Today: Get My No Fail, Easy Cookbook Series for 60% OFF
Buy Now

Lemon Cheesecake

close up shot of lemon cheesecake with a slice being removed with a spatula
Lemony, bright and so decadent, this rich lemon cheesecake is the perfect dessert for any gathering.
Jump to Recipe
Table of Contents
  1. LEMON CHEESECAKE INGREDIENTS
  2. HOW TO MAKE THIS LEMON CHEESECAKE RECIPE
  3. HOW TO SERVE
  4. STORAGE
  5. FAQ
  6. MORE RECIPES YOU'LL LOVE
  7. JUMP TO RECIPE

Tangy, refreshing, and creamy, this simple lemon cheesecake is the perfect marriage of summer flavors. The sweet flavor of the vanilla crust complements the light, velvety cream cheese and lemon cake for an easy dessert that will melt in your mouth.

You can’t go wrong with cheesecake, and the options are endless. Try blueberry cheesecake, mint chocolate cheesecake, Reese’s cheesecake and pecan pie cheesecake.

close up shot of lemon cheesecake with a slice being removed with a spatula

MORE CHEESECAKE RECIPES:
Classic Cheesecake | Carrot Cake Cheesecake


LEMON CHEESECAKE INGREDIENTS

lemon cheesecake raw ingredients that are labeled

You will need:

For the Crust

  • 2 ½ cups vanilla wafer crumbs, ground (the contents of an 11-ounce box of cookies)
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the Filling

  • 3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest, from 1 large lemon
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, from the 1 large lemon that was zested

For the Garnish

  • 1 (10-ounce) jar of lemon curd, good quality
  • 1 (6.5-ounce) can extra creamy whip cream spray topping

Pro Tip: Make sure your cream cheese and sour cream are the full-fat versions to ensure your cake is as creamy as it can be.

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

Citrus flavor: This cheesecake can be adapted depending on the citrus flavor you would like to use. Lime or orange are fantastic options to change up the recipe a bit.

Crust: You can substitute boxed graham cracker crumbs in the crust to make this an even easier cheesecake.

Text

HOW TO MAKE THIS LEMON CHEESECAKE RECIPE

PRO TIP: If your wafers do not come pre-crushed, either place them in a Ziploc bag and use a rolling pin to crush them quickly and mess-free, or use a food processor to turn them into crumbs.

STEP ONE: Make the crust by combining the vanilla wafer crumbs, flour, sugar, salt, and melted butter in a medium-sized bowl.

lemon cheesecake process shot of ingredients being combined in a bowl

STEP TWO: Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan that is lightly sprayed with baking spray. Make sure the crumb is tightly packed and goes up the side of the pan about 1 inch. Set aside.

PRO TIP: You can place your springform pan on a parchment-lined sheet tray prior to filling. This will make it easier to transport your cheesecake to and from the oven.

PRO TIP: If you do not have a springform pan, you can use a deep-dish pie plate. Just make sure that it is at least 2 inches deep and 9 inches wide. If you want to freeze your cheesecake in this dish, make sure it is a freezer-safe dish.

lemon cheesecake process shot of wafer crumb mixture being pressed into bottom of a pan

STEP THREE: To make the filling, in a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth.

STEP FOUR: Add the eggs to the cream cheese mixture, one egg at a time until each egg is incorporated. Do this at a low speed so that you do not incorporate too much air into the batter. 

lemon cheesecake process shot of ingredients being blended into a bowl

STEP FIVE: Add the vanilla, sour cream, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Mix the batter just until all the ingredients are incorporated, and the batter is smooth.

lemon cheesecake process shot of ingredients being blended into a bowl

STEP SIX: Pour the batter over the crust and bake your cheesecake in an oven preheated to 350°F for 60 minutes, or until the top looks set but slightly jiggly. Do not let the top brown.

lemon cheesecake process shot of before and after cheesecake is baked in a pan

STEP SEVEN: Turn off your oven and crack your oven door open, about 2 inches, and allow your cheesecake to cool in the oven for 1 hour. After that, you can remove your cheesecake and place it on a cooling rack on your kitchen counter until it cools completely another hour. This helps keep your cheesecake from cracking.

STEP EIGHT: After your cheesecake has cooled on the counter, spread the lemon curd in a thin, even layer over the top of your cheesecake. This will cover any cracks your cheesecake may have gotten while cooling. Garnish with whipped cream and lemon slices.

lemon cheesecake process shot of cheesecake topped with lemon curd, whipped cream, and lemon slices

STEP NINE: Refrigerate your cheesecake for at least 2 to 4 hours. Once your cheesecake is completely cool and refrigerated, run your knife around the edges and un-mould your cheesecake from the springform pan.

