This Sweet Potato Cheesecake with Marshmallow Meringue is a flavor explosion. It's easy to make and the perfect recipe for the upcoming Holidays.
The cheesecake is done very quickly and requires just a few steps to make.
Start with the crust. I decided to go with a graham cracker crust. Straight-forward, nothing fancy. Just graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter. If you like the idea of having nuts in the crust, you could replace ½ cup of graham cracker crumbs with a ½ cup of finely chopped pecan nuts. Delicious either way!
The cream cheese should be soft. Take it out of the fridge and let it stand on the counter for an hour before you start. This prevents you from overmixing the filling. Cold cream cheese needs longer to get creamy without any lumps.
You can use canned sweet potato puree, or you can do it on your own. I used homemade sweet potato puree for this recipe. It is very, very easy to make. You can't do anything wrong.
Preheat oven to 350°F / 175°C. Poke sweet potatoes a few times with a skewer. Then brush them lightly with olive oil and bake for about 55-60 minutes until very soft when poking with a skewer. Let cool to room temperature. Then peel and cut a few times.
Place the sweet potatoes in a food processor and pulse until it is very creamy, smooth, and no lumps remain. You can make the puree one day ahead and store it in the fridge.
After the cheesecake is completely chilled, it's time to make the marshmallow meringue.
For perfect fluffy and creamy marshmallow meringue, you need just 3 ingredients. Egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar.
Place all ingredients in a heatproof bowl (I suggest glass) over a pot of simmering water. Then whisk for about 3-5 minutes until the sugar is completely dissolved and the meringue is warm to touch. Then remove from the pot and beat with an electric mixer on high speed for about 5-7 minutes until it's glossy and stiff.
This method makes sure that you don't need to worry about salmonella because the egg white is warmed. It also prevents the meringue from weeping as much as possible. It can weep very very little the longer it stands in the fridge.
I suggest baking the cheesecake the day before you serve it. This makes sure that it has enough time to chill. Chilling is necessary for the texture anyway, and the flavors have time to unleash their full potential.
I know for many of us it is terrible when cheesecake cracks. To prevent cracks make sure not to overmix the filling. This creates too many air pockets in the filling, and this can cause cracks during the baking.
Also overbaking is a common reason for cracking cheesecakes. When you turn off the oven, it still should have a slight wobble in the center and shouldn't be completely set. It should have a very bright center with puffed edges.
Temperature changes also cause cracks. Do not open the door while baking. You can open the door the last couple of minutes of baking to check if the cheesecake is done. This shouldn't cause any problems.
After baking, crack open the door and let in the oven for another hour. Pinch a wooden spoon in the door.
Even if we follow all these recommendations, it happens to every one of us that you end up with a cracked cheesecake anyway. But let's be honest. A crack in a cheesecake is nothing to go crazy about, right? It is just a crack. The taste and texture are still great.
Cracks don't mean that there is something wrong with the recipe or that you did anything wrong. It is not ruined, and everything is fine.
And if it is important that it is not just delicious but also pretty (for a birthday, e.g.) top it with meringue, whipped cream, chocolate ganache, or whatever and nobody sees it.
If you love cheesecakes, you will be excited to try my lemon cheesecake, chocolate cheesecake, eggnog gingerbread cheesecake, oreo cheesecake, coconut cheesecake, and air fryer cheesecake recipes as well.
Sweet Potato Cheesecake with Marshmallow Meringue
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (7oz / 200g)
- ¼ cup granulated white sugar (50g)
- 6 tablespoon butter, melted (85g)
- 3 packages cream cheese, room temperature (24oz / 680g)
- 1 cup granulated white sugar (200g)
- 2 tablespoon all-purpose flour (15g)
- 2 cups sweet potato puree* (15.9oz / 450g)
- 1+½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 vanilla bean** (or 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract)
- 4 large eggs
- ⅓ cup heavy whipping cream (80ml)
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 cup granulated white sugar (200g)
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- Preheat oven to 350°F / 175°C. Line the bottom and the sides of a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Crust: In a large bowl stir together graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter until combined and evenly moistened. Transfer to the prepared pan and press crumbs into the bottom and halfway up the sides with the back of a measuring cup. Freeze until filling is done.
- Filling: In a large mixing bowl, using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk or paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese, sugar, and flour just until combined, smooth and no lumps remain. Add sweet potato puree*, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla** and mix to combine. Add one egg at the time and mix just until combined before you add the next egg. Scrape down the bowl and add heavy whipping cream and mix until creamy. Don't overmix. Too much air in the filling can cause cracks while baking.
- Pour filling into the crust and spread evenly. Place a piece of parchment paper underneath the springform pan and bake for 55-65 minutes until the edges look puffed and the top is set with a lightly wobble underneath. It still should wobble like pudding. Don't overbake. I baked mine for 60 minutes.
- Turn off the oven, crack open the door, and let the cheesecake in the oven for another hour. Then remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature. Refrigerate at least 3 hours or overnight.
- Meringue: Fill a saucepan 2 inches high with water and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. Place egg whites, sugar, and cream of tartar in a heatproof bowl (preferably glass) and set over the saucepan. The bowl should not touch the water. Whisk continuously for 3-5 minutes until sugar is completely dissolved. (Make sure the meringue doesn't get too hot, or the egg whites will cook through, and the meringue won't be stiff but lumpy. Remove from saucepan in-between to cool down a bit, if necessary.) The meringue should be warm to the touch. Remove from heat and beat with an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment on high speed until shiny, glossy, and stiff peaks form, for about 5-7 minutes.
- Pipe or spread meringue on top of the cheesecake. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge up to 3 days.
**First, cut off the straight end of the vanilla bean. Then place the tip of your knife below the curled end and cut the vanilla bean through the middle of the bean lengthwise with a sharp knife. Although you don't need to cut it all the way through, it's ok when you do so. Then open the vanilla bean and scrape out the flavorful seeds with the back of your knife. Just use the seeds.
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