Easy No-Bake Cheesecake

Easy No-Bake Cheesecake from JustaTaste.com #recipe

Chances are your oven will be on overdrive this Thanksgiving, as you rotate a turkey and countless side dishes in and out of it like a game of culinary Tetris. Consider this recipe for Easy No-Bake Cheesecake to be that often desired skinny block shape—the one my fellow nerds and I know as the “I-block” tetromino—that instantly eases your (and your oven’s) anxiety. The second it’s in your reach, your stress subsides as your oven gains some much-needed breathing room.

Now, this isn’t any ordinary cheesecake. There are no eggs involved, because no baking plus no eggs means no salmonella. Triple win! So rather than a traditional cheesecake consistency that’s firm, and yet fluffy, this no-bake cheesecake is more pudding-like.

And when it comes to taste, I like my cheesecake like I like my cocktails—not too sweet and just a touch sour. This recipe delivers big on the flavor front. Pour the smooth and tangy custard into a buttery graham cracker crust, top it off with a few (easily extracted) pomegranate seeds, and you’ll be giving thanks for a whole lot this holiday season.

Easy No-Bake Cheesecake from JustaTaste.com #recipe

Easy No-Bake Cheesecake from JustaTaste.com #recipe

Easy No-Bake Cheesecake from JustaTaste.com #recipe

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Easy No-Bake Cheesecake

Yield: 1 (9-inch) cheesecake

Prep Time: 4 hours (includes chilling)


2 sleeves (18 sheets) graham crackers
11 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/3 cup pomegranate seeds, for garnish


Place the graham crackers in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely ground. (Alternately, crush the graham crackers in a sealed plastic bag.) Transfer the graham cracker crumbs into a medium bowl and stir in the melted butter and sugar until the mixture is well combined.

Press the graham cracker mixture firmly into the bottom and up the sides (about 1 1/2 inches) of a 9-inch springform pan. (You can use the side and bottom of a dry measuring cup to help press the crumbs into the pan.) Cover the crust with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for 20 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until smooth and then stream in the sweetened condensed milk. Add the lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Pour the filling into the chilled graham cracker crust, cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, or until firm. (See Kelly's Notes.)

When ready to serve, remove the cheesecake from the fridge and unclasp the spring on the springform pan to remove the outer ring. Top the cheesecake with the pomegranate seeds then slice and serve.

Kelly's Notes:
This cheesecake has a softer, pudding-like consistency. Because there is no gelatin in the mixture, the cheesecake will never fully harden past the pudding stage.

Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart.


33 Responses to “Easy No-Bake Cheesecake”

  1. #
    marcie — November 20, 2013 at 12:44 am

    Gorgeous cheesecake, Kelly! I love that it’s no bake!

  2. #
    Laura (Tutti Dolci) — November 20, 2013 at 12:46 am

    Gorgeous cheesecake, I love the pom seed topping!

  3. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — November 20, 2013 at 2:51 am

    Kelly this is so pretty! Wow! Never would have guessed it’s no-bake, either! Love those pom arils, too! Pinned

  4. #
    Christine @ Cooking with Cakes — November 20, 2013 at 9:40 am

    I’m a huge fan of no-bake cheesecakes, and I’ve found using reduced fat CC produces a much silkier, thicker texture than regular CC. Either way, this looks gorgeous and I love the addition of the poms!

  5. #
    Noma — November 20, 2013 at 10:21 am

    Absolutely beautiful photos…as usual, Kelly! I will definitely be making this cheesecake to be shared (or not) after Thanksgiving dinner. Thank you for another wonderful creation!

  6. #
    Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction — November 20, 2013 at 11:58 am

    Gorgeous cheesecake! I need an easy dessert to go with the rest of my Thanksgiving menu. This is perfect!

  7. #
    Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar — November 20, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    Loving this no bake recipe! It looks perfect AND totally delicious!

  8. #
    Michelle @ Life on the Horizon — November 20, 2013 at 3:20 pm

    I love cheesecake and this one looks delicious!

  9. #
    Coco in the Kitchen — November 20, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    Gorgeous! This would be especially great to the hotter months when I want to give my oven a break.

  10. #
    Maria — November 20, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    Gorgeous! Pinned!

  11. #
    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking — November 20, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    Love this excuse to give my oven a rest over the holidays. What a beauty this cheesecake is, Kelly! Pretty pomegranate seed topping idea, too!

  12. #
    Rachel @ Bakerita — November 20, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    I love how easy this is! No-bake cheesecakes are delicious, and topping it with pomegranate seeds sounds amazing, and so easy to make it so pretty!

  13. #
    Tieghan — November 20, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    So gorgeous, Kelly!! Those pom arils are my favorite and I love that this is no bake!

  14. #
    lew — November 21, 2013 at 12:21 am

    This dessert has been a staple at my family functions for years (it & “fluffy jello” were the very first things I got to make myself, I thought I was soooo cool!!) We usually top it with cherries or blueberries, but I’m loving the idea of pomegranate as a topping to freshen it up this year!

  15. #
    Dipti Joshi — November 21, 2013 at 1:30 am

    Looks super yummy and easy to make! I like these tempting pics. :)

  16. #
    kim — November 21, 2013 at 2:20 am

    this looks divine! and no bake? that’s even better!

    perhaps you can help a fellow food blogger out and vote for my mac n cheese in this recipe contest? i’d truly appreciate it! thanks!:

  17. #
    Becca @ Crumbs — November 21, 2013 at 4:38 am

    Such a good idea to make a no-bake dessert when your oven is going into overdrive! The pomegranate seeds look lovely on the top

  18. #
    Cass @foodmyfriend — November 21, 2013 at 6:12 pm

    Oh pomegranate. How beautiful. I really love how you haven’t used gelatine :) makes me very happy!

  19. #
    Aimee @ Simple Bites — November 21, 2013 at 8:38 pm

    Heck, ya! Love mine sour, too. Can’t wait to try this, Kelly.

  20. #
    Natalie @ Tastes Lovely — November 22, 2013 at 12:55 pm

    Kelly, that crust is amazing! I never thought to have the crust go higher than the cheesecake, which is crazy because the graham cracker crust is my favorite part. Going to try that next time for sure. And I love the idea of no bake. Can’t wait to make this!

  21. #
    Diane Hurst — November 22, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    Could you make it Pumpkin with a ginger snap crust???

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 22nd, 2013 @ 3:05 pm

      Hi Diane! Absolutely! That would be a delicious combo :)

  22. #
    Jaclyn — November 23, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Gorgeous cheesecake Kelly!

  23. #
    Jessica @ Food Luv Bites — November 26, 2013 at 8:22 am

    Wow, I never knew the no bake version was easy to make. Thanks for sharing.

  24. #
    Monica-Christine — November 28, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    Yes the pictures are very pretty! One thing though, you forgot to add the sugar for the actual cheesecake. I tasted the batter before filling the pie crust and it was extremely bitter! Added a little less that a cup of sugar for taste!

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 28th, 2013 @ 10:01 pm

      Hi Monica-Christine! There purposely isn’t any sugar in the actual cheesecake, as the sweetened condensed milk provides all of the sweetness. I mentioned in the recipe description that this is a tangier cheesecake, but if you prefer sweeter, add all the sugar you want :)

  25. #
    Zohra — December 15, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    Hey I love this recipe but instead of lemon can I use chocolate or any other fresh fruit??

  26. #
    Jodee Weiland — April 18, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    This looks fabulous and oh so delicious. I love everything about it…thanks for sharing this recipe!


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