The BEST New York Cheesecake Recipe! (Silky, Smooth and NO CRACKS!)

The Best Vanilla New York Cheesecake Recipe online! Silky, Rich, Creamy and perfectly smooth, this cheesecake is the dessert of your dreams!  With a few tips and tricks, you can make a restaurant favorite right at home! Better than the Cheesecake Factory or Juniors! 

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New York Cheesecake overhead shot with full cheesecake and four slices with raspberries and raspberry sauce

What is New York Cheesecake?

What makes a New York cheesecake official is its dense texture, which feels so smooth and rich you can’t eat more than a small slice without regretting it later. It’s that heavy. New York cheesecake should be tall, bronze-skinned, and dense.

At the center, it should be cool, thick, satiny, and creamy; going outward, it goes gradually from velvety to suede-like, then, finally, about the edges, it’s cake-like and fine-pored. My mouth is watering even as I type out these words.  You may have had this classic at famous places in Junior’s Cheesecake in New York.

Overhead shot of New York style cheesecake slices on white plates


How do you get that rich, creamy but also light, fluffy texture? It all starts with the ingredients!  These are my key ingredients for the perfect texture!

  • Cream Cheese (I go with full fat!)
  • Heavy Cream (the cream when mixed in the batter lightens it like a whipped cream and makes it utterly delicious!)
  • Sour Cream (provides moisture, additional texture elements)
  • Secret ingredient: All purpose flour (this ingredient brings structure to the ingredients and provides a flawless no cracked top!!! Even without a water bath!)
New York style cheesecake slice on white plate with raspberry sauce and raspberries

Tips for the BEST New York Style Cheesecake!

TIP 1: The best cheesecake starts with a perfect crust.  The graham cracker crust must be crisp, buttery and sweet.  I have some awesome tips on How to Make a Graham Cracker Crust in this post.  Prebaking the crust also makes sure that it stays crisp.

TIP 2: Start with room temperature ingredients. This will ensure that your cheesecake does not have lumps. And believe me, you don’t want that.

TIP 3: For extra insurance against cracks, USE A WATER BATH!  Don’t be fooled, once your cheesecake is in the oven, even with the incredible moist ingredients, you are not in the clear yet. You still run the risk of a dry cheesecake. To prevent this, we bake a cheesecake with a pan of water in the oven. This will generate steam, and a steam oven will prevent the cheesecake from drying out. Put the roasting pan of water on the lower rack and bake the cheesecake on the upper rack.

A slice of New York Cheesecake with raspberry sauce

TIP 4: Don’t open the oven while baking! You don’t want to let all that steamy air out. Changes in temperature during baking can cause the cheesecake to crack or sink in the middle. Don’t poke anything into the center of a cheesecake to see if it’s done. All you’ll do is make a hole in it. Instead, just give it a jiggle. If it’s firm at the edges and still wobbles a little in the center, it’s done.


Additional Water Bath Tips

Triple wrap your cheesecake pan all the way up the sides with heavy duty foil.  I also use parchment paper underneath the foil just in case.


The result should be simple and minimalist, sweet and rich. It should not be citrusy, vanilla-scented, fluffy, mousse-like, leaden, gummy, chewy, or starchy. It should be absolutely perfect. So much so, it could turn the most avid cheesecake hater into a believer.

New York Cheesecake overhead shot with full cheesecake and four slices with raspberries and raspberry sauce


Silky, Rich, Creamy and perfectly smooth, this New York cheesecake is the dessert of your dreams!  With a few tips and tricks, you can make a restaurant favorite right at home! Better than the Cheesecake Factory!
4.59 from 17 votes
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Cooling Time 12 hours
Total Time 13 hours 40 minutes
Course: Dessert
Servings: 12 servings


For The Crust

  • 1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 5 tbsp melted butter

For The Cheesecake Filling

  • 4 cream cheese packages 8 ounces packages/ room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 4 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 cup sour cream room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tbsp vanilla bean paste
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour


For The Crust

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a 9 inch springform pan with at least 2 ¾ inch sides or a 10 inch springform pan with non-stick baking spray. Make sure it is properly secured too!
  • Whisk together graham cracker crumbs, sugar and melted butter. Press mixture into the bottom of the springform pan and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. 

