Pumpkin Cheesecake with Streusel Topping and Walnut Pumpkin Snap Crust

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Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Streusel Topping Crumb Crust

Fall has officially arrived! In Southern California, you can tell the seasons have changed when Trader Joe’s stocks its shelves with pumpkin-flavored everything and Starbucks starts pumping out pumpkin spice lattes by the barrel-full. One such pumpkin-incarnation provided the inspiration for this decadent Thanksgiving dessert recipe: pumpkin cheesecake.




Best Pumpkin Products and Treats in Store

If you cannot find pumpkin snaps, ginger snap cookies or graham crackers will work wonderfully. I have to admit though, the pumpkin snap cookies make this cheesecake crust quite spectacular. This pumpkin cheesecake has a lighter texture because of a secret ingredient: Greek yogurt. The yogurt adds just the right amount of tang to balance all the sweetness, and it creates a great texture. The streusel crumb topping, which is chock-full of cinnamon and nutmeg, adds another layer of yum to this dessert. I hope you get to enjoy this Thanksgiving treat with your friends and family. Happy Thanksgiving!

Pumpkin Spice Walnut Streusel Crumb Topping Recipe

 

The cinnamon streusel crumb topping is a faithful stand-by in my kitchen. It makes any baked good extra special, and its addition to this pumpkin cheesecake is no exception!

Pumpkin or Graham Cracker Crumb Crust Recipe for Cheesecake

 

You can use a blender or food processor to pulse the pumpkin snap cookies. If you’ve had an exceedingly taxing day, feel free to place the pumpkin snaps in a ziploc bag and pound them with a rolling pin.

Walnut Cookie Crumb Crust for Pumpkin Cheesecake

 

To create the walnut or pecan “crumbs” for the crust, intermittently pulse the nuts in a blender or food processor. Make sure you don’t over-process the nuts because this will create a nut butter…very tasty, just not what we need here 🙂

Walnut Cookie Crumb Crust for Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

 

You can use a fork (or your hands) to press the crumb mixture into an 8×8 inch pan. I like to work the crumbs up the sides of the pan- it makes the cheesecake look extra pretty when you serve it.

Best Thanksgiving Desserts- Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

 

My favorite trick for creating a creamy, smooth cheesecake filling is letting the cream cheese reach room temperature before working with it. Beating the cream cheese by itself for a few minutes also ensures a smooth texture. 

Cookie Crumb Crust for Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Recipe

To assemble an easy water bath for this cheesecake, just nestle your 8×8 inch pan into a 9×13 inch baking dish. 

How to Make a Water Bath for a Cheesecake Recipe

Make sure the water you pour into the baking dish is hot and that it reaches about 2/3 of the way up the sides of the pan. Oh, and place the pans in the oven before you add the water (trust me, it’s a lot easier this way 🙂 

Cinnamon Streusel Crumb Topping Recipe for Pumpkin Cheesecake

Once the cheesecake has been in the oven for 25 minutes, top it off with the cinnamon streusel crumb topping.Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Streusel Topping Crumb Crust

Here’s the finished product! The cheesecake tastes best when it is served chilled. I typically can’t wait that long, so I can tell you from personal experience that it also tastes amazing warm…with ice cream…and whipped cream 🙂

 

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cinnamon Streusel Topping and Walnut Pumpkin Snap Cookie Crust
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Cinnamon Streusel Crumb Topping
  1. 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  2. 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  3. 1/4 brown sugar, lightly packed
  4. 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  5. 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  6. 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  7. 1/4 walnuts, roughly chopped
Walnut Pumpkin Snap Cookie Crust
  1. 1 1/2 cups pumpkin snap* cookie crumbs
  2. 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  3. 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans, finely ground
  4. 6 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  5. 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  6. 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  7. *You can substitute ginger snap cookie crumbs if you cannot find pumpkin snap cookies
Pumpkin Cheesecake Batter
  1. 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  2. 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  3. 1/3 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  4. 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  5. 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  6. 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  7. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  8. 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
  9. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  10. 2 eggs
  11. 1/3 cup Greek yogurt (2% or whole, not fat-free)
  12. 2 egg yolks
  13. 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
Cinnamon Streusel Crumb Topping
  1. Combine the flour through the pumpkin pie spice. Cream in the softened butter. Then stir in the walnuts. Set aside.
Walnut Pumpkin Snap Cookie Crust
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. For the walnuts or pecans, intermittently pulse them in a food processor or blender to avoid creating walnut or pecan "butter." Combine all dry ingredients for the crust. Then work in the melted butter. Press the crumb mixture into a 8x8 inch square pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
Pumpkin Cheesecake Batter
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, blend the cream cheese on medium speed for 4 minutes. Add the sugars, cream for 4 more minutes. There should be no lumps. Add the remaining ingredients, one at a time, fully incorporating each addition before moving on to the next ingredient. Pour over the baked pumpkin snap cookie crust. Tap the pan on the counter top to remove air bubbles. Nestle the 8x8 inch pan into a 9x13 inch pan. Place this configuration in a preheated 350 degree oven. Fill the 9x13 inch pan with hot water. Bake for 25 minutes, then gingerly sprinkle the streusel crumb topping over the cheesecake batter. Bake for an additional 20-25 minutes, or until the center of the cheesecake no longer jiggles when shaken. Allow the water bath to cool, then remove the 8x8 inch pan to a wire rack to cool further. Refrigerate overnight. Enjoy!
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