Mini Cheesecakes (in a Standard Muffin Pan)

Did you know you can bake cheesecake in a muffin pan? This recipe for creamy mini cheesecakes is so simple and perfect for a small crowd. Make sure you use a standard 12-count muffin pan. For extra mini cheesecakes baked in a mini muffin pan, see recipe note.

stack of mini cheesecakes with a cherry on top

Cheesecake is one of my favorite desserts and I have two recipes that steal my heart each time: classic cheesecake recipe and no-bake cheesecake. Both recipes serve A LOT of people. If you love cheesecake, but don’t need an entire cheesecake in the house, try mini cheesecakes instead.

I have a few mini cheesecake recipes:

These recipes yield anywhere from 16-24 muffin-sized cheesecakes. They’re all fun and flavorful, but maybe 16-24 mini cheesecakes is still too many. I felt inspired to reduce down even further and leave out all the extra goodies. Today’s recipe yields 9-10 mini cheesecakes. They’re simple, straightforward, and at only a few bites each, they’re awesome for portion control.

mini cheesecakes with whipped cream and cherries on top on a white plate

cheesecake batter in a muffin pan before baking

Video Tutorial

How to Make Cheesecake in a Muffin Pan

All we’re doing here is scaling down both the graham cracker crust and cheesecake batter from my classic cheesecake. Use a little more than 1 Tablespoon of both the crust and batter in each mini cheesecake. Like the big version, pre-bake the crust and make sure your cheesecake batter ingredients are at room temperature.

Bake the cheesecakes in a standard 12-count muffin pan. There’s no need for a springform pan and no need to mess with a water bath. Mini cheesecakes are not only easier than a full cheesecake, they take half the time to prepare!

Want to add some flavor? Use my white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars recipe and see those recipe notes for how to turn them into mini cheesecakes. Love those.

mini cheesecake on a white plate

Get creative with the toppings. The baked and cooled cheesecakes will slightly sink down in the centers, but all is not lost. The way I see it, the dip gives you more room for toppings!

Cheesecake Toppings:

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mini cheesecakes with whipped cream and cherries on top on a white plate

Mini Cheesecakes

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours, 15 minutes
  • Yield: 9-10 individual cheesecakes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Bake deliciously creamy mini cheesecakes in a muffin pan! This easy recipe yields 9 individual cheesecakes that are perfect for portion control. Use a standard 12-count muffin pan. For extra mini cheesecakes baked in a mini muffin pan, see recipe note.


Ingredients

Graham Cracker Crust

  • 2/3 cup (65g) graham cracker crumbs (about 45 full sheet graham crackers)
  • 2 Tablespoons (29g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 Tablespoon (12g) granulated sugar

