This incredible S’mores Cheesecake recipe features a buttery graham cracker crust, decadent homemade cheesecake and the best marshmallow and fudge topping! There are even mini marshmallows and chocolate morsels layered right onto the crust to really seal the deal on that classic s’mores flavor.
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I’ve found heaven on earth – and it’s this cheesecake recipe! I’m a huge fan of s’mores flavored anything, especially during the summertime when I want to feel all of the bonfire feelings. With a recipe like this, I can get my s’mores fix without having to sit by a campfire! For those of us who live in the south, we know how treacherous those hot summer nights can be.
The crust of this cheesecake is your average buttery graham cracker crust, but it’s enhanced with flavors of sweet marshmallows and chocolate morsels to really solidify that s’mores flavor. It’s layered with my signature cheesecake recipe (that honestly can’t be bested) topped with hot fudge sauce and gooey marshmallows. Are you drooling yet?
While this homemade cheesecake may be a real show-stopper, fear not! It’s a whole lot easier to make than you may think it is and always impresses at parties of all kinds. Since I consider myself something of a cheesecake expert, I’ve also included plenty of little tips and tricks to help make this process wonderfully simple for you.
Vanilla Extract – I always recommend using pure vanilla extract. It lends a much better flavor than imitation.
Graham Cracker Crumbs – If you can’t find graham cracker crumbs at the store, you can get regular graham crackers and pulse them in a food processor until they blend into crumbs.
Heavy Cream – While it’s best to use heavy whipping cream, you can use half and half but do not go any less fat than that. Note that half and half is thinner than heavy whipping cream so use about a tablespoon less.
Cream Cheese – Don’t try to make the cheesecake “lighter” by using low fat cream cheese. It will change the texture. Use full fat, original cream cheese and make sure to take it out of the refrigerator 30-45 minutes before using it.
Hot Fudge Topping – If you’re a fan of the way the hot fudge compliments this cheesecake, be sure to make my Oreo Mint Chocolate Chip Cheesecake! It’s got a very similar vibe.
See recipe card for complete information on ingredients and quantities.
How to Make S’mores Cheesecake
Prepare – Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease a 9 inch spring form pan. You’ll also need a large roasting pan to create the water bath.
Make the crust – Combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, vanilla extract and brown sugar. Mix well and evenly spread the crumb mixture in the bottom of the spring form pan, pressing it over the bottom and half way up the sides (1).
Create the base s’mores layer – Spread mini chocolate morsels and marshmallows over the crust (2).
Make the cheesecake mixture – In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and fluffy. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and beat for another minute. Mix in the cornstarch and sugar until combined. Beat in the eggs until incorporated. Mix in the sour cream, vanilla, and heavy cream until also incorporated.
Pour the batter – Carefully pour the cheesecake batter into the springform pan (3, 4).
Create the water bath – Place the roasting pan into the oven. Place the cheesecake spring form pan inside of the roasting pan. Carefully add water to the roasting pan, going about halfway up the side of the spring form (5).
Bake and rest – Bake for 90-95 minutes. Turn off the oven and open the oven door halfway. Let the cheesecake rest for 10 minutes before you take it out of the oven (6).
Let it rest again – Let the cheesecake rest for 10 minutes on the counter. Then, gently run a butter knife between the sides of the cheesecakes and the springform to carefully separate it.
Chill – Cool cheesecake for an hour in the refrigerator.
Add the toppings – Turn on the broiler in the oven. Evenly spread the warmed hot fudge sauce across the top of the cheesecake (8). Sprinkle marshmallows on top of the fudge (9).
Toast the marshmallows – Place the cheesecake back in the center of the oven under the broiler. Let the marshmallows toast for just 30-35 seconds. Remove the cheesecake from the oven once marshmallows are lightly browned (10).
Chill again – To cool the cheesecake completely, cover it loosely with foil and refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours.
YES! The reason for baking a cheesecake in a water bath is to keep direct heat away from the baking dish.
Cheesecakes are heavy on both cream and eggs. If not baked evenly and slowly but exposed to direct heat, it would not be baked uniformly. The outside will be overdone and inside will still be gooey. Creating a water bath ensures even baking throughout the whole dish by keeping layer of protection between the baking dish and oven heat.
Without the water bath, cheesecake will be sagging in the middle, is likely to crack, and most importantly, it would be over-cooked on the outside and under-cooked on the inside.
It’s not gluten-free, but it can be made that way with one simple swap!
The only part of this cheesecake that contains gluten is the graham cracker crust. Use gluten–free graham crackers and pulse them into crumbs to create a gluten-free crust. Everything else listed here should already be naturally gluten-free, but always check your labels just in case.
