i came across this recipe when i was looking around online for bloggers who decorate their EC planners since mine is coming in soon. i knew i had to make them. first of all, i love cheesecake. but it’s a pain to make and hard to serve at school, which is what i needed something for. you would need plates, something to cut it with, forks, etc. so little mini cheesecakes seemed easier. and second, i freaking love salted caramel. it’s the perfect combo of salty and sweet.
i did tweak the recipe a little bit which i’ve noted below. i also used the pioneer woman’s caramel sauce instead of the one with the original recipe. the recipe will make a little over two dozen. make sure you use paper cup liners. foil will result in a bad flavor transfer. also, you will need several muffin tins for the baking process. i had to split the recipe because when i realized that indeed i only had a 12 cup muffin tin. it took longer but i didn’t have a choice at 9 pm. by the way, this whole process takes several hours so make sure to block out that time to make them.
- 2 cups finely crushed graham crackers (about 12-14 full sheets)
- 3 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 7 Tbsp salted butter, melted
preheat oven to 350 degrees. put the graham crackers in a food processor to quickly crush them. in a mixing bowl, whisk together crushed graham crackers with 3 tbsp granulated sugar. then, pour in melted butter and stir mixture until evenly coated. divide graham cracker mixture among 24 paper lined muffin cups (or more – i had extra graham cracker mixture and batter), adding about a heaping tbsp to each. press mixture into an even layer using the back of the tablespoon . bake in preheated oven 5 minutes. remove from oven and allow to cool while preparing filling.
- 4 (8 oz) pkg cream cheese, softened
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour
in a small mixing bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar with 3 Tbsp flour until well blended. add softened cream cheese to a separate mixing bowl (i used my mixer) and pour sugar mixture over top. blend mixture on low speed until smooth.
- 4 large eggs
mix in eggs one at a time and blend on low speed, while scrapping sides and bottom of bowl and mixing just until combined after each addition. do not overmix.
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
add vanilla, sour cream and heavy cream and mix just until combined. tap mixing bowl against counter top about 30 times to release some of the air bubbles. (this is vital to a smooth cheesecake!!) divide mixture among muffin cups filling each cup nearly full. again, tap the muffin tins against the counter to release the bubbles. then, bake in preheated oven 20 – 23 minutes. the centers should still jiggle slightly. don’t overbake (if they begin to crack they are starting to become overbaked). place a shallow pan of water below the muffin tins to help infuse moisture. remove from oven and allow to cool 1 hour. cover loosely with plastic wrap and transfer to refrigerator and chill at least 2 hours. serve chilled with a spoonful of the pioneer woman’s caramel sauce and a pinch of coarse sea salt. chill again until ready to serve. this is an important part of this recipe, which we discovered at school when they were left out for a couple of hours. not that the mini cheesecakes didn’t still taste awesome, but they were soft and had to be eaten with a fork or spoon. so keep those babies in the fridge before they’re ready to go. 🙂 enjoy!
recipe reference: cooking classy