Mini Lemon Cheesecakes are an easy mini lemon cheesecake recipe with a spicy gingersnap crust.  They’re topped with lemon curd and whipped cream for the ultimate lemon dessert! {GF}

mini lemon cheesecakes on serving platter

**This post was originally published in December 2014.  I’ve updated some of the text, photos and added step by step recipe photos.

What’s better than cheesecake?  Mini cheesecakes!   

I love cheesecake, but an entire slice is just too heavy for me.  A few bites is all I need to satisfy me, and I’m sure I’m not alone. 

These Mini Lemon Cheesecakes are so much fun, and downright adorable.  People have told me that they’re too pretty eat, yet somehow they still disappear. 🙂

close up of mini lemon cheesecakes topped with lemon curd and whipped cream

What you’ll love about this mini lemon cheesecake recipe:

  • They’re an explosion of flavor with a spicy gingersnap crust, lemony cheesecake filling and tangy lemon curd.
  • This recipe is very easy, and everything may be made in advance.
  • These cheesecake bites are a show stopping dessert that’s perfect for holidays and entertaining.
  • Any variety of citrus may be substituted for the lemon.  

What’s the best pan to use for mini cheesecakes?

Years ago I purchased this mini cheesecake pan, which works wonderfully.  I love them because they include a removable bottom for easy cheesecake removal.

If you prefer to use a standard muffin pan, the quantity and baking time will vary as the size is larger.  See this recipe for Mini Cheesecake Cupcakes for more information.

overhead shot of mini lemon cheesecakes topped with whipped cream and lemon slice

Mini Lemon Cheesecake recipe ingredients

  • Store bought gingersnap cookies (I used gluten free)
  • Butter
  • Cream cheese
  • Granulated sugar
  • Eggs
  • Lemon zest and juice
  • Greek yogurt or sour cream
  • Vanilla extract
  • Heavy whipping cream

How to make Mini Lemon Cheesecakes

There are a few steps involved in this recipe, but they’re all incredibly easy.

  • Prepare the Lemon Curd.  This may be done up to 2 days in advance.
  • Prepare the crust.  Process the gingersnap cookies in a food processor and combine with melted butter and pinch of salt.  Divide the mixture evenly between the (12) cavities and press in firmly.  Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden.

mini lemon cheesecake gingersnap crust collage

  • Prepare the cheesecake filling.  Beat the softened cream cheese in a medium bowl until smooth.  Add the sugar, egg, Greek yogurt, lemon zest and juice and vanilla extract and beat until well combined.  Divide the filling evenly between the (12) cavities, then bake for 15-18 minutes or until slightly wobbly (begin checking for doneness after 15 minutes as oven times vary).  Cool for 20 minutes on a wire rack, then remove the cheesecakes from the pan and cool completely.  Once cooled, refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.

Mini lemon cheesecakes before and after baking

  • Prepare the whipped cream.   Place the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla extract in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium speed until the cream thickens.  Increase to high and mix until medium peaks form, then remove the whisk attachment and finish whisking the cream by hand until stiff peaks form.  This may be done in advance, simply whisk once more prior to serving!
  • Assemble the cheesecakes.  When ready to serve, top the cheesecakes with a dollop of lemon curd, followed by the whipped cream.  

Mini lemon cheesecakes before topping with lemon curd and after

How do you know when mini cheesecakes are done?

The cheesecakes are done when they’re set but slightly wobbly in the center.  

Be sure to begin testing for doneness after 10 minutes as oven times vary considerably.

close up front shot of mini lemon cheesecakes on marble serving board

How long do mini cheesecakes keep in the fridge?

Mini lemon cheesecakes keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Recipe notes

  • Cheesecakes and lemon curd can be made in advance and stored in an air tight container and assembled just before serving.
  • The whipped cream may be made in advance, simply whisk it beforehand.
  • Make mini lemon cheesecakes with graham cracker crust or use your favorite cookies!
  • Substitute the lemon for lime, key lime or blood orange.

distant front shot of mini lemon cheesecakes on marble board with piping bag alongside

More cheesecake recipes you’ll love:

Classic cheesecake by Food Network

Cranberry orange cheesecake

Key lime cheesecake bars

Oreo cheesecake bites

Strawberry cheesecake dip

Yield: 12 mini cheesecakes

Mini Lemon Cheesecakes

Mini lemon cheesecakes with whipped cream and lemon slices on top

Mini Lemon Cheesecakes are an easy mini lemon cheesecake recipe with a gingersnap crust, topped with lemon curd and whipped cream! 

Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes

Ingredients

For the Crust:

  • 1 cup gingersnap cookie crumbs, pulsed in a food processor (I used Pamela's gluten free brand), plus more for garnish*
  • 4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
  • pinch of salt

For the Cheesecakes:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt or sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup Lemon Curd

For the Whipped Cream:

  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions

Prepare the crust:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the inserts into the bottom of each of the (12) cavities of a mini cheesecake pan, and spray with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Place the gingersnap crumbs and a pinch of salt in a small bowl and stir to combine. Add the butter and stir until the mixture is well combined. Drop 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of the mixture into the each of the (12) cavities, and press down firmly with the back of a teaspoon. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack while you make the filling.

Prepare the cheesecake filling:

  1. Beat the cream cheese in a medium bowl until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the sugar, egg, Greek yogurt or sour cream, lemon juice, zest, and vanilla, and beat until smooth and well combined. Fill each cavity with the filling as evenly as possible, and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 15-20 minutes or until set but slightly wobbly in the center. Begin checking for doneness after 10 minutes, as oven temperatures vary considerably.
  2. Cool 20 minutes on a wire rack, then using your finger, push up through the hole in the bottom of each cheesecake and remove each one. Use a knife to loosen the sides if necessary -- I didn't have to. Remove the metal insert if they're easy to remove at this point, and cool completely in the refrigerator for 2 hours or overnight.

Prepare the whipped cream:

  1. Place the heavy whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium high speed until soft peaks begin to form. Remove the whisk attachment and whisk just a bit more by hand until you've reached the desired consistency.

Assemble the cheesecakes:

  1. Place the cheesecakes on a serving tray. Top each with a dollop of lemon curd, and pipe the whipped cream decoratively over the top of the curd. Garnish with the reserved gingersnap crumbs and enjoy!

Notes

  • Cheesecakes and lemon curd can be made in advance and stored in an air tight container and assembled just before serving.
  • The whipped cream may be made in advance, simply whisk it beforehand.
  • Make mini lemon cheesecakes with graham cracker crust or use your favorite cookies!
  • Mini lemon cheesecakes keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Substitute the lemon for lime, key lime or blood orange.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 270Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 57mgSodium: 206mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 1gSugar: 16gProtein: 4g

Nutrition information is mean to be an estimate only. The numbers will vary based on the quantity consumed, brands used and substitutions that are made.


 

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