Cheesecake in a jar… (to the tune of Phish)

In Recipes on November 30, 2011 at 9:22 AM

Anyone get that?

Anyway, months ago I saw this post on Use Real Butter about cheesecake in jars and I immediately bookmarked it. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m infatuated with jars, because I LOVE cheesecake, or because the description of these by the blogger was: Full. Double. Rainbow. All. The. Way. Um, ya. Bookmark!

Fast forward to Thanksgiving week – what could be better than easily transportable jar-ed desserts? Not that I had to travel or even make dessert…that’s besides the point. I wanted to test these out. I loved them. I Paleo-ized them. I’m doing dairy these days, so Lacto Paleo if you wanna get technical. For the rest of you, they’re just yummy and gluten-free, if nothing else. One husband said they needed more sweet but everyone else said YUM. The recipe was a test so adjust as you think is needed. Don’t be scared!

For the vessels, I bought a dozen 8oz. jelly jars but when all was said and done I liked the 4oz Weck jars best. Just the perfect size. You can always eat two!

Onto baking – I pulled from a few different ideas for nut crusts and altered Ina Garten’s cheesecake recipe to come up with this plan of attack. It makes about 12 8oz. jars. I happened to find fresh black berries that looked good but you could use any topping you like for this.


  • 2 cups walnuts ground to a course meal (big surprise, I didn’t have enough walnuts so I used walnuts and almonds – whatever!)
  • 2 Tbs melted unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Mix well and spoon into your jars. I had this old coffee scoop thing that was perfect for pressing the crust down evenly into the jars. Don’t smash it too much!


  • 4 8oz. packs cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar (coconut sugar, duh)
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup sour cream (ONLY because I had some left over from my whoopie pies)
  • 1 tsp vanilla (had none whoops! so I used maple syrup)
  • 1 lemon, grated peel of

To make the filling, cream the cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Reduce the speed of the mixer to medium and add the eggs , 2 at a time, mixing well. Scrape down the bowl and beater, as necessary. With the mixer on low, add the sour cream, lemon zest, and vanilla. Mix thoroughly and pour into the crust.

Pour the batter into each jar about 2-3 inches deep. I found a liquid measuring cup to be helpful for this. Tap the base of the jars on a counter or table to get the air bubbles out of the batter. Place the jars in a roasting pan and carefully pour the boiling water into the pan avoiding getting any water into the cheesecake jars. The water should come up to an inch below the shortest jar. Place in oven and reduce heat to 300°F. This is when I was a little nervous! I did NOT want those things blowing up!

Bake 30 minutes then turn off the oven and let the cheesecakes sit in the oven for another 20 minutes. Centers should be jiggly while the edges should be slightly firm. Remove from oven, remove from water bath and let cool completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

Blackberry curd

  • 2-4 cups blackberries, fresh or thawed (I used 2 cups fresh)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 cup sugar (I used less than 1/2 a cup)
  • 2 oz. butter
  • 4 tbsps cornstarch (optional)

Place the blackberries, water, and orange zest in a pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes. Press the mixture through a food mill or you can purée the berry mixture in a food processor and press through a sieve. Pour the berry liquid back into the saucepan over medium heat. Stir in 1 cup sugar and 2 ounces butter. Mix the cornstarch and 2-4tbsps. water together in a small bowl. While whisking the berry mixture, pour the cornstarch into the pan. Stir until thick and bubbly and stir for another 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Pour the contents into a bowl or vessel and cover with plastic wrap. Let cool. *I opted not to use cornstarch. Guess why… haha came out just fine without it, just not quite as thick.

Share. This is the easiest treat to share with friends or bring to a hostess as a little treat for them only – perfect for the season of giving.

  1. This looks delicious and I love the jars! I’m bookmarking it too!

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