No-Bake Cheesecake Jars

This is a full page dedicated to homemade individual no-bake cheesecake jars! Use this simple no-bake recipe when you need a quick and crowd-pleasing 30 minute dessert. Have fun with different flavors and toppings, too!

jars of individual no bake cheesecakes

No bake cheesecake jars are a fun individual dessert to serve when you’re short on time and don’t feel like turning on the oven. There’s literally no baking involved and the entire dessert takes around 30 minutes. You only need a handful of familiar ingredients and some cute little jars. Individual desserts have been all the rage the past several years and this mason jar dessert trend isn’t disappearing any time soon.

I’ve published no bake cheesecake and a classic baked cheesecake recipe on my blog, both of which take hours to either bake, cool, and/or chill. Shortcut cheesecake, here we come!

no bake cheesecake jars

Why You’ll Love Individual No-Bake Cheesecake Jars

If you’ve ever enjoyed my no-bake cheesecake recipe, you know you’re in for a real treat with this mini version. You see, no-bake cheesecake (either served as a whole or in jars) is a lot easier than baked cheesecake. Without eggs and baking, there’s no way to mess up this dessert. You can’t over-bake it, you can’t over-whip the eggs, and there’s no cheesecake water bath involved. If summer was a dessert, it would be no-bake cheesecake jars.

Here’s what I appreciate and know you will too:

  1. Easy recipe
  2. Creamiest cheesecake filling
  3. Few tools required– just a mixer and a couple bowls
  4. Ready in 30 minutes
  5. Unlimited flavors & topping options
  6. Convenient to transport to parties, BBQs, baby showers, & other events
  7. Did I mention no baking?

Video Tutorial: No Bake Cheesecake Jars

Before we get to the written out recipe, let’s review each layer. Even though this is a simple dessert, it’s important you familiarize yourself with the process before starting.

no bake cheesecake jars

3 Layers in No-Bake Cheesecake Jars

  1. Buttery Graham Cracker Crust
  2. No-Bake Cheesecake Filling
  3. Topping

The graham cracker crust doesn’t need much explanation. You only need graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Mix the two together, then layer into the individual jars. Again, there is NO BAKING so you do not need to pre-bake this graham cracker crust.

graham cracker crust crumbs

2 Parts to Cheesecake Filling

There are 2 parts to the cheesecake filling. First, whip heavy cream into stiff peaks. You’re essentially making whipped cream without sugar or flavor. Set that aside. Then beat the remaining cheesecake filling ingredients together. Finally, fold in the whipped cream. Whipping the cream 1st is imperative because it supplies all the deliciously fluffy and creamy texture. This no-bake cheesecake jar filling almost tastes like cheesecake mousse– it’s so light– and we have the whipped cream to thank for that. 🙂

Cheesecake Jar Filling Ingredients

  1. Heavy Cream: Whip into stiff peaks. Set aside.
  2. Block Cream Cheese: Use full-fat block cream cheese, not cream cheese spread. I recommend this for all of my no-bake and baked cheesecake recipes, including mini cheesecakes and white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars.
  3. Sugar: Sugar sweetens the cheesecake jars. This is a lightly sweetened dessert, so you only need 1/3 cup of sugar in the entire filling.
  4. Sour Cream: Sour cream is a must-have ingredient in this recipe. Even though you only need 2 Tablespoons, it promises a tangy cheesecake flavor and ultra creamy texture. In fact, I don’t make regular cheesecake without it.
  5. Vanilla Extract: Vanilla extract adds flavor.
  6. Fresh Lemon Juice: Lemon juice adds a little brightness and slight flavor.

 

Here’s the heavy cream beaten into stiff peaks:

bowl of unsweetened whipped cream

Here’s the cheesecake filling after you fold in the whipped cream. It’s airy, light, and fluffy:

no bake cheesecake filling

Filling Flavors

The pictured no bake cheesecake jars are plain, but you can definitely add some flavor! Add these ingredients when you beat the cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, and vanilla extract together. I recommend leaving out the lemon juice if making the peanut butter, Nutella, chocolate, or coconut variations.

  • Peanut Butter: 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • Nutella: 1/3 cup Nutella
  • Lemon: 2 extra teaspoons lemon juice + 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Raspberry: 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons raspberry preserves
  • Chocolate: 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder or chocolate ganache and replace graham crackers with Oreos or chocolate graham crackers
  • Coconut: 1 teaspoon coconut extract
  • Key Lime: replace lemon juice with lime juice and add 2 more teaspoons of lime juice, plus 1 teaspoon lime zest

Toppings

Last layer! Finish the no-bake cheesecake jars with your favorite toppings. This recipe yields about 6 8-ounce cheesecake jars, so you can layer each with a different topping.

