Rating: 3.69 stars
1581 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 480
  • 4 star values: 484
  • 3 star values: 348
  • 2 star values: 188
  • 1 star values: 81

A crumbly graham cracker crust and silky cream cheese filling make this New York-style cheesecake a winner.

Gallery

Read the full recipe after the video.

Recipe Summary

prep:
20 mins
total:
2 hrs
Servings:
12
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Ingredients

For Crust
For Filling

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Make crust: Butter a 9-by-3-inch springform pan. In a food processor, pulse graham crackers until fine crumbs form; add melted butter, sugar, and salt, and pulse to combine. Press crumb mixture into bottom and about 1 inch up side of pan. Bake until set, 12 to 15 minutes; let cool on a wire rack. Reduce oven to 325 degrees.

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  • Set a kettle of water to boil. Make filling: Using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on medium until fluffy, scraping down side of bowl. Gradually add sugar, beating until fluffy. Beat in lemon zest and juice, and salt. Beat in eggs, one at a time, scraping down side of bowl after each addition. Beat in sour cream.

  • Wrap bottom half of pan in foil. Pour in filling; place in a roasting pan. Pour in boiling water to come halfway up side of springform. Bake until just set in center, about 1 3/4 hours. Remove pan from water; let cool 20 minutes. Run a paring knife around edge; let cool completely. Cover; chill overnight before serving.

Reviews (75)

