Peanut Butter Cheesecake

My husband is weird.

First of all, he’s a vegetarian. Well, more specifically, he’s a pescetarian (otherwise known as a seafood eating vegetarian), but he’ll still tell you he’s a vegetarian. He’s also lactose intolerant (which makes things really fun since he loves ice cream).

And he also doesn’t like normal desserts. You know, like brownies, chocolate cake or fudge. He also doesn’t like anything that reminds him of any of the above which means yellow cake with fudge icing is out because it tastes too much like chocolate cake. ::eye roll:: Whatevs. Just means more for me.

Some things he does super love is Peanut Butter and Cheesecake, especially when they are merged together into a beautiful beautiful union.

So for his birthday I usually try to make him a peanut butter cheesecake.

One year, I made him a peanut butter cheesecake cut into the shape of Pi so he could have a cheesecake pi (we’re nerdy like that) but that’s a different story…

Crust

  • 1 package Nutter Butters
  • 6 tbsp butter (melted)

Filling

  • 3 – 8 oz packages of cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups peanut butter (don’t skimp on this…get the good stuff)
  • 3 large eggs, slightly beaten

Topping (optional and not pictured here)

  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Preheat oven to 350°.  Place Nutter Butters in a food processor (cream filling and all) and pulse until they are crumbs (you may have to do several batches depending on the size of your food processor). Place in a medium size bowl. Slowly pour melted butter over crumbs, mixing as you pour. Pour mixture into the bottom of a 10 inch springform pan and press the crumbs to the bottom and work up the sides (about 2/3 of the way up). You can use a metal cup for this but I always just use my hands. Bake in the oven for 7 minutes.

In a large mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar and vanilla extract. Cream together until smooth. Add peanut butter and mix until well combined (do not overmix or you could create air pockets which may cause your cheesecake to crack later). Slightly beat 3 large eggs and slowly add to batter. Mix until combined (again, do not over beat). Pour into prepared crust. Place a large pan of water into the oven on the bottom rack and place cheesecake on the rack above it. Make sure you put it in the center of the oven for even baking. Bake for 55-60 minutes. *VERY IMPORTANT – DO NOT OPEN OVEN WHILE BAKING* When done, turn oven off and crack the oven door open but DO NOT remove cheesecake from oven. You want to let it cool down gradually (this will also help prevent cracking). Your cheesecake will still look soft in the middle. This is fine, it will set as it cools. Once the cheesecake has cooled in the oven (I usually leave it in for up to an hour), pull it out and allow to cool on the counter (uncovered) until it is room temperature. Then cover and place in the refrigerator overnight.

Place chocolate in a medium sized bowl. Heat cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until it just starts to boil. Slowly pour heated cream over chocolate and stir until smooth. Pour over cooled cheesecake and let set. Once it’s cooled, serve and enjoy!

by Stephanie

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