This S’mores Cheesecake was made for the ultimate s’mores lover! The rich, decadent and thick chocolate cheesecake is baked in a buttery graham cracker crust and topped with chocolate ganache and ruffles of toasted meringue!
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Summer may be coming to an end, but our love for s’mores will never go away! I’ve wanted to make this cheesecake for so long now. I’m talking like 5-6 years at least!
Ever since I started baking again, I’ve wanted to make a s’mores cheesecake, but I’ve never really found a recipe that appealed to me. Thankfully, now that I’m a far more advanced baker and recipe developer than I was back then, I can create my own!
The BEST S’mores Cheesecake
You don’t understand how badly I wish I could shove a forkful of this cheesecake through the screen so you could have a taste!
Let’s just jump straight into things. There are 4 components in this cheesecake:
- Graham Cracker Crust
- Chocolate Cheesecake
- Chocolate Ganache
- Marshmallow Meringue
Each part is made completely from scratch, but I promise you the entire process is super simple! Let me break them down for you.
Graham Cracker Crust
Graham cracker crumbs + white sugar + melted butter, that’s all you need for the graham cracker crust. Combine the three ingredients in a bowl, then pour into your greased springform pan.
This time we’re using 3 whole cups of graham cracker crumbs, so we could have a nice thick crust on the bottom and up the sides. About that, when you pour the crust mixture into the pan, use the bottom of a measuring cup to press it into the bottom of the pan.
Then use the sides of the measuring cup to push the excess crumbs into the sides while using your fingers to lightly press down the edges so it doesn’t crumble when removing the pan ring. Pre-bake the crust, then set it aside to cool while you prepare that thick chocolate cheesecake filling!
Perfect Chocolate Cheesecake
Oh man, the chocolate cheesecake filling is so, so good! Creamy and smooth with LOADS of chocolate! Make sure to use a nice, good-quality bar of chocolate. I used bittersweet chocolate, which is dark chocolate with usually 70% cocoa solids. Melt the chocolate and set aside to cool for at least 10 minutes before you add it to the batter.
Room Temperature Ingredients = Easier to Blend
For the actual cheesecake batter, you want to make sure all of your ingredients are at room temperature. The sour cream, heavy cream and eggs can be taken out at least 30 minutes ahead of time, but I recommend you leave the cream cheese bricks out for at least an hour or two.
I used to only leave the cream cheese out for 30 minutes before starting, but I’ve found that the cream cheese still doesn’t blend completely with the batter and I’m left with little specks of cream cheese inside.
This would be fine if it was a vanilla cheesecake, because the colours would blend, but this is a deep dark chocolate cheesecake so little white cream cheese bits would stick out like a sore thumb. So the softer your cream cheese, the easier it’ll blend.
And don’t even think about increasing the mixer speed to speed things along. Cheesecake batter needs to be mixed on a low speed, because we don’t wanna whip any air bubbles into the batter and we also wanna prevent cracks.
Which brings me to the other thing that prevents cracks, everyone’s favourite — the water bath. I know this is just an extra annoying step, but it’s worth it! Even baking, no cracks, no falls, and creamier texture!
Chocolate Ganache Topping
My favourite part of a s’more is the chocolate, so I had to add a double dosage to this cheesecake. First the rich chocolate cheesecake, then the silky chocolate ganache topping!
Only 2 simple ingredients, chocolate and heavy cream. You can spread the ganache on top of the cheesecake before refrigerating, or you can add it the next day, after the cheesecake has chilled completely. If you decide to pipe on the meringue the way I did, though, I recommend letting the ganache set.
Marshmallow Meringue Topping
The marshmallow meringue topping is the same meringue I’ve used in past recipes like this Lemon Meringue Cheesecake and my Mississippi Mud Pie. I know some people, myself included, can get quite nervous when it comes to making meringue because one small misstep (like getting a bit of yolk in the egg whites, or over cooking the eggs) can ruin the entire thing.
Don’t worry, though, with only 3 ingredients and 2 easy steps, it can be super simple. Whisk the egg whites, sugar and vanilla together in a heat safe mixing bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Beat continuously until the sugar dissolves. I usually stick a clean finger inside once it gets foamy, then rub them together and if I don’t feel grains, it’s ready.
Using a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat until the egg white microwave doubles in size and becomes a thick, glossy meringue.
How to Pipe the Meringue Ruffles
You don’t have to pipe the meringue on top if you don’t want to, you can just dollop the meringue on top and it’ll still look great!
But if you want to recreate the ruffle triangle topping I did, here’s how you do it. Start by using a medium ruffle tip, I used Wilton 104. Make sure the wide end is on the bottom.
I used a wooden skewer to draw lines, dividing the top into 8 sections. Then, starting from the edge, pipe in a side to side motion. Use the lines as a reference for where the piping should begin and end within the triangle. For a visual tutorial, check my Instagram post.
Repeat with the remaining sections, then use a kitchen torch to toast the top and sides. I lightly toasted the topping to keep the details of the piping, but you can make it as burnt and toasty as you like your marshmallows!
Even though there’s 8 triangle sections on top, I don’t suggest using them as a reference to cut out your slices. Since this cheesecake is pretty rich, a small serving goes a long way, so you can get about 12-16 slices out of this thing.
This cheesecake was a huge hit! Everyone that tried it fell in love and couldn’t resist going back for more! The crunchy and smooth meringue topping, rich and silky ganache, thick creamy cheesecake and buttery graham cracker crust is the most amazing combination of flavours and textures!
