Mini Cheesecakes With Vanilla Wafer Crust Recipe

Mini Cheesecakes

 Kristina Vanni

Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 25 mins
Chill:: 2 hrs
Total: 2 hrs 40 mins
Servings: 24 servings
Yield: 24 cheesecakes
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
329 Calories
17g Fat
41g Carbs
5g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 24
Amount per serving
Calories 329
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 17g 21%
Saturated Fat 8g 39%
Cholesterol 50mg 17%
Sodium 213mg 9%
Total Carbohydrate 41g 15%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 23g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 2mg 9%
Calcium 94mg 7%
Iron 2mg 11%
Potassium 197mg 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.)

Mini cheesecakes are the perfect delicious bite for dessert. Not only are they easy to make, but the small size is good for portion control. If you don’t want an entire tempting cheesecake in the kitchen, try these mini versions instead.

Mini cheesecakes are also great for serving a crowd. There is less mess and they can even work as finger food when guests are eating and mingling. They are baked in muffin cups with no need for a fussy pressed crust. Simply drop in a vanilla wafer into the bottom of each muffin cup and that makes a perfect cookie crust in a snap. No need to mess with melted butter and graham cracker or cookie crumbs. 

Many toppings can be used to garnish these mini cheesecakes such as prepared canned pie fillings, lemon curd, chocolate ganache, or even just whipped cream. You can even use this recipe as a base and then build a mini cheesecake bar where your guests can make it their own and everyone can personalize dessert by picking their favorite topping. This recipe will soon become a staple in your recipe box as well as a party favorite.

These mini cheesecakes freeze well. They will keep in the refrigerator for several days. To serve, defrost completely and then top with cherry pie filling before serving.

"These mini cheesecakes turned out creamy and delicious. The beaten egg white adds some lightness and volume to the cheesecake batter, though they do deflate a bit as they cool. They were excellent with the cherry pie filling. Mine were done in 24 minutes at 275 F (non-convection)." —Diana Rattray

Mini Cheesecakes With Vanilla Wafer Crust/Tester Image
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 24 store-bought vanilla wafer cookies

  • 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened

  • 3 large eggs, separated

  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt

  • 1 (21-ounce) can cherry pie filling

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  2. Position a rack in the upper and lower third of the oven and heat to 275 F. 

    Place cupcake liners in two standard size 12-well muffin pans. Place a vanilla wafer on the bottom of each liner.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  3. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until light and fluffy.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  4. Add egg yolks and sweetened condensed milk. Beat until smooth.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  5. Stir in lemon juice.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  6. In a medium bowl, beat egg whites and salt to form soft peaks.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  7. Gently fold beaten egg whites into cream cheese mixture until incorporated and white streaks are no longer visible.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  8. Fill the prepared muffin pans to 1/2 inch from the top. Bake until the mixture is set, about 20 to 25 minutes, rotating the pans half way through baking.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  9. Cool cheesecakes completely in the muffin pan. Remove the cheesecakes from the pan and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve, about 2 hours.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni
  10. Before serving, remove muffin liners and top with pie filling.

    Mini Cheesecakes
     Kristina Vanni

Recipe Tip

  • Store any leftover cherry pie filling in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze it in an airtight container for up to 4 months. Use leftover pie filling to top ice cream, custards, or other desserts.
  • This recipe uses egg yolks and egg whites in separate steps. To separate an egg, crack the shell in half and carefully cup the yolk in one half of the shell while allowing the white to drain into a bowl below. Then, tip the yolk into the other half of the eggshell allowing the remaining egg white to fall into the bowl. You might have to tip the yolk back and forth between the two halves one or two more times to get all the egg white out and into the bowl. Now you can easily use the eggs and yolks separately in this or any recipe!


  • Replace the cherry topping with another flavor canned pie filling.
  • For lemon mini cheesecakes, top the cooled cheesecakes with lemon curd and serve them with whipped cream and finely grated lemon zest.
  • For gluten-free mini cheesecakes, use gluten-free vanilla wafers.
  • For crumb crusts, omit the vanilla wafers. In a medium bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups of graham cracker crumbs—regular or gluten-free—with 6 tablespoons of melted butter; stir to mix thoroughly. Divide the crumbs among the paper-lined muffin tins and tamp down with a spoon or your fingers.

How to Store Mini Cheesecakes

  • Cool mini cheesecakes to room temperature, transfer them to covered containers, and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
  • To freeze, arrange the mini cheesecakes in a single layer in one or more airtight containers, and freeze them for up to 3 months. Defrost the mini cheesecakes in the fridge for a few hours or overnight.