Sweet Lemon Cheesecake

We can all use a little more sunshine in our lives right now.

I think just about everyone would agree with that.

Sunshine has a way of warming the body and the heart, right?

Well, this sweet lemon cheesecake reminds me of how I feel about sunshine.

But this amazing cheesecake goes even further by delighting those all-important taste buds too.

One of the things that I love about this recipe is how light but crispy the crust is.

I’ve made cheesecakes before that feature a much heavier crust (and that’s fine), but this light crust version is much more subtle and not overpowering in any way.

And that really compliments the light and fluffy filling which somehow makes the entire cheesecake a little more elegant.

The full recipe is below.

By the way, I deliberately styled this yellow-shaded cheesecake with artificial forsythias to give the whole setup a feeling of spring and sunshine. 

Sweet Lemon Cheesecake

Sweet, creamy and insanely rich... cheesecake lovers will flip over this easy dessert. Adapted from a recipe by King Arthur Flour. Serves 9-10 people.

Course: Dessert
Ingredients
FOR THE CRUST
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour (unbleached)
  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 3/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 lemons (grated peel)
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
FOR THE FILLING
  • 3 8-ounce packages of cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour (unbleached)
  • 1 lemon, grated peel
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 teaspoon lemon oil (optional) or 3 tsp lemon juice.
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice powder (optional)
Instructions
LET'S MAKE THE CRUST
  1. Whisk, flour, almond flour and confectioners' sugar, alt and lemon zest.

  2. Cut in the butter and chop until even crumbs form.

  3. Press into a 8-9-inch springform pan. Press the crumbs across the bottom of the pan and then, push the crust evenly up the side of the pan as possible for a taller crust.

  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, F.

  5. Prick the bottom of the crust with a fork and chill in the freezer for 15 minutes.

  6. Remove the crust from the freezer and cover the bottom of the pan with a piece of parchment paper.

  7. Pour ceramic pie weights into pan. You can also use raw beans or rice. Bake for about 15 minutes. This is called "Blind Baking".

  8. Blind baking helps to prevent the crust from puffing up during the baking process. Blind baking gives the crust a head start before any wet filling is added. This helps prevent the filling from soaking into the crust and making it soggy.

  9. Remove from oven. Set aside and allow crust to cool completely.

  10. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.

LET'S MAKE THE FILLING
  1. Mix the cream cheese, sugar and flour in a stand mixer (on low speed) until there are no lumps.

  2. Add the lemon zest salt and one egg.

  3. Scrape down the side of the mixing bowl and add the remaining eggs, one at a time. Make sure each egg is fully incorporated into the mix before adding the next.

  4. Mix in the sour cream.

  5. Pour the filling over the cooled crust and bake for 55 minutes.

  6. Turn off the oven and leave the door propped open. Allow the cheesecake to rest in the oven for an hour.

  7. Remove cake from oven and allow cake to cool. Refrigerate until you want to serve it.

  8. Just before serving, top oven with cherry filling or another favorite fruit topping.

A while back I promised I would share my photography setup whenever I remembered to snap the shot.

Well, here’s a closer look behind the scenes of this shoot.

This is my favorite corner of my dining room which always has the most wonderful light streaming in from that south-east facing window.

The diffuser in the window helps to soften the light that much more.

And if you like the backdrop, it’s easy to reproduce. It’s just three yards of green, faux suede that I found at a home decorator store.

Meanwhile, up the flavor factor of this lemon cheesecake with a favorite fruit topping.

I used canned cherry pie filling because that’s what I had on hand at the time.

Assorted fresh fruit would also make a wonderful topping for this light and lovely cheesecake. 

If you are interested in a slightly heavier cheesecake that is just as yummy, check out my post featuring a lemon curd cheesecake, HERE.

Thanks for popping by.

Stay safe and be well.

See you back here next time.

