The Pioneer Woman's Blueberry Cheesecake


The Pioneer Woman's Blueberry Cheesecake

Blueberry cheesecake is the perfect cool, fruity, make-ahead summer dessert. And though there are so many great ways to get blueberries in a cheesecake—from folding whole berries into the filling to swirling a compote into the top before baking, to making a pretty, purple batter with blueberry puree—we've kept it simple and followed Ree Drummond's sage advice: "Make a dang good, basic cheesecake and top it with syrupy sweet fruit!" Consider your summer blueberry dessert plans made!

What is the secret to making a good cheesecake?

Cheesecakes are always good, but there are a couple of key steps in the process that help take a cheesecake from great to outstanding.

1. Use room temperature ingredients: It's important to take the chill off of certain ingredients before making the filling. Specifically cream cheese, eggs, and sour cream. This allows these ingredients to be beaten more smoothly and come together without lumps.

2. Use a water bath: The steam from a water bath helps to cook the cheesecake gently and prevent it from drying out in a springform pan. This contributes to its moist texture and prevents cracking on the top of the cheesecake while it bakes.

3. Let it chill: It is important to let the cheesecake cool to room temperature slowly and completely. First in the oven; then on the countertop until it reaches room temperature; then in the refrigerator, ideally overnight. This helps the cheesecake set-up for easy slicing.

Does sour cream make cheesecake better?

We would say, yes! Sour cream is a key ingredient in this strawberry cheesecake as well as Ree Drummond's classic blackberry cheesecake. Not only does it add moisture to the cake, it helps to smooth out the overall texture of the filling. Heavy cream is commonly added to cheesecake filling as well (though check the recipe—it's not always a 1:1 swap), but sour cream also offers an extra tanginess, which helps to balance a sweet, seasonal fruit topping.

Yields: 10 - 12 servings

Prep Time: 0 hours 30 mins

Total Time: 12 hours 30 mins


For the Crust:

Nonstick cooking spray

2 c. graham cracker crumbs

1/2 c. salted butter, melted

2 tbsp. granulated sugar

For the Filling:

4 (8-oz. packages) cream cheese, at room temperature

1/2 c. sour cream

1 1/4 c. granulated sugar

2 tbsp. all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. salt 

4 large eggs, room temperature

1 tbsp. vanilla extract

1 tbsp. lemon juice

2 tsp. lemon zest

1 c. blueberries

For the Topping:

3 c.


1/4 c.

granulated sugar

1 tbsp.

lemon juice

Pinch of salt


    For the crust: Preheat the oven to 325°. Wrap heavy-duty foil around the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Spray the inside of the pan lightly with nonstick cooking spray.

    In a medium bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, butter, and sugar. Press into the bottom and 1 inch up the sides of the springform pan. Bake until golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack, about 30 minutes.

    For the filling: Beat the cream cheese on medium speed& until no lumps remain in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, about 2 minutes. Add the sour cream, sugar, flour, and salt. Beat until the batter is smooth and creamy, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.

    Add the eggs one at a time and beat on low speed until just combined after each addition. Continue scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Stir in the vanilla, lemon juice, and zest. Fold in the blueberries.

    Pour the filling into the springform pan and place it into a large roasting pan. Place both pans into the oven and quickly pour hot water into the roasting pan so that it comes up about halfway up the foil-wrapped springform pan.

    Bake for 1 hour 20 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes or until the cheesecake is set on the sides and just barely jiggles in the center when the pan is shaken. Turn the oven off and crack the door. Leave the cheesecake in the oven for 15 minutes.

    Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and carefully remove the foil. Transfer to a wire rack. Let the cheesecake continue cooling to room temperature, about 2 hours. Place in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours to chill completely. 

    For the topping: Combine the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until some of the blueberries start to break down and the sauce is thickened, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat. Cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. Cover and refrigerate until using. 

    To serve: Run a thin knife along the edge of the pan before removing the sides from the pan. Top the cheesecake with the blueberry mixture just before serving.

Sub Nilla Wafer crumbs or Ritz cracker crumbs for a twist on the classic graham cracker crust!

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