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Ultimate Cheesecake

This is a labor of love. Make the crust. Make the cheesecake filling and bake the cheesecake in a water bath. Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight. Make the sauces and let them cool. Serve.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12


For The Cheesecake Crust

  • 1 cup finely ground graham crackers About 7 - 8, or one sleeve full-size graham crackers put in a food processor and ground up
  • 1/2 cup whole almonds, finely ground Measure 1/2 cup almonds and then grind them in a food processor
  • 2 T brown sugar
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 - 3 T melted butter

For The Cheesecake Filling

  • 3 8 - ounce packages of real cream cheese Don't use light cream cheese.
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/3 cups whole milk ricotta Don't use reduced fat.
  • 1 2/3 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 C Cornstarch
  • 1 T vanilla extract or the scrapings from 2 - 3 vanilla beans


To Make The Crust

  • Grease a 9-inch springform pan with butter.
  • Blast the graham crackers and almonds in a food processor until they are reduced to small crumbs. If you don't have a food processor put them in a ziplock baggie and pulverize with a rolling pin. 
  • In a medium bowl, thoroughly combine the ground graham crackers, ground almonds, cinnamon, sugar and melted butter.
  • Pour the crumb mixture into the prepared springform pan and patiently press it out evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Grease the bottom of a glass and use that to press it. It will go about 1 1/2 - 2 inches up the sides of the pan.

To Make The Cream Cheese Filling

  • Preheat the oven to 350.
  • Put one 8-ounce package of cream cheese, 1/3 cup of the sugar, and all the cornstarch in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on low until creamy. This takes about 3 minutes. 
  • With the mixer still on low speed, beat in the rest of the cream cheese and the ricotta cheese. Occasionally scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  • Increase the mixer speed to high and beat in the remaining 1 1/3 cups of sugar. Beat in the vanilla. Add the eggs, one at a time. After each egg beat well and scrape the sides of the bowl.
  • Reduce the mixer speed and blend in the heavy whipping cream. Stop mixing as soon as the heavy whipping cream is combined.
  • Gently spoon the filling into the prepared 9-inch springform pan. 
  • Place the springform pan in a large shallow pan containing hot water. The hot water should come up the sides of the springform pan about an inch.
  • Bake one hour at 350. The cheesecake is done when the center just barely jiggles when you shake the pan.
  • Cool on a wire rack for an hour.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until it's completely cold, about 4 hours. Overnight is best.
  • Remove the sides of the springform pan and slide the cake onto a serving plate or cake pedestal.
  • Cut the cake with dental floss instead of a knife. Once you make a "cut" with dental floss, you may still need a knife to cut through the crust.