1581 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 480
  • 4 star values: 484
  • 3 star values: 348
  • 2 star values: 188
  • 1 star values: 81
Rating: 5 stars
06/23/2019
Make this exactly as described in directions and it will be a hit! I am not a baker and it came out perfectly for me. Thank you!!
Rating: 5 stars
02/14/2019
Love it! It was so good and creamy! My best recipe yet!
Rating: 5 stars
02/07/2019
This cheesecake is "The Bomb"!!! No matter where I take it everyone loves it. It does take a while to do, but well worth it. The last time I made it I put sliced strawberries on the top and laid them out in a sunburnt pattern and put a strawberry.glaze on them. It couldn't have looked better. Thanks Martha E
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Rating: 5 stars
02/06/2019
Works every time, i’vedone this several times. What I love most : 1. just the right combinationof sweet, tangy and creamy cheese 2. Simple recipe, no need to beat up whipping cream in another bowl and then fold etc 3. EVeryone loves this!
Rating: 5 stars
11/22/2018
I made this several times. Now it's a Thanksgiving tradition. Love the texture and the taste. It tastes really good with blueberries on top. The only down side to this is sometimes it does crack, but I just cover it with the fruit. Nobody notices it.
Rating: 5 stars
08/12/2018
I LOVED this recipe. My mother and grandmother always made cheesecake and this recipe was my mother's favorite, EVER, which says a lot! I beat the mixture quite a bit more than suggested and it turned out light and fluffy - just the way I LOVE it.
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Rating: 5 stars
06/11/2018
The cheesecake came out PERFECT - no cracking! So creamy and delicious, the lemon adds a freshness and tricks you in to believing it's a light and "healthy" dessert, ha! I did change 2 things, though...I did not add sugar to the crust as the graham crackers are sweet enough and I added a tablespoon of vanilla. I would mention that you need to buy the larger size aluminum foil in which to wrap the pan because the regular size isn't big enough.
Rating: 5 stars
04/19/2018
I make this recipe at least once a year and it's perfect every time. I think it's important to remember that all of the ingredients need to be at room temperature. Gently take the chill off of your eggs by placing them in warm water for 15 minutes, changing the water if necessary. I would also recommend some more elaborate notes about removing it from the oven; when the time is up, turn off the oven but do not immediately remove the cake.
Rating: 5 stars
02/03/2018
I forgot the sour cream once, and prefer it to the batch I made with sour cream. Both are great, sans SC just greater.
Rating: 2 stars
12/24/2017
I watched the video and she left off the salt in the cheesecake recipe. Should have followed the recipe. Don't know how it's going to come out. From all the reviews I hope mine does not get wet at the bottom.
Rating: 5 stars
07/29/2017
This is my go-to cheesecake recipe. simple ingredients list and it makes an incredible dessert. Occasionally, i will stir in some warm raspberry jam right before putting it in the oven, but it is even better plain with fresh tart berries
Rating: Unrated
06/30/2017
i've nvr made a cheesecake before. making the first tonight. going to add crushed walnuts to the crust, a dark chocolate ganache, then a layer of salted caramel on top of that for a topping. won't matter if the top browns or not. found a way to make sure water won't seep into the pan (by accident no less) when i was searching for foil and a large enough pan. there was a pkg of reynolds hot bags in the drawer. they are ex lg, hd foil cooking bags. and the pan fits in it. plan on cutting it down to sz needed and reuse the rest when i bbq next time. will post update on results.
Rating: Unrated
05/26/2017
why does the cheesecake in the video have a browned top while the cheesecake in the image (and most cheesecake images) does not? I'd like to make sure the top is not browned.
Rating: Unrated
05/24/2017
My nephew requested "plain cheesecake " for his birthday. I wanted to try the MS Classic recipe I'd seen on Martha Bakes. Everyone loved this cheesecake, even the "I hate cheesecake crowd". It was silky and delicious. I have made dozens of recipes, this will be my goto in future. Follow instructions explicitly. Use three layers of HD 18" foil so there are no leaks. I made MS ganache tart and this cheesecake to follow dinner for 20 people ... there was only 1 small piece of each left-over ... Yahoo!! Martha and Team !!
Rating: 5 stars
05/02/2017
I made this and it turned out to be lovely!
Rating: Unrated
04/04/2017
Best recipe ever! I don't even cook it in water now! Everyone still loves it!
Rating: 4 stars
02/12/2017
