• Ginger-Pecan Crust:
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup pecans (1.2 oz.)
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup cold butter
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake Filling:
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree (canned is fine)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 lbs (20 oz, or 2 1/2 eight oz. bricks) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 4 large eggs

From healthy to indulgent…I’m switching gears today! I’ve had my eye on this cheesecake for as long as I can remember and I thought Thanksgiving was the best time to try the recipe. I know that you’re probably all pie’d out but maybe put this one in your back pocket for a Christmas treat.

Let’s start with the crust.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9″ springform pan and then wrap the bottom with aluminum foil.  Place the flour, sugar, salt, pecans and ginger in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the pecans are ground.  Add in the cold butter and pulse until small balls form.  Add in the water and pulse in small bursts to allow a dough to form.  Drop the dough into the bottom of the prepared pan and press down firmly.  Bake for 20-25 minutes and then cool completely.

Reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees.  In a medium-sized bowl stir together the pumpkin puree, heavy cream, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger and salt and then set aside.  In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until it’s creamy.  Add in the sugars and cornstarch and blend well.  Add in the pumpkin mixture and continue to mix until well blended. Add in the eggs, one at a time, and mix completely before adding another.

Scrape the batter into the prepared crust.  Place the pan into a larger roasting pan, making sure that the foil is secure on the bottom.  Fill the roasting pan with hot water until it reaches halfway up the side of the cheesecake pan.  Bake for 70-80 minutes, until the cheesecake is just slightly wobbly.  Remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow to cool before placing it in the refrigerator.

pumpkin cheesecake

What’s a pumpkin cheesecake without whipped cream?  You’ll need 2 cups of cold whipping cream and 1/2 cup of granulated sugar for this.  In a cooled bowl on your stand mixer, start to beat the whipping cream, starting slow and gradually increasing the speed.  When it begins to thicken, slowly add in the sugar and continue to mix until soft peaks form. Do not overbeat!..You’ll end up with butter.  Spread or pipe decoratively over the top of the cold cheesecake.

And most importantly on this cheesecake are the sugared pumpkin seeds.  Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup hulled raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1 egg white
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In a small bowl, whisk the egg white until it becomes foamy. In a separate bowl, place the pumpkin seeds and top with salt, sugar and cinnamon. Gradually pour just enough of the egg whites over the pumpkin seeds to coat them and then lay them out on a parchment paper covered baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until they are dry.  Once they are cooled you can break them into pieces and use as garnish for the cheesecake.
pumpkin cheesecake