Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake

If you are a fan of strawberry cheesecake, you have to try my strawberry swirl cheesecake recipe. It has a homemade graham cracker crust that is filled with a creamy vanilla cheesecake with a cooked strawberry sauce swirl on top.

a slice of cheesecake with a strawberry swirl on top on a small white plate


 

Slice and serve up this incredible strawberry dessert recipe. Great for entertaining, potluck events, birthdays and more.

How to make Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake

Graham Cracker Crust | This cheesecake uses a classic graham cracker crust. You will mix up the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter until everything is coated in butter and then press it into a 9-inch springform pan. Use the pack of a measuring cup to help pack down the crust.

Place the graham cracker crust in the freezer or fridge to firm up.

Fresh Strawberry Puree | Strawberries and sugar are all that is required to make this strawberry puree. Cook on the stove to help break down the strawberries. Once it is done cooking, place it in a blender or food processor to make a smooth puree. Let cool while you work on the cheesecake.

Vanilla Cheesecake | A classic vanilla cheesecake is the cheesecake base for this strawberry swirl cheesecake recipe. Add the cream cheese to a large glass mixing bowl and beat using a hand mixer until creamed.

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Beat in the sugar until combined. Add in the vanilla extract and then beat in each egg one at a time. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl after each egg too.

Add in the heavy cream and sour cream. The batter should be loose at this point so you don't have to worry about lumps forming. Beat until the heavy cream is incorporated.

Pour the batter on top of the crust in the springform pan. Add the puree to a sandwich bag and cut a small hole in one of the corners. Swirl the cheesecake with the strawberry filling, and bake as directed.

Photo showing the side and top of the cheesecake while it's sitting on a white plate with a red fabric under it

How long will Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake last

You can expect your strawberry swirl cheesecake to store for around 5 days in the refrigerator.

The biggest thing is making sure to place your cheesecake in an airtight container. Otherwise, your cheesecake can take on other flavors that are in your fridge.

overhead photo of strawberry cheesecake on a large white plate with a red fabric under it

Can you freeze Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake

This strawberry swirl cheesecake can be frozen if you don't plan to eat it all right away. I recommend slicing up the cheesecake and then freezing it. To keep the pieces from sticking together is placing parchment paper in between each slice so they don't stick together.

The cheesecake can be frozen for up to 3 months. Use a freezer-friendly container or wrap in aluminum foil and then place in a sealable freezer bag.

If you're wrapping the cheesecake in foil, I would recommend place the cheesecake pieces or even whole cheesecake in the freezer until it's frozen solid first since the cheesecake is soft.

bite taken from the tip of a slice of cheesecake on a white plate with a red linen under it

How do you make swirls in a cheesecake?

The tip I find helpful when making swirls is taking your strawberry mixture and pour into a sealable bag. Take scissors and cut off the side to make it pourable. Then lower the bag close to the cheesecake and begin squeezing some of the strawberry mixture onto the cheesecake.

Then with a skewer or toothpick you can swirl the strawberry mixture into the filling. The biggest thing is don't go too deep on swirling or you will not see the swirl on top of your cheesecake.

It adds some color and depth when you leave some red on top of the cheesecake.

Why Does Cheesecake Have to Set Up Overnight?

Cheesecake takes a long time to really cool down once it has been baked. That is why it is very important to allow the cheesecake to fully set up in the refrigerator overnight. Then you can slice and serve up a cheesecake that is rich, dense, and offers tons of flavor.

Strawberry cheesecake on a white plate with a red fabric under it and strawberries behind it

Interested in more cheesecake ideas

Variation To Crust For Strawberry Cheesecake

Go right ahead and swap out the graham cracker crust out with a vanilla wafer crust, shortbread cookies, Golden Oreos, or even an Oreo crust. It doesn't have to be the graham cracker if you have an idea of using something else to swap it out.

I loved the golden graham crust for this next to the strawberry, but by all means swap if you feel the urge.

a slice of cheesecake with a strawberry swirl on top on a small white plate

Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake

This strawberry swirl cheesecake has a homemade graham cracker crust that is filled with a creamy vanilla cheesecake with a cooked strawberry sauce swirl on top.
4.66 from 112 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 35 minutes
Chill Time 8 hours
Total Time 10 hours 5 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10 slices

Ingredients
  

Crust

Strawberry Sauce

  • 2 ½ cups sliced strawberries
  • ½ cup granulated sugar

Cheesecake

  • 24 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • ½ cup heavy cream

Instructions

Crust

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease the sides of a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick baking spray. Place a 3-inch wide strip of parchment paper on the sides of the springform pan.
  • Add the graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and melted butter to a medium mixing bowl. Stir until the butter thoroughly coats the graham cracker crumbs.
  • Pour the crust mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan and firmly press the crumbs evenly into the bottom of the pan.
  • Place in the freezer or fridge to set up while working on the sauce and cheesecake batter.

Strawberry Sauce

  • Add the sliced strawberries and sugar to a medium saucepan. Place over medium heat and cook for 10 to 13 minutes. Break the strawberries down with a wooden spoon while they cook to help speed up the process.
  • Remove from the saucepan and place in a blender or food processor. Pulse until the sauce is a smooth puree. Set aside and begin working on the cheesecake.