Thank you Martha! I made this for my pookie pie for Valentine's Day. She loved it! Followed recipe to the letter. Perfect!
Rating: 1 stars
12/03/2016
Tried this recipe and there ended up being lumps in it, no matter how long I stirred it. I don't know what happened, but I was really disappointed by this recipe.
Rating: Unrated
11/25/2016
It needs vanilla. Was it's omission a mistake? 2 t.
Rating: Unrated
03/24/2016
I made this following every single instruction, watching Sarah Carey's marvelous video, and I am heartbroken. I bought huge heavy duty foil. I have examined it and there is still not a pinhole in it, but my cheese cake came out of the oven standing in an inch of water. I haven't cut it yet, but the bottom is obviously sodden. What is that, condensation? Why isn't it happening to everyone? (though I did see one other commenter having this problem) I am devastated, but not deterred. Advice please!
Rating: Unrated
02/07/2016
"9-by-3-inch Springform-Pan" .....which size is it in cm?
Rating: Unrated
11/11/2015
I did the recipe last night.First I watched videoI Supposed that I made a mistake.I dont know what kind of mistake. The top of the cake burned.I wanted to cry.I did one more mistake.After cooking ı removed it the oven.Then the cake goes.Help me pleaseee..
Rating: 5 stars
10/31/2015
I've made this cheesecake twice, following the recipe exactly, except for using gluten-free graham crackers. Since the gluten-free crackers are not the size specified in the recipe, I used math to determine how many to use. Anyway, my family loves it and ate it up in record time. The only problem is I can't figure out how to keep the crust from getting wet. Some water always seeps in no matter how well I wrap it.
Rating: 5 stars
04/07/2015
This was my first time making a cheesecake and it came out fabulous! I used a 6" pan so I cut the recipe in half and reduced cooking time. I will definitely use this recipe again in the future!
Rating: Unrated
02/03/2015
Can ready made graham cracker crumbs be used instead of grinding graham crackers for this recipe? Seems like am we some recipe, excited to make it this weekend. Thank you all for the tips and reviews.
Rating: 5 stars
01/30/2015
I made this recipe and forgot the sour cream. I felt stupid until I tasted it. It was wonderful. The family said it was better than restaurant cheese cake. Tonight I am making it again, this time with the sour cream. The family has agreed to judge which is better. Just know that even without the sour cream this is a great recipe.
Rating: Unrated
12/23/2014
So amazing!!! I'll be making this again tomorrow as one of the things to take over to my parent's for Christmas. This is my third time making this since I discovered this recipe a year or so ago. SO easy to make, do exactly as the recipe says. Like another guest said, the water bath especially and lemon are totally a must. BEST ever, yay!!!
Rating: 5 stars
09/29/2014
This was the easiest recipe to follow Not only did my cheesecake come out perfect without any cracks it was creamy and silky throughout! This was my first attempt at a cheesecake and I made it for a bi-weekly game night, everyone loved it by the end only one slice remained. So EASY - Thank you Martha!
Rating: Unrated
08/03/2014
Fantastic cheesecake. I have one baking now with raspberry coulis swirled into it, as I prefer a classic base to the swirl recipe on here. One thing I do differently is that I use a cold water bath with ice in it, then bake to an internal temperature, in the center, of 160° F. This gives me a cheesecake that is perfectly smooth and creamy from edge to edge. It's a personal preference, but everyone who has tried it loves it, and I've even converted a few self-proclaimed cheesecake haters.
Rating: 5 stars
06/17/2014
Recipe is the very best cheesecake ever! Do not skip the water bath or lemon...
Rating: Unrated
06/09/2014
does anyone have any suggestions on how to bake this cheesecake without a water bath??? didnt realize i let someone barrow my roasting pan and nothing else is big enough for my pan
Rating: 5 stars
06/01/2014
To die for! I made this yesterday for a family picnic today. Everyone raved about it!! I was very nervous about how it would come since it was my first time baking such a large thick cheesecake. I baked it for exactly 1 hr 45min. I let it get golden brown on the top and it was fine. I spread cherry topping on it to make it prettier. It really was a hit with everyone! Lots of compliments and it was completely devoured in no time!
Rating: Unrated
05/05/2014
Simple, quick, and easy. I love that the cake has to sit in the fridge overnight, forcing you to make it a day in advance. I usually feel guilty for doing that because I want my dishes to be as fresh as possible. In this case, you have no choice. Anyway, it was a hit with my guests and looked beautiful on the table.
Rating: 5 stars
04/27/2014
