No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake

Ever since I published plain no-bake cheesecake, I’ve had requests for this flavor! This no-bake pumpkin cheesecake is smooth and creamy with extra spiced flavor. It sits in a crunchy gingersnap cookie crust that provides the best textural contrast to the fluffy mousse-like filling. There’s absolutely no oven required– the dessert sets up in the refrigerator, making it a convenient make-ahead option this fall season.

no bake pumpkin cheesecake with a gingersnap crust and whipped cream on top

There aren’t many seasonal desserts that top pumpkin pie. A dessert tradition this time of year, pumpkin pie features a smooth spiced filling sitting in a wonderfully flaky pie crust. It’s hard to compete with this kind of perfection.

But I found something that comes shockingly close. Let me introduce you to no-bake pumpkin cheesecake. A recipe that skips the oven, says goodbye to pie crust, and waves toodaloo to any sort of cheesecake water bath. (See ya!) It tastes like cheesecake mousse with the deeply spiced flavor of pumpkin pie. Sitting in a flavorful gingersnap cookie crust, this ultra creamy dessert is unforgettable. If you don’t fall in love, I’ll happily take your leftovers.


Why You’ll Love No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake:

  1. Texture– crunchy crust, light & creamy filling
  2. Flavor– cinnamon gingersnap crust and pumpkin spiced filling
  3. Ease– no water bath, no baking, no cheesecake cracks on top, no worries
  4. Convenience– save precious oven space for other dishes
  5. Make-ahead– filling sets and flavor tastes better

no bake pumpkin cheesecake slice with whipped cream on top

No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake Video Tutorial


Gingersnap Cookie Crust

With more flavor and crunch than a graham cracker crust, a gingersnap cookie crust isn’t just there in the background. Instead, it’s a whole other layer to savor. You need gingersnap cookie crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. To make this crust a cut above the rest, I suggest adding cinnamon and ginger too. This is exactly how I prepare the crust for my (baked) pumpkin swirl cheesecake, though you need a little more of each ingredient for this recipe.

3 Success Tips:

  • Type of cookie: The type of gingersnap cookie you use will make or break the recipe. (Literally.) I’ve never had luck using homemade gingersnaps. Pick up a box/bag of store-bought gingersnaps, such as Stauffer’s brand. You can find them in the cookie aisle of most grocery stores. You want extra crunchy, hard, and somewhat dry cookies. If they’re too moist, your crust won’t set up.
  • Pack it in: The tighter you pack in this crust, the less likely it will fall apart when cutting the cheesecake. I recommend using the bottom of a measuring cup to pack it into the bottom and up the sides of your springform pan.
  • Briefly freeze to set the crust: After you pack in the crust, place it in the freezer while you prepare the cheesecake filling. Remember, we aren’t baking this crust– the freezer gives the crust a chance to set before you add the filling on top.

Don’t want to use gingersnap cookies? Use the graham cracker crust from my plain no-bake cheesecake.

package of gingersnap cookies and a photo of gingersnap cookie crumbs

pressing a gingersnap crust into a springform pan

Overview: How to Make No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake Filling

  1. Whip heavy cream: In the 1st bowl, beat heavy cream/heavy whipping cream into stiff peaks. This is the most important step in this entire recipe and *the secret* to a thick no-bake cheesecake filling.
  2. Mix the other filling ingredients together: In a 2nd bowl, you need cream cheese, canned pumpkin, confectioners’ sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, spices, and salt. In my recipe testing, I used my plain no-bake cheesecake as the starting point. Pumpkin thins the mixture out, so I had to play with the amount of cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar. Thrilled with the developed recipe below– spiced, thickened, and perfectly pumpkin-y.
  3. Fold in the whipped cream: Remember our whipped cream? Gently fold it into the pumpkin cream cheese mixture. Avoid over-mixing because we don’t want to deflate anything.
  4. Spread into crust: Smooth the filling into the crust. I like using a large or small offset spatula to make the job easier.
  5. Refrigerate: Instead of the oven, use the refrigerator to set this cheesecake. Cover and refrigerate the prepared cheesecake for at least 8 hours or up to 2 days.

