So… you love the ease and even the taste of a Jell-O No Bake Cheesecake, but you miss the satisfying density and richness of a “real” cheesecake. Problem solved! Lucky for you, I’m a bit of a tinkerer in the kitchen. This recipe provides the best of both worlds. It couldn’t be easier to make, just like a regular ol’ Jell-O No Bake cheesecake, but it doesn’t disappoint in the dense & rich department either.
I swear, if you try this, you’ll never make a plain ol’ Jell-O No Bake Cheesecake again…
Here’s what you’ll need for this no bake cheesecake:
- Jell-O No Bake Cheesecake (flavor of your choice) – 1 box
- Sweetened condensed milk – 1 can (14 oz)
- Evaporated milk – 1 can (12 oz)
- Cream cheese – 1 block (8 oz)
- Vanilla extract – 1 t
- Salt – 1/8 t
Here’s what you’ll do to make this no bake cheesecake:
First things first, put the can of evaporated milk in the fridge for at least a couple hours before you want to make this. The filling just comes together better if the evaporated milk is cold.
Dump the block of cream cheese into a large mixing bowl and let it come to room temperature. This is very important. Cold cream cheese will result in a lumpy filling and no one wants a lumpy cheesecake filling.
You can either prepare the graham cracker crust per the directions on the box or use a pre-made graham cracker crust. That’s totally up to you. If you decide to use the crumbs in the box to make your own crust, make it at this point per the directions on the box and put it in the fridge to set up while your cream cheese comes to room temperature.
Once your cream cheese comes to room temperature, pour in the can of sweetened condensed milk. I know, I know… it seems like a lot. But you’re not making a cheesecake because you’re watching your weight, right? Trust me, once you taste this, you’ll understand. The can of sweetened condensed milk adds a perfect amount of sweetness to the block of cream cheese. Beat the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk together (either a hand mixer or stand mixer works, but if you use a stand mixer, make sure you scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl really well). Beat until the mixture is very smooth and there are no lumps.
Now add the can of cold evaporated milk, Jell-O No Bake Cheesecake filling packet, 1 t of vanilla and 1/8 t of salt. Beat the hell out of it on medium/medium-high speed for 3 minutes. If the filling still isn’t perfectly smooth, keep beating it until it is.
Pour the filling into the prepared crust of your choice, cover it with plastic wrap, put it in the fridge to chill for at least two hours (overnight is best) and… VOILA! The easiest, most delicious no bake cheesecake you’ve ever had in your life. If it’s not, you can kick me in the shins if you ever see me out in the wild.
No bake cheesecake: to flavor or not to flavor?
Everyone knows plain cheesecake is delicious, whether it’s no bake or not. If you didn’t believe that, you wouldn’t be here. But sometimes — just sometimes — you want to shake things up a bit. Sure, you could go the traditional route and top it with a fruit compote, like blueberry or strawberry or raspberry. Cherry compote? Awesome. Peach compote? Delicious. Did you just curl up your nose at peach compote on a cheesecake? Try it once, friend. And them come back here to issue me a formal apology. You could even top it with store-bought lemon curd. Mmm… lemon curd. Wait, what were we talking about again? Oh, right… flavoring this spectacular no bake cheesecake.
Sure, topping the cheesecake with fruit (or even chocolate ganache) would be delicious. But you could flavor the filling itself! Personally, there’s little I love more than a lemon cheesecake. A lemon cheesecake with blueberry compote on top? We’re talking slap-your-mama-and-not-feel-bad-about-it delicious. For a mild lemon flavor, add the juice of half a freshly-squeezed lemon (no, you shouldn’t use the bottled junk… I can’t even believe you were about to ask). Maybe you love lemon as much as I do. In that case, add the juice of a whole lemon and 1-3 teaspoons of lemon zest (you can’t zest a bottle, which is yet another reason not to use the bottled crap).
Don’t like lemon? Try orange. Or chocolate (in the form of cocoa powder, which you’d add to the cream cheese/sweetened condensed mixture… how much depends on how chocolatey you want your filling). How about an Oreo cheesecake? Yeah. I just went there. Crush up some Oreos (just the cookies… not the filling) and beat them into the filling at the end. Buy a pre-made Oreo crust and fill it with your spectacular Oreo no bake cheesecake filling. You could even top it with chocolate ganache. WHAT?!? Yep… I just went there, too. I’m a maniac.
This extra no bake cheesecake filling though?!?
Yeah… you’ll end up with quite a bit of leftover filling, but definitely not enough to fill a whole second crust. What you do with it is up to you. I mean, if you want to just stand there in the kitchen and eat it with a spoon right out of the mixing bowl… well, that’s your God-given right and you’ll get no judgement from me. But if you maybe don’t want to do that, you could get creative.
Make another batch of graham cracker crust, smush it into the bottom & sides of some muffin cups (pro tip: use silicone muffin cups for this) and make some little cheesecakes, which you can then freeze to eat at your leisure over the next couple months. Or separate the leftover filling into different bowls and play around with flavors. Make some lemon filling and put blueberry compote on it. Mix some dehydrated blueberries or strawberries into the filling and see what happens. It’s extra filling, right? You already have an entire cheesecake chilling in the fridge that’s perfect. Who cares if you screw up the leftover filling while experimenting?!? You never know, one of these experiments might turn out to be the best thing you’ve ever made. How do you think this no bake cheesecake recipe of mine came to be? EXPERIMENTS!
Never be afraid of playing around in the kitchen. So… you make something that doesn’t turn out. Who cares? It’s food. Not rocket science. No one gets hurt if you have an idea that turns out to suck. But EVERYONE wins when one of your ideas turns out amazing.
Now get cooking. Or, in this case, not cooking… but you know what I mean!