I don’t know about you, but for me cheesecake is synonymous with the holidays. It seems to make an appearance at every one of my family’s holiday functions. So, in anticipation of this tradition my brain was working overtime to think of a new way to make a cheesecake with flavors that remind me of the holiday season. It didn’t take me long to come up with this flavor combination that just seemed like they were destined for each other. This cheesecake is luxurious and indulgent with warm spiced flavors coming from a ginger snap cookie crust and a pear compote topping.
Ginger snaps are hands down one of my favorite cookies! I feel like they make a noticeable resurgence around the winter months so I knew I wanted to make a dessert that included them in some capacity. It just made total sense to switch out the standard, classic graham cracker for a toasty, spicy ginger snap cookie. This crust helps to balance the super rich cheesecake filling. For this recipe you could make your own cookies if you want, however, that’s entirely unnecessary. I ended up using a store-bought ginger snap cookie and blitzing it in the food processor to make crumbs and it couldn’t have been any easier!
With this cheesecake you may notice that there isn’t as much sugar as a classic cheesecake would call for and that is completely intentional. White chocolate by nature is a very sweet ingredient so I found that cutting down on the added sugar made for just the right amount of sweetness without being too much. There’s a perfect ratio of tangy to sweet which is what I love in a cheesecake.
I served my cheesecake with a spiced pear compote that was ridiculously easy to make. Everything is thrown into one pot and cooked for 15 minutes and voila you have a delicious and impressive pear compote to top your cheesecake or really anything for that matter.
This recipe is a little bit more involved than my usual recipes but it is so worth it and from a self-proclaimed “not a baker” it isn’t that difficult. I really hope you give making this cheesecake a try because I know it won’t disappoint.
White Chocolate Cheesecake with Ginger Snap Crust
Ginger Snap Crust
- 1 1/2 Cups Ginger Snap Cookie Crumbs
- 5 Tbsp Melted Butter
- 2 Tbsp Sugar
- 4 8 oz. Blocks of Cream Cheese room temperature
- 1 Cup Sour Cream
- 3/4 Cup White Chocolate
- 3 Eggs room temperature
- 1 Tsp Vanilla
- 1/4 Cup Sugar
- 2 Bartlet Pears diced
- 1/4 Cup Maple Syrup
- 1/4 Cup Apple Cider
- 1/2 Tsp Cinnamon
- 1/4 Tsp Clove
- 1/4 Tsp Nutmeg
- 1/4 Tsp Salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°
- Start by adding the ginger snap cookie crumbs, melted butter and sugar to a bowl and mix until combined.
- Pour the crust mixture into the bottom of a 9×2 inch spring form pan and firmly press and pack down. I used the bottom of a glass to help pack it down but you could use any hard, flat surface. Next place it in the oven for 10 minutes. After the 10 minutes take it out and Wrap the entire bottom and sides of the springform pan in aluminum foil and set aside.
- Next, melt the white chocolate and set aside (I melted using a double boiler).
- In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer add the room temperature cream cheese and begin mixing. Slowly add in the eggs one at a time, then the sour cream, sugar and vanilla making sure to scrap down the sides of the bowl to ensure everything is mixed and creamy. Lastly, add the room temperature melted white chocolate and mix. Pour the cheesecake filling on top of the crust and smooth out with a spatula.
- Next place the spring form pan into a larger roasting pan and fill the roasting pan with hot water until it is 2 inches up the side of the springform pan. Place in the oven for 55 minutes. After the 55 minutes shut off the oven and open the oven door halfway but leave the cheesecake in the oven for another hour. After that hour take the cheesecake out to cool on the counter for an hour, then place in the fridge for a few hours to chill.
- Add the pears, maple syrup, apple cider, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg and salt to a small sauce pan oven medium heat. Simmer the mixture for 15 minutes and turn off the heat. It could be served hot or cold.