Creamy New York–Style Cheesecake

Photo Credit
Becky Luigart-Stayner
The Editors
Makes 8 servings.
Preparation Method
Print Friendly and PDF

Who doesn’t love a creamy New York–Style Cheesecake? The texture of this sour cream cheesecake is like velvet on the tongue … and it’s easier to make than you think!

Tip: When blending cheesecake ingredients, make sure not to overdo it. Beating air into a cheesecake only increases the possibility that it will rise more than it should and then crack as it settles.


1 1/4 cups fine graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons light-brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly butter the sides of an 8-inch springform pan.
  2. Put a shallow pan of hot water on one of the lower racks of your oven (not on the center rack). The water will create steam that will help to prevent your cake from cracking.
  3. For Crust: Combine the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and salt in a bowl. Add the melted butter and mix well. Press the crumbs evenly into the bottom and about 1 inch up the sides of the springform pan.
  4. Bake on the center oven rack for 8 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a cooling rack.


16 ounces cream cheese (not lowfat or whipped), softened
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract or 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  1. Put the cream cheese into a bowl and, using an electric mixer, beat on medium speed while gradually adding the sugar, until smooth and creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each until just blended. Add the sour cream and extracts and beat until evenly mixed. Pour the filling into the crust.
  2. Put the pan on the center oven rack and immediately lower the heat to 325°F. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until the cake rises slightly on the sides. If you nudge the pan, the cake should wobble and not be runny in the center. Turn off the heat and open the oven door slightly. Leave the cake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  3. Transfer to a cooling rack.

Topping (optional):

1 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons sugar
  1. Combine the sour cream and sugar in a small saucepan and stir to blend. Cook on low heat, just until runny; do not boil. While the cake is warm, pour the topping over the center and immediately tilt the pan to spread the topping. Set aside to cool.
  2. Topped or not, cover the cake in the pan with foil and refrigerate for at least 12 hours before serving.
About The Author

The Almanac Chefs

We love introducing fun new recipes as well as time-tested recipes, straight from the archives! Read More from The Almanac Chefs