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We highly recommend using a Hand Mixer to mix the cheesecake batter instead of a Stand Mixer. Stand Mixers are often more powerful, thus you can easily overmix and introduce too much air into the cheesecake batter. This may result in a puffy souffle-style cheesecake.
Read our 11 Tested Tips to Make a Stunning Instant Pot Cheesecake to help you make a successful cheesecake! :)
Place 16 ounces (454g) cream cheese, 2 large eggs, ½ cup (120g) sour cream on counter-top to reach room temperature. Then, melt the 3 - 4 tablespoons (42g - 56g) unsalted butter.*Pro Tip: this is critical for your cheesecake's success, so please make sure all the above ingredients are at room temperature before you start. If not, you may end up with lumpy fluff top cheesecake. So don't skip this step! :)
Ground Graham Crackers: Finely ground 120g graham crackers in a food processor. Or place the graham crackers in a Ziploc bag and roll them with a rolling pin.
Mix Crust Mixture: In a small mixing bowl, mix finely ground graham crackers, a pinch of sea salt, 2 tsp - 1 1/2 tbsp (8.3g - 19g) brown sugar together with a fork.
Perfectionist’s Step - Add Flour (if blind-baking for firmer & crisper crust): mix in ¼ cup (32g) all-purpose flour.
Add Melted Unsalted Butter: Mix in roughly 3 - 4 tbsp (42g - 56g) unsalted butter until the mixture sticks together.
Line Pan: Line the side & bottom of cheesecake pan with parchment paper.*Note: We did not use any butter to line the parchment paper.
Form Crust: Pour in the graham cracker crumbs mixture. Gently press down the crumbs with a ramekin or Mason jar to form an even layer. You can also use a spoon for the edges.
Firm CrustMethod #1 - Freeze: Place cheesecake pan in freezer while you make the cheesecake batter. Method #2 - Blind-Bake (for firmer & crisper crust): Place crust in a 325°F oven for 15 minutes.
Mix Sugar Mixture: Mix 2 tbsp (16g) cornstarch, 2 pinches of sea salt, and 2/3 cup (133g) white sugar together in a small mixing bowl.
Briefly Beat Cream Cheese: In a medium mixing bowl, briefly break up the 454g cream cheese by beating it for 10 seconds with a hand mixer using low speed.
Mix in Sugar Mixture: Add in half the sugar mixture and beat until just incorporated using low speed (roughly 20 - 30 seconds). Scrape down the sides and hand mixer with a silicone spatula every time a new ingredient is added. Add remaining sugar mixture and beat until just incorporated using low speed (roughly 20 - 30 seconds).
Add Sour Cream & Vanilla Extract: Add 1/2 cup (120g) sour cream and 2 tsp (10 ml) vanilla extract to the cream cheese mixture. Beat until just incorporated using low speed (20 - 30 seconds).
Blend in Eggs: Blend in the two eggs using low speed, one at a time. Mix until just incorporated (about 15 – 20 seconds with a hand mixer & less time if you are using a powerful stand mixer). Try not to overmix on this step. Scrape down the sides and hand mixer with a silicone spatula and fold a few times to make sure everything is fully incorporated.
Pour Batter in Pan: Pour cream cheese batter in cheesecake pan.
Remove Air Bubbles for Smooth Surface: Tap cheesecake pan against the counter to let air bubbles rise to the surface. Burst the air bubbles with a toothpick or fork. Tap until you are satisfied. Ensure the surface is clear of air bubbles or fork marks. See above photos for demo.
Method #1: Pour 1 cup (250 ml) of cold water in pressure cooker. Place cheesecake pan on top of a steamer rack (so, it’s not touching the water). Close lid and pressure cook at High Pressure for 26 minutes and Full Natural Release. Natural release will take roughly 7 minutes. Open lid gradually. Absorb any condensation on surface by lightly tapping it with a soft paper towel.Perfectionist’s Method #2 - Prevent Surface Dents: Place a steamer rack and pour 1 cup (250ml) of water in pressure cooker. Bring water to a boil (Instant Pot users: Press manual/Pressure Cook and set the time to 28 minutes). When the water begins to boil, place cheesecake pan on the steamer rack with a foil sling right away.*Caution: Don't wait too long to place the cheesecake in pressure cooker, as it'll affect the cooking time. Place it immediately once the water begins to boil. This prevents too much water from evaporating. Immediately close the lid with Venting Knob at Venting Position. Turn Venting Knob to Sealing Position and let it pressure cook at High Pressure for 28 minutes and Full Natural Release. It should go up to pressure in roughly 1 minute. Natural release will take roughly 7 – 9 minutes. Open the lid gradually. Absorb any condensation on the surface by lightly tapping it with a soft paper towel.
Cool Cheesecake: Allow cheesecake to cool to room temperature with the lid open in the pressure cooker. Or place it on a wire rack to cool to room temperature.
Release Cheesecake from Sidewall to Avoid Cracking: After cooling for 10 – 15 minutes, carefully run a thin paring knife between the sidewall and parchment paper to release the cheesecake from the pan. Pull the slightly wrinkled parchment paper lightly to straighten it out for a smooth side.
Chill Cheesecake in Fridge: Once the cheesecake has completely cooled, place it in the refrigerator for at least 4 – 8 hours (preferably overnight).
Serve: Remove cheesecake from the refrigerator. The best way to release the cheesecake from the bottom pan is warm the bottom of the pan to melt the butter. You can use a torch or heating pad for this step. Carefully peel off the parchment paper. Enjoy~