I can't believe it took me 65 years on this planet before I made my first cheese cake. I love Sarah's videos...love her humor and her relaxed style makes me think I can make a cheese cake, no problem! It's in the oven now, but if licking the filling off the beater is any indication, I know everyone is going to love it. And another thing...sunset magazine...I had to go to Martha Stewart to learn how to do a jelly roll for a recipe you had in your April issue.... Shame on you!
Rating: 5 stars
04/21/2014
Made it for Easter and it was great! So silkly smooth and creamy. My other recipe I have made for years is great but it is a denser cheesecake.
Rating: Unrated
03/10/2014
I've made this twice now. First time, I used less than half the amount of cream cheese called for because I misread "2 1/2 pounds bar cream cheese" as two 1/2 pound bars of cream cheese. That one was denser, possibly just because I mixed it by hand haha. I also use vanilla greek yogurt instead of sour cream. My only issue was creating a good enough seal with my aluminum foil to keep the water out while cooking. My first crust was a bit on the moist side, but both times it tasted great anyways!
Rating: Unrated
03/02/2014
If you follow the recipe to the letter, this is a great cheesecake.
Rating: 5 stars
01/07/2014
I am not from New York (I am Croatian - Europe) but I made something similar these days, so yummy, I added a little bit of cinnamon in the crust, try if you like it, And congratulations for your good recipes and more!
Rating: Unrated
12/11/2013
This was a perfect recipe. And, it was very simple too. Just like New York Cheesecake. I would prepare some sort of glaze next time too.
Rating: Unrated
11/18/2013
That is perfect. Finally -- a simple recipe that is perfection.
Rating: Unrated
09/14/2013
After watching Martha create this on her show I had to give it a try! It's my first from scratch cheesecake and it looks beautiful! I even added the raspberry swirls to give it an extra pop! So much easier than I envisioned and no cracks! Love this recipe!
Rating: Unrated
08/09/2013
If you can't follow a recipe that has actual measurements (so that you can have a accurate idea of the ingredients that you need) then perhaps you shouldn't attempt a cheesecake from scratch. This recipe is not "misleading". Its awesome. I've made it 4 times and it comes out perfectly. In fact, its the ONLY cheesecake recipe that consistently comes out perfectly. Follow the recipe and instructions and you will get a beautiful cake. SUCH a crowd pleaser and absolutely delicious.
Rating: Unrated
07/02/2013
I just made this, following the recipe to the "T". It turned out beautifully. The top did get golden and is fine with me. This was my first attempt at a cheesecakes and I'm now empowered to try a more fancy flavor. Thanks Martha
Rating: Unrated
05/12/2013
People really??? Its not rocket science! Some people think 2 and half pounds is 2 and half packs cream cheese...Each pack is 8oz....16oz = 1 lb....Therefore you need 5 packs of creamcheese...to make this cheesecake...however she demonstrates 7 packs! and put flour in her recipe... I stuck to 5 pks c.cheese and no flour...Perfect!! everytime I make it...:)
Rating: Unrated
04/06/2013
Im very disappointed, very misleading recipe. used 4 pkg. of cream cheese. too much cake, risen past the top of springfoam pan. took longer than a one and 3/4 hour to get done. browned on top. followed recipe to the letter!!
Rating: Unrated
04/01/2013
I have made this cheesecake three times already, and so far it has tasted as good as it looks !!!!! I am very proud of accomplishing this and hope I can master the other recipes Martha has !! I do seem to have a problem with the top also turning into a lovely golden brown !!!! I don't mind it, but I have a friend who says it should be a lot lighter-I am following the instructions to the letter, so I don't understand why it doesn't come out lighter, like in the photograph (?) !
Rating: Unrated
03/28/2013
So todayI tried this recipe. At firsti thought everything was fin to review the recipe and to my surprise found that the way it is written is misleading. The amount of Cr. Cheese required needs to be written more cleary. Interpretation of what is there is not what . I now have to start all over again. Thanks Martha
Rating: Unrated
12/16/2012
me parece muy practica
Rating: Unrated
11/13/2012
Hi, does anyone know what difference salt makes to the cheesecake. which factor does it specifically affect - the taste or texture? And, does anyone know how heavy the finished cheesecake is? cheers(:
Rating: Unrated
11/13/2012
Hi, does anyone know th difference salt makes to the recipe. is the taste or texture affected by the presence of salt in the cheese cake? and does anyone know what is the exact weight of the completed cheesecake? (: cheers
Rating: Unrated
11/13/2012
