Wow your family and guests at your holiday table with this dessert.
The holidays are a time to splurge and go the extra mile when preparing the feast. Dessert is no exception.
Cheesecake is probably everyone’s favorite dessert and this one is one of the best I’ve ever tasted. I consider myself an expert on cheesecake too, since I’m from New York City and we know cheesecake!
This is also a wonderful dessert for Thanksgiving. OK, I know pumpkin pie is traditional and a must-have, but if you’re having guests, you may want to offer an alternative just in case you have people who are not crazy about pumpkin. Likewise, this is also an excellent choice for Christmas dessert.
This contains lots of nuts, therefore it’s out for anyone with a nut allergy. However, if you’re in love with anything nutty, then you’ll simply love this cheesecake.
Not only are there nuts in the filling itself, but you’ll also find them in the crust and in the topping. The topping is just some reserved crumb mixture–nothing special to make for it.
If you have the time to fuss a bit, then toast the pecans. I thought of this after the fact, but I will do this the next time I make it because I feel it will improve the flavor. However, it’s totally not necessary. The cake is delicious regardless and even better, it’s very easy to make.
The original recipe called for 1/2 teaspoon of butter extract in addition to the vanilla. I didn’t have that so I left it out. Unless you like that flavor, I suggest you save $4 and don’t buy it specially for this. I haven’t tasted it recently, but I remember it from 40 years ago and the taste was neither buttery nor pleasant. They could have improved it, but I doubt it. Anyway it wasn’t worth the cost for me to find out.
Substituting rum extract for the butter extract would probably taste fantastic. That I would recommend and I am going to do that when I make this again. Yes, it’s that good that it’s a keeper!
Watch The Video
- 1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- ½ cup finely chopped pecans
- ⅓ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup butter, melted
- 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
- 1-1/2 cups sugar
- 2 cups sour cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract (see NOTES)
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans
- In a large bowl, combine the cracker crumbs, pecans, sugar and butter; set aside ⅓ cup for topping. Press remaining crumb mixture onto the bottom and 1 in. up the sides of a greased 9-in. springform pan.
- Place springform pan on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18 in. square). Securely wrap foil around pan.
- In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Beat in the sour cream and vanilla. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold in pecans. Pour into crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture. Place springform pan in a large baking pan; add 1 inch of hot water to larger pan.
- Bake at 325 F until center is almost set, 70-80 minutes. Remove springform pan from water bath. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; cool 1 hour longer. Refrigerate overnight. Remove sides of pan.
*Adapted from Taste of Home Yum