Pictured on the left below: the whipped cream. On the right below: the pumpkin cream cheese mixture.

whipped cream and pumpkin filling mixture

Pictured on the left below: the whipped cream and pumpkin cream cheese mixture combined. On the right below: spread into our gingersnap cookie crust.

no bake pumpkin cheesecake filling

With No Baking, How Does This Cheesecake Hold Its Shape?

  1. Make sure you pack the crust in tightly.
  2. As I mention above, the most important ingredient is the whipped heavy cream. Fold the whipped cream into the pumpkin cheesecake filling gently so you don’t deflate all the air. The air creates a deliciously fluffy mousse-like consistency and, more importantly, helps the filling set in the refrigerator.
  3. For a clean and sturdy slices, refrigerate it for at least 8 hours, but 12+ hours is ideal. Not only does the time in the refrigerator solidify the filling, it also gives the flavors a chance to mix and mingle. Flavor is incredible the next day.

Skip these 3 steps and you’ll be eating pumpkin soup for dessert. Avoid that mess!

a slice of no bake pumpkin cheesecake

slice of no bake pumpkin cheesecake with a gingersnap crust

Smaller Serving Alternatives

  1. For 24 cupcake size no-bake pumpkin cheesecakes, use the crust and filling ingredients below and the instructions for my mini no-bake cheesecakes. Feel free to halve the recipe if you don’t need quite as many.
  2. You can use this recipe to make 6 8-ounce or 10 6-ounce cheesecake jars. Halve the crust recipe below because we don’t need as much crust for the jar dessert. Use the full recipe for the filling. Follow the instructions for my no-bake cheesecake jars. Top with salted caramel, chocolate ganache, heath bar toffee bits, or more gingersnap cookie crumbs.
Print
clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon print print icon squares squares icon
a slice of no bake pumpkin cheesecake

No Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 8 hours, 20 minutes
  • Yield: serves 10-12
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Whipping
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This fluffy no-bake pumpkin cheesecake sits in a crunchy gingersnap crust. The most important steps are whipping the heavy cream into stiff peaks before folding into the filling and refrigerating the cheesecake long enough so it can set.


Ingredients

Gingersnap Cookie Crust

  • 2 cups (200g) gingersnap cookie crumbs*
  • 1/4 teaspoon each: ground ginger and ground cinnamon
  • 6 Tablespoons (85g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar or brown sugar (packed)

Cheesecake

  • 1 cup (240ml) cold heavy cream or heavy whipping cream
  • two 8-ounce blocks (450g) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (227g) pumpkin puree*
  • 3/4 cup (90g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice*
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Optional Toppings