Before baking: Separate the springform side and bottom part. Then, take the bottom part of the pan and lay it down on a sheet of parchment paper. Use a pencil to trace around the bottom of the pan. Keep in mind that the circle will need to be just a little bigger than the bottom of the pan.
Cut out the circle you traced. Put the spring form back together. Spray the springform with cooking spray and fit the parchment paper circle on the bottom.
After baking: When you are ready to take the cheesecake out, make sure to use large, hard spatula. Have the serving dish or the cardboard cake circle ready.
Carefully slide the spatula in between the parchment paper and the bottom of the springform pan. Gently pull the cheesecake off of the springform and right onto the serving dish. Keep them side by side, and make sure you don’t tilt the cheesecake pan!
How to Store S’mores Cheesecake
Make sure to store the cheesecake in the refrigerator and keep it covered tightly with plastic wrap. Properly stored, s’mores cheesecake will stay fresh for up to 5 days.
I recommend simply storing it in the same pan it was baked in.
How to Freeze S’mores Cheesecake
If you plan on freezing s’mores cheesecake, you must do so without the toppings.
Once cheesecake has been cooled to room temperature, run a butter knife along the inside of the spring form pan to separate the cheesecake from the pan. Place the pan with cheesecake in the freezer and freeze for about an hour.
Carefully take off the side portion of the spring form. At this point, you can either keep the bottom of the spring form with the cheesecake or transfer it onto a piece of thick cardboard cake holder covered with aluminum foil.
Wrap the cheesecake and the bottom of the pan with plastic wrap in 2-3 layers. Then, wrap the whole thing with aluminum foil. As an added protection from air, you can place the whole things in a large, zip-lock freezer bag, but that’s not necessary.
Make sure to date and label before placing cheesecake back in the freezer. This cheesecake will stay fresh in the freezer for 2-3 months.
To thaw frozen cheesecake, make sure to do so slowly. Place cheesecake from freezer into the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight.
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S’Mores Cheesecake Recipe
- 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 5 Tbsp melted unsalted butter
- ¾ cup mini chocolate morsels
- 1 cup marshmallows
- 32 oz cream cheese softened
- ½ cup sour cream
- 2 eggs
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- ¾ cup white granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp corn starch
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 10 oz hot fudge topping warmed
- 2 cups marshmallows
- Preheat the oven to 325 and grease a 9 inch spring form. You will need a large roasting pan (one that’s bigger and longer than the spring form. I use the aluminum foil disposable ones.)
- In a small bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, vanilla extract and brown sugar. Mix very well.
- Spread crumb mixture in the bottom on the spring form, evenly, pressing it over the bottom and half way up the sides.
- Spread mini chocolate morsels and marshmallows over the bottom, evenly.
- In a bowl of an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth and fluffy. Scrape sides and bottom on the bowl and beat for another minute.
- Add corn starch and sugar and mix until combined.
- Beat in eggs until well incorporated.
- Add sour cream, vanilla extract, and heavy cream and beat until all mixed very well.
- Transfer batter into the spring form and spread in evenly. (If you are not sure about your springform holding up in water, you can wrap the springform in heavy duty aluminum foil from bottom up to the sides.)
- Place roasting pan into the oven and place cheesecake spring form inside the roasting pan. Carefully add water to the roasting pan, about half way up the side of the spring form.
- Bake for 90-95 minutes. Turn off the oven and open the oven door half way. Let cheesecake rest for 10 minutes and take it out of the oven.
- Let it rest for 10 minutes on the counter and then gently run a butter knife between sides of the cheesecakes and the springform to carefully separate it. (You don’t actually have to take the cheesecake out of the pan until ready to serve.)
- Cool cheesecake for an hour.
- Turn on the broiler in the oven.
- Spread warm hot fudge over the top of the cheesecake and spread marshmallows evenly on top.
- Place cheesecake back in the center of the oven, under the broiler. Let marshmallow toast for only 30-35 seconds. Watch it because they toast very quickly. Take out the cheesecake once marshmallows are lightly browned.
- Cool cheesecake completely, cover gently and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
- Water Bath: remember, DO use the water bath technique, it does strongly affect the texture of the cheesecake for the better.
- How To Tell If Cheesecake If Done: You can tell the cheesecake is baked when the edges are set and the center is slightly soft and jiggly. As it cools in the oven and on the counter, the center will continue to set more and become more firm. DO NOT insert a knife or toothpick into the center since that may cause the dessert to crack.
- Cooling: DO cool the cheesecake is three steps: 10 minutes in the turned off oven, on the counter, and chill in the refrigerator.