Food for Soul

Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake

By Southern Living

Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake

Credit: Photography and Styling: Sarah Epperson

Enjoy what our Test Kitchen calls “the fresh and light flavors of summer” with this Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake. Whether it’s Pecan Pie Brownies or Glazed Donut Buttermilk Cake, we love a dessert mashup, and this winning recipe combines the flavors of classic strawberry shortcake and cheesecake. This creamy cheesecake is nestled in a buttery shortbread crust and surrounded by fluffy lady fingers. Top it with fresh strawberries and homemade whipped cream to make it even prettier and more delicious. A slow-cooker liner is going to be your new best friend when baking cheesecakes, as it’s the best way to avoid the water bath from leaking into the springform pan. Don’t ignore the step that tells you to leave the oven door open slightly; it’s best for our Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake to be introduced to temperature changes subtly to yield the best texture possible. Because it needs to chill for a long time, this Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake is the ultimate make-ahead dessert for summertime. This beautiful cheesecake will be your next baking project feat.

Active:25 mins

Total:7 hrs 20 mins

Yield:Serves 12 (serving size: 1 slice)


Ingredient Checklist

  • Cooking spray
  • 2 (5.3-oz.) pkg. shortbread cookies (such as Walker’s), finely crushed (about 2 1/4 cups)
  • 5 tablespoons (2 1/2 oz.) salted butter, melted
  • 4 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 tsp. lemon zest, plus 1 Tbsp. fresh juice (from 2 lemons), divided
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 cups sliced fresh strawberries (from 1 qt. strawberries)
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 (7-oz.) pkg. ladyfingers, cut in half crosswise


Instructions Checklist

  • Step 1Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray. Stir together crushed cookies and melted butter in a medium bowl until crumbs are moistened. Transfer to prepared pan, pressing crumbs in a flat layer on bottom of pan. Bake in preheated oven until set and light golden, about 10 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack 30 minutes (do not turn oven off).
  • Step 2Beat cream cheese and 1 1/4 cups of the granulated sugar with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium speed until just smooth, about 1 minute. Scrape down sides of bowl using a rubber spatula. Add sour cream, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon of the lemon zest, beating until just combined, about 1 minute. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating on low speed until combined, about 30 seconds. Do not overbeat.
  • Step 3Pour filling over cooled crust; gently jiggle pan to level. Place cheesecake in a slow cooker liner; place cheesecake in liner in a roasting pan large enough to fit springform pan with at least 2 inches around all sides. Place roasting pan in oven; carefully pour enough boiling water into roasting pan around cheesecake to fill halfway up sides of springform pan (be careful to not let any water get into slow cooker liner).
  • Step 4Bake at 350°F until cheesecake has a slight jiggle in center, about 1 hour, 10 minutes. Turn oven off. Prop oven door ajar about 1 inch. Let cheesecake stand until room temperature, about 1 hour. Remove cheesecake from oven; remove springform pan from liner. Transfer cheesecake in springform pan to refrigerator; let stand until chilled, at least 4 hours or up to 24 hours.
  • Step 5Toss together strawberries, lemon juice, and remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon lemon zest in a bowl; let stand 10 minutes.
  • Step 6Meanwhile, beat whipping cream and powdered sugar with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Step 7Run a thin knife along sides of cheesecake in springform pan; remove springform pan, and transfer cheesecake to a plate. Spread a thin layer (about 1 cup) of whipped cream along sides of cheesecake. Arrange ladyfingers vertically around cheesecake sides, gently pushing into whipped cream to adhere. Spoon remaining whipped cream on top of cheesecake. Top with strawberry mixture. Slice and serve.

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