No Bake Chocolate Cheescake Recipe

The other dessert I made for Thanksgiving at my sister’s this year, a peanut butter–chocolate cheesecake with an Oreo cookie crust. I served this with bourbon–caramel sauce. The base cheesecake recipe is derived from one from Cook’s Illustrated, if memory serves.
2 tbl. unsalted butter
24 Oreo cookies
2 lb. softened cream cheese
1 1/4 c. sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 c. heavy cream
1/4 c. sour cream
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate
2 tbl. dutch process cocoa powder
3/4 c. creamy peanut butter
Preheat your oven to 325°F. Place a roasting pan on the middle rack of the oven. Line the outside of a 9″ springform pan with aluminum foil (to help make it water-tight from the outside, since we’ll be cooking in a water bath). Place a large pot of water on high heat on the stove to boil.
Pulse the cookies into crumbs in your food processor. Melt the butter, combine with the cookie crumbs, and press into an even layer on the bottom of the springform pan, and put the crust into the refrigerator to firm up while you prepare the other ingredients.
Beat the cream cheese at medium speed, then add sugar and continue beating until the sugar is dissolved. Add the eggs one at a time while continuing to beat the cream cheese mixture, scraping down the bowl between each egg to ensure that no lumps of plain cream cheese will remain in the batter. Fold in the vanilla, heavy cream, and sour cream, then separate the batter into two equal portions (I use my kitchen scale for this).
To one half of the batter, add the peanut butter and blend just until combined.
Chop and melt the chocolate, and add the still-warm chocolate and cocoa powder to the other half of the batter and blend well.
Pour the peanut butter batter into the springform and spread with a spatula to an even layer. Carefully pour the chocolate batter on top and even out that layer as well. Alternately, add the two batters in dollops and marble by running a butter knife through the batter, being careful not to disturb the crust.
Place the springform pan into the roasting pan, and pour the boiling water into the roasting pan, enough to come about halfway up the side of the springform pan. Bake for 55-65 minutes, until the edges are set and the center continues to jiggle like gelatin. Turn off the heat, prop oven the oven door slightly (a wooden spoon is great for this), and allow the cheesecake to sit in the oven for another hour. Remove, cool to room temperature in the pan, then transfer the pan to refrigerate until cold (several hours, preferably overnight).
Run a thin knife around the outside of the pan before removing the ring from the springform pan. Place parchment or plastic wrap on the top, invert carefully onto a plate, remove the bottom of the springform pan, then invert carefully onto your serving platter and remove the parchment or plastic.
This is very rich, and should serve 16-20.

I’ve been trying to get a bit more creative in the kitchen because there really is a limit to the number of times I can make fajitas, a roast dinner or a tuna pasta bake.

One of the main problems I face is that I get absolutely zero enjoyment out of standing in the kitchen for hours prepping or waiting for things to cook so I wanted to find a recipe for a quick but more importantly easy dessert.

I found a Good Food recipe for a “No Bake Chocolate Cheesecake” (all credit goes to Good Food, I’ll put the link at the bottom of this post) and decided that I’d use the bank holiday weekend to trash my kitchen by having a go at this seemingly simple recipe. The concept of ‘No Bake’ is completely new to me but also very appealing because I’m useless at the whole “Don’t open the oven door or the cakes will sink” thing… Here’s my attempt:


  • 45 g butter, melted (get unsalted butter!)
  • 110 g caster sugar
  • 120 ml whipping cream (Tesco, green lid, next to the double cream)
  • 150 g dark chocolate, melted and cooled (would advise using chocolate 60% cocoa solids minimum)
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder (get the Green & Black’s cocoa powder, it’s so worth it)
  • 200 g cream cheese (Philadelphia is fine but you don’t want to buy the fat free version as the cheesecake will end up sloppy like me on a Saturday morning)
  1. Firstly you will need to mix the crushed biscuits with the butter and 1 tablespoon of the caster sugar. It will look as if you didn’t melt enough butter but actually what you’re trying to do is just lightly coat the biscuits rather than create something that sticks together.
  2. Put the cheesecake base in the fridge to set whilst you get on with the fun bit: CHOCOLATE TIME.
  3. Melt the chocolate like a normal human being. I chose to deviate from the recipe as I didn’t have a circular glass bowl; I found that a dangerously placed glass fajita serving dish over a pot of boiling water worked perfectly. Mary Berry may not agree.
  4. The recipe says to whip the cream until “soft peaks form”. I just whipped it until it started to turn thick and creamy. Then you need to add the cooled melted chocolate, and then the cocoa powder mix. Give this all a stir with a wooden spoon until it looks like a sort of dusty ganache and set it aside.
  5. Next, you need to beat the cream cheese and the remaining sugar together. Fold this into the cream chocolate mixture and mix thoroughly, taking care to ensure that all of the ingredients are mixed together completely.

Try not to eat the entire bowl of chocolate mixture then and there. If you survive this step you may progress onto the next part: spread the heavenly chocolate mess onto the crushed biscuits in the tin.
All you need to do next is pop the cheesecake into the fridge for an hour or two to let it set before serving! I actually found that the biscuit base crumbled away when I served it after an hour (nope, couldn’t wait any longer) but after I had left it overnight it was much easier to serve. I’d recommend making this the day before if you’re planning on serving it to guests or people who care what their food looks like.