I’d love to know how these turn out for you, so if you make this recipe or any other recipe of mine, come back and leave a comment down below to tell me how they turned out! And don’t forget to leave a rating!
Craving More S’mores? Try these Recipes:
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Let’s get baking!
Graham Cracker Crust:
- 3 cups graham cracker crumbs
- ¼ cup Granulated Sugar
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, melted
- 12 oz. Bittersweet (70%) chocolate, melted and cooled
- 3 (8oz) packages cream cheese (24 oz), softened to room temperature
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 Tbsp. cornstarch (or 3 Tbsp. all purpose flour)
- 1 cup sour cream, room temperature
- ½ cup heavy cream, room temperature
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 large egg yolk
Dark Chocolate Ganache:
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
Marshmallow Meringue Topping:
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
For the Graham Cracker Crust:
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease sides and bottom of one 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray and line with parchment rounds.
- Pour graham cracker crumbs into a medium bowl and mix in sugar and melted butter using a fork until all the crumbs are coated.
- Transfer mixture to the greased 9-inch springform pan and, using the flat bottom of a glass or measuring cup, press into the bottom and up the sides of the pan.
- Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and reduce the temperature to 300F. Set aside to cool.
- Take 1 extra large piece of aluminum foil that’s bigger than your springform pan. Place springform pan in the centre and fold aluminum up to the sides to cover the outside of the pan. This ensures that no water seeps into the pan during the water bath. Alternatively, I placed my pan in a slightly larger pot to completely protect my crust from the water.
For the Chocolate Cheesecake:
- Put chopped chocolate into a large heat-safe bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir constantly until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Remove bowl from heat and set aside to cool for at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the cheesecake batter.
- In a stand mixer bowl, fitted with the paddle attachment. Or in a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer, beat the cream cheese on low speed until smooth and creamy.
- Add both sugars, cocoa and cornstarch and continue to beat on low speed until completely combined and smooth.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add sour cream, heavy cream and vanilla and continue beating until smooth. Add melted chocolate and mix on low speed to combine.
- Add eggs and yolk one at a time, beating slowly until just combined, do not overbeat. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula to make sure everything is fully combined. Forcefully tap bowl on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles.
- Pour into prepared pan and place into a larger pan.Bring a few cups of water to a boil and carefully pour into the larger pan. The water should only be a few inches up the sides of the pan. Do not go over the top.
- Bake at 300°F for about 1 hour and 20 minutes to about 1 hour and 30 minutes. The cheesecake is done when the edges are set and the center jiggles just slightly.
- Turn off oven and leave the cheesecake to cool for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, crack the door open and continue cooling the cheesecake for another 30 minutes. This helps prevent cracking.
- After an hour, remove cheesecake from waterbath and aluminum foil. Run a knife around the edge of the pan so it's not sticking to the sides and allow to cool completely on a rack.
- Loosely cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm and chilled, about 8 hours or preferably overnight.
For the Dark Chocolate Ganache:
- In a heat safe bowl, microwave the heavy whipping cream and chocolate in 30 second intervals, stirring after each until mixture is completely combined and smooth.
- Pour ganache over chilled cheesecake and spread into an even layer. Return to the refrigerator to set while you prepare the meringue.
For the Marshmallow Meringue Topping:
- Bring an inch of water to a simmer in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once it begins to simmer, turn heat to low so the water doesn't begin to boil.
- Add the egg whites, sugar and vanilla to the bowl of a stand mixer or a large stainless steel or glass bowl.
- Place bowl over the saucepan of simmering water and whisk constantly until the sugar is dissolved and egg whites are warm. You can test this by rubbing the mixture between two fingers. If it doesn't feel grainy, the sugar has dissolved and can be removed from the heat. If you still feel grains, continue whisking and keep testing until the sugar is fully dissolved.
- Move bowl to stand mixer, or using a handheld mixer, beat on low speed until the mixture is frothy, about 1 minute.
- Gradually increase the speed to high and beat until the frosting is thick and glossy, 7-8 minutes.
- Remove springform pan ring and transfer cheesecake to a serving platter.
- You can either dollop the meringue on top, or you could pipe on the ruffle design I did.
- To do the ruffle design: Scoop the meringue into a piping bag fitted with a ruffle tip (I used Wilton 104).
- Using a wooden skewer, toothpick or pizza cutter, lightly trace 8 triangle sections onto the chilled ganache.
- Starting on the wide side of the triangle, pipe in a side to side motion, working your way to the tip of the triangle. Make sure the wide part of the ruffle tip is on the bottom and positioned at a 90° angle.
- Repeat with the remaining sections, then use a kitchen torch to toast the meringue topping as light or dark as you want.
- Slice and serve! Cheesecake will stay fresh in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
- Room temperature ingredients: Make sure all ingredients are room temperature so everything blends together easily and you won’t risk over-beating.
- Cream cheese: I recommend letting the cream cheese sit at room temperature for at least 2 hours so it can mix properly and you won’t have chunks of cream cheese in the batter.
- Chocolate: Use a good-quality baking chocolate instead of chocolate chips for the best results. Bittersweet chocolate with 70% cocoa solids is best to use to balance out the sweetness. You could use semisweet chocolate, but it may be too sweet.
- Ganache: If you’re just gonna dollop the meringue on top of the cheesecake, you can spread on the ganache after the cheesecake has chilled. If you want to pipe it on, I recommend letting it set up completely in the refrigerator.
- Meringue Ruffles: For a visual guide on how to pipe the meringue ruffles, check out my instagram post.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 427Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 109mgSodium: 123mgCarbohydrates: 49gFiber: 1gSugar: 38gProtein: 5g
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