe and dispite its simplicity it makes a wonderfully light cheesecake. The ingredients are straightforward, the method is simple and the baking time is forgiving.



125 ml (1/2 cup) Sugar
5 ml (1 tsp) Vanilla
500 g (16 ounces) Cream Cheese (regular or light)
2 Large Eggs
1 store-bought graham cracker crust (Keebler Ready Pie Crust is the only one I've seen, but this may vary by region)
Whatever fruit you want for your topping.


Pre-heat oven to 450F (230C).

Depending on how well stocked your kitchen is the preparation can be effortless or may require a little elbow grease. If you are fortunate enough to have an electric mixer then you're set, if, like me, you are a poor student who hasn't found an electric mixer fits into your budget, than a good spoon will work.

Which ever method you're using, I've found that cutting the cream cheese into cubes and microwaving for a little to soften it up helps immensely. The electric mixer is more forgiving, but your arm may not be.

Once you have your cream cheese at a suitable softness combine it with the sugar until the two are well blended. Add the eggs one at a time mixing well after each. Blend in the vanilla and continue mixing until the concoction is smooth.

Now you're finished the major part, so just pour the mixture over the crust and pop it in the oven, which should be preheated to 450F by now. Let it bake for 10 minutes and then turn the oven down to 250F (125C). The time for this second part will vary depending on your oven. I've had it cook in an additional 15 minutes (in my new old oven) or in an additional 25-30 in a regular oven. So although it should probably take 25-30 minutes at 250F I would keep an eye on it. As soon as the top starts browning a little it's pretty safe to take out.

The hardest part of making cheesecake, I find, is waiting for it to cool. On average for it to cool all the way through takes a few hours in the refrigerator, but nothing horrible will happen to you or the cake if you sneak a piece early.

Topping Instructions

Depending on your preference you can put whatever you want on your cheesecake. If you like cherries, some cherry pie filling will work, personally I'm a sucker for raspberries, or you can skip the topping altogether. It you have some fresh or frozen fruit or berries that you want to use as a topping just put them on the stove (in a pot) with some sugar (to taste) and let it boil a little. If it's a little too dry add some water, or even better, some juice to help it along. Once it cools you should have a nice fruity topping for your cheesecake.

Time Required/Servings

The preparation time is 10-15 minutes max.
Total cook time is ~35-40 minutes.
Cooling time is ~3-5 hours depending on your patience level.
This recipe makes 6-8 servings.