Hi, does anyone know th difference salt makes to the recipe. is the taste or texture affected by the presence of salt in the cheese cake? and does anyone know what is the exact weight of the completed cheesecake? (: cheers
Rating: Unrated
11/12/2012
How can I keep the top of my cheesecake from turing golden brown?
Rating: Unrated
09/20/2012
Several days ago, I was fortunate enough to watch Martha demonstrating this recipe, on her morning show. I tried it and much to my surprise, I was simply amazed at the taste, texture and creaminess of the recipe. I garnished the cheesecake with strawberries, chilled overnight, and then served them to some friends. The water bath kept the cheesecake from cracking and the sauce looked beautiful on top of the cake. Following her instructions, it came out perfect if not, better then hers.
Rating: 5 stars
07/16/2012
BTW, I used 5 8oz pkgs of cream cheese. Martha demonstrated this on her show, and that's how many she used also.
Rating: 5 stars
07/16/2012
I used this recipe to teach my 12 year old grandson how to make cheesecake. It's not complicated and teaches basic steps in preparation. Not everything comes out of a box! It's rewarding to have something so amazing as a finished product. The flavor is amazing. Not easy waiting for it to chill completely before diving in!
Rating: Unrated
06/23/2012
q
Rating: Unrated
12/02/2011
BSinME, the amount of cream cheese is correct. As stated earlier it is 5- 8oz packages. This recipe is perfect, I make it all the time and I several other recipes that call for similar amounts of cream cheese.
Rating: Unrated
11/20/2011
Aalley, I know this is late, but I hope it helps. At first glance I thought it said 2 1/2 pounds of cream cheese. I have NEVER seen a recipe that calls for anything close to that. I looked again and it does seem to mean 2 8 oz packages. 2 or 3 packages is the norm. Will be trying this recipe this week.
Rating: Unrated
08/31/2011
*droooool*, this looks so good! I totally have the problem of my cheesecakes sinking in the middle all the time. I ran across a really good photographic step-by-step article of how to do a water bath - it is UNBELIEVABLE how much of a difference it makes. I tried it on my last cheesecake, and it turned out completely smooth and straight on top. http://www.cheesecakesmadeeasy.com/the-water-bath-technique/
Rating: Unrated
07/24/2011
This is the most perfect NY style cheesecake I've ever made! If you follow all of the baking instructions exactly and allowing the cheesecake to cool completely at room temperature and then putting in refrigerator overnight, you have no cracks and perfect texture! I have made this recipe several times now, flawless every time! My family, friends, and I love it. I like to make a couple and serve with several topping options. Delicious!!!
Rating: Unrated
03/19/2011
Wow thanks a lot for this recipe its delicious and and very easy to make. greetings from Germany
Rating: Unrated
03/12/2011
How do I keep the top of my cheesecake from turning golden brown?? I want it to look like the picture and be the same color throughout, but the top is always golden brown! Should I cover it?? HELP!!!
Rating: Unrated
01/19/2011
aalley2, there are 16 oz in a pound so you need 5 (8oz) packs of cream cheese for this recipe. Good luck!
Rating: Unrated
01/19/2011
Does 2 1/2 pounds mean 2 - 8oz packs of cream cheese? I looks to me that 2 1/2 could mean a couple different things, but since I have never seen any bigger than 8 0z, that is what I would go with. Places like Sam's Club probably sell huge bars of cream cheese!
Rating: Unrated
01/12/2011
This cheesecake is the best by far I love it and it was very easy to make I most definitely recommend it its delicious once u get this recipe no need to look any further for one its absolutely awesome.
Rating: Unrated
12/17/2010
This is by far the best cheesecake I have ever made! Highly recommend it!
Rating: Unrated
11/20/2010
this was the perfect cheese cake ever.... loved it
Rating: Unrated
10/06/2010
I'm zozo from Egypt i adore u Martha I'd like to make this cake at home and i like American food
Rating: Unrated
03/03/2010
Rating: Unrated
01/13/2010
This cheesecake is just wonderful. Easy and delicious. Anyone will love it.
Rating: Unrated
12/29/2009
I made this for Christmas
Rating: Unrated
11/21/2009
I give up..I tried 3 times and only one showed upt and it wasn't even a comment. Sorry!
Rating: Unrated
11/21/2009
Is this working? I keep typing comments and they don't show up.
Rating: Unrated
07/14/2009
i've made this recipe twice now..and people FREAK OUT at how good it is. experienced cheesecake eaters have said it was the best cheesecake they had ever had! highly recommend it. and it's easy to make too!
Rating: Unrated
07/03/2009
This recipe is excellent, easy to make, and it is very moist, I highly recommend this recipe, enjoy.