Ultra-smooth, rich and creamy white chocolate cheesecake on a buttery shortbread cookie crust, topped with raspberry sauce and fresh raspberries, this White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake is a favorite flavor combination.
I’ve kept the raspberries on the top of this White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake so that nothing would interfere with the creamy, ultra- smooth texture of the cheesecake. Use a good quality white chocolate, because it’s flavor definitely shines through, even if it’s subtle. The white chocolate also adds a delicious density to the texture of the cheesecake.
The raspberry sauce adds a sweet-tart contrast to the rich sweetness of the white chocolate. Putting the raspberries on top of the cheesecake instead of baked inside it keeps the raspberries fresh and vibrant. A rich, buttery shortbread cookie crust makes the perfect base. It’s never soggy and adds a lovely flavor.
Make sure to use a good quality white chocolate that melts smoothly. Lindt and Ghirardelli are good options. In a test of white chocolates best for taste, melting, and blending, Cook’s Illustrated ranked Guittard Choc-Au-Lait White Chips the top pick. Even though it is not a true white chocolate, it was ranked the best for its creamy, buttery, strong vanilla flavor and it’s silky, crème fraiche-like smoothness. They found that real white chocolate, due to its high cocoa butter content melts and solidifies at a lower temperature and will form crystals if it cools too quickly. The refined fats in artificial white chocolates help it melt and solidify at higher temperatures so the melted chocolate doesn’t become grainy. Who knew! And if you really want to splurge, try Valrhona’s Ivoire 35 percent White Chocolate Feves.
For the crust:
- 1½ cups shortbread cookie crumbs, finely ground (6.75oz, 191g)
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted (1.5oz, 43g)
For the filling:
- 12oz good quality white chocolate, melted and cooled (340g)
- 4 – 8oz packages full fat Philadelphia cream cheese, room temperature (32oz, 907g)
- 1/2 cup sugar (3.5oz, 99g)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs, room temperature
For the raspberry sauce:
- 12oz frozen raspberries (340g)
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/3 cup sugar, or more to taste (2.3oz, 65g)
For topping the cheesecake:
- fresh raspberries
For the crust:
- Adjust oven rack to the lower-middle position and preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
- Mix the cookie crumbs and the melted butter until well combined and moistened.
- Press the crumbs into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Using a flat bottomed measuring cup, press the crust firmly and evenly into the bottom of the pan,
- Bake on a lower-middle rack until golden brown around the edges and fragrant, about 13 minutes. Set aside to cool.
For the filling:
- Make sure the cream cheese and eggs are at room temperature for a silky smooth texture.
- Increase the oven to 500 degrees F.
- Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and the sugar on medium-low speed for about 2 minutes, until combined.
- Add cooled melted white chocolate, salt, and vanilla and beat at low speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape the paddle and the bowl well.
- Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat for about 30 seconds after each addition, scraping the paddle and the bowl after each addition.
- Tap bowl on the counter several times so that any large air bubbles come up.
- Brush the sides of the springform pan with butter and place on a baking sheet. Pour the filling into the pan and set aside for 5 minutes, allowing any air bubbles to rise to the top. Pop any unpopped bubbles with a fork.
- Bake in a 500 degree F oven, checking with an oven thermometer, until you can see that the edges are becoming golden, about 10 minutes.
- Reduce the temperature to 200 degrees F and continue to bake until the center of the cheesecake is just slightly jiggly, about 1½ hours.
- It is important to keep an eye on the oven thermometer to be sure the temperature is dropping to 200 degrees F. If it doesn’t drop quickly enough, crack the oven door open until the 200 degrees is reached. I have to crack my oven door open until the temperature reaches 200 degrees because my oven doesn’t cool quickly enough.
- Place the pan on a cooling rack for 5 minutes, then run a knife around the cake to loosen it from the edges of the pan. Allow to cool to room temperature, 2½-3 hours.
- Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold and firmly set, at least 6 hours.
- Top with raspberry sauce and fresh raspberries just before serving.
For the raspberry sauce:
You can top the whole cheesecake with the raspberry sauce and fresh raspberries, or top each slice individually.
This way of baking a cheesecake is the Cook’s Illustrated method for baking an authentic New York Cheesecake with a golden top and puffy brown edges. If you don’t have an oven thermometer, you can bake this cheesecake the normal (less risky) way:
Wrap the springform pan very well with two layers of heavy duty aluminum foil. Don’t leave any openings for water to seep inside.
Bake cheesecake in a roasting pan filled with hot water that comes half way up the side of the springform pan.
Bake at 325 degrees F until the center jiggles just slightly and the sides begin to puff, about 1 hour. The internal temperature should be about 150 degrees F.
Turn off oven and prop open oven door with a wooden spoon handle. Allow cake to cool in water bath in oven for 1 hour. Transfer springform pan without foil to wire rack; run small paring knife around inside edge of pan to loosen sides of cake and cool cake to room temperature, about 2-3 hours.
Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, about 6 hours or overnight.
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