Cheesecake


Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a standard 12-count muffin pan with 9-10 liners. (For a mini muffin pan, see recipe note.) This recipe yields only 9-10 mini cheesecakes, so there will be 2-3 empty. You could skip the liners and spray the pan with non-stick spray or grease with butter, but the mini cheesecakes are pretty stubborn to release from the pan. I recommend using liners to make things easier.
  2. Make the crust: Combine all of the crust ingredients in a medium bowl. Mixture will be sandy. Firmly press a heaping Tablespoon of crust mixture into each liner. (I use closer to 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons of crust per mini cheesecake.) Pre-bake for 5 minutes.
  3. Make the filling: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed in a large bowl until the mixture is smooth and creamy, about 1 minute. Add the sour cream, vanilla extract, and lemon juice then beat until fully combined. On medium speed, add the egg and beat just until combined. Batter will be thick. Divide the batter between all the liners. It’s about 1 Tablespoon per cheesecake.
  4. Bake until the edges are set and the centers only slightly jiggle, about 18-20 minutes.
  5. Set the pan on a wire rack and allow cheesecakes to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, then transfer to the refrigerator and chill for at least 2 hours and up to 1 day. If chilling for longer than 2 hours, loosely cover the cheesecakes. The cheesecakes will slightly sink in the middle as they chill. It gives you room for toppings!
  6. Once chilled, add toppings and serve. Cover and store leftover cheesecakes in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Prepare the cheesecakes through step 3 up to 2-3 days in advance. Cover unbaked cheesecakes and store in the refrigerator until ready to bake. Continue with step 4. Freeze individual baked cheesecakes for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
  2. Special Tools: KitchenAid Stand Mixer | Glass Mixing Bowls | Muffin Pan | White Plate
  3. More than 9 Mini Cheesecakes: This recipe is fantastic for doubling, tripling, or quadrupling. Simply double, triple, or quadruple each ingredient, including in the crust.
  4. Super Mini Cheesecakes: Line a 24-count mini muffin pan with mini muffin liners or grease with nonstick spray or butter. For easy and seamless removal from the pan, using liners is preferable. Make the crust and cheesecake batter as directed. Press 2 teaspoons of crust into each mini muffin liner. Pre-bake at 350°F (177°C) for 4 minutes. Remove from the oven and fill each with cheesecake batter. Bake for 10-11 minutes or until the cheesecakes appear set on top. Continue with step 6 in this recipe. Yields approximately 30 super mini cheesecakes.
  5. Non-US Readers: With the help of other non-US readers who do not have access to graham crackers, here is a basic crust recipe you can follow for these mini cheesecakes. 110g digestive biscuits + 45g butter + no sugar. Grind the digestive biscuits into crumbs, melt the butter, and mix with the crumbs. Press into liners and pre-bake as directed in step 2. And from what I understand, spreadable cream cheese sold in a tub in countries outside of the US is a little different from the spreadable cream cheese in the US. It’s thicker, sturdier, and more solid and should be OK to make cheesecake. I have no experience with it, but this is what I’ve heard from other non-US readers.

214 Comments

  1. barbara k peatman says:

    Hi Lexi,
    Thanks so much for your response about freezing mini cheesecakes. I had not scrolled down far enough for those details. It’s a GO! I’ll start making blueberry and strawberry for July 4th. Can I freeze them with the fruit topping on or should I wait until that morning to put on the toppings? Thanks. Barbara

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Barbara, it would be best to wait until that morning to top with the fruit!

  2. Try this for the 1st time yesterday, one word comes to mind, Wow. Super easy to make and super yummy. It’s just enough to take the edge off of wanting a full size cheesecake. Family enjoyed it!!! I will definitely be making these again.

  3. Hi,
    Thanks for sharing this amazing recipe. What’s the substitute for sour cream? Plain yogurt was mentioned in one of your replies. But unable to find full fat yogurt. So is there any other substitute ? Can whipping cream with lemon be used instead. Thanks

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Vincy, plain full-fat yogurt really is the best substitute for sour cream. We don’t recommend whipping cream in its place. Hope you’re able to find some yogurt soon!

  4. these say “mini” so I used a mini muffin pan, but are you sure they’re mini? I followed the recipe to a T and they turned out horribly. first, when I was trying to fill them with the crust, they were filled almost to the top. so I had to put about half a tablespoon in each one, and even had some left over (I made 10). then, I had a ton of filling left over. and I baked them for 16 minutes, and they are brown, and split 3 ways in each one, and they feel like rubber

    1. Mini means they are just not a full size cake. They need to be baked in a regular size cupcake pan.

      1. yeah I got it now. I just love how the creator never said anything to me, but changed her title and description. thank you!

  5. For those of you who use mini cheesecake pans with the removable bottoms and for those of you who weigh your ingredients: I made nine of these cakes in my pan using the 1 1/2 TBSPS. of crust (didn’t bother weighing that) and 43 grams of batter in each cavity and I baked them for 15 1/2 minutes. It’s not that I am as fussy as I sound on the bake time; I was simply watching them for the last few minutes of baking and that was the point where I decided they were done. I let mine cool to room temperature over a rack before chilling them overnight in the refrigerator and I left the cakes in the pan for that chill time, covering the entire top of the pan with plastic wrap. I find chilling them in the pan makes it easy to remove the cakes the following day. Also, if I decide to freeze some, I place the pan (or the cakes if they are already out of the pan) on a tray, freeze for about an hour or two, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and pop them in either a zip top bag or a container suitable for freezing. To thaw, I take them out the night before, remove the wrapping, making sure they are still in a covered container and then I let them come up to chilled temperature in the refrigerator.

