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Pumpkin Cheesecake

This creamy Pumpkin Cheesecake on a gingersnap crust will be a hit at your Thanksgiving dinner. Each bite is filled with sweet fall aromas.

Overhead view of three slices of Pumpkin Cheesecake on white plates.

You can make this cheesecake a day ahead of your planned get together so it’s ready to wow your guests after dinner. It’s the perfect ending to a holiday meal.

Because the cheesecake is so light and creamy, it won’t feel too heavy on a full stomach. Top each slice with whipped cream and gingersnap crumbs when you’re ready to serve it.


This pumpkin cheesecake is one to obsess over. It’s so light and creamy, you’ll want to eat it for breakfast! It’s basically a cheesecake version of my favorite pumpkin pie.

Cheesecake is far from diet food but it’s so worth the splurge this holiday season. Dessert isn’t meant to be healthy anyway.

After one slice of this decadent fall treat, I can guarantee you’ll want to go back for seconds. Then you’ll need to try my apple pie cheesecake!

It’s the creamiest cheesecake. Remember my Nutella cheesecake? It’s like that! Almost mousse-like in texture. SO GOOD!!

Overhead view of creamy Pumpkin Cheesecake on white plates.

Pumpkin cheesecake with gingersnap crust

This recipe was inspired by my pumpkin crumble bars. They’re my most popular fall recipe. I combined pumpkin, cream cheese, and yogurt for those bars and everyone loved them. I decided to go full-on with pumpkin and cream cheese in the form of a delicate cheesecake that is sure to impress anyone who tries it.

It didn’t take me a lot of time to get the recipe right. I’ve practically mastered cheesecake so whipping this up was a breeze.

The moisture in pumpkin puree can cause things to get all funky with cheesecake. To solve this, I spread the puree out onto paper towels to allow some of the liquid to seep out. This works perfectly and I even use this trick when making pumpkin bread.

The cheesecake bakes at 300°F for one hour and then remains in the oven for a second hour. For the second hour, the oven should be off and the door should remain closed. This will continue to cook the cheesecake as well as allow it to cool down very slowly. This process is crucial to getting that wonderfully creamy texture.

This cheesecake is such a tasty alternative to pumpkin pie. You won’t regret making it!

Angled view of a slice of Pumpkin Cheesecake on a white plate with a fork taking a bite out.

Can you make pumpkin cheesecake in advance?

Yes, you can and I highly recommend you do so. This isn’t a quick recipe. The cheesecake takes an hour to bake, an hour to rest, and needs at least four hours in the refrigerator (overnight is best).

I suggest making it the day before you plan to serve it but the cheesecake will keep for up to 4 days covered tightly in the refrigerator.

Can you freeze pumpkin cheesecake?

Yep, you certainly can. This recipe, in particular, will keep for up to two months in an airtight container. If you really want to plan ahead for the holidays, make it well in advance then freeze it after it has set in the refrigerator for four hours.

Place the frozen cheesecake in the refrigerator to thaw overnight before serving.

Helpful tools

More cheesecake recipes you’ll love

  1. Pecan Pie Cheesecake
  2. Eggnog Cheesecake
  3. Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake

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Overhead of pumpkin cheesecake topped with whipped cream and cinnamon

Pumpkin Cheesecake

Yield: 16 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Cool Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 40 minutes

This creamy Pumpkin Cheesecake on a gingersnap crust will be a hit at your Thanksgiving dinner. Each bite is filled with sweet fall aromas. You can make this cheesecake a day ahead of your planned get together so it’s ready to wow your guests after dinner. 