For the Cheesecake Filling

  • In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat together cream cheese and sugar until completely smooth. Next add heavy cream then add eggs one at a time, mixing until incorporated.
  • Next add sour cream, vanilla bean paste and flour and mix until smooth.
  • Pour cheesecake filling into baked crust.
  • Bake cheesecake for 1 hour and 5 minutes then turn the oven off and allow the cake to cool in the oven with the door closed for 4 hours.
  • Remove cheesecake from oven and allow it to come to room temperature for an additional 30 minutes then store in the refrigerator overnight before serving.


TIP 1: Start with room temperature ingredients. This will ensure that your cheesecake does not have lumps. And believe me, you don’t want that.
TIP 2: For extra insurance against cracks, USE A WATER BATH! 


Calories: 401kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 15g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 107mg | Sodium: 682mg | Potassium: 286mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 36g | Vitamin A: 605IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 313mg | Iron: 1mg
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Filed Under:  Cheesecake, Christmas, Comfort Food, Easter, Mother's Day, Oven, Thanksgiving


  1. Hello,

    Where I live, I have not seen real heavy cream, only plant based cream (usually from palm oil). Should I use that or it would be better if i exclude that ingredient?

    Thank you!

    1. I wonder if it is called something else where you live. You could try asking the grocery store clerk, they would know. I am not sure if the plant based cream would work the same.

  2. This is the best cheesecake recipe it took a little longer to prepare than I expected but it was worth it thank you so much Jocelyn

    1. I haven’t baked this particular recipe in a convection oven but you could potentially bake at 250F for about 50 minutes or so.

  3. I made this today for my boyfriends birthday request and it came out with no cracks! I’m so pleased. I think I did have it too high up a rack in the oven because it’s a bit darker on top but it’s still soft and creamy. I guess now that I was confused about how the water bath worked because I wrapped the spring form in tinfoil with parchment paper, but I put the cake on the rack above the water instead of inside it. Whoops!! But the cake still came out beautifully! Thanks so much!

  4. I was a bit confused about the water bath as I’ve never done that before and the recipe tips mention to place the pan of water on the bottom rack with the cake pan on the top rack. My cheesecake cracked, but I don’t even care. Best tasting cheesecake ever! And the graham cracker crust too! Super simple to put together.

  5. I’ve tried multiple cheesecake recipes and I’ve never been able to achieve a clear white top – mine always brown. The same thing happened with this recipe. What is the secret? Your pictures show a perfectly creamy white top…

    1. I am wondering where you are placing the cheesecake in your oven. I’m also wondering if your oven may need to be calibrated as well since it seems like it might be baking your cakes fast. You can test the temperature in your oven by hanging a thermometer in the oven and setting it to 350 degrees. See if it matches up.

  6. The cheesecake was very good! My wife and I enjoyed it! I always thought that cheesecake was too difficult to make, but it wasn’t at all.

    1. You can replace the vanilla bean paste with vanilla extract.

  7. I have a question about the water bath: You say to triple wrap the pan in heavy duty foil – does this mean the pan sits directly in the water or should the bath go on the next rack down?

    Also, my friend wants a strawberry swirl IN the cake – is it OK to swirl in some strawberry syrup (i’ll figure that out) in before it bakes or will that mess with the bake?


    1. You sit the cheesecake in the pan with the water which is why you need to be absolutely certain that you wrap it very thoroughly. If you have concerns, you can definitely avoid doing the water bath since this recipe hardly ever cracks. Also I think you would be ok with a strawberry swirl. I wouldn’t add too much since it could change the ratios of the recipe but sounds so delicious. Enjoy!

    2. Best Buy ever! I use silicone cheesecake wraps now. Forget the fingers crossed foil wrap. The baking pan fits into the wrap and it goes up the sides of the pan-fits snugly. If interested bought them on Amazon and wraps come in various sizes to fit your size pan using.

  8. Can I substitute pure vanilla extract if I can’t get the vanilla bean paste? If so how much of the extract.

4.59 from 17 votes (7 ratings without comment)

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