There are certain days during the summer when the last place anyone wants to be is in a hot kitchen. But that's when kids can come to the rescue, making a delicious dessert for the whole family without ever having to ask their parents to turn on the oven.
- 2 packages (20 sheets) graham crackers
- 11 tablespoons (1 3/8 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 14-ounce can (1 1/4 cups) sweetened condensed milk
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Put graham crackers in a large resealable plastic bag, and crush them with a rolling pin until very fine crumbs form.
Pour crumbs into a medium bowl; stir in sugar. Add butter, and stir until well combined.
Press the crumb mixture into a 9-inch springform pan, spreading it 1 1/2 to 2 inches up the side; press flat. Chill crust in freezer at least 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the filling: Using an electric mixer set at medium-high speed, beat the cream cheese in a large bowl until smooth. Beat in the condensed milk a little at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat in the lemon juice and vanilla.
In this step:
Pour the filling into the crust; smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
Unclasp sides of pan, and remove cheesecake.