Ingredients

  • 15 ounces (425 g) pumpkin puree
  • 2 ½ cups (250 g) gingersnap cookie crumbs
  • 1 ¼ cup (263 g) packed light brown sugar, divided
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 24 ounces (678 g) cream cheese, softened
  • ¾ cup (178 ml) heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten, room temperature
  • 1 cup (60 g) homemade whipped cream

Instructions

  1. Position the oven rack to the lower third position. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Wrap the outer bottom of a 9-inch springform pan tightly with a large sheet of aluminum foil.
  2. Take 4 connected sheets of paper towels and fold it in half. Lay the folded paper towels across a baking sheet. Spread the pumpkin puree in an even layer over the paper towels and set aside.
  3. Combine the gingersnap crumbs, ¼ cup of the brown sugar, and melted butter in a bowl. Stir to combine. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and about 2-inches up the sides of the prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
  4. Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the remaining sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg. Stir with a fork.
  6. Lift one of the shorter sides of the paper towel slightly and gently scrape the pumpkin puree loose. Lift the edge of the paper towel a little higher and give it a gentle shake. The puree should begin to roll down the paper towel and form a log. Scrape loose as needed. Transfer the puree to a large mixing bowl.
  7. Add the cream cheese, heavy cream, and sugar mixture. Beat on medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. Add the vanilla and beat on low speed to combine. Using a silicone spatula, gently stir in the eggs just until combined. 
  8. Pour the batter over the crust in the prepared pan. Place the pan inside a roasting pan. Fill the roasting pan with enough hot water to reach halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan.
  9. Bake for 1 hour, OR until the edges are set and the center is slightly jiggly. Turn the oven off, leave the cheesecake in the water bath in the oven for another hour.
  10. Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and place it on a wire rack. Run a small knife around the outer edge of the cheesecake to loosen it from the pan and leave it to cool completely. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
  11. Remove the sides of the pan and top the cheesecake with whipped cream before serving.

Notes

Don't skip step 5! Removing excess moisture from the pumpkin puree is necessary in order to achieve the right texture.

Oven temps can vary which means your cheesecake may need more time to bake. You'll know it is done cooking when the outer edges of the cheesecake feel firm to the touch while the center looks wet and jiggles when shaken. If the cheesecake doesn't look this way after an hour of cooking, let it cook until it does. Then you can turn the oven off and let the cheesecake rest for another hour in the oven.

Make ahead tip

  1. The baked and chilled cheesecake will keep for up to 4 days covered tightly and stored in the refrigerator.
  2. The cheesecake will keep for up to 2 months covered tightly and stored in the freezer. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight. 

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 454Total Fat: 27gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 113mgSodium: 404mgCarbohydrates: 47gFiber: 2gSugar: 24gProtein: 7g

The nutrition information provided is for convenience and as a courtesy only. It is not guaranteed to be accurate because nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator and input the exact ingredients you used in the recipe.

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Kathleen R

Wednesday 25th of November 2020

What should one do when they forget to bake the crust before putting the batter in?!? Specific fix for this mix up!

Jenn

Sunday 15th of November 2020

Can I use graham crackers instead of ginger snap cookies? Do you think I would have to modify the crust ingredients if I do?

Jen Sobjack

Wednesday 18th of November 2020

Graham crackers are fine to use without any adjustments to the recipe.

Brenda

Monday 4th of November 2019

I always do the “bingo arm jiggle” test with cheesecakes. Think 25year old jiggle, not 80 year old jiggle. So excited to try this one!

Cassie

Saturday 24th of November 2018

Hi Jen! I made this cheesecake and it was a big hit, but the texture was runnier, not firm like most cheesecakes I’ve made. I removed the excess moisture from the pumpkin puree and refrigerated it overnight. Any tips on how to ensure a firm cheesecake in the future?

Jen Sobjack

Sunday 25th of November 2018

The cheesecake should be creamy but not runny. I'd double check the temperature of your oven with an oven thermometer. And don't turn the oven off until the edges of the cheesecake are set. They'll be firm to the touch. But the center should still look wet and jiggly. It will continue to set in the refrigerator.

Ashley

Monday 20th of November 2017

So i need to line my pan with parchment paper

Jen Sobjack

Tuesday 21st of November 2017

Line the pan with heavy-duty foil, not parchment paper. Especially if you plan to use the water bath method.

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