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Introducing my 22nd birthday cake: a beautiful Black Raspberry Cheesecake featuring a creamy basically-vanilla base with a festive fuchsia swirl. I sure hope you try it, because this is my favorite cheesecake recipe to date! Thankfully my cooking and baking techniques seem to be improving with age and experience (I think…but maybe someone should knock me off my high horse right about now), and I’ve learned a few things about making cheesecakes creamier, less stiff, less eggy. You’ll find that today’s recipe uses more cream cheese and less eggs. I actually used reduced-fat cream cheese to cut down on excess calories and because I’ve found that reduced-fat cream cheese produces cheesecakes that aren’t as stiff as those made with the full-fat variant.
“But wait!” you say. “You need to use full-fat ingredients to minimize cracking!” Well, that may be true sometimes, but if you make sure your ingredients are at room temperature before beating them together and incorporate the techniques laid out in the recipe below, I don’t think you’ll have a problem. I didn’t! This cheesecake was structurally flawless. Contrary to uninformed suppositions I carried at the tender age of 17 before I ventured into the cheesecake-baking world, cheesecakes are not hard to make. Like, at all. In fact, cheesecake has become one of my favorite desserts to make because a) it is so easy, b) it is usually enjoyed by most people, even if it’s healthy, and c) leftovers.
Yes, leftovers. Cheesecakes are pretty rich, so you can cut small slices and enjoy for a long time. In fact, cheesecakes taste much better with age. Because of the way my schedule worked out, I didn’t cut into this cheesecake for a full 2 days after making it, and it continued to get better and better during the following week as we carved off slivers.
NSV (non scale victory): I was content with small slices. Godliness with contentment may be great gain, according to 1 Timothy 6:6, but contentment can also lead to great loss in the weight department. 😉 Lately I’ve been trying to content myself with less dessert in general, and when I do partake, I do so in smaller doses and savor it. It’s been awhile since I’ve made something as rich as cheesecake, and I didn’t even want a huge piece! That made this dessert fiend very, very happy, and I didn’t feel over-stuffed and guilty of gluttony after my meal. Chew slowly; savor each bite.
You may also enjoy:
As always, check out the Notes section of the recipe for extra info. Check out the links in and below the recipe to see the products I use and recommend. Some of the links included in the recipe and blog post are affiliate links, which means that if you make purchases through these links, I make a small commission (but your price doesn’t change).
Previous birthday cakes:
- Peppermint Brownie Cheesecake (18th)
- Mocha Cake (19th)
- Chocolate Cake with Whipped Chocolate Buttercream (20th)
- Peppermint Brownie Ice Cream Cake (21st)
Most of those posts include pictures of me with each year’s creation, so I found it very interesting to flip through them and see how I’ve changed! A lot of things have clicked for me recently (finishing last year’s cookbook project and getting rid of the stress and deadlines that came with it had a role to play, I’m sure), and the weight I gained while traveling frequently during the past two years is finally coming off! I feel better now than I have in years, and I’ve learned some very sustainable tricks to losing weight and maintaining that weight loss. If you follow along via email, you’ve seen snippets of my “revelations,” and I hope to write a blog post or two about them in the near future so CLICK HERE to sign up for email updates and follow along if you haven’t already!
Need to start organizing your schedule for 2018? Check out my new recipe calendar! It comes with 12 exclusive recipe cards!
- ¼ c. + 2 T. Briana's Baking Mix*
- 3 T. oat fiber (use gluten-free if necessary)
- 1 tsp. THM Super Sweet Blend
- ¼ tsp. xanthan gum
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 5 T. salted butter (softened)
- 2 T. Greek yogurt
- 1 (10 oz.) pkg. black raspberries (about 1½ c.)
- ⅓ c. water
- ⅛ tsp. xanthan gum
- Dash salt
- 2-3 tsp. THM Super Sweet Blend (or more, to taste)
- CRUST: Whisk the dry ingredients. Add the butter and Greek yogurt and mix with a hand mixer until crumbs form. Press into a greased 10" spring-form pan and bake at 350* for 6 minutes. Remove from the oven. Turn the oven down to 325*.
- SWIRL: Make the black raspberry swirl next so it can cool a bit. Blend the raspberries, water, xanthan gum, and salt together until smooth. (If using frozen, thawed raspberries, use the juice and all.) Transfer to a saucepan on the stovetop and bring to a boil, then simmer for 5 minutes. While it is heating, add THM Super Sweet Blend to taste. After the raspberry mixture has simmered for 5 minutes, press it through a sieve with the back of a spoon to remove the seeds. You should have about a cup of thick raspberry syrup left.
- CHEESECAKE: Beat the cream cheese until smooth. (I do this in a stand mixer.) Add the rest of the ingredients and beat for 2 minutes. Pour the cheesecake mixture onto the pre-baked crust. Dollop the raspberry sauce onto the top of the cheesecake in separate blobs, then run a knife through the blobs to make a nice swirled pattern.
- Place the cheesecake pan into a piece of extra-wide aluminum foil and wrap the foil around the sides of the pan, then place the contraption into a larger pan filled with ¾" water. (This water bath will help prevent your cheesecake from cracking.) Bake at 325* for one hour or until set. (At one hour, mine still jiggles a little in the middle. I like this because it makes for a creamier cheesecake, but feel free to leave it in until it's set all the way through.) Turn the oven off, leave the door open a crack, and leave the cheesecake in the hot oven for 10 minutes to cool slowly. Remove the cheesecake from the oven, let it cool, then refrigerate to chill completely before cutting and serving (overnight is perfect).
**Please taste and add more sweetener if you like! I prefer my cheesecakes not very sweet, so most people will probably want to add more sweetener. I recommend adding more of the less concentrated sweetener for the best taste. (I combine sweeteners to get the best taste for the best price.) Feel free to substitute with the sweeteners you have; just taste and adjust.
-I like to use reduced-fat cream cheese because a) the cheesecake is calorie-dense enough as it is, and b) the reduced-fat cream cheese makes a creamier, not-so-stiff cheesecake. I do use full-fat sour cream, though. This is the combination of ingredients that I've found gives the best texture.
-Cheesecake improves with age! I actually waited 2 days to cut into this one because of the way my schedule worked out.