The Best Smoked Cheesecake Recipe

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Smoked Cheesecake Recipe

Although many foods can be smoked, not all of them should. Smoked cheesecake is one of those that should be smoked. We are excited to share our delicious recipe for smoked cheesecake, and our easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions for how you can enjoy this delicious smoked cheesecake recipe!

Smoked Cheesecake close up

Applewood Smoked Cheesecake

Enjoying the applewood smoked cheesecake might just be the most delicious cheesecake you have ever tasted. Perhaps you didn’t realize that cheesecake could be smoked, well today is the day to learn all about it.

Because cheesecake is typically cooked low and slow, the milk elements inside of the cheesecake do not curdle, and the cake does not crack, this makes it an excellent candidate to try smoking. If you are using a pellet smoker, you can use applewood pellets, or you can also use walnut or pecan pellets for a delicious taste as well. 

Why I Love Smoked Cheesecake

You can easily smoke a cheesecake in a water bath inside of your smoker. This is such a fun thing to do in the summertime, or even in the winter if you’re feeling adventurous.

Smoked cheesecake has a delicious flavor that you cannot obtain by any other means. Smoked cheesecake is unlike oven-baked cheesecake, and it is oh so delicious. 

Why This Works

Smoked cheesecake works well because cheesecake is naturally cooked at a low temperature, and for a longer amount of time allowing the cheesecake to fully bake without cracking or curling.

This makes an excellent combination for cooking on your smoker as the cooking method fits your smoker naturally, then the added flavor of your smoke benefits the overall taste of your cheesecake, making it unlike anything else you have ever tried. 

How to make a smoked cheesecake on your Traeger or pellet smoker

Although not all foods or grills can be used to smoke things, nor should all food be smoked. But in this case, it works out well. You can easily use a Traeger or pellet smoker to smoke your cheesecake. We are excited to walk you through the step-by-step process of how to do this. 

Equipment Needed:

Smoker

Cheesecake pan

Aluminum foil

Larger pan to fit your cheesecake pan into

Crust Ingredients:

Crushed graham crackers

Butter

Brown sugar

Cheesecake Filling Ingredients:

Cream cheese

Granulated sugar

Eggs

All-purpose flour

Sour cream

Eggs

Vanilla extract

Recipe Overview:

Now, let’s turn our attention to how you can go about making this delicious smoked cheesecake recipe. Please note that any flavor of cheesecake can be smoked using the following instructions. 

How to Make

For the Crust

Begin making your cheesecake by starting with the crust. First take a package of graham crackers and crush them up as finally as you can using a rolling pin or stick them in the food processor.

Next, add your brown sugar, and melt your butter. Add your melted butter to the mixture and combine. Spray your pan with cooking spray, then pour the mixture into the baking dish. Press it down hard, preheat your oven to 350°F, and bake the crust for approximately 10 minutes. Remove and allow it to cool.

Preparing the filling

After the crust has been prepared, it is time to make your filling. To make your filling add the cream cheese to a mixing bowl, and beat with a blender until it becomes creamy and smooth.

Add sugar, and eggs, then stir to combine. Once mixed in and creamy, add flour, sour cream, and repeat the process of mixing until creamy. Add vanilla and stir until mixed in. Pour your filling into your cooled and prepared crust.   

Smoked Cheesecake top down

Smoking the cheesecake

Now that your cheesecake is prepared, it is time to preheat your smoker to 300°F, according to your manufacture’s instructions for your smoker. 

While your smoker is preheating, it’s a good idea to prepare your cheesecake for smoking by getting a water bath ready. To prepare your cheesecake for smoking, wrap the outside of your cheesecake pan securely in aluminum foil. Wrapping your cheesecake pan in aluminum foil is a necessary step so that it can help prevent water from seeping into your cheesecake pan.

After your cheesecake pan has been wrapped securely in aluminum foil, place your cheesecake pan into another larger pan, and fill it with water that goes about halfway up the side of your cheesecake pan (should be about 1 to 2 inches deep of water). Place these in your preheated smoker. 

Smoke for approximately 1 to 2 hours depending on the external temperature of your location. At the 1-hour mark begin checking on your cheesecake to see if it is cooked. If your cheesecake is set, but still slightly jiggly, reduce the heat of your smoker to 200°F and continue smoking until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. This should allow your cheesecake to continue cooking, but begin to cool off as well. 

