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Cheesecakes are always a hit, and if you've never made one before, you may wonder how to get started. Grab a cheesecake recipe that looks good to you, so you know the exact amount of ingredients you need, like this no-bake chocolate cheesecake or this no-bake cool whip cheesecake recipe. Then, follow these step-by-step instructions with photos to make it easier for you.Continue to 2 of 15 below.
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Gather the Crust Ingredients
The first step in making a cheesecake is the crust. Most cheesecake recipes call for a cookie crumb crust. You may either purchase the crumbs, but making your own with a food processor is incredibly easy. Get your cookies or graham crackers and butter ready.Continue to 3 of 15 below.
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Butter the Pan
Completely butter the bottom and sides of a springform pan.Continue to 4 of 15 below.
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Process the Graham Crackers
While the cookies are processing, slowly drizzle melted butter into the bowl. This way, the machine will do the work combining the butter and crumbs.
You can also put cookies into a resealable plastic bag and push out the air when sealing the bag. Use a rolling pin and roll it over the cookies in the bag to make the crumbs.
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Press the Crust
The cookie crumbs mixture needs to be pressed into the cheesecake pan. Use the bottom of a glass for a nice, uniform crust.Continue to 6 of 15 below.
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Gather the Cake Ingredients
Gather the filling ingredients.Continue to 7 of 15 below.
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Soften the Cream Cheese
Make sure to soften the cream cheese to room temperature before beginning. Just go ahead and leave it right in the mixing bowl on the counter covered with a towel or a little plastic wrap until it has softened.
Don't have the time to wait for your cream cheese to soften? (Check out these tips for softening cream cheese in the microwave.)
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Mix in the Sugar
After beating the cream cheese, add in the sugar. Slowly pour it in while the machine is running. If you are using a hand mixer, add a little of the sugar at a time and combine.Continue to 9 of 15 below.
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Add the Remaining Ingredients
Mix in the sour cream, lemon juice, and vanilla extract.Continue to 10 of 15 below.
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Mix in the Eggs One at a Time
Of course, not all recipes are the same, but most of them will have you add your eggs at this step. Always, add one egg at a time. Mix completely before adding the next egg.
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Scrape the Bowl
More than once during the process of making a cheesecake, you'll need to scrape down your bowl. Don't forget to scrape the beaters down as well. This way you won't end up with a lumpy cheesecake.Continue to 12 of 15 below.
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Pour the Batter Into the Pan
Carefully pour or scrape your batter into the cheesecake pan. Once the batter is in the pan, use a rubber spatula to smooth the top.
Place the pan into a preheated oven. Bake for the amount specified in the recipe.
Note: Many people will tell you to place your pan in the oven with a pan full of water. Many feel the steam will help lessen the chance of getting cracks in the cheesecake. Often, once the cheesecake has cooled, the cracks have disappeared. If they don't, you can always cover them up with a topping.Continue to 13 of 15 below.
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Loosen the Sides
Once the cheesecake is removed from the oven, allow it to cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Use a knife to go around the pan to loosen the cake from the pan. Place the completely cooled cheesecake in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. Don't remove the sides until the cheesecake is cold.Continue to 14 of 15 below.
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Cool the Cheesecake in the Refrigerator
Finish cooling the cheesecake in the refrigerator, uncovered for at least 3 hours.Continue to 15 of 15 below.
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Top the Cheesecake
If desired, finish your cheesecake with cherry pie filling or other fresh fruit toppings. Enjoy!