Instructions

  1. Make the crust: Stir the gingersnap crust ingredients together. Pour into a 9-inch or 10-inch springform pan and pack in very tightly. The tighter it’s packed, the less likely it will fall apart when cutting the cheesecake. I recommend using the bottom of a measuring cup to pack it into the bottom and up the sides. You can watch me do this in the video above. Freeze for 10-20 minutes as you prepare the filling.
  2. Make the 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 4 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk or paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until perfectly smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the pumpkin, confectioners’ sugar, and brown sugar and beat on medium-high speed until combined. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl as needed to help combine. Add the vanilla extract, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, and salt and beat until combined, creamy, and smooth. Make sure there are no large lumps of cream cheese. If there are lumps, keep beating until smooth.
  4. 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.
  5. Remove crust from the freezer and spread filling into crust. Use an offset spatula to smooth down the top.
  6. Cover tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and refrigerate for at least 8 hours and up to 2 days. For best results, at least 12 hours is best. I chill mine overnight. The longer refrigerated, the nicer the no-bake cheesecake will set up. I don’t recommend using the freezer to set this cheesecake filling.
  7. Use a knife to loosen the chilled cheesecake from the rim of the springform pan, then remove the rim. Using a clean sharp knife, cut into slices for serving. For neat slices, wipe the knife clean between each slice.
  8. Serve cheesecake with optional toppings. I used Ateco 849 piping tip for the whipped cream in the pictured cheesecake. Cover and store leftover cheesecake in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: This cheesecake can be made 1-2 days in advance. It can be refrigerated in step 5 for up to 2 days before serving. You can also make the crust 1-2 days ahead of time. Freeze for up to 1 hour in step 1, then cover tightly and refrigerate for 1-2 days before adding the filling. Another way to make this cheesecake ahead of time is to freeze it. After it sets in the refrigerator (step 6), wrap the whole pan (you can remove the sides if desired) in 1 layer of plastic wrap, then 1 layer of aluminum foil. No-bake cheesecake freezes wonderfully for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator, then slice and serve.
  2. Pan: To make slicing easy and neat, use a springform pan. If you don’t have one, a 9 inch deep dish pie dish (at least 2 inches deep) works. Chill the cheesecake for at least 12 hours to help guarantee the cheesecake slices neatly.
  3. Gingersnap Cookies: Store-bought gingersnap cookies are ideal as they are the most dry. The ONLY brand that I’ve had issues with is the Nabisco gingersnap cookies. They’re delicious on their own, but they’re too moist for a gingersnap cookie crust. I love Stauffer’s brand. You need about 30. Alternatively, you can use the graham cracker crust from my regular no bake cheesecake instead. Feel free to add or reduce the amount of cinnamon and ginger based on your taste preference.
  4. Pumpkin: I strongly recommend canned pumpkin, not fresh (homemade) pumpkin puree in this recipe. I like to use Libby’s brand. Fresh pumpkin puree will prevent the cheesecake from properly setting. Do not use pumpkin pie filling. If you can’t find canned pumpkin, use 1 cup of sweet potato puree. Boil 2 medium sweet potatoes until soft, then peel, slice, and puree/mash them with a blender or mixer until smooth. Measure and use 1 cup. Make sure the puree is room temperature or cold before using.
  5. Pumpkin Pie Spice: Instead of prepared pumpkin pie spice, you can use 1/2 teaspoon each of ground nutmeg, ground ginger, ground cloves, and ground allspice. (Use the 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, too.)
  6. Can I Make Mini No-Bake Cheesecakes? Yes, use this crust and filling recipe and follow the instructions in my mini no bake cheesecakes, which are made in a standard muffin pan.

Keywords: no bake, cheesecake, pumpkin cheesecake

How to Join the November Sally's Baking Challenge

Make the No-Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake recipe. You can make the large cheesecake or either smaller variation detailed above the recipe. This recipe kicks off Sally’s Pie Week, an annual tradition where I share multiple pie recipes in a row. Since pumpkin has been hard to find this season (or if you’re not into this recipe), there are several alternate challenge recipes you can make instead:

  1. Any previous challenge recipe OR
  2. Any recipe from this year’s Sally’s Pie Week— a new recipe will publish every day tomorrow (Monday) through Friday. Check the Pie Week page or sign up for my daily email list so you’re alerted as soon as a new Sally’s Pie Week recipe publishes.

After you make the cheesecake or alternate recipe, email me your recipe photo. For a bonus entry, leave a review on the recipe below!

By emailing your recipe photo to us, you are automatically entered in the baking challenge for the $250 Amazon gift card prize. We keep track of your photos and randomly select 1 winner at the end of the month. The challenge is open to the whole world. Challenge ends on November 29th 2020 at 5pm ET. The winner will be selected at random and posted in the December Baking Challenge blog post on November 30th 2020.

259 Comments

  1. Amazing! My family’s favorite thing I have ever baked (and I bake A LOT)!!! Made it multiple times this month including Thanksgiving along with pumpkin pie. Thanks so much for the recipe Sally!

