Sunday, May 29, 2022

Lemon Cheesecake + Video

Our lemon cheesecake features a creamy smooth filling with a bright citrus flavor nestled into a buttery graham cracker crust. Make this baked cheesecake recipe for a fantastic holiday dessert. Don’t forget to top it with whipped cream and fresh berries!!

Lemon cheesecake on a white plate

Tangy citrus perfectly complements this rich dessert for an incredible taste you won’t soon forget! Each bite melts in your mouth and tickles your taste buds without being too heavy.
lemon cheesecake ingredients

Lemon Cheesecake

Since cheesecakes can be finicky when baked, there are lots of notes in the instructions to address the most common issues that occur.

One of the most important steps is baking at a low temperature - it guarantees that perfect creamy texture and makes the dessert less likely to crack.

Don’t have time for a baked lemon cheesecake? Try this delicious no bake cheesecake recipe! This version features fresh blueberries and a crispy cookie crust.

Or, take a look through more of my no bake dessert recipes! There are plenty more cheesecakes to choose from, along with a citrus icebox cake and plenty of finger food treats.

pressing crust into pan

Tips for Making a Baked Lemon Cheesecake

Use room temperature ingredients. Transfer all of the refrigerated items to the counter at least 30 minutes before starting this lemon cheesecake recipe.

Allowing them to warm helps everything blend together easier and prevents lumps in the cheesecake batter.

Don’t beat in the eggs!  Beating eggs into the batter adds extra air, causing it to puff when baked and collapse when cooled. 

It’s a surefire way to get cracks in your cheesecake. Whip the cream cheese, sugar, and citrus ingredients well, then whip the eggs separately.

Wrap the pan in foil. Springform pans are not watertight, so cover the outside in a double layer of aluminum foil before placing it in the water bath.

Need more flavor?  The combination of juice, zest, and extract creates a prominent but natural flavor.

For a brighter lemon flavor, you could try increasing the extract or zest if desired, or add a lemon flavoring oil.

Be cautious of adding extra juice, as the extra liquid may affect the consistency of the dessert.

smoothing cheesecake batter in pan

Recipe Video

To see us make the lemon cheesecake from start to finish, watch the video in this post.

Kitchen Tools You Will Need

spreading lemon curd on cheesecake

Lemon Cheesecake Recipe FAQ

How do you prevent cracks in baked cheesecake?

Gradually reducing the temperature is one of the best ways to prevent cracks - along with baking the dessert in a water bath.

Once the baking time is up, turn off the oven, but leave the door closed for 20 minutes. Then, crack the oven door but leave the dessert inside for an additional 20 minutes.

This allows the center to finish setting as it slowly cools and keeps it from overbaking as well.

Can I freeze the lemon cheesecake?

Absolutely! Any remaining slices can be refrigerated for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 1 month.

Either way, wrap tightly in plastic and foil before storing to prevent condensation or freezer burn.

piping whipped cream on cheesecake


With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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cheesecake on cake lifter



Yield: 8-12
Author: Donna Elick
Lemon Cheesecake

Lemon Cheesecake

Our lemon cheesecake has a creamy filling and buttery graham cracker crust. Make this baked lemon cheesecake recipe for a holiday dessert!
Prep time: 30 MinCook time: 80 MinTotal time: 1 H & 50 M


  • 1 sleeve honey graham crackers, crushed (about 1 ½ cups)
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) salted butter, melted
  • 4 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest (about 2 lemons)
  • 3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup plain whole milk yogurt
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice (~ 2 lemons)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 (10 ounce) jar lemon curd
  • 1/2 (8 ounce) package whipped topping
  • 1/2 zested lemon, optional
  • 1/2 thinly sliced lemon, optional


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and assemble a 9 inch springform pan.
  2. Make the crust by combining the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter and honey together in a small mixing bowl.
  3. Press the crust into the bottom of the 9 inch springform pan with a flat bottomed measuring cup or your fingers.
  4. Bake the crust for 10-12 minutes or until it just begins to brown at the edges.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely while preparing the cheesecake.
  6. Once cooled, wrap the springform pan in several layers of aluminum foil and place in a baking bag, if possible.
  7. To make the cheesecake: Prepare a large roasting pan or baking dish to make a water bath by placing a folded, lint free towel in the bottom of the pan.
  8. Heat at least 4 cups of water to a boil in a kettle or saucepan and allow to set while preparing the cheesecake.
  9. In a separate large bowl, use a stand or hand mixer to beat together the white sugar and lemon zest until fragrant and colored, about 2 minutes. Shake or scrape the zest off of the beater back into the bowl.
  10. Beat in the softened cream cheese, 1 package at a time, until light and fluffy. This is likely to take 5-10 minutes, depending on the temperature of your cream cheese.
  11. Mix in the yogurt, lemon juice and vanilla extract until completely combined and smooth, about 2 minutes.
  12. In a separate, small mixing bowl whisk together the eggs, just until combined. Do not overbeat.
  13. Add the eggs to the cheesecake mixture while beating on low speed and mix just until incorporated. Do not overbeat.
  14. Pour the cheesecake mixture into the cooled crust in the prepared springform pan. Spread evenly with an offset spatula.
  15. Place the wrapped springform pan into the prepared roasting or baking pan, on top of the folded towel. This will help keep the springform pan from sliding around once the water has been added.
  16. Place the pan in the oven on the top rack and carefully pour the hot water into the roasting or baking pan to create a water bath around the springform pan. It should come up about 2 inches or to the middle of the springform pan, add more water if necessary.
  17. Bake for 60-80 minutes until the outer 2-3 inches are set but the middle still jiggles very slightly when the pan is gently moved. Turn off the oven and leave the door open. Allow everything to cool for 1 hour.
  18. Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and allow it to cool another 2-3 hours or until it reaches room temperature.
  19. Refrigerate the cheesecake in the springform pan overnight.
  20. When ready to serve, remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator and gently run a knife or spatula around the edge of it. Release the springform pan and gently remove the outside from the cheesecake.
  21. Top the cheesecake with the lemon curd and spread evenly with an offset spatula.
  22. Pipe on the whipped topping using a piping bag and a 1M or large star tip and garnish with lemon zest and sliced lemon, optional.

Lemon Cheesecake closeup

Originally published May 2022

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