This lighter cheesecake is made with a combination of Greek yogurt and cream cheese, but it is just as rich and creamy as a traditional cheesecake. This easy recipe requires very little hands-on time and no fancy techniques.
2cupsgraham cracker crumbsfrom about 12 sheets of graham crackers
1/2cupunsalted butter, melted
pinch of salt
14ounces2% plain Greek yogurt
16ouncesreduced fat cream cheesesoftened to room temperature
1/4cupall purpose flour
1 1/2teaspoonspure vanilla extract
finely grated zest of 1 small lemon only use the yellow, no white pith
See note about toppings
Wrap foil around the lower exterior of a 9-inch springform pan (just to prevent any leaks). Preheat oven to 325°F.
Graham cracker crust:
In a large bowl, thoroughly combine graham cracker crumbs, sugar, melted butter, and salt. Dump the mixture into the prepared springform pan, pressing the mixture onto the bottom, and at least 1-inch up the sides. I like to use the bottom of a measuring cup to help firmly press the mixture in. Transfer the crust to the freezer while you prepare the filling.
In a food processor*, combine yogurt, cream cheese, eggs, sugar, flour, vanilla, and lemon zest. Process until creamy and completely smooth, scraping down the bottoms and sides as needed.
Pour the batter into the crust and smooth the top. Bake in the center of the oven for 45-55 minutes, until the cheesecake is just set and the center still has very slight jiggle. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool to room temp, then move it to the refrigerator until completely chilled (several hours). Serve with any of the toppings suggested.
TOPPINGS:We find that this cheesecake tastes best when paired with fruit (as opposed to chocolate or caramel). These are our favorite toppings:
Easy Berry Topping - Stir together the fresh berry of your choice along with the same flavor of jam (about 1-2 tablespoons of jam for each cup of berries). Allow the mixture to sit at room temp for about 30 minutes so the berries can release some of their juices.
*If you use your food processor to crush the graham crackers be sure to clean it out well before adding the filling ingredients.