This Christmas, you’re going to want to give this festive cheesecake a try. Cranberry Cheesecake is made with a thick layer of graham cracker crust, a classic Christmas cheesecake and topped with homemade cranberry jam. This is an incredibly decadent holiday dessert recipe.
Christmas Cheesecake with Fresh Cranberries
During the holidays I love making desserts with cranberries. The sweet and tangy fruit flavor and the beautiful color make it great for sweet treats. I picked out a few of my favorites from over the years and left them at the bottom of this post for you.
The cheesecake layer of this dessert is a classic recipe and when you add in the cranberry jam it makes it really incredible. I love taking a basic recipe and turning it into something brand new.
Ingredients You Will Need
The supplies you’ll need for this are mostly simple pantry staples like flour and sugar. Grab your cranberries and let’s make a yummy Cranberry Cheesecake.
- Fresh Cranberries – these are super easy to find in the fall and winter months at the grocery store.
- Sugar – Both granulated sugar and brown sugar.
- Vanilla – pure vanilla extract, not imitation.
- Butter – whichever butter you like, but remember salted butter will leave a light salt flavor.
- Graham Crackers – you can crush them yourself in a food processor or buy them already ready.
- Cream Cheese – softened.
- Flour – all purpose.
- Heavy Whipping Cream – for the cheesecake layer.
How To Make Cranberry Cheesecake
1. Make Cranberry Jam. Heat the cranberries and sugar in a saucepan until the berries are soft and the sauce has thickened. Take it off the heat, add in the vanilla and set it aside to cool.
2. Make the crust. Mix the cracker crumbs with butter and sugar and press into the bottom of your springform pan. Bake the crust for about 10 minutes and let it cool.
3. Make cheesecake filling. Cream the softened cream cheese until it’s fluffy and then slowly add in sugar and flour. Add the vanilla in next, then the heavy whipping cream. Lastly, add the eggs in one at a time. Before pouring the cheesecake onto the crust, spread some jam over it.
4. Top it. Spread jam over the top of the cheesecake and add whipped cream and cranberries along the edges.
How To Store Cranberry Cheesecake
Keep this one refrigerated and eat it within about three days (if it makes it that long.)
More Cranberry Desserts
Cranberry Jam Ingredients:
- 16 oz. fresh cranberries washed
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar lightly packed
- 5 tablespoons butter melted
Cheesecake Filling Ingredients:
- 4 packages cream cheese softened
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup heavy whipping cream cold
- 3 eggs
Cranberry Jam Instructions:
- In a medium saucepan, add the cranberries and sugar and mix to combine.
- Heat over medium heat until the berries are soft, and the mixture begins to thicken. About 8-10 minutes.
- Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Set aside to cool.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a 9” springform pan by spraying with non-stick spray and set aside. (For added protection, you can add a round of parchment paper along the bottom of the springform as well)
- Prepare the crust by adding about 1 ½ packages graham crackers to a food processor and pulse until you get about 1 ½ cups of crumbs.
- Add in brown sugar and melted butter and pulse until well combined.
- Pour the crumbs into the prepared pan and gently press using the back of a spoon to form the crust. Be sure to bring the crumbs up about 1” up the sides.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and allow to cool on a wire rack.
- Add the softened cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer equipped with a paddle attachment. Cream for 5-6 minutes or until light and fluffy. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the sugar and flour. Once the sugar is combined, increase to medium speed, and mix for an additional 1-2 minutes.
- Add the vanilla extract and mix until just combined.
- Slowly pour in the heavy whipping cream and mix on low speed until combined. Increase the mixer to high speed for about 1 minute.
- Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and mix for an additional 30 seconds before moving on to the next step.
- Reduce the mixer to low speed and add the eggs one at a time until fully incorporated. Be careful not to overmix after adding the eggs.
- Pour half of the cranberry jam on top of the cooled crust and smooth.
- Pour the prepared batter into the springform pan and gently tap to release any air bubbles.
- Bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Then, without opening the oven door, reduce the heat to 200 and bake for an additional 50-55 minutes until the center slightly jiggles and the edges are set. (You are looking for a Jell-o consistency, not a runny/watery consistency. If the center still looks too watery, bake for an additional 5–10-minute checking often. However, the cheesecake will set up more while cooling, so keep that in mind.)
- Turn off the oven and slightly crack the oven door to allow the cheesecake to cool for 15-20 minutes before removing.
- Allow to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled and place in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours but overnight is recommended.
- Once the cheesecake is set, add the remaining cranberry jam to the top of the cheesecake and smooth.
- Top with additional whipped cream, sugar cranberries, and rosemary twigs for added color.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.