Legendary New York Cheesecake

I’m not a cake person.

That said, the few cakes I do enjoy are all in the “Best Desserts Ever” category. Can you guess what’s at the very top? Cheesecake. Cheesecake is the best cake, food, and ice-cream flavor I’ve ever tasted. Seriously, if they came out with a Cheesecake GO app where you capture recipes like Pokemon, I’d be the first in line.

Anyways, a few years ago I visited my dad’s side of the family in the South. While there, and possibly on the way out of a chocolate shop, my great aunt told me about this cheesecake recipe.



What, you don’t know the legend? Well, it’s not the story that makes this cheesecake exciting, I promise you. The story just emphasizes why this cheesecake is my favorite one.

The topping is just some caramelized pears. I used them because pears are in season and I needed to cover up a big crack in the top of the cake. This cake tastes equally good without any topping though, don’t worry.

Once upon a time, one of my great aunt’s friends was eating at a fancy restaurant in a fancy city. Of course she tried a slice of cheesecake, and of course that cheesecake was delicious, so she asked for the recipe. On her way home, she looked at the receipt for her meal and realized the recipe had been added to her bill… for an extra couple hundred dollars. Ever since then, she’s been sharing that recipe with all her friends and relatives, because you don’t hoard Truth. That stuff needs to be shared.

It’s a little shorter than it’s supposed to be here because I divided the recipe by 2/3. We didn’t have enough cream cheese for the full cheesecake. Totally not because I’m a cream cheese fiend. Why would you say that???

Ever since my great aunt wrote down this recipe in the margins of my sketch book, it has been the centerpiece of many a birthday. While my dad prefers the chocolate raspberry truffle variety of cheesecake, I prefer the plain and simple purity of this legendary recipe. So basically, I’m passing the world’s fanciest cheesecake recipe into your hands. Use it wisely.


Legendary New York Cheesecake


6 packages of cream cheese at room temperature (8 oz each)
16 oz sour cream (around 2 cups)
2 cups sugar
6 eggs (room temperature is best)
2 tsp vanilla

*Note: You can use any graham cracker crust you want, but the one I used is here.


  • Prepare a spring form pan with graham cracker crust and well-oiled sides.
  • Preheat oven to 450*F.
  • Blend cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar thoroughly.
  • Add the eggs in two at a time, being careful not to over-whip.
  • Stir in vanilla.
  • Place spring form pan into a larger pan surrounded with one inch water.*
  • Pour cheesecake batter into the spring form pan and bake for 15 min.
  • Lower the temperature to 300*F, and bake for an additional 60 min.
  • Remove spring form pan from larger pan and return to oven. Turn oven off. Stuff hot pads in the oven door to create a small vent. Leave cheesecake in oven to cool as the oven cools. I’d recommend leaving it in overnight, but either way works.
  • Refrigerate for one day. (You could skip this step. Just make sure you have leftovers so you can appreciate its flavor the next day.)

*Note: If you don’t have a pan large enough, simply fill a pan with water and place it on the rack underneath the cheesecake.




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