How to Make The Best Gingerbread Cheesecake For The Holidays

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If you are looking for a delicious twist on a classic recipe, this Gingerbread Cheesecake Recipe will be a hit at your next holiday dinner party.

I can’t believe it’s December already, can you? It seems like the year just flew by and, of course, my first invitation to a holiday potluck took me by surprise. It seemed early, but the safe part was, it wasn’t…

My contribution to the first holiday potluck party had to be, of course, a delicious cheesecake. I added an extra twist with some molasses and ginger. I love cheesecakes because you can create a wide variety of types by just switching up the spices you’re using. The basic elements of a good cheesecake are the crust (usually graham wafers) and the cheese filling. Everything else is up to you!

Once the mousse has set for a couple of hours in the fridge, you can remove your cheesecake from the pan!
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Why Gingerbread?

Many people have a pleasant holiday memory of decorating gingerbread cookies!

Gingerbread cookies are easily among the most popular cookies you’ll see being baked during the holiday season. I love gingerbread cookies, just something about the mix of molasses and spices that just scream Christmas to me.

Some of my favorite memories of the holidays are baking gingerbread men and decorating them with icing and other sugar packed candies! This cheesecake differs from that, but no less delicious!

Gingerbread has long been associated with the holidays, ginger of course, originates from China, but they imported it along the silk road into Europe and now it refers to any sweet treat that combines ginger with molasses. You can read much more about the fascinating history of gingerbread over at The History Kitchen.

Making A Gingerbread Cheesecake

There's a lot of ingredients for this gingerbread cheesecake recipe, but it's worth it!

This recipe starts with a shortbread crust. If you’ve ever had all butter shortbread cookies, they’re delicious. I prefer to buy the shortbread fingers, because it’s easy to feed them into my food processor and grind them into a nice crumbly powder. Then you add in some spices and, of course, melted butter to bind everything together before you press it into a springform pan and bake. A quick tip for pressing the crust in is to use the bottom of a drinking glass (try to find a smooth one).

A tip for pressing your crust into the pan is to use the bottom of a glass drinking glass.

To make the cheesecake filling, I always recommend mixing the ingredients at a low rate of speed on your blender, as that will prevent too much air from getting into your batter. This makes for a nice crack free cheesecake once it comes out of the oven.

Once you have your cheesecake filling on its bed of shortbread crust, you need to add some warm water to the outside of the pan. Foil prevents the water from soaking your cake!

The mousse goes onto the cheesecake once it’s firm and then the whole thing gets topped with some delicious cinnamon flavored whipped cream and some leftover shortbread cookies (or whatever you’d like, for example, some festive sprinkles).

The Recipe

Gingerbread Cheesecake

This Gingerbread Cheesecake recipe is put together nicely with a shortbread crumble crust and a delicious whipped molasses mousse. This dessert is sure to be a hit at your next great holiday party or dinner!

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cheesecake, gingerbread cheesecake, holiday desserts, holiday recipes, how to make cheesecake
Prep Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 40 minutes
Servings 10 Slices
Calories 483 kcal


Shortbread Crust

  • 1 3/4 cups Shortbread cookie crumbs (I used Walmart's "Our Finest" All Butter Shortbread Cookies, but another great brand is Walkers)
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 3/4 tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp Butter

Cheesecake Filling

  • 24 ounces Cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup Packed light brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp All purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup Sour cream
  • 1/4 cup Molasses
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp Ground ginger
  • 2 1/2 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Ground cloves
  • 4 Eggs

Mousse Topping

  • 1 1/4 cup Heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup Icing sugar (also called powdered sugar)
  • 3 tbsp Molasses
  • 3/4 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Ground nutmeg
  • 8 ounces Cream cheese, softened

Cinnamon Whipped Cream

  • 3/4 cup Heavy whipping cream
  • 6 tbsp Icing sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract


The Crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 325F and line the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan with parchment paper and grease the sides.

  2. Combine all the crust ingredients into a bowl.

  3. Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan.

  4. Bake the crust for 10 minutes and set aside to cool.

  5. Once the pan is cool, cover the outside of the pan with aluminum foil and set prepared pan aside.

The Cheesecake Filling

  1. Reduce the oven to 300F.

  2. In a large mixer bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar and flour until well mixed. Use a low speed on your mixer to decrease the amount of air getting into the batter (this will help avoid cracks from forming). Don't forget to scrape the sides of the bowl as you mix!

  3. Add the sour cream, molasses, vanilla extract and spices to the bowl and continue to mix on low speed until well combined.

  4. Add the eggs in one at a time, mixing well.

  5. Pour the cheesecake batter onto the crust and spread evenly.

  6. Place the prepared springform pan with the foil into a larger pan and fill the larger pan with warm water to go about halfway up the springform pan.

  7. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes.

  8. Turn the oven off and let the pan sit in the oven for 30 minutes with the door closed.

  9. Prop open the oven door and continue to let the pan sit in the oven for 30 minutes.

  10. Remove cake from oven and the water bath and chill in the fridge for at least 5 hours until firm (overnight works too).

The Mousse Topping

  1. In a large mixer bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth and set aside.

  2. In another bowl, combine whipping cream, powdered sugar, molasses and spices and whip until stiff peaks form.

  3. Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese and mix until well combined.

  4. With the cheesecake still in the springform pan, smooth the mousse topping over the cheese cake evenly.

  5. Set in the fridge for another 1 to 2 hours until the mousse is firm, then remove from the springform pan.

The Cinnamon Whipped Cream Topping

  1. Add all the ingredients for the whipped cream into a mixing bowl and beat until stiff peaks form.

  2. Pipe the whipped cream around the edges of the cheesecake and decorate with sprinkles, pieces of shortbread cookies or even gingerbread men.

  3. Keep in fridge until ready to serve.

Final Thoughts

This gingerbread cheesecake recipe at first looks daunting, but it’s quite easy to execute and I will definitely add this to one of my favorites from now on. You can never go wrong with a cheesecake for most gatherings (barring any dietary restrictions)! The mousse topping adds an extra layer of gingery goodness to what would otherwise be a standard cheesecake.

I hope you enjoyed this month’s new blog post and let me know if you tried by leaving a comment down below!

Also, be sure to share this post on your favorite social media platform and pin it to Pinterest!

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Until next time, stay crafty!!

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