This extra creamy No Bake Cheesecake Recipe is so easy to make, fluffy and almost mousse-like with a thick, buttery graham cracker crust. Top with with fresh fruit, caramel sauce, or whipped cream!
My No Bake Cheesecake Recipe is Creamy, Light and EASY!
Today I’m showing you how to make a cheesecake WITHOUT baking it!! You know I LOVE cheesecake, and have the most perfect Cheesecake Recipe here on my site, that is guaranteed to turn out perfectly. I answer all the questions you may have and simplify the process. SO many have made it and loved it. But today, while we are still talking about cheesecake, we’re coming at it from a different angle! An entire cheesecake recipe from start to finish that you DO.NOT.BAKE. Yep, completely no bake with AMAZING results. You’re going to LOVE this recipe!
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Does a No Bake Cheesecake TASTE like Cheesecake?
Let’s discuss the elephant in the room here, does No Bake Cheesecake taste like cheesecake? I’m going to go with a solid yes-ish. The flavor as a classic is very similar to classic cheesecake, albeit a little milder due to the there being less cream cheese involved, but it’s the texture that’s the most different. Cheesecake, is smooth and creamy, with the distinct tang from the cream cheese. No Bake Cheesecake has less cream cheese and is much lighter in texture due to the whipped cream! So yes, it does taste like cheesecake, but it’s just a little different. IN A GOOD WAY!
How To Make No Bake Cheesecake
No Bake Cheesecake, like classic cheesecake, is an amazing make-ahead dessert. It’s fantastic for parties or special occasions where you want to impress guests, but not be stuck in the kitchen the day of the event! Both the crust and the filling are completely “no bake” and only need a few minutes of prep!
What Ingredients Do You Need For a No Bake Cheesecake?
Here are the ingredients you will need for your no bake cheesecake recipe:
- Graham Cracker Crumbs: You can buy whole graham crackers and crush them in a blender or food processor, or you can buy the boxes of graham cracker crumbs! If you do crush them yourself, just make sure they are all finely crushed and uniform in size, so the crust holds together!
- Kosher Salt: I like to add a small pinch of kosher salt to my graham cracker crust to give it a little salty/sweet vibe!
- Cream Cheese: It is cheesecake, of course! Just make sure your cream cheese is room temperature, so it will fold in with the whipped cream smoothly, leaving no lumps!
- Heavy Cream (aka Heavy Whipping Cream): The fluffy texture of this cheesecake comes from the whipped cream! Make sure your heavy cream is very cold so it will whip into stiff peaks!
- Butter: You will need a little butter for the graham cracker crust. The butter basically holds the crust together!
- Powdered Sugar AND Granulated Sugar: You will need both kinds of sugar for this recipe. You’ll use the granulated sugar in the crust and the powdered sugar in the cheesecake filling!
- Vanilla Extract: This is what gives your cheesecake flavor, but feel free to use any extract flavor you like!
Do You Bake The Crust of a No Bake Cheesecake?
I love a graham cracker crust on my cheesecakes and I’ve adapted a typical graham cracker crust recipe so you don’t have to bake it! If you prefer to bake the crust, you can absolutely do that, just omit 2 tablespoons of butter in this recipe. I have found that sometimes no bake crusts can be a little more crumbly, not be as sturdy, and generally not slice as pretty as a baked crust. But, they taste almost the same, and I enjoy the ease of a no bake crust! Not having to turn on your oven and wait for the crust to cool is a huge bonus!
Why Is My No Bake Cheesecake Runny?
This is the most common issue folks have with a no bake cheesecake…it never firms up. There are a few reasons this could be happening:
- You didn’t whip your heavy cream until stiff peaks formed. You want your whipped cream to be THICK. Don’t whip it so much that it turns into butter, but get it as stiff as you can. This will make a huge difference.
- Another reason that your cheesecake isn’t firm is that you haven’t let it chill long enough! Be patient, friends!
- Possibly you could have over-mixed the whipped cream into the cream cheese. Fold this GENTLY. You want it to be mixed thoroughly, but not aggressively. Make sense? Use a rubber spatula to fold in the whipped cream into the sweetened cream cheese. Take your time!
Can I Use Cool Whip In My No Bake Cheesecake?
Of course I know I will get this question, and the answer is yes. You can use Cool Whip in this no bake cheesecake in place of the whipped cream, but the texture will be different. It won’t be as mousse-like in texture, and will be a little more creamy. It won’t be quite as stiff, but it will still be delicious!
What Can You Add To No Bake Cheesecake?
The texture of a no bake cheesecake is a little delicate, so it won’t hold up well to large pieces of mix-ins. BUT you could definitely add a few things to make it interesting! Here are some ideas:
- Crushed Oreo Cookies. I would say add no more than 1 cup of crushed Oreo Cookies. AND sub in crushed Oreos for the graham crackers to make a full blown Oreo Cheesecake!
- Extracts. I use vanilla extract in this recipe, but you could use whatever flavor you prefer! Try Coconut Extract, Almond Extract, Lemon Extract, or even Peppermint Extract (on a crust made from Thin Mints this would be fab!) Get creative!
- Lemon Juice. My mom used to make her No Bake Cheesecake with a few tablespoons of fresh lemon juice added right in. This gives it a tiny amount of tartness, and it’s fantastic!
Let’s Talk Toppings!!
Can You Top This Cheesecake?
Yes of course! Just add the topping before serving, not before chilling for best results! Here are some fun ideas:
- Fresh Fruit
- Whipped Cream
- Cherry Pie Filling
- Hot Fudge
- Any Chopped Candy
- Drizzle of Nutella