Rich and creamy, this New York Cheesecake features a homemade graham cracker crust, irresistibly sweet and tangy cheesecake filling, and whipped cream topping. Better than any restaurant!
The Best New York Cheesecake Recipe
If I’m at a restaurant and ordering dessert, it’s likely going to be a New York style cheesecake. Rich, creamy, and just a bit tangy, I just can’t get enough!
While I’ve shared many other cheesecake recipes on this site, like instant pot vanilla cheesecake and bananas foster cheesecake, today I wanted to take it back to the basics. This New York cheesecake recipe is just like what you would order at a restaurant. It’s simple, without a lot of added flavors, but that really allows the tangy cheesecake filling to shine through.
I also decided to make a traditional graham cracker crust and then to top the entire cheesecake with homemade whipped creamy. The end result is one of my favorite cheesecakes ever!
What’s The Difference Between New York Cheesecake and Regular Cheesecake?
New York cheesecake is similar to regular vanilla cheesecake but it’s known for being rich and creamy, with a filling made of cream cheese and sour cream. It also usually doesn’t have a lot of extra ingredients or flavors added to it. It’s the simple, classic slice of cheesecake that you often get at restaurants.
One great thing about New York style cheesecake is that it’s not usually prepared with a waterbath but instead cools slowly in the oven after baking to maintain the ultra creamy inside.
This classic cheesecake recipe is made with just a handful of ingredients. See the recipe card below for measurements.
- Graham crackers – Mixed with melted butter to form the crust.
- Butter – For the crust I like to use unsalted sweet cream butter.
- Cream cheese – It’s important to soften the cream cheese to room temperature before beginning the recipe, for a smooth and creamy cheesecake.
- Sugar – Adds a sweetness to the cheesecake.
- Whole milk – It’s important to not substitute skim milk here.
- Sour cream – Adds the classic tangy flavor to the cheesecake.
- Vanilla extract
- Flour – Helps prevent the cheesecake from cracking.
- Heavy whipping cream – The base of the homemade whipped topping.
- Powdered sugar – Sweetens the whipped cream.
- Piping bag – I use a piping bag with a star tip for piping on the whipped cream.
How to Make New York Cheesecake
Making a New York style cheesecake at home is probably a lot easier than you think!
- Prepare the pan. Preheat the oven to 325. Place a circle of parchment paper on the bottom of your spring form pan.
- Prepare the crust. Crush the graham crackers into fine crumbs, then mix with the melted butter. Press into the bottom of the springform pan and 3 inches up the sides. Set aside.
- Make the cheesecake filling. Beat the cream cheese with the sugar until smooth. Mix in the milk and then add the eggs one at a time. Stir in the sour cream, vanilla, and flour. Mix until smooth. Pour the mixture into the crust.
- Bake. Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
- Cool in the oven. Turn the oven off and then allow the cheesecake to cool for about 3 hours in the oven.
- Chill. Chill the cheesecake overnight in the fridge.
- Make the whipped cream. Beat the heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Mix in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Transfer to the piping bag.
- Decorate the cheesecake. Pipe dollops of the whipped cream all over the cheesecake then use a knife to smooth it out. Then use the remaining whipped cream to pipe dollops around the edge.
Tips for the Best Homemade Cheesecake
Here are a few tips for making the best New York baked cheesecake.
- Make sure the cream cheese is softened. If your cream cheese is still hard, it will take longer to mix and you’ll likely end up with a lumpy cheesecake filling.
- Use full fat ingredients. This is not the recipe for low fat cream cheese or sour cream. Using low fat cream cheese in particular can cause the filling to be much softer and not set completely.
- Don’t overmix the ingredients. After each addition to the filling, mix until just combined. Overmixing will add more add to the mixture which can cause the cheesecake to crack later.
- Cool in the oven first. Cooling the cheesecake in the oven is key to preventing cracks from forming. Do not open the door during this time, just allow the oven to naturally cool down.
- Chill overnight. Once the cheesecake cools to room temperature, it’s not quite time to dig in yet. I always recommend letting the cheesecake chill overnight to ensure it sets fully, though 6 hours can be enough if you’re in a rush.
Keep your cheesecake chilled until serving. I find the whipped cream to be the perfect topping but you can either omit it or add to it. Chocolate syrup, caramel sauce, and fruit pie filling (like cherry or blueberry) are all great cheesecake toppings. You could also add some mini chocolate chips, crushed Oreos, or graham cracker crumbs if desired.
How to Store Leftovers
You can store any leftover New York cheesecake in the fridge for up to 5 days. Keep it tightly covered to prevent it from drying out. I recommend pressing plastic wrap down on any exposed sides.
Can You Freeze New York Cheesecake?
Yes, this cheesecake freezes well. However, I recommend doing so before adding the whipped topping. Once the cheesecake as fully set in the fridge overnight, wrap it (or individual slices) tightly in plastic wrap then in foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then enjoy.
More Cheesecake Recipes:
- Red Velvet Cheesecake
- Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake
- Red White and Blue Cheesecake
- Turtle Brownie Cheesecake
New York Cheesecake
- 2 packages of original graham crackers
- 2 tbsp unsalted sweet cream butter melted
- 1 C heavy whipping cream
- 1/2 C powder sugar
- 1 TSP vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325
- Cut out a circle of parchment paper to fit on the bottom of the spring form pan
- Using a ziplock bag, crush the graham crackers until fine crumbs, sand like texture.
- Using a medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs with melted butter.
- Press onto bottom of springform pan and about 3 inches up the sides
- Set aside
- Using a standing mixer, mix cream cheese with sugar until smooth.
- Mix in milk, and then mix in the eggs one at a time, mixing just enough to incorporate.
- Mix in sour cream, vanilla and flour until smooth.
- Pour filling into the crust
- Bake in the oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes
- Turn the oven off, and let the cheesecake completely cool. About 3 hours
- This will help prevents cracking.
- Once it’s completely cool chill in refrigerator overnight
- Using a standing mixer, mix the heavy whipping cream on medium speed until stiff peaks form
- Mix in the powder sugar and vanilla extract
- Scoop whipped cream into the piping bag
- Pull out the cheesecake and pipe big dollops of whipped cream all over the cheesecake
- Using a flat spatula or a knife, smooth the whipped cream over the top of the cheesecake
- Using remaining whipped cream, pipe dollops around the edging