And let’s not forget garnishes like sprinkles, berries, lemons, mint, etc!

individual no bake cheesecake jars

Jars for No-Bake Cheesecake Jars

8 ounce jars, as pictured, are a pretty generous serving size. Feel free to use smaller jars or even use this recipe as a trifle. Whichever size jar, I highly recommend using wide mouthed jars so you can easily spoon the layers inside.

If you don’t have jars, use custard cups or bowls. Same taste, different delivery. 😉

 

no bake cheesecake jars

Print
individual no bake cheesecake jars

No Bake Cheesecake Jars

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 8-ounce jars or 10 6-ounce jars
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Mixing
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This jar dessert recipe combines a 2 ingredient graham cracker crust with an easy no-bake cheesecake filling. For best results, read through the recipe and watch the video tutorial above before beginning. See blog post for cheesecake filling flavors and see recipe notes or blog post for topping and garnish suggestions.


Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons (30g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup (100g) graham cracker crumbs (about 8 graham crackers)
  • 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping cream, cold
  • one 8-ounce block (224g) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (65g) granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons (30g) sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • toppings & garnishes (see note)

Instructions

  1. Have your jars ready to go and lined up. This recipe yields about 6 8 ounce jars or 10 6 ounce jars.
  2. Crust: Melt the butter in the microwave in a medium heat-proof bowl or use the stove. Stir in the graham cracker crumbs. The mixture will resemble wet sand. Spoon a generous spoonful into each jar, about 2 Tablespoons into the 8 ounce jars and 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons into the 6 ounce jars. If there’s any crust leftover, sprinkle into the jars to use up or discard. Set jars aside.
  3. Filling: Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whip the cold heavy cream into stiff peaks on medium-high speed, about 3-4 minutes. Set aside.
  4. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk or paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, lemon juice, and vanilla extract together on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy. Make sure there are no large lumps of cream cheese. If there are lumps, keep beating until smooth.
  5. Using your mixer on low speed or a rubber spatula, fold the whipped cream into the cheesecake filling until combined. This takes several turns of your rubber spatula. Combine slowly as you don’t want to deflate all the air in the whipped cream.
  6. Layer a couple large spoonfuls of filling on top of the crust in the jars. Use about 1/4 – 1/3 cup filling in the 8 ounce jars and 3 Tablespoons (or however much you can pack in!) into the 6 ounce jars. Make sure to leave room for the topping.
  7. The cheesecake jars are at room temperature at this point, but if you’d like to serve chilled, chill for at least 30 minutes and up to 3 days before adding the topping. (Cover if chilling for longer than 30 minutes.) I recommend adding the topping when serving or up to 2 hours in advance. The topping can seep down into the layers, so that’s why I recommend adding it soon before serving.
  8. Spoon topping and garnishes on top of filling, then serve.
  9. Cover and store leftover cheesecake jars in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: These cheesecake jars can be made 1-3 days in advance. They can be refrigerated in step 7 for up to 3 days before serving. You can also make & layer the crust 1-2 days ahead of time. Another way to make these cheesecake jars ahead of time is to freeze them before adding the toppings. Seal jars with the lids and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before topping and serving. You can also freeze the cheesecake filling as a whole. Cover tightly and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before layering on top of crust.
  2. Toppings: Chocolate Ganache, Strawberry Topping, Blueberry Sauce (use the blueberry sauce from my blueberry swirl cheesecake), Whipped Cream, Cherry Pie Filling, Lemon Curd, Salted Caramel
  3. Garnishes: Fresh berries, chopped fruit, nuts, chocolate chips, lemon slices, lime slices, shredded coconut, sprinkles, mint, or whatever you desire.
  4. More Cheesecake Jars: This recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, or quadrupled. Keep in mind the whipping and beating times will increase with the added volume.

Keywords: cheesecake

318 Comments

  1. I used 4 oz jars which was the perfect size for everyone to get a taste but still enjoy other desserts. I imagine doing these again with a toppings bar so everyone can customize their own cheesecake experience.

  2. Easy to make and great combo of sweet and tangy. I used cinnamon graham crackers to give a slight change. Perfect light dessert for summer. Thank you!

  3. I love all the different ways these can be made and that they’re No Bake for when it’s too hot for the oven! I made the Nutella version today and I’m in love!

  4. Made these today and they will definitely be my go-to summer dessert! Made 3 lemon and 3 strawberry jars -they are so refreshing! Looking forward to making them again- I might try pineapple as I love that combo!

    1. Pineapple would be amazing! Let me know if you try it- thanks for participating in this month’s challenge 🙂

  5. It was so easy to make and just perfect for a sunny afternoon. I used your homemade caramel recipe for the topping…sooo amazing too! On top of the sauce I put fresh raspberries and blackberries. Such a lovely recipe :).

