Miniature-sized cheesecakes with a cinnamon-sugar swirl and a cream cheese topping. These mini desserts taste just like a cinnamon roll in a cheesecake form.
If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you’ve probably noticed my obsession with miniature desserts. Namely miniature cheesecakes. Not only have there been lemon-blueberry cheesecakes here, but red velvet ones have made their debut as well. And those were covered in oreos and a chocolate ganache. Mmmmmm.
Clearly, I love mini desserts. And cheesecake is on my mind way more than is probably normal.
In fact, to be honest, food is on my mind way too much. Like…I dream about new recipes. (No, not kidding) And wake up super excited about trying something new. I’m pretty sure that’s not normal. Basically my day consists of trying to distract myself in between breakfast and lunch and in between lunch and dinner because I’m so excited for those meals. And by distract — I mean eat lots of snacks. And cookies. Lots of cookies…
And so naturally, I’ve channeled my obsession for food into a food blog. I think it was a good idea. And one that has only fueled on my love for food even more…
I’m not quite sure where that was going, except to tell you that cinnamon rolls and cheesecake has been on my mind for a while. And I was pretty excited to experiment with the combo.
But more excited when they worked. And now I can’t wait to share the recipe. Oh, and begggg you guys to make these and be in miniature cheesecake + cinnamon roll heaven.
These cheesecakes have swirls on cinnamon sugar goodness and are covered (drenched?) in a cream cheese frosting. Just how I love cinnamon rolls. The more frosting = the better.
These cheesecakes are super simple. No water bath is needed and they only bake for about 20-22 minutes. The only hard part is waiting for them to cool. 1 hour at room temperature + 2 hours in the fridge. But totally worth it. You’ll want to start with a homemade graham cracker crust. And this recipe calls for a thick crust which I personally think is a requirement for cheesecakes. But if you aren’t into the whole half the cheesecake is crust then feel free to cut the ratios down a bit.
Next, the actual cheesecake. The cheesecake is pretty standard. The usual suspects: lots of cream cheese, plenty of white sugar, a tad bit of flour, a few drops of vanilla extract, and one large egg.
But the cinnamon sugar swirl – now that’s where things are get a ‘lil crazy. Melted butter, cinnamon, and brown sugar are mixed to create the *perfect* cinnamon-sugar filling. That filling gets swirled into the cheesecake. In two places! On top of the graham cracker crust, you’ll spoon out a bit of the cheesecake filling, then some of the cinnamon-sugar filling gets swirled around. Layer a bit more cheesecake and top it off with more cinnamon-sugar swirled in.
You’ll want to fill these up to the brim. The cheesecakes will rise a bit in the oven, but once they are cooled, they deflate quite a bit. Leaving a spot for plenty of cream cheese frosting.
Which goes into the center and can be drizzled all around the top of the cheesecakes. And if you are like me and adore cream cheese frosting, you can even make extra to dip your cheesecake in.
Miniature Cinnamon Roll Cheesecakes
- 4 sheets of graham crackers
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons butter (unsalted or salted) melted
- 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese at room temperature
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 teaspoons white flour
- 1 large egg at room temperature
- 1/4 cup butter (unsalted or salted) softened
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon white flour
Cream cheese topping
- 1 and 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup butter at room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ounce cream cheese at room temperature
- 1 - 1 and 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream or whole milk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a regular sized muffin tin with 8 liners and fill up half of the other empty spaces with water. This ensures even baking. Spray the liners with non-stick spray. (Cinnamon sugar mixture gets sticky!)
In a food processor, pulse the graham crackers to crumbs. Stir in the sugar and melted butter. Press an even amount of graham cracker crust into the bottom of each muffin liner.
Press down the crust with a milk cap or the backside of a tablespoon measuring spoon and set aside.
In a medium sized bowl, combine the room temperature cream cheese and white sugar. Beat until smooth and creamy. Add in the vanilla extract, flour, and a lightly beaten egg. Beat until just combined.
In a small bowl, combine the softened butter, brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Stir until completely combined.
Spoon 1 full tablespoon of the cheesecake filling into each of the prepared 8 cups. Then place 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon sugar swirl on top. Swirl the cinnamon sugar into the cheesecake with a toothpick.
Top the rest of the cheesecake filling on top (about 1 and 1/4 tablespoons per cheesecake) and then disperse the remaining cinnamon sugar swirl evenly among the 8 cheesecakes. You should use all of this mixture.
Swirl the cinnamon sugar (again) on top of the cheesecake with a toothpick (The cheesecakes should fill the muffin liners close to the brim) and bake for 20-22 minutes. The centers will still jiggle a little bit, but the edges should be a very light brown.
Remove from the oven and let cool at room temperature for 1 hour and then transfer to the fridge and let cool for at least 2 hours.
The cheesecakes may have risen in the oven and will deflate quite a bit while cooling.
Cream cheese topping
Cream together the powdered sugar, butter, vanilla extract and cream cheese. Slowly add in the heavy cream until desired consistency is reached.
Spoon over the cooled cheesecakes and drizzle extra cream cheese frosting on top.
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