I'm crazy over maraschino cherries and knew Galentine's Day was the perfect reason to make a cherry chocolate chip cheesecake. I did manage to eat an entire jar of cherries and drink the juice in the process though. I'm pretty sure I proclaimed my love for maraschino cherries last year in my cherry cupcakes with white chocolate frosting and my white chocolate cherry bombs, but what's one more time.
I added basically an entire jar of juice to my cheesecake. It gave it the most amazing flavor AND color. There wasn't any food coloring added to the inside of my cheesecake other than the maraschino cherry juice. I figured the people that anti-food coloring would appreciate that slightly more.
Oh, if you're wondering why I said Galentine's Day instead of Valentine's Day, here's the scoop. To quote the wise Leslie Knope, "Oh, it's only the best day of the year. Every February 13th, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it, breakfast-style. Ladies celebrating ladies. It's like Lilith Fair, without the angst. Plus frittatas." I like it and I joining in with a few lady friends in sharing recipes. Their links will be at the bottom of the post!
Okay, so leaving my cherries loosely diced and the chocolate chunks large made the cheesecake kind of not so gorgeous after cutting into it, but looks aren't everything. If you're a cherry fiend like I am, make this! Cut the chunks smaller, give the cherries a finer dice and let the cheesecake set in the fridge overnight. I can tell you one thing, it was the bees knees. For a girl to not be able to put the fork down after making desserts every single day, that says something about how delish it is.
Cherry Chocolate Chip Cheesecake
- 2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs 14 sheets of crackers
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 8 tablespoons butter melted
- ¾ cup milk chocolate chips
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 8 stemmed cherries for garnish
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray the sides of the 9.5-inch springform pan with nonstick baking spray. Wrap the sides of the pan with a strip of parchment paper.
- In a mixing bowl, add in the chocolate crumbs, sugar, and melted butter. Stir to combine.
- Firmly press the crumbs evenly into the bottom and up the sides of the prepared pan.
- Place in the oven and let bake for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool while you work on the cheesecake filling.
- In a mixing bowl, add in the cream cheese. Beat with a hand mixer on medium until smooth. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Add in the sugar and flour. Beat until incorporated.
- Add in the vanilla extract and then the eggs one at a time. Beat in each egg completely before adding the next. Scrape down the bowl after incorporating each egg.
- Add in the cherry juice and sour cream. Mix until incorporated.
- Stir in the chopped cherries and chocolate.
- Just before adding the cheesecake mixture, wrap the outside of the springform pan with 2 layers of heavy-duty tin foil.
- Pour the cheesecake filling into the crust.
- Place the springform pan in a slightly larger baking pan. Fill the outer pan with 1 inch of water. This will keep the cheesecake from cracking.
- Place in the oven at 325 degrees and let bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes or until done. To make sure the cheesecake is done, gently give it a wiggle. If it slightly jiggles in JUST the middle like jello, then it's done. If it jiggles all over, it needs to bake longer. Turn off the heat and crack the oven door slightly. Let it cool in the oven for 1 to 2 hours until it reaches room temperature and then place in the fridge to chill overnight.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, add in the chocolate chips and heavy cream. Microwave for 30 seconds and stir. Repeat microwaving for 30 seconds and stirring until the ganache comes together. It will look like a chocolate syrup.
- Pour the ganache in the center of the chilled cheesecake and spread out with a knife.
- Add the stemmed cherries on the edges of the cheesecake.
- Cut and serve.
(Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.)