  6. These were so much fun to make!
    I went with no-bake banana cream pudding cheesecake jars and my sons LOVED them!

    Thank you for supporting exploration and confidence in baking. Your tips make all the difference! ❤️

    1. * I added banana pudding to your cheesecake mixture, layered fresh bananas between the layers and used crushed Nilla wafers for the crust.

      1. What a treat!! Yours sound incredible- I’m so happy these recipes are getting you out of your baking comfort zone 🙂

  7. These were so fun to make! Easy to assemble and so cute in their little individual jars. The whole family LOVED them!!

  8. I’m lactose intolerant but am determined to participate in all the baking challenges this year so I followed this recipe, swapping out the sour cream, heavy cream, and cream cheese for dairy free alternatives and it came out delicious!! It tastes just like cheesecake Thank you, Sally!

  9. This recipe was perfect for a hot summer day! The cheesecake filling was very light and almost like a mousse. I topped each jar with a blueberry topping and lemon curd. You can’t go wrong with a Graham cracker crust.

  10. I made these for the challenge this month and they were very light and creamy and easy to make, a perfect summer dessert.

  11. I don’t curse frequently but I literally said “omfg” when I had a bite of this. I love cheesecakes and I resisted against making the no bake version because I really love the process of making baked cheesecake. After trying this I think I even like this better than baked cheesecake!! Love these challenges that allow me to expand my dessert horizons. Thank you Sally!

  12. This was certainly a hit after a dinner at a friend’s house. I made the blueberry and strawberry sauce so they would have options.

  13. LOVE this recipe !!! It is soo easy to make, super delicious, and so versatile !!! I used the base and made cookies and cream, lemon blueberry, lemon strawberry walnut, and peanut butter – so amazing!! Thank you!!

  14. These were super easy to make, and so delicious! I had all the ingredients, so I got to work, and was done really fast. Thank you so much for this recipe!!

    1. I’m so happy you enjoyed this recipe! Thanks for participating in this month’s baking challenge, Hannah 🙂

  15. Hi Sally, I want to make these for a birthday celebration for my brother in law who always requests my pecan pie for Christmas dessert…Do you have any recommendations for a Pecan no bake? Thanks Roberta

    1. Hi Roberta! I don’t have any recipes like that published on my site, but do a quick internet search for “pecan pie topping.” There are lots of results!

  16. These were so yummy! Made them for the 4th of July and they were a big hit. Made strawberry and blueberry sauces to go on top. So easy and tasty! I will definitely make these again!

    1. So happy you’ll be making these again! Thanks for participating in this month’s baking challenge, Catherine 🙂

  17. Cheesecake is one of my favourite desserts – I have had it for more of my past birthday desserts than I can count!!!! I still love making the real deal when I have the time, but these taste AMAZING and are so incredibly quick and easy! LOVE…thank you Sally!

  18. These are great! I made them ahead of time and packed them up in our cooler for a trip to our cabin. I made the strawberry topping and packed that separately and put them together when it was time to serve. They were so yummy! Not too heavy like cheesecake can sometimes be. I’m really looking forward to trying out different toppings!!

  19. My partner usually doesn’t like cheesecake, but she saw this on your instagram and said it looked good so I HAD to try it, because I love cheesecake so much and getting her to eat some sounded like a slam dunk!! At first I was a little skeptical because this got a lot of bowls dirty, but it’s SO easy and summery that it’s definitely a five star. I paired it with homemade raspberry sauce and mint—I’m so excited to try making a chocolate version!! Thanks, Sally! ♥️

  20. Really easy to make and I used glass tumblers instead of jars!! I even got Graham crackers from our local USA shop!!

    1. I’m so happy you were able to find graham crackers! Thanks for participating in this month’s baking challenge 🙂

  21. These were so simple to make and were super delicious! I topped them with your chocolate ganache and strawberry sauce 🙂

  22. Easy and quick to make and eat! I went with two to start: s’mores and key lime I tripled the cocoa powder and the lime juice for each and they were amazing

  23. What a light, creamy dessert! So cute to make these little versions for individual servings. My mom used to make a similar recipe growing up. My daughter begged to make the Nutella one, so that was a fun twist!

  24. Super easy and great for when it’s too hot to bake. Fun way to personalize dessert too by having a few different topping options for everyone.

  25. These are so easy and so delicious! I topped mine with chocolate ganache and my kids topped them with crushed Oreos. I will definitely make again…next time with peaches since they are peaking right now in my area. A great summer dessert recipe!

  26. I was resistant to making the no-bake version of cheesecake but am so glad I did! It was so easy and so delicious. Cheesecake mousse is the perfect way to describe this recipe. I will definitely be making this again. It’s the perfect summer dessert!

  27. This recipe was perfect! Loved the little touch of lemon juice. This was so versatile and I feel like I will definitely be making more of these in the future.

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