  6. Hi Sally!
    Is it possible to use reduced fat cream cheese as my grocery store ran out of regular cream cheese?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Sue! Full fat is best, but low fat may work in a pinch. The end result may be less firm.

  7. Excellent recipe read the reviews added 1/2 Tbsp flour and cooked them @ 350 degrees convection for 15 minutes.
    They turned out perfect and they didn’t fall.
    Topped them with blueberry sauce.
    So yummy!
    Thanks for a great recipe.
    Cheers

  8. I followed the directions exactly as written and measured everything. They came out with a sour taste. What happened?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Nicole, is there any chance that any of the ingredients were spoiled or close to expiration? The final cheesecakes may be a bit tangy, but shouldn’t taste sour.

  9. Hi. What is the size of each cavity for the 12 cup muffin pan?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Valerie, the size of each cavity can vary slightly depending on the brand of pan you are using. If you look up your pan on the internet (or are searching for a new one), the exact dimensions should be provided. Any 12-cup muffin pan should work perfectly for this recipe!

  10. stephanie l Maxwell says:

    If anyone is complaining about this recipe not turning out it’s your fault. If you follow the simple directions your cheesecakes will be perfect. This is my go to recipe for every cheesecake I make. I have not ever had 1 complaints ever. I’ve had people pay me to make this cheesecake recipe and I add my own toppings or fillings. This is the best base or just plain cheesecake.

  11. Could I get some advice on removal? I use paper liners, but liquid seems to seep out of the base and stick them to the bottom of the pan. I have made them twice, and each time had to dig the cheesecakes out with a fork which leaves little marks in the side. I’m going to try to get some aluminium lined or silicone liners but in the meantime has anyone else had issues getting out the paper liners? Thanks!

  12. Epic fail for me. They came out of the oven looking beautiful but as they cooked they totally cratered. From the recipe I was expecting some indents but not this. So disappointed as I have used your other recipes with great success.

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Karen, this is totally normal – the cheesecakes will slightly sink in the middle as they chill. It gives you room for toppings! Hope you still enjoyed these mini cheesecakes.

  13. Can i make them in the cupcake tin straight away because I want to make them but don’t have cupcake liners (papers) right now or will it affect the recipe

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Malek! Without liners, it will be very difficult to remove the mini cheesecakes from the muffin pan. We strongly suggest using them for best results.

  14. I made these starting with a tablespoon of filling for each standard muffin. It barely covered the crust so I added maybe 1/2 tablespoon more. They came out too flat, not enough filling. ????

    1. Hi Candace, these cheesecakes are supposed to be flat or concave. When using more filling, I find they puff up, overflow, or significantly crack on top. Feel free to test it if you ever try the recipe again.

  15. It says use a full sized cupcake pan I have a mini meaning only 6 cupcakes per pan, I hope this works just the same! I’ll be back w. My experience w. This recipe I use her recipe for the full size cheesecake & it NEVER fails me

  16. i have made this recipe 4 or 5 times, and making again tonight! never fails! and always delicious

  17. Hi sally, can I skip the eggs?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Amitha! Eggs are an important part of this recipe, we don’t recommend skipping them. You may love this recipe for mini no-bake cheesecakes that doesn’t require eggs. Let us know if you give them a try!

  18. This was so easy and delicious! No cracks! I got 9 minis out of this, but it probably could have been 8 that filled the liners more. Love that it’s a small batch. I added a pinch of cardamom and cinnamon in the crust and topped with whipped cream and a high quality maraschino for a friend’s birthday. He loves cheesecake and he loved them.

  19. Hi Sallly, looking Forward to try this week,
    Can I make it in silicone tartalette moulds

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      We haven’t tested it, but don’t see why not! Let us know if you give it a try.

  20. I made a batch of these. Excellent!!
    I did put the pan with water in the oven as it was heating
    Left in the oven with the door cracked for 60 minutes, they didn’t crack or sink. These are just as good as the Cheesecake Factory!

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