  • Antonietta

    Blessings to you, Lisa! I just had to stop by to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for one gorgeous and truly wonderful post after post after post! Each one is so pleasing to the eye, styled so beautifully, and you share so much information with us. I appreciate the time and effort and love you put into them, and I look forward to each one; it’s such a lovely treat for me to get away from things and just have my cup of tea, my favorite spot to sit and relax, and spend some precious time enjoying such your pretty photos and words. Much appreciated!

    • Lisa Tutman-Oglesby

      Thank you so much for those incredibly thoughtful and encouraging words, Antonietta.
      I really appreciate that.
      Every once in a while, I wonder if it’s worth it to keep blogging and putting so much into every post, and then I read a comment like yours.
      I’m thrilled you find inspiration and comfort from this little corner of creativity.
      Take care and stay safe and well. xoxo

  • Karen

    Hi, Lisa
    Hope you and your family had a marvelous Easter. Hubby and I spent most of the day video calling out family members. That really helped ease our isolation.
    So today I’m making this cheese cake but I have a question: what is lemon OIL? I’ve never heard of it. Can I replace it with lemon juice? Thank you!

    • Lisa Tutman-Oglesby

      Hi Karen, video calling is the only way to go these days. I’m glad you had a lovely Easter and that you were able to connect with family.
      As for this recipe, I used lemon oil as a flavor enhancer. It just adds a concentrated boost to any recipe. However, it’s not critical and in this recipe, I consider lemon oil optional (I’ll tweak the instructions to include that).
      I think you could easily substitute 3 teaspoons of lemon juice, if you like.
      Lemon oil may be available at your local grocery store or specialty grocery but I found mine online at King Arthur Flour (I love them). There are probably other online sources too.
      Please let me know how your cake turns out. I think you and your hubby will enjoy it.
      Take care and stay safe.
      xoxo

      • Karen

        Oh, my goodness, Lisa, this cheesecake is so fluffy and delicious! It’s rather time consuming to make, but so worth it. Hubby and I love it. I think I’ll check into the King Arthur lemon oil as we love that bright flavor profile. Thanks for the recipe and your timely reply to my email about the ingredients.

  • Denise Cox

    I’d like clarification, please. I’m not a baker,yet I’ve always wanted to try my hand at a cheese cake and this one sounds yummy… 😋🍰!! When you state you push the crust up along the side of the pan as far as possible, is that to say that no crust is to be left on the bottom? Or just a very thin layer?
    Thanks so much…

    • Lisa Tutman-Oglesby

      Hi Denise you actually caught an omission in my instructions.
      Sorry about the confusion.
      The crumbs are pressed into the bottom of the pan, FIRST. And then pushed up along the side of the springform pan.
      Try to spread the crust in a way that keeps the thickness even on the bottom and the sides.
      I’ve corrected that missed step in my instructions.
      Thanks for the heads-up.
      Good luck with your cheesecake.
      Happy weekend and stay safe.
      xoxo

  • Cristina Di Noia

    Hi Lisa, hope you and the family are keeping well. Another beautiful blog post, love the colours. Spring at its finest.

    • Lisa Tutman-Oglesby

      Thanks for that, Cristina.
      I hope you and your family are safe and well too.
      Glad to add a bit of “sunshine” to your day with this cheesercake (smile).
      Take care.
      xoxo

  • Diane Ruebel

    Lovely lightness on what has been a heavy day. Thank you.

    • Lisa Tutman-Oglesby

      Thanks so much, Diane.
      I really appreciate knowing that this post had that effect.
      Strange times we live in. I’m happy to add a little “lightness” to your day.
      Stay safe.
      xoxo

  • Jane Volz

    This cheesecake recipe looks delicious! Everything you post is wonderful! I enjoy your blog so much

    • Lisa Tutman-Oglesby

      Thanks, Jane.
      I really appreciate your kind words.
      I’m happy there are multiple things that you enjoy around this little blog.
      If you try any of the projects or recipes, please let me know how they turned out for you.
      Hope you and your family are safe and well.
      xoxo

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