Easy Chocolate Cheesecake // Beckham + BelleMy family does Christmas Eve right with a spread of hor’douvres, desserts, and drinks. We don’t do a meal and since I generally prefer all day grazing, this is a perfect setup in my mind. Last year I contributed a cheesecake to the spread. Cheesecake is one of my Dad’s favorite desserts (he actually claims that the White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake I made him earlier this year is now more specifically, his favorite dessert). I’ve always loved baking but making cheesecakes has become a new baking favorite of mine. They’re also fairly easy to make though can sometimes require a bit of a time commitment and almost always pre-planning. Anyway I figured making a cheesecake for Christmas Eve wasn’t really a bad tradition to start and actually a great one, so this was officially my 2nd annual Christmas Eve cheesecake.
Easy Chocolate Cheesecake // Beckham + Belle

EASY CHOCOLATE CHEESECAKE

recipe adapted from Dorie Greenspan

Ingredients:

Crust – 
1 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs
2 T. sugar
4 T unsalted butter, melted

Filling – 
3, 8 oz. packages reduced fat cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 c. sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
pinch of salt
6 oz. dark chocolate, melted
Additional dark chocolate, shaved, for garnish

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray or grease a 9in springform pan.

Crust – 
In a food processor, pulse the graham crackers, sugar and butter together until moist.
Pour the crust mixture into the prepared pan and press along the bottom and up the sides of the pan (approx. 1.5 inches up the side if possible). Freeze the crust for approx. 10 minutes.
Bake the crust in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool while you prepare the filling.

Filling – 
In a large food processor or blender, add the cream cheese and sugar. Blend until white and smooth, approx. 2 minutes. Add the eggs, vanilla, salt and pulse approx. 6 times, scraping down the sides in between to ensure all ingredients are fully incorporated. Add the melted chocolate and pulse a couple more time until blended.
Scrape the filling into the cooled crust.
Fill a large pan (I use a roasting pan) with approx. 2 inches of water and place on the bottom rack in the oven (optional). This helps keep the oven heat moist and helps prevent the cheesecake from cracking while baking.
Bake the cheesecake on the middle rack of the oven for approx. 40-45 minutes.
Transfer to a cooling rack. Once cooled to room temperature, refrigerate for at least 8 hours or ideally, overnight, before serving.
Garnish with shaved chocolate (optional).

The cheesecake can be stored in the refrigerator for up to three days or frozen, wrapped well, for up to two months. Defrost in the refrigerator before serving.

Easy Chocolate Cheesecake // Beckham + Belle

Enjoy!
-Stephanie