When your cheesecake has fully cooked, turn your smoker off, but leave your cheesecake inside of the smoker with it opened for another 15 to 30 minutes so that your cheesecake can cool. After it has cooled, remove it from the smoker, and the water bath, and refrigerate until it is chilled. This typically takes between 4 to 6 hours, or overnight. 

What kind of wood should I use to smoke a cheesecake?

Determining the type of wood you should use to smoke your cheesecake is a very important factor. There are many different types of wood to choose from, that can change the overall flavor of your cheesecake drastically. 

If you are new to smoking, it might be a good idea to start with something mild, like applewood or maple. However, fruit types of woods such as cherry, pecan, applewood, and maple are all good options and will give you a delicious flavor. 

Storing

There are two main ways to store a cheesecake. Those two main ways are in the refrigerator or placing the cheesecake into your freezer. Below are the details on both storage methods. 

Fridge. Once your cheesecake has finished smoking and cooled to room temperature, it is of the utmost importance to place your cheesecake into the fridge for storage.

For best results, you can cover the top of your cheesecake with plastic wrap, or aluminum foil to help keep it fresh in your fridge.

If you have an airtight container that your cheesecake will fit into, you can also store your cheesecake inside of an airtight container to keep it fresh. Your cheesecake can last between 3 to 4 days when stored in the refrigerator.

Freezer. Your cheesecake may also be frozen if desired. Before freezing, you may choose to slice your cheesecake, so that it is in individual servings, or leave it whole.

You will want to place your cheesecake into a freezer bag that can be sealed or place it into an airtight storage container before freezing. Your cheesecake can last up to two months in the freezer. 

Hints for Making a Smoked Cheesecake for the First Time

Perhaps this is the first time you are trying to make a smoked cheesecake. If this is the case, we have a few helpful hints to help you have a delicious cheesecake in the end. 

Prebake Crust. Pre-baking your cheesecake crust is always a good idea. This will help it to fully set up so that it will support the rest of your cheesecake. 

Water Bath. No matter if you are baking your cheesecake in the oven, or smoking it, using a water bath is essential as it helps your cheesecake to bake evenly, and not to crack down the center. 

Fully Bake. Another key to having a delicious cheesecake is to fully bake it. To do this on a smoker, in normal warm temperatures, the process of fully baking your cheesecake could take approximately two hours. If you are in a chilly location, it may take longer to fully bake your cheesecake. 

Chill. After your cheesecake has been fully smoked, and then cooled to room temperature, it is important to cool your cheesecake before eating it. This helps your cheesecake to be the best it can be if you allow your cheesecake to fully cool. The cooling process usually takes about four hours, or overnight for best results. 

Pellet Flavors. Determining the flavors of pellets to use in your smoker is another important factor. Perhaps this is the first time you are smoking a cheesecake, you will want to stick with something on the mild side so that the smoke flavor does not overpower your cheesecake. 

Smoked Cheesecake cover photo

A Few Tips On Making The Perfect Cheesecake

Now that we have covered a few helpful hints for your first time smoking a cheesecake, let’s turn our attention to a few tips to make the perfect smoked cheesecake. 

Tips for Making Smoked Cheesecake

Don’t Be Chilly. When you are smoking a cheesecake, maintaining a good temperature of your smoker is an important factor in baking your cheesecake evenly.

If you’re trying to do this in the winter in a Northern, or cold location, it may be a bit difficult to evenly bake your cheesecake. The best results are going to be enjoyed when you are not fighting against cold outdoor temperatures. 

Swap Oreos For Grahams. When making your cheesecake crust, we recommend using graham crackers rather than Oreos, as graham crackers tend to taste better after they have been smoked. 

Keep Things Subtle. To enjoy an overall good flavor, it’s a good idea to keep your smoke flavors subtle. That means you will want to try and avoid any wood flavors that are on the strong, and overpowering inside. Getting a nice subtle smoky flavor will make a delicious smoked cheesecake. 

Use Parchment Paper. Using parchment paper on the bottom of your cheesecake pan is an important step, it can help you easily remove your cheesecake from the pan.

This means to first line your cheesecake pan with parchment paper before adding your crust into the pan. 

