Peanut butter. We meet again old friend. If I had to pick one favorite flavor in baking I’d easily go with you peanut butter. Just a little bit goes so far and adds such a wonderful nutty flavor. I’ve posted plenty of desserts (and savory dishes) featuring peanut butter…
Here’s a list below. Be sure to come back and read on for the Fudgy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake recipe.
Peanut Butter + White Chocolate + Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Cookies | Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Mini Cheesecake Cupcakes | Maple and Peanut Butter Oatmeal Waffles (Gluten-Free) | Udon Noodle Salad with Peanut Sauce | Barbecue Chicken Kebabs with Peanut Lime Dipping Sauce
During my recipe development, testing, baking and cooking I’ve tried many techniques and ingredients; even making homemade hazelnut butter for a hazelnut fudge cake. All variations of nuts are ideal for baking and cooking.
Fudgy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake is exactly as it sounds. Creamy, silky, rich peanut butter cheesecake atop a chocolate crust. Each bite will melt in your mouth and bring a smile to your face.
In this recipe I chose to make chocolate cookie crust, instead of buying a pre-made one; as well as whipping fresh whipped cream. Both of these are relatively simple to do and highly recommend for better flavor. Plus you’ll be proud of yourself from making a cheesecake from scratch. A little bit of drizzled chocolate on top adds some flair and more chocolate. More chocolate is always good.
Food Science and Cooking Tips:
- When a recipe calls for softened butter or cream cheese, it means at room temperature. If you leave out on counter for 20–30 minutes it’s usually perfect for baking.
- A quick tip is to slice in roughly ¼-inch pieces and lay out on a plate. This increases the surface area and speeds up softening time. Lay the plate on stove-top of an oven that is warming up, and the slight heat will increase softening speed as well.
- It’s best not to soften in the microwave. This can lead to uneven constancy and even melting.
I shot this in natural light at 1/500 sec, f/ 1.8, ISO 200. This was a fun recipe to photograph. The Costco peanut butter container I used in the background had a vintage/retro typographic flair. As a graphic designer and creative lover, this is one of my favorite styles. Some deliberate contrast and saturation adjustments to the photographs give them an almost 40’s magazine vibe. You can be creative with your cooking, plating, and photography as well. Not all images have to be that perfect 3-point balance, clean, neutral background type of shot. This is your work, create it how you want.
P.S. I have another variation on this recipe. I’m keeping it a secret until I post as a separate recipe, but you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Be sure to keep coming back to Plating Pixels for that and more recipes.
Products used in this recipe:
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Fudgy Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake
- 2 cups chocolate cookie crumbs, I used crushed Oreo’s with filling removed
- ½ cup butter, melted
- 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup, plus ¼ cup creamy peanut butter, divided
- 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream, should make 3 cups whipped cream
- 1 tablespoon butter
- ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350º F. In medium bowl mix cookie crumbs and butter until combined. Press mixture evenly into bottom and up sides of a greased 9-inch pie pan or spring-form pan. Bake 7–10 minutes, until crust dries out slightly and sets. Remove, turn off oven, and let crust cool.
- In medium bowl, beat heavy whipping cream with a mixer until fluffy and whipped cream forms, about 4–6 minutes. Set aside (read Food Science & Cooking Tips section above for better homemade whipped cream).
- In a large bowl, beat softened cream cheese until smooth, 1–2 minutes. Beat in sugar and 1 cup of peanut butter until combined. Gently fold in 3 cups whipped cream; spoon mixture into cooled crust and evenly spread.
- Heat chocolate chips and butter in a small bowl for 30 seconds in microwave. Stir and heat in 15 second increments, stirring between, until melted. Pour over cheesecake and evenly spread. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to set cheesecake.
- Topping: Place remaining peanut butter into corner of a small Ziploc bag. Cut small hole in corner and pipe over cheesecake in desired pattern (see pictures above).
- Use softened (room temperature) cream cheese to avoid lumps in the filling. Make sure to bring it out of the fridge 10-15 mins before using.
- Make sure to whip the cream for a light and soft texture.
- To melt chocolate in a microwave do it in small 15 second bursts to stop it burning. Alternatively, use a bain-marie.
- Make sure to remove the oreo filling for the crust. Most cookies will work well for this recipe, just make sure to choose a crumbly textured cookie and not chewy.
- Let the cake chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours to set. This will also help when cutting the cheesecake.
- You can prep this cheesecake in advance and store it in the fridge for up to 1 week or freeze in a suitable container.
Note: Prep time does not include 2 hours chilling. You can buy pre-made chocolate cookie crust and/or whipped cream and skip those steps in the recipe.