Cheesecake Cheat Sheet

With a few basic tips your cheesecake will bake rich, creamy and more fantastic than ever.
Related To:

Cheesecake Accomplished 
Follow our tips for fabulous results.

Avoid Overmixing: Unlike other cakes, where beating air into the batter is key, overmixed cheesecake can rise, fall and then crack from that excess air. Keeping ingredients (cheese, eggs, liquids and flavorings) at room temperature can help.

Prevent Cracking: It happens to the best of cheesecakes, mainly because of fluctuations in temperature (or overmixing). Cook and cool your cheesecake slowly, and use a water bath (see below) to prevent cracking.

Be Patient: The whole trick with cheesecake is gentle, coaxing heat — cook slowly and cool gradually.

Springform Success

Use a two-piece springform cake pan for cheesecake; it allows you to remove the sides and the bottom, maintaining a nice shape. (If you don't have one and can't get one, try a pie-sized cake pan lined with parchment paper.)

Make sure that the bottom of the pan is right-side up. The raised edge should sit face-up in the pan: This makes it seal properly and makes it easier to cut the crust.

Setting Up a Water Bath 
Many cheesecakes are baked in a water bath (i.e. a pan of water) to moderate the temperature and prevent cracking. Since water remains at a constant low temperature, the cake sets slowly, resulting in a super-creamy dessert.

Because springform pans warp over time, and even the best pans might leak if the seal isn't perfect, line the outside of the pan with foil whenever you do the water bath. Remember, this pan will be floating in water. Next steps: 
1. Bring a kettle of water to a boil. 
2. Set springform pan (with cheesecake inside) in a roasting pan. 
3. Gently place the roasting pan in the oven. 
4. Fill roasting pan with hot water until it gets about halfway up the side of the springform pan.

Judging Doneness 
The center should still be a bit wobbly — the cake continues to cook as it cools, and it will set completely when refrigerated. Shake the pan slightly, but be careful not to splash hot water on yourself.

Removing From the Pan 
Run a thin knife around the cake's edge as soon as it comes out of the oven. This prevents the cheesecake from cracking as it cools. Once it's cooled, remove the springform ring and slice directly on the base.

Freezing 
Most cheesecakes freeze well for up to two weeks, but remember to wrap tightly in both film and foil.

Keep Reading

Next Up

How To Make Pie Crust

Make (and master) an exceptional pie crust, and you're more than halfway to an exceptional pie. Here are a few insider tricks for tackling this daunting yet delicious pastry.

How to Make Pumpkin Desserts

Get the best pumpkin dessert recipes and sweet pumpkin dessert baking tips from the chefs at Cooking Channel.

Showstopping Holiday Desserts

Get the best holiday dessert recipes and tips from Sandra Lee, Nadia G. and the chefs at Cooking Channel.

Baking Disasters Solutions

Avoid these common baking blunders — and find quick fixes for the inevitable mishaps.

Bryan Voltaggio

After nine successful years in the restaurant business in New York, chef Bryan Voltaggio fulfilled his dream of opening his own restaurant. VOLT opened in 2008, characterized by Voltaggio's personalized take on modern American cuisine.


With restaurants on both coasts victory on Top Chef and a cookbook on the way the Voltaggio brothers are two of the hottest young chefs in the country. Catch them on the Cooking Channel as they share their tips tricks and recipes for a Thanksgiving feast full of flavor and style.

Michael Voltaggio

Chef Michael Voltaggio was a finalist for the James Beard "Best New Restaurant" award in 2009 and winner of Bravo's Top Chef. He has established a reputation for "serious" food that is playful, visually stunning and flawlessly executed.

Mix-and-Match: 50+ Thanksgiving Recipes

Mix and match Cooking Channel's best Thanksgiving recipes to put together your own custom turkey day table.

A Guide to America's Most-Interesting Regional Desserts

We've rounded up the greatest provincial treats from across the country, from Kentucky Derby Pie to Ohio's famous peanut-butter-filled Buckeye Candy.

Desserts on the Grill

The grill can be just as good for your sweets as it is for your meats. Here are some tips for making desserts on the grill.

On TV

Good Eats

10am | 9c

Good Eats

10:30am | 9:30c

Good Eats

11am | 10c

Good Eats

11:30am | 10:30c

Man Fire Food

12pm | 11c

Man Fire Food

12:30pm | 11:30c

Man Fire Food

1pm | 12c

Man Fire Food

1:30pm | 12:30c

Emeril's Florida

2:30pm | 1:30c

Cheap Eats

6pm | 5c

Cheap Eats

6:30pm | 5:30c

Cheap Eats

7pm | 6c

Cheap Eats

7:30pm | 6:30c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Cheap Eats

8pm | 7c

Cheap Eats

8:30pm | 7:30c

Cheap Eats

9pm | 8c

Cheap Eats

9:30pm | 8:30c

Cheap Eats

10pm | 9c

Cheap Eats

10:30pm | 9:30c

Good Eats

11pm | 10c

Good Eats

11:30pm | 10:30c

Cheap Eats

12am | 11c

Cheap Eats

12:30am | 11:30c

Cheap Eats

1am | 12c

Cheap Eats

1:30am | 12:30c

Cheap Eats

2am | 1c

Cheap Eats

2:30am | 1:30c

Good Eats

3am | 2c

Good Eats

3:30am | 2:30c
What's Hot
What's Hot

Carnival Eats

Thursdays at 9pm ET

So Much Pretty Food Here