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 with strawberry topping

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!

row of no bake cheesecake jars

Why You’ll Love Individual No-Bake Cheesecake Jars

If you’ve ever enjoyed my no-bake cheesecake recipe or mini no bake cheesecakes, you know you’re in for a real treat with this jar 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 in a glass bowl

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:

2 images of no bake cheesecake filling in a glass bowl and on a spoon

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 with assorted toppings

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. These are all affiliate links.

If you don’t have jars, use custard cups or bowls. Same taste, different delivery. These are always fun to serve at bridal showers, baby showers, for tea parties, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, wedding celebrations, BBQs, graduation parties, and more. A crowdpleaser every time!

no bake cheesecake jars with chocolate ganache topping

Print
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individual no bake cheesecake jars with assorted toppings

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

240 Comments

  1. Gwen Woodman says:

    I loved how easy to follow this recipe was. it was my first time whipping heavy cream, and your instructions made it fun, and easy to understand and I am pleased with the results I made the key-lime version and I must say that my family and I all enjoyed it for an after supper treat tonight. Thanks! Gwen

  2. Paulina Zacchia says:

    I LOVE no bake cheesecake & this recipe is wonderful! The cheesecakes were so perfectly light & creamy it was hard to resist eating two – but I’m looking forward to tasting them again tomorrow so see how much firmer the texture gets. Tonight they were perfect! No lengthy chill time for the win!

  3. I loved the make ahead ease of the recipe! I made the Peanut Butter cheesecake filling and dark chocolate mousse earlier in the day. This made the actual assembling a breeze. Thanks for the recipe!

  4. So good! Told my husband it only made 4… because I already ate 2!

  5. My whole family loved this recipe! It was a great dessert to make for summer because it didn’t require a lot of time or the oven. Putting them in the jars was such a cute idea, too!

  6. I need a cheesecake filling for cupcakes and don’t want to use pudding. Would this work as a filling for cupcakes? I was thinking to make it, refrigerate, then pipe in the cupcakes? Thoughts?

    1. Yes, this would work well and delicious!

  7. Hi Sally,
    I’d like to make this for a garden party on Saturday. We don’t have sour cream available here, so I usually substitute with Crème fraîche in most recipes. However, I’m worried that the lack of tangy flavor will make the cheesecakes bland. Is there a way to add more zing? Or would I be better off using Greek yogurt instead? Your advice is appreciated! 🙂 Thanks very much!

    1. Hi Merri! Plain Greek yogurt would be the next best option. Will add that lovely tang.

      1. Thank you, Sally!
        BTW, love your site and have always had great results with your recipes!

      2. Sally, the greek yogurt worked perfectly! The cheesecakes were superb!

  8. If I make these for a wedding in mini 2 or 3oz cups, will they melt out of the refrigerator at room temperature? I don’t want it to turn into liquid after a few hours.

    1. Hi Cher, not at all! 🙂 The cheesecake filling/mixture will just be a little softer, but this filling does not melt.

  9. I am wanting to make these for Thanksgiving. Am I able to use frozen cool whip instead of heavy cream?
    So excited to try these!

    1. Hi Crystal! No, I recommend heavy cream (the liquid).

  10. Would this no bake recipe be yummy with small dollops of buttercream icing on top, instead of fruit or other toppings?

    1. Hi Michelle, there wouldn’t be much of a textural difference between the cheesecake filling and buttercream topping– but go for it if that’s what you’re craving!

  11. Can these be frozen for later, if so, how long?

    1. Hi Mike! Yes, see Make Ahead Instructions.

  12. I’m yet to be dissappointed by any of your recipes!! This was no exception!! Taste divine, one of the best ones I’ve EVER had!! I love you not only post ingredients, but your explanations with each page honestly by go to for just about every baking!!

  13. Love this recipe! I made these to give as gifts at work. I made 4 batches with different flavors. I even made 2 different low carb varieties substituting splenda for sugar. Thanks!

  14. I tried this recipe for our family get together recently and out of the 12 jars made, I still have 10 in the frig. My group didn’t like them, but for the record they are spoiled by the Mason Jar Cheesecakes that I prepare in the instantPot.

  15. Could I add key lime juice to the cream cheese recipe, & how much

    1. Hi Pat, You can replace the lemon juice in the recipe with lime juice.

  16. Loved this recipe! It was a big hit at my family Christmas and I’m making them again today for Super Bowl. Yum

  17. My first try to make cheesecake and these were delicious…. omg…. tasted even better 24 hours later. Cant wait to try all the different topping variations! ❤️

  18. Made these for my sister’s baby shower and they were a huge hit! My sister loved them and has been begging me for her own personal pie, so I was wondering if this recipe would work for a standard pie, or should it be doubled?

    1. I’m thrilled that these were a hit! For a full size dessert I suggest following the recipe for No Bake Cheesecake.

  19. This was super easy and omg delicious.

  20. Didn’t have enough cream cheese to make a full size cheesecake so I wanted to make a mini one. This is the only recipe I could find that uses 1 package cream cheese. It was super easy to make, took 10 minutes and tastes delicious!!

  21. I made the Key Lime variation and they were a HUGE hit with my family. I plan to try some other options in the near future. I highly recommend this cheesecakejar recipe!!

  22. I had so much fun baking this! I did not have lemon juice, so I did one tablespoon of vanilla and orange extract to substitute it and it is acctually amazing! I hope my family will like it and thank you for the great recipe!

    1. They were combined (The vanilla and orange extract) within the tablespoon.

  23. One of my favorite desserts! It’s so simple and has the perfect amount of sweetness to it.

  24. Wow these cheesecake jars are incredible!! They truly do taste like a cheesecake mousse, so light and creamy, and SO easy to put together! Love that there’s no overnight chill time needed! I’ll definitely be making these again 🙂

  25. They look lovely! Would the recipe work the same if I change cream cheese to mascarpone?

    1. Hi Rita, Mascarpone would be excellent! Use a 1:1 substitution.

  26. If I could rate this 10 stars, I would! This is so good and thank you so much for the recipe Sally! I just tried a lemon flavored jar, and the lemon flavor is light, but delicious! I love the creamy texture. I topped it with fresh wipped cream and some extra graham cracker crumbs! Thanks again!

  27. Absolutely love this recipe!!!! Perfection *mwah*

  28. Heather M. Whipple says:

    Can I use the Ball brand jars for this?
    I think they would be just as good for this.

    1. Hilari @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Heather, absolutely! I recommend any 8 ounce glass jars.

  29. Pete Mathis says:

    For your Blueberry Sauce, you separated it into juice and cooked berries. Do I leave them combined to top these jars?

    1. Hi Pete, if you’d like the chunks of blueberries in the sauce (I do as a topping!) then there’s no need to separate.

  30. Hi! Any substitute for the sour cream? Thank you!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Ravish, Plain Greek yogurt would be the next best option. Enjoy!

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