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Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites

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These pumpkin cheesecake bites pair a buttery graham cracker crust with a layer of creamy spiced pumpkin cheesecake and a dollop of whipped cream. A Thanksgiving crowd-pleaser for sure!

Closeup photo of pumpkin cheesecake bites on plate

I am all about “bites” for Thanksgiving, and especially when it’s time for dessert. After you’ve eaten focaccia fig and sausage stuffing, mashed sweet potatoes, turkey, and and roasted parmesan broccoli, are you really going to have room for a whole slice of pie?

Well, okay, maybe. But at least with pumpkin cheesecake bites, you can take a single bite or grab a few if you’ve saved room for dessert. There’s none of that awkward, “Sure, I’ll have a slice, but can you just cut me a tiiiiiny sliver, maybe from that piece right there….”

You know how sometimes you get a pumpkin cheesecake and it’s all pumpkin? Well this one isn’t. It’s super creamy and dreamy, with just the right ratio of cheesecake-to-pumpkin flavor. These pumpkin cheesecake bites are going to disappear right off the dessert table. You must make them. Must must!

Close-up photo of pumpkin cheesecake bite topped with whipped cream

What You’ll Need

Don’t be intimidated by the ingredient list! A lot of the items here are pantry staples that you probably already have on hand.

For the graham cracker crust:

  • Graham crackers
  • Unsalted butter
  • Granulated sugar

For the filling:

  • Pumpkin puree – Make sure you buy plain pumpkin puree, not pie filling.
  • Eggs
  • Dark brown sugar
  • Heavy cream
  • Vanilla extract
  • Granulated sugar
  • Cornstarch
  • Cinnamon – As an alternative to the cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger, you can use 2 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.
  • Nutmeg
  • Ginger
  • Salt
  • Cream cheese – Take the cream cheese out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter for about an hour before you’re ready to start the recipe.

For the whipped topping:

  • Heavy whipping cream – A can of whipped topping will work if you’re short on time, but nothing compares to homemade!

Can I use graham cracker crumbs for the crust instead of whole graham crackers?

Absolutely! If you prefer to buy graham cracker crumbs instead of whole crackers, you’ll use about 2 1/2 to 3 cups. Start with 2 1/2 cups and add more if needed.

How to Make Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites

Once you’ve assembled your ingredients, it’s time to start baking! Here’s what you’ll need to do, step-by-step:

Prepare. Preheat the oven to 400ºF and coat an 8×8-inch baking pan and 9×9-inch baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.

Make the crust. Pulse the graham crackers in a food processor until they’re finely ground, then transfer them to a large bowl. Stir in the sugar, then add the melted butter and stir until the crumbs are wet. Press the crust mixture into both of the pans, then place them in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until the crust is set and golden brown. Reduce the oven temperature to 325ºF.

Make the filling. In another large bowl, whisk the pumpkin puree, eggs, brown sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract. Then, in a stand mixer, cream the cream cheese, granulated sugar, cornstarch, spices, and salt until the mixture is light and fluffy. Pour in the pumpkin mixture and beat until no lumps remain.

Bake the pumpkin cheesecake bites. Divide the filling between the two pans, then bake for about 40 minutes, or until the filling pulls away from the sides. Cool completely.

Make the whipped cream. Pour the heavy cream into the bowl of a stand mixer and use the whisk attachment to whip the cream until it forms stiff peaks. Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a large pastry tip.

Finish the bites. Use a round biscuit or cookie cutter to cut the cheesecake into circles, then top each with whipped cream.

Overhead photo of pumpkin cheesecake bites on plate

Tips for Success

I’ve made this recipe many times, so I’ve picked up a few tricks along the way! Here are some hints and tips to try when making cheesecake bites:

  • Cutting the bites. When you’re using your biscuit or cookie cutter, press it firmly into the cake, then give it a quarter-turn. Lift it out carefully, then place it over a plate or serving board and gently press the top of the cheesecake until it falls out of the cutter. (Don’t worry, you can hide your fingerprint with the whipped cream.) If you’re having trouble, dip the cutter in flour before cutting each piece. As an alternative, you can use a sharp knife to cut square bites instead.
  • Use full-fat cream cheese. Seriously, cheesecake isn’t where you want to be cutting calories! Full-fat is the only way to nail that creamy, dreamy texture.
  • There should be a jiggle in the middle. The center of a cheesecake should always have a bit of a jiggle, without being liquid-y. If you bake your cheesecake until it’s completely solid, it will be over-baked.