Get Funky With Mix-Ins. Don’t hesitate to get creative with your flavor mix and for this cheesecake. We are excited to provide you with a delicious bass cheesecake recipe, that can easily be improved upon to make any kind of cheesecake flavor you are in the mood for. 

Smoked Cheesecake Recipe

Ingredients

For the crust:

8 large sheets graham crackers

5 Tbsp butter, melted

¼ cup brown sugar

For the filling:

24 oz cream cheese (3 – 8 oz blocks)

1 cup sugar

4 large eggs

3 Tbsp all-purpose flour

1 cup sour cream

2 Tbsp vanilla extract 

Recipe Steps

Step 1: Prepare the oven and grill 

Before you begin, it is important to clean your grill and get it ready to smoke. Then, when ready, you can begin preheating your smoker to 300°F. 

Step 2: Crust

Begin making your crust by crushing graham crackers until they are finely ground. If you have a food processor, you can simply pulse your graham crackers until they are fine, however, if you do not, you can crush them by hand until you have only small crumbs. 

Mix the graham crackers and your melted butter and brown sugar. Stir to combine, then pour out onto a lightly greased springform pan. Press your graham crackers into a solid crust, then bake at 400°F, for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. 

Step 3: Filling

In a mixing bowl, add your cream cheese, and beat with a blender until soft and creamy. Add sugar, and eggs, blend with your mixer until combined and creamy.

Next, add flour, and sour cream. Blend until combined. Add vanilla, and stir until mixed in. Pour your filling mixture over your cooled graham cracker crust. 

Step 4: Get ready to smoke

Now that your cheesecake is assembled, it is time to prepare your cheesecake to smoke while your smoker is preheating. To finish preparing your cheesecake, wrap the outside of your springform pan in aluminum foil so that it is secure. This step helps to prevent water from seeping into your cheesecake. 

Place your cheesecake wrapped in aluminum foil, into another larger pan. Fill the outside pan with water so that it is halfway up the outside of your cheesecake pan. This typically means you are adding 1 to 2 inches of water. You have now created a water bath for your cheesecake. 

Step 5: Smoking

When your smoker is preheated to 300°F, take your cheesecake inside of the water bath and place the entire thing on your smoker. Smoke for approximately one hour, or until your cheesecake is set.

When your cheesecake is set but still slightly jiggly in the center, decrease your smoker temperature to 200°F and continue smoking until your cheesecake is fully baked, or until a toothpick is inserted into the center and comes out clean.

This typically takes around 30 minutes, but the time may vary depending upon your external temperature.

Step 6: Cool and serve

After your cheesecake is fully baked, and a toothpick inserted into the center of the cheesecake comes out clean, turn your smoker off but leave the cheesecake on the smoker with the lid open. 

Allow the cheesecake to cool to room temperature. This typically takes around 30 minutes. 

After the cheesecake has cooled to room temperature, place the cheesecake into the fridge, and allow to chill for at least 4 to 6 hours, or overnight. After your cheesecake has chilled, you can add any desired toppings then serve and enjoy. 

Recipe Notes

The recipe above is a delicious base cheesecake, that can have many toppings added to it, or easily be adjusted for different flavorings. The steps to smoke a cheesecake are very much the same no matter what flavor of cheesecake you are smoking. 

Smoked Cheesecake salted top

Nutrition

Looking at the above recipe, we have estimated that the above recipe contains approximately 10 servings, or can they be divided into 10 slices. We have estimated that one slice or one serving contains approximately 518 cal. 

We have also estimated that one serving contains approximately 37.5 g total fat, 175 mg cholesterol, 352 mg sodium, 37.2 g total carbohydrates, and 9.5 g protein. Please keep in mind that the nutrition facts may vary depending upon what specific ingredients you include when making your cheesecake. 

Recipe Variations

There are many different versions of smoked cheesecake that you can make. The steps above apply to the smoking process, no matter what flavor of cheesecake you decide to make. 

The recipe above provides you with a delicious base recipe, that can easily be adapted into many different varieties of cheesecake flavors. Below are some ideas for you and how you can make different smoked cheesecake recipe variations. 

Smoked Cheesecake With Burnt Sugar Cream Sauce

A very delicious and easy way to mix up the basic cheesecake recipe above is to add a burnt sugar cream sauce on top of it.

