Basque Burnt Cheesecake

basque cheesecake with slice removed and placed on plate

The Spruce / Michael Young

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 60 mins
Chill Time: 4 hrs
Total: 5 hrs 20 mins
Servings: 8 to 10 servings
Yield: 1 cheesecake
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
687 Calories
51g Fat
48g Carbs
11g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8 to 10
Amount per serving
Calories 687
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 51g 66%
Saturated Fat 30g 151%
Cholesterol 257mg 86%
Sodium 341mg 15%
Total Carbohydrate 48g 18%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Total Sugars 45g
Protein 11g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 137mg 11%
Iron 1mg 4%
Potassium 210mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This cheesecake is a stunningly velvet crustless treat. It’s unlike any cheesecake you’ve had before, but at the same time it’s rich and familiarly creamy. This seemingly "burnt" cheesecake—inspired by the ones found in Spain's Basque region—bakes at a high temperature for an extended amount of time to achieve its signature intense caramel crust. The outside layer forms a protective barrier between the smooth high-fat batter which sets beautifully once thoroughly cooled.

Be sure to use regular (now low fat) cream cheese and 36 to 40 percent heavy cream to incorporate as much fat as possible and ensure that your cheesecake’s center stays creamy during the baking process. When folding the parchment paper into the base of your springform pan, don’t be afraid to fold the paper as needed for a better fit.

Ingredients

  • 32 ounces cream cheese, softened

  • 2 cups granulated sugar

  • 6 eggs, room temperature

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 3 tablespoons al-purpose flour, sifted

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 425 F.  

    ingredients to make basque burnt cheesecake

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  2. Line a 10-inch round springform cake pan with parchment paper. Pleat 2 large (12x16-inch) sheets of parchment paper to fit snugly against the sides of the baking pan.

    placing parchment paper into springform pan

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  3. Add softened cream cheese to an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Whip cream cheese on medium speed for 4 minutes or until smooth and light.

    softened cream cheese in bowl of stand mixer with paddle attachment

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  4. Add sugar and mix until fully incorporated.

    sugar being added to cream cheese in stand mixer

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  5. Mix in one egg at a time.

    egg being added to bowl in stand mixer

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  6. Reduce speed to low and add heavy whipping cream and vanilla extract.

    heavy cream being added to bowl in stand mixer

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  7. Add the all-purpose flour.

    flour being added to bowl in stand mixer

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  8. Pour the cheesecake mixture into the prepared pan.

    cheesecake batter in springform pan

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  9. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until the crust has significantly darkened into the color to burnt umber. The crust of the cake will slightly rise and gradually became darker the longer it bakes. 

    burnt basque cheesecake baked in springform pan

    The Spruce / Michael Young

  10. The cheesecake should have a slight jiggle when it’s removed from the oven. Allow it to cool to room temperature and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving. Remove the cheesecake from your springform pan and fold back the pleated parchment paper to cut slices.

    basque burnt cheesecake taken out of pan with parchment removed

    The Spruce / Michael Young

Tips

  • For best results, have all of your ingredients at room temperature before starting.
  • If you don't have a stand mixer you can use an electric hand mixer. Make sure to beat the cream cheese until creamy and fluffy and thoroughly combine the mixture.
  • Store the leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Why Is It Called Basque Cheesecake?

Burnt Basque cheesecake is named after its region of origin. A relatively new invention, the dessert was first served at La Viña, a restaurant in San Sebastián, Spain. It can now be found in bakeries around the world.

Why Did My Basque Cheesecake Crack?

Cheesecakes frequently crack when they are over-cooked, so keep a close eye on your homemade dessert in the last several minutes of baking. It should still have a slight wobble in the middle. It's worth noting that one of the nice things about Basque cheesecake is their rustic look, so don't fret too much about a crack or two.