How To Cook a Perfect Cheesecake Using a Water Bath

Is there anything better in life than a slice of New York style, creamy cheesecake? Whether it's an Autumnal pumpkin cheesecake, a rich chocolate cheesecake, or even a no-bake cheesecake, it's a tried and true dessert. I'm like a lot of novice bakers who are a bit intimidated by making cheesecake. Many bakers say they key to baking the perfect cheesecake is to cook it in a water bath. Before we get into how, we need to know why we need a cheesecake water bath.

The hot water bath, also known as a Bain Marie,  ensures that the oven stays moist and helps to make sure the edges don't cook faster than the middle. Cheesecake is very delicate and the high oven temperature can cause cracking and a rubbery cake. By using a water bath, you can hopefully prevent these issues. Read on for our tips and tricks to creating a cheesecake water bath for the best cheesecake.

How To Make a Water Bath

The first thing you'll want to do is get a springform pan. This cheesecake pan is essential for baking cheesecake. It has a tight seal that helps avoid leaks and spills. To make sure it's leakproof, wrap the pan in two layers of heavy-duty aluminum foil. If you're really worried about leakage, you can put your pan in an oven bag while baking. Once it's in its pan, you'll transfer it to a larger pan, like a roasting pan. An important step is to make sure you position the roasting pan in the oven before adding the water.

Wilton Springform Pan

Of course, you'll need to fill the bottom of the pan with your graham cracker crust and cheesecake filling before putting it in the oven.

Once the baking pan is securely in the oven, you can add the boiling water until it comes about halfway up the springform pan.

Cheesecake Recipe

If it's your first time, you've got this! Leave yourself plenty of time in the day, since the total time required is about 3 hours. The cook time is about 2.5 hours, and the prep is only 20 minutes. For ingredients, you'll need: graham cracker crumbs, 4 large eggs, sour cream, softened cream cheese, heavy cream, unsalted butter, vanilla, sugar, and salt.

To make the crust, use a food processor and grind up your graham crackers, along with sugar and melted butter. Press the crust inside the springform pan and along the sides of the pan. Bake at 350 in your preheated oven for 10 minutes and then let the cheesecake cool to room temperature.

Next, you'll wrap the cheesecake pan with foil and place it in a large roasting pan.

In a stand mixer, combine your cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, eggs, sour cream and heavy cream. After you add the cheesecake batter to the pan, go ahead and make your cheesecake water bath. Just add boiling water to the middle of the springform pan. We suggest adding the water after you've put the pan in the oven.

After cooking for 1.5 hours, turn the oven heat off, crack open the oven door and let it cool. Then, chill for 4 hours, and voila, a beautiful, tasty and moist cheesecake!

Get the full recipe here.

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