New York Style Smoked Cheesecake with Brandied Peaches

Another delicious way to mix things up with the above base recipe is to add brandied peaches on top of your cheesecake.

Smoked Cheesecake With Smoked Cherry Compote

Smoked cherry compote is a delicious topping for the above base cheesecake recipe. To do this, you’ll want to make your cherry compote and add it on top of the cheesecake at the end of the smoking process. This would be added after your cheesecake has been baked most of the way. 

Smoked Oreo Cheesecake

There are so many ways you can make an Oreo cheesecake. One easy way is to change the graham cracker crust above to Oreo crust and add crushed Oreos into your cheesecake recipe above. Then top it with more crushed Oreos, a drizzle of chocolate, and some homemade whipped cream for a delicious cheesecake. 

Smoked Cheesecake With Caramel And Sea Salt (Cooked In A Smoker)

Topping your smoked cheesecake with caramel and sea salt is another delicious way to mix things up with the above cheesecake recipe. You can make homemade caramel sauce, or simply use caramel ice cream topping for a delicious cheesecake. Then sprinkle the top with sea salt chunks for the ultimate smoked cheesecake. 

Ooey, Gooey Smoked S’mores Cheesecake

You could also make a s’more cheesecake using the above-based recipe. If you want to adapt the cheesecake into a chocolate one, you can add cocoa powder, and melted chocolate chips into your filling. Then top with marshmallows, chocolate chips, and graham cracker pieces in the last portion of your smoking. This gives you a lovely s’more like cheesecake. 

Baked Summer Berry Cheesecake

Summer berry cheesecake is another delicious option that can be easily made using the above recipe. Simply bake the cheesecake as instructed above, then top off with your favorite summer berry combination. 

Smoked Chocolate Cheesecake

Smoke chocolate cheesecake is another delicious action that can easily be made. To make chocolate cheesecake, use the above recipe, then add melted chocolate chips, and a little bit of cocoa powder for a delicious smoked chocolate cheesecake. 

Whiskey Smoked Cheesecake Bars

To make a whiskey smoked cheesecake, you can simply add approximately 1 tablespoon of whiskey, or to taste to be above the cheesecake recipe. You can also add additional toppings to the whiskey-smoked cheesecake if desired.

Smoked Salmon Cheesecake

Salmon cheesecake is a less common option but can be enjoyed as well. To make a smoked salmon cheesecake, prepare as instructed above, then add in some pre-cooked, or smoked salmon, chopped onions, and green peppers. If desired, you can also add in Parmesan cheese as well. 

Smoked Cheesecake front on

Recipe FAQ

What is the risk of over-mixing the cheesecake filling?

Although you don’t want to mix the cheesecake filling too much, it is okay to beat the cream cheese until smooth and creamy, and then fully mix your other ingredients. 

How do you prevent cracking as the cheesecake cools?

The best way to prevent cracking as your cheesecake cools is to let it cool gradually. This is why we recommend cooking your cheesecake in a water bath and then turning the temperature down as it gets closer to being fully baked. 

How do you tell when the cheesecake is done?

To tell when your cheesecake is done, you can simply insert a toothpick into the center of your cheesecake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cheesecake is done. 

What is a Water Bath for Cheesecakes?

A water bath is when you submerge your cheesecake halfway into the water. You then bake the cheesecake in the water, so that it cooks evenly, and helps prevent cracking. 

Can you use low-fat cream cheese?

Yes, you can use low-fat cream cheese, it will just not be quite as creamy as it would if you used full-fat cream cheese. 

Super Smoked Cheesecake

Enjoying smoked cheesecake takes cheesecake to a whole new level of dessert. A smoked cheesecake is a cheesecake that has a delicious flavor added to it by the wood.

There are many different flavors of smoked cheesecake that you can enjoy, so get creative and think of your favorite cheesecake then enjoy your cheesecake after it has been smoked. 

Smoked Cheesecake

Smoked cheesecake is an easy way to mix up your average cheesecake recipe. Enjoying our smoked cheesecake recipe is easy to do, and tastes delicious.

The process of smoking a cheesecake is quite simple, and our step-by-step instructions walk you through the entire process. Give it a try today and see how you like smoked cheesecake!

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