    1. Love that! I’m thrilled to hear this one is a favorite for your family, Daisy.

  2. Dani Crittendon says:

    This was my first cheesecake I’ve ever attempted to make and it was DELICIOUS! I made this for my husband and I’s first Thanksgiving and he and my parents loved it! I will definitely be making this again in the future, I loved the spicy ginger flavor in contrast to the creamy pumpkin cheesecake

    1. Thank you for including my recipe in your family’s first Thanksgiving, Dani!

  3. Sally’s recipes never disappoint, and this was no exception! Made these as mini cheesecakes by following what Sally outlined in her instructions/notes and it was so easy! They set up to the perfect consistency after chilling, and had a delicious, creamy pumpkin flavor and just the right amount of spice. Topped with homemade whipped cream (also Sally’s recipe!) which I piped around the edges for a cute finish. I love how Sally’s recipes make a novice baker like me feel professional! Thank you Sally!

    1. Thank you for the positive feedback, Taylor! I’m so happy you enjoyed this one.

  4. My first time making cheesecake, and it was a huge success with the family for Thanksgiving! I’ll definitely make it again. The pumpkin with the ginger snap crust was delicious. My cheesecake came out a bit thin..more like a thicker mousse than a cheesecake; even though I had it in the fridge for 28 hours. Next time I make I’ll see what I did wrong. Thanks for another yummy recipe Sally!

  5. Absolutely delicious! The spiciness of the crust is something special! I think I will use this crust for other no bake cheesecakes as well. It really gave the whole cake an extra zip!

  6. This recipe is so delicious! Love all the flavors! Made it for my moms birthday/Thanksgiving and it was a big hit! Will definitely make this again!

    1. So sweet, thank you for including my recipe in your Thanksgiving / birthday celebrations, Courtney!

  7. This was easy and quick to make- much appreciated given the enormous amount of cooking and baking to be done at Thanksgiving!! I loved the smooth, creamy texture- delicious!!

  8. Ok, 4 stars is probably my fault. I realized last minute that I didn’t have enough cream cheese so I cut the recipe in half. It definitely did not set even after being in the fridge overnight. It was however, extremely tasty. I loved the gingersnap crust which I was not expecting, it might have been my favorite part! My kiddos (4 and 3) we not big fans but my 9 month old was

  9. Whitney Ludvigsen says:

    Simple to whip up and oh so delicious! I loved this as an “update” to a traditional pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving. The filling was light and airy, and the ginger snap crust packed a spicy punch! I will definitely add this to my Thanksgiving day dessert menu for years to come!

  10. This cheesecake was so easy to make and out of this world delicious! My whole family (2 year old included) loved it for Thanksgiving. I followed the recipe excactly, as I always do with Sally’s recipe, because they never fail me. Thanks for sharing your knowledge 🙂

  11. This was a breeze to make and impressed everyone who ate it!

  12. Delicious! Ended up being more light and fluffy than traditional cheesecake. I’d definitely recommend baking the crust for a couple minutes to get it to come together more. Perfect Thanksgiving dessert!

    1. Amazingly easy recipe full of wonderful fall flavors. I made it for Thanksgiving but did it as a deconstructed dessert and added Sally’s salted caramel recipe and whipped cream. Everyone loved it and it saved me from trying to add one more thing in my already jam packed oven

      Highly recommend to anyone!

  13. Judith Shelton says:

    This is such an amazing recipe! Tastes so good. Huge success for Thanksgiving. 5 stars all the way!

  14. The crust was delicious! The filling tasted yummy, but was more mousse like than cheesecake. Still, a yummy dessert for Thanksgiving!

  15. If you like pumpkin flavors and fall tastes, make this cheesecake! Incredibly easy and very tasty! So flavorful and deliciously creamy.

  16. The flavor was delicious and this cheesecake was a hit with my family. I found it precarious removing it from the springform pan, especially because this cheesecake is not as firm as a typical baked cheesecake. For less stress next time I might make this in a regular pie plate.

  17. This pumpkin cheesecake was so easy to make and so delicious! I made it for Thanksgiving, and my family loved it. The gingersnap crust was amazing.