PRO TIP: Slice the cheesecake while it is cold to avoid a messy cut. Dip a knife in hot water, dry the blade and then slice. Clean and rewarm the knife after each cut.

HOW TO SERVE

Garnish your cheesecake with whipped topping or your own whipped cream and a slice of fresh lemon or lemon zest. You could also top it with fresh fruit. Pick a local fruit that is in season. Raspberries and blueberries both make an especially lovely match with the lemon flavor.

Serve iced tea, raspberry iced tea, sweet peach iced tea, or our southern strawberry sweet tea on the side.

STORAGE

IN THE FRIDGE: You can store your cheesecake covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

IN THE FREEZER: If you want to freeze your cooled cheesecake, just wrap it tightly with plastic wrap BEFORE you put your top layer of lemon curd on it. It will keep for 2 months in the freezer. When ready to eat, take it out of the freezer the night before and let it thaw completely in the refrigerator overnight. Once thawed, top with lemon curd and garnishes.

lemon cheesecake on a cake serving tray with a slice missing

Delicious, smooth and lemony cream cheese and an amazing crust combine to create this simply perfect lemon cheesecake. You will love how fresh and light this dessert is!

FAQ

Can I substitute lemon extract for lemon juice in cheesecake?

Yes, you can substitute lemon extract for lemon juice. Since the lemon extract is far more concentrated than lemon juice, you will only need a couple of drops of the extract to replace the lemon juice.

Can lemon cheesecake be frozen?

This cheesecake will freeze very well. Wrap in plastic wrap and store in the freezer in an airtight container. Thaw in the fridge overnight.

Can this lemon cheesecake be made ahead?

Absolutely! Since this cheesecake needs time to chill and set, it is actually best to make it ahead of time. Make it 24 hours in advance of serving for the best results.

How do you prevent your cheesecake from cracking?

To prevent your cheesecake from cracking, don’t overmix your batter as it will cause bubbles that will burst during baking, potentially causing cracks on top. Also, don’t over bake your cheesecake and once your cheesecake is finished baking, let it sit cooling in the oven for an hour. This also helps prevent cracking on the top.

MORE RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE

Get a Free Cookbook
Subscribe now to receive our FREE Sweet & Treats digital cookbook with 15 amazing desserts inside!
close up shot of lemon cheesecake with a slice being removed with a spatula

Lemon Cheesecake

No ratings yet
Lemony, bright and so decadent, this rich lemon cheesecake is the perfect dessert for any gathering.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 5 hours 20 minutes
Servings 12 slices

Ingredients
  

Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups vanilla wafer crumbs ground (the contents of an 11-ounce box of cookies)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted

Filling

  • 24 ounce cream cheese room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest from 1 large lemon
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice from the 1 large lemon that was zested

Garnish

  • 10 ounce lemon curd good quality
  • 6.5 ounce extra creamy whip cream spray topping

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 9-inch springform pan with baking spray. Set aside.
  • Make the crust by combining the vanilla wafer crumbs, flour, sugar, salt, and melted butter in a medium-sized bowl.
  • Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the springform pan so that it is tightly packed and goes up the side of the pan about 1 inch. Set aside.
  • To make the filling, in a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time until each egg is incorporated. Do this at a low speed so that you do not incorporate too much air into the batter.
  • Add the vanilla, sour cream, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Mix the batter just until all the ingredients are incorporated, and the batter is smooth.
  • Pour the batter over the crust and bake your cheesecake for 60 minutes, or until the top looks set but slightly jiggly. Do not let the top brown.
  • Turn off your oven and crack your oven door open, about 2 inches, and allow your cheesecake to cool in the oven for 1 hour. After that, you can remove your cheesecake and place it on a cooling rack on your kitchen counter until it cools completely another hour. This helps keep your cheesecake from cracking.
  • After your cheesecake has cooled on the counter, spread the lemon curd in a thin, even layer over the top of your cheesecake. This will cover any cracks your cheesecake may have gotten while cooling.
  • Refrigerate your cheesecake for at least 2 to 4 hours.

Nutrition

Calories: 593kcal | Carbohydrates: 59g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 37g | Saturated Fat: 21g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 141mg | Sodium: 490mg | Potassium: 189mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 45g | Vitamin A: 1172IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 99mg | Iron: 2mg
Have You Tried This Recipe?Follow me on Pinterest @spaceshipslb

Proudly Prepared by the Spaceships Kitchen

You May Also Like

Reader Interactions

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating




Comments

16108

Free Membership!

Get all our new recipes straight to

your inbox plus a BONUS

download in your first email! ❤