Milk Chocolate Cheesecake

Ahh, cheesecake. One of those desserts I never cared for, and now I have made it multiple times with multiple recipes, and even turned it into ice cream. Did you enjoy cheesecake as a kid? The first time I ever liked it in the slightest was with another dessert I never liked much, carrot cake. At a wedding I attended, they had a combination carrot cake/cheesecake as their dessert and somehow the two together made me like each more. That was dipping my toe in, I suppose.

Today I bring a chocolate cheesecake. Supposedly, according to America’s Test Kitchen, you don’t want to use a dark chocolate with this recipe because milk chocolate helps you still taste the tangy cheesecake flavor. I haven’t tested it myself, but I will say that I enjoyed this cheesecake. Creamy and chocolatey but it left you thinking of “chocolate cheesecake” versus just chocolate or just cheesecake. So, maybe I agree?

Hop on board the cheesecake train with me?

Directions for Milk Chocolate Cheesecake

Slightly adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

  • 16 Oreo cookies, broken into thirds/quarters
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar, plus 1/2 cup
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 8 ounces chopped milk chocolate (divided)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder (I used Dutch processed, but it doesn’t really matter here)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1.5 pounds cream cheese, softened
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and have an oven rack in the middle position. Grease a 9-inch springform pan (I only greased the bottom since my sides are silicone).

In a food processor, grind together the cookies and Tablespoon of sugar until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until combined.

Press into the bottom of the springform pan to form an even layer. Bake until set, about 10 minutes. Let it cool completely on a wire rack. (I did this all ahead, then did the cheesecake part a little later.)

Set the oven temperature to 250 degrees F. Take 6 ounces of the chopped chocolate and all of the heavy cream in a medium heat-proof bowl, and melt together in the microwave. Use 50% power in 30-45 second increments, stirring in-between, until melted and smooth. Let it cool for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in your stand mixer bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup of sugar.

Add the cream cheese to the stand mixer bowl, and, using the paddle attachment, beat on medium speed until creamy and smooth (3-4 minutes). Scrape down the bowl as needed. Reduce the speed to medium-low, add the melted chocolate, and again beat until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating each until incorporated. Add the vanilla and stir it in by hand, making sure everything is combined.

Pour into the springform pan, and smooth the top with a spatula.

Tap the pan gently on the counter to release any air bubbles. Cover the top tightly with foil (don’t touch the top of the cheesecake), and place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour, then remove the foil and bake for another 30-45 minutes. You want the edges set, and the center to be a little jiggly when shaken. If desired, check the temperature in the center and it should register 150 degrees F. Let it cool completely on a wire rack, then cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 8 hours (up to 4 days).

To serve, microwave the remaining 2 ounces of chocolate until melted, stirring occasionally. Let it cool for 5 minutes before drizzling on the top. You can put it into a ziplock bag and cut off the corner, use a pastry bag, or use a fork to drizzle.

Let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. (Or eat it from the freezer if you are like my husband.)

Directions for Milk Chocolate Cheesecake (without pictures)

Slightly adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

  • 16 Oreo cookies, broken into thirds/quarters
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar, plus 1/2 cup
  • 2 Tablespoons butter, melted
  • 8 ounces chopped milk chocolate (divided)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder (I used Dutch processed, but it doesn’t really matter here)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1.5 pounds cream cheese, softened
  • 4 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and have an oven rack in the middle position. Grease a 9-inch springform pan (I only greased the bottom since my sides are silicone).

In a food processor, grind together the cookies and Tablespoon of sugar until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until combined. Press into the bottom of the springform pan to form an even layer. Bake until set, about 10 minutes. Let it cool completely on a wire rack. (I did this all ahead, then did the cheesecake part a little later.)

Set the oven temperature to 250 degrees F. Take 6 ounces of the chopped chocolate and all of the heavy cream in a medium heat-proof bowl, and melt together in the microwave. Use 50% power in 30-45 second increments, stirring in-between, until melted and smooth. Let it cool for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in your stand mixer bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup of sugar. Add the cream cheese to the stand mixer bowl, and, using the paddle attachment, beat on medium speed until creamy and smooth (3-4 minutes). Scrape down the bowl as needed. Reduce the speed to medium-low, add the melted chocolate, and again beat until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating each until incorporated. Add the vanilla and stir it in by hand, making sure everything is combined.

Pour into the springform pan, and smooth the top with a spatula. Tap the pan gently on the counter to release any air bubbles. Cover the top tightly with foil (don’t touch the top of the cheesecake), and place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 1 hour, then remove the foil and bake for another 30-45 minutes. You want the edges set, and the center to be a little jiggly when shaken. If desired, check the temperature in the center and it should register 150 degrees F. Let it cool completely on a wire rack, then cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 8 hours (up to 4 days).

To serve, microwave the remaining 2 ounces of chocolate until melted, stirring occasionally. Let it cool for 5 minutes before drizzling on the top. You can put it into a ziplock bag and cut off the corner, use a pastry bag, or use a fork to drizzle. Let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. (Or eat it from the freezer if you are like my husband.)