- For the crust:
- 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 6 tablespoons butter (melted)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- For the cheesecake:
- 22 ounces cream cheese (2 3/4 blocks) (room temperature)
- 1 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 16 ounces sour cream (plus 2/3 cup sour cream) (room temperature)
- 4 large eggs (whisked, room temperature)
Graham Cracker Crust Preheat the oven to 325º Fahrenheit. In a medium bowl, mix together the cracker crumbs, melted butter, and sugar. Press the cracker crumbs into the bottom of the springform pan. Bake the crust for about 6 minutes or until golden brown. Allow the crust to cool completely. (Use any type of cookie or cracker that you’d like. Think any oreo flavor, gingersnaps, or pecan Sandies.)
Place the cream cheese in a large bowl. Use 22 ounces of cream cheese which is 2 8-ounce blocks and then an additional 6 ounces. The cream cheese should be at room temperature. Use a hand mixer on low speed to cream the cream cheese until it is smooth. Don’t beat too much air into the cream cheese. Mix on low speed just until smooth and any lumps are out.
With the mixer on low speed, mix in the sugar and vanilla extract. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. Mix in the sour cream and mix on low speed just until blended.
Crack the eggs into a small bowl. Use a hand whisk to gently whisk the eggs together to break up the yolks. Don’t whisk them too much. You don’t want them frothy.
Add the eggs to the cream cheese mixture and blend the eggs into the cream cheese mixture. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix just until combined.
Wrap the bottom of the springform pan in foil. We use at least two layers of foil and it should come up mostly to the top of the pan. This prevents water from getting into the pan. Or use a silicone mold! Then you don’t waste foil.
Get a large baking pan. If you have a 9″ springform pan then use at least a 10×15″ pan if not one just a little bigger. Heat water to very, very hot. It does not have to be boiling, but should be steaming. Pour the water into the pan. I usually don’t pour it all in first because you don’t want it to overflow into the cheesecake. Place the cheesecake in the center of the pan in the water. Add any additional water needed to get the water level up about half way.
Place the cheesecake (in the water bath) in the preheated oven. Allow the cake to bake for 60 minutes. Do not open the oven. After 60 minutes, turn off the oven and allow the cheesecake to sit in the oven for another 5 hours. Don't open the oven. Just allow the cheesecake to sit in the oven while the oven cools. After 5 hours, remove the cheesecake from the oven and the pan. Remove the foil wrap. Loosely cover the cheesecake and place it in the refrigerator to firm up overnight.
Serve the next day with your favorite toppings.