Cheesecake

  • Add the cream cheese to a large mixing bowl. Using a hand mixer, beat on medium until creamy.
  • Add in the sugar and vanilla extract and continue to beat until combined.
  • Add in the eggs one at a time and beat each egg just until incorporated. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl before adding the next.
  • Once all of the eggs are incorporated, add in the sour cream and heavy cream. Beat just until the sour cream and heavy cream is worked into the cheesecake batter.
  • Just before adding the cheesecake mixture, wrap the outside of the springform pan with 2 layers of heavy-duty tin foil. You can skip the tin foil and add the cheesecake in a slightly larger pan to keep the cheesecake dry and then place the two pans in a third pan that's filled with about 1 inch of hot water.
  • Pour the cheesecake batter on top of the crust.
  • Pour the strawberry puree into a sandwich bag and cut a small hole in one of the corners.
  • Place the hole of the sandwich bag barely in the cheesecake batter and begin piping a swirl with the strawberry sauce. Don't go too deep with the filling otherwise, you won't see it on top.
  • Add a few swirls dragging a skewer through the cheesecake and fresh strawberry puree. Adding too many swirls will create cracks in the top of your cheesecake when it's baked so keep it to a minimum.
  • Place the cheesecake in the preheated oven and bake for 1 hour 25 minutes or until the edges of the cheesecake are set and the center slightly jiggles like jello when the pan is wiggled back and forth and not like wet batter. This time may vary so always give it the jiggle test and bake longer if needed.
  • Once done, leave the cheesecake in the oven, turn the oven off, and leave the door slightly ajar until the cheesecake has cooled to room temperature.
  • Once the cheesecake has cooled, move to the fridge and allow to chill overnight to set up.

(Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.)

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63 Comments

  1. Followed directions exactly and cooked longer than stated but came out runny in the middle. Embarrassing because I made it for my daughters birthday. Flavour was good but didn’t at all hold it’s shape once cut. Not sure what happened.2 stars

    1. So sorry to hear this Hayley! My only suggestions would be to make sure it is very cold before cutting (straight out of the fridge) and also to make sure the strawberry is swirled in well and not in one dense spot. Just a few guesses as to why it wouldn't set!

  2. We make a lot of cheesecakes in my house because it's the only sweet my husband likes. This was a fantastic recipe - thanks so much for sharing! Multiple people told me it was the best cheesecake they'd ever had! Great tip to use parchment paper - this prevented it cracking as it cooled, which I often have an issue with. I used a little less sugar (1/4c in the berries was more than enough for us, 3/4c in the cake was perfect), which is all just personal preference. But the creamy lightness of the cake and cutting it with the berries was absolutely delicious! I will definitely make this again.. many times! Thank you!5 stars

    1. Yes! If you do not have vanilla extract on hand, you can skip it and the cheesecake will still be quite delicious.

    1. Make sure you beat the cream cheese and sugar until very smooth and soft. Scrap down the sides of the bowl several times when the cream cheese is beating to ensure you get every bit of cream cheese blended into the cheesecake mix. This will help make the cheesecake smooth and creamy.

  3. First time Cheesecake baker here and was able to do this one! It was a hit!! Family said it was the best cheesecake they had. The texture was light and fluffy compared to some heavier cheesecakes. Already plan to make it again this weekend. I do feel a lot of the strawberry swirl went to waste as i only used about 1/3 of it.5 stars

  4. The top of my cheese cake is nicely cooked maybe even a bit over done as it’s slightly brown but when I took the form off the cake it seems like the outside of it isn’t cooked I cooked it longer then it says not sure why it’s like that or if it will be cooked all the way through when I cut into it

    1. If the top starts to get too dark but the cheesecake isn't cooked, place a piece of foil over the top of the pan just to cover the cheesecak from the direct heat. This will let it continue to cook without getting too dark. Also be sure you bake your cheesecake in a water bath and also chill it completely before cutting. It needs to be completely cold before sliced!

  5. Made this for the first time and this recipe is a bit different than the other I’ve used. I ended up over mixing the ingredients and wonder if you have any tips or tricks for not doing that with the method used here.
    Thanks,
    John4 stars

    1. One way to prevent over mixing is to beat the cream cheese and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy then use just a regular rubber spatula to fold the rest of the ingredients into the batter by hand. Mixing by hand will ensure you do not overmix! I hope this helps 🙂

  6. I made the cheesecake and I am disappointed that the top of my cheesecake is brown and looks nothing like the photos. I even turned off the oven five minutes earlier. How do I prevent browning?

    1. Hi Elizabeth! So sorry to hear that the top of your cheesecake was brown. This can sometimes happen if the oven is too hot or the oven rack is too close to the top, causing the heat to be directly on the surface of the cheesecake. To prevent this, you can try moving your oven rack lower or, if you see that the top is starting to brown, place a piece of foil loosely over the top of the cheesecake to deflect the heat. This will stop the browning but let the cheesecake continue to cook. I hope this helps!

    1. Yes you can! I recommend lining the cake pan with parchment paper in the bottom to help it pop out of the pan easily. Be sure it is completely cool before unmolding the cake. You may even want to try freezing it to make the layer of cheesecake easier to handle when assembling your cake.

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