Can pumpkin cheesecake bites be made in advance?

Yes! If you’re prepping for a big Thanksgiving dinner, you can make these bites up to 3 days in advance and store them in the refrigerator. (You can even freeze them for up to 2 months.) I do recommend that you add the whipped cream right before serving, though.

Can I make this recipe in a muffin tin?

Many of my readers have successfully made this recipe in a muffin tin! You can make 36 bites in a mini muffin tin; bake them for about 15 minutes.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites

The perfect little fall bite!
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 16 bites
Author: Julie Chiou
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Ingredients 

For the graham cracker crust

  • 18 graham crackers, about 2 sleeves
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar

For the filling

  • 1: 15- ounce can of pumpkin puree
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ginger
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 20 ounce cream cheese, room temperature

For the whipped topping

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray a 8×8 baking pan and a 9×9 baking pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In a food processor, put the graham crackers in and pulse until finely ground. Pour out into a large bowl. Pour the granulated sugar on top and stir, then add the melted butter and stir until well incorporated and all the crumbs are moist.
  • Divide the graham cracker mixture evenly amongst the 8×8 baking pan and the 9×9 baking pan. Press gently to the bottoms of the pans. Bake for 10 minutes, until slightly golden brown on top. Remove, set aside, and turn oven temperature down to 325 degrees.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together pumpkin puree, eggs, brown sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together cream cheese, granulated sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt until light and fluffy. Gently pour in the pumpkin mixture and beat until well incorporated. Continue beating until no lumps remain.
  • Divide the batter evenly amongst the 8×8 pan and the 9×9 pan.
  • Bake for 40 minutes, or until the cheesecake starts to pull away from the sides.
  • Let cool completely before cutting into circles.
  • While the cheesecake cools, make your whipped cream.
  • In a bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whisk 1 cup of heavy cream until stiff peaks form. To pipe onto the individual circles, fill a piping bag with a large pastry tip (I used a closed star tip).

NUTRITION FACTS

Serving: 1 Bite | Calories: 264 kcal | Carbohydrates: 21 g | Protein: 4 g | Fat: 19 g | Fiber: 1 g | Sugar: 16 g

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition information can vary for a variety of reasons. For the most precise nutritional data use your preferred nutrition calculator based on the actual ingredients you used in the recipe.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: mini cheesecakes, thanksgiving desserts
Recipe Rating




DEBBIE

Friday 22nd of November 2019

What type of pan to make these small pumpkin cheesecake bites?

Julie Wampler

Monday 25th of November 2019

i used a mini muffin tin

Stephanie

Sunday 20th of November 2016

I did this but used my mini-cupcake pan, lined with wrappers and pressed the graham cracker crust in with a cocktail muddler end, filled with filling and baked for 15 minutes. They were PERFECTLY sized, cooked and the wrappers came right off easily for presenting on tray. It made 36 mini-bites and had no waste!

Barbara Manrique

Wednesday 11th of November 2015

I had something similar to these and never saw them ever again, so I finally had a chance to put this together and the delightful aroma is filling the house. I know it will be good because the rest of the family and I couldn't stop eating the batter..ha. Can't wait to finish.

Beth in Texas

Friday 21st of November 2014

I think I'm going to make these - what do you think of me cooking them on Wednesday (storing the pans in the fridge over night) and then cutting them out Thursday morning? Also, about how many did they make? Thanks.

Julie

Saturday 22nd of November 2014

You can definitely do that. In the recipe, it says it makes 16-18 cheesecake bites! Enjoy!

Amy

Friday 29th of November 2013

I made these for Thanksgiving and they tasted wonderful. I did do a little addition of some gingersnap cookies mixed into the crust. I was wondering if you ever have had problems cutting through the crust or getting the cheesecakes out of the cutter. Most of mine did not look very professional. Do you have any tips?

Julie

Sunday 1st of December 2013

Hi Amy! I'm so glad you made these for Thanksgiving! I just pressed gently on the top of the cheesecake and it would fall out of the cutter and onto the plate. You could also dip the cutter in flour before cutting and that should help it slide it out more easily.