  18. Happy Thanksgiving, Sally!! This is the first time I have joined in on your monthly baking challenge and am so glad I did! Thought about this recipe all month and finally made it yesterday for Thanksgiving dinner. This is a big “win” in my book as my husband who is not a big sweets eater can’t stay out of this cheesecake! Guess what he ate for breakfast this morning? . Easy to make and delicious!!

  19. We made this for Thanksgiving and it was fantastic! I loved being able to make it the night before and not need to use the oven for it. It will go into our regular Thanksgiving dinner rotation, thanks!

  20. Jessica jones says:

    This is the best new tradition for my thanksgiving table! So delicious!

  21. Emily Leishman says:

    Soooo good! My family and I love this cheesecake! It was super light and fluffy while also being creamy and decadent! Not to mention the crunch from the gingersnap crust! I loved it all!

  22. This was a very easy recipe to follow and the flavor was very good. I used biscoff cookies for the crust and topped with homemade whipped cream and salted caramel which I definitely do not think is optional!

  23. This was pretty easy to make the night before Thanksgiving, and nice not to have dessert to worry about while preparing turkey and fixings. The instructions and notes are super easy to follow. I used a hand mixer and it turned out perfectly! The salted caramel and whipped cream are the perfect pairing!

  24. Nicole Gotthelf says:

    Made this for my solo Thanksgiving. I started looking for gingersnaps when you published the challenge and took several weeks to find only the Nabisco brand. This was delicious, very creamy and I love the ginger. I served with bourbon infused whipped cream and praline bourbon sauce. It was easier to slice the second day when I started delivery slices to my neighbors today. I plan to make again with Stauffer gingersnaps to see the difference. A very easy recipe to make.

  25. Christine Price says:

    This was light, fluffy, and very mousse-like. I had to change the way I called it to my family who just kept looking at me like I was crazy when I used the word “cheesecake.” But the flavor was delicious, and the cake set up beautifully. It held its shape when I took it out of the springform and when serving up a slice. I had chilled it about 48 hours before serving. I may try to experiment with adding more pumpkin (or maybe a pumpkin extract…?) for a stronger flavor, but even without changes, I would make this again.

  26. I had to comment on this TWICE because not only is it easy and fun to make but it has to be said that after careful evaluation, this easily beats pumpkin pie in my book. Also, I learned that: 1) It sets nicer in a 10 inch pie pan than springform pan, 2) It is delicious in a graham cracker crust too and 3) the salted caramel is so worth the extra time for looks and taste. I can’t wait to not-bake this every Thanksgiving. 🙂

  27. This cheesecake was delicious! The texture was smooth and creamy and the flavor was great. My husband who isn’t a huge cheesecake fan loved it!

  28. This turned out excellent and my family loved it! For the crust, I used Trader Joe’s Triple Gingersnap Cookies and omitted the extra powdered ginger since the cookies already have bits of candied ginger in them. I also didn’t have pumpkin pie spice or allspice but it still tasted delicious with nutmeg, clove & extra cinnamon. I was worried about the canned pumpkin leaving too much of a tin can flavor since I had that issue making a different no-bake pumpkin cheesecake before, but that wasn’t a problem at all with this recipe. I’ve made Sally’s pumpkin pie from scratch before and I have to say this was actually a lot tastier (and a lot less time consuming!)

1 4 5 6

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

With kitchen-tested quality recipes and step-by-step tutorials, my goal is to give you the confidence to bake and cook from scratch.

Sally's signature

Recipes You’ll Love

Archives

Categories

Join the community on the 1st of every month as we tackle a new challenge recipe.Review Sally's Baking Challenge FAQ page if you have any questions.

View More

A tradition since 2013, every December we countdown to Christmas with 10 new cookie recipes in a row!

View More

The first week of every November is all about Thanksgiving Pies.

View More

My Cookbooks

Sally's Cookbooks

About Sally

Welcome to my Kitchen!

I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally

×