This delicate and elegant white chocolate cheesecake is perfect for the summer as it is a no-bake cheesecake, and it is filled with mild, creamy, and fresh flavors you would love on a warm summer day.
Although it is a mild cheesecake, there are hints of white chocolate, Earl Grey, lavender, honey, lemon AND goat cheese. I promise, it's a good one.
Why you'll love this recipe
First of all, this is a no-bake cheesecake which is super easy to do. Baked cheesecakes have never been my friend, both in terms of making them and in eating them. No-bake cheesecakes are lighter and fluffier, and there's no chance for the cake to ooze out of the cake pan when you bake it.
It is made with both cream cheese and goat cheese for an extra tangy mouthfeel, as well as white chocolate and lemon. The cake is fluffy and tangy, exactly how I like my cheesecakes.
The crust is very simple with digestive cookies and butter - because it works. You can, however, use whatever cookies you prefer.
The jelly lid makes this cake extra interesting, with a mix of lavender honey and lemon. Almost like eating a lavender bee's knees. You'd love it.
- Cream cheese: Got to have regular cream cheese for a no-bake cheesecake. I prefer to use Philadelphia, but there are other great options too. That tanginess is perfect and not overpowering.
- Goat cream cheese: Because I love tanginess, I add some goat cream cheese as well (In Norway it is naturell Snøfrisk). Spreadable chèvre is basically the same thing. You can use whatever ratio of regular and goat cream cheese you prefer.
- Sour cream: Helps the cake to get more creamy and moist. Because there are many sweet components too, the sour cream helps to cut through it with its tartness.
- Granulated sugar: To sweeten the cheesecake. You can use powdered sugar too, but the granulated sugar does get dissolved when mixing it with the cream cheese. Just take a piece of the mixture and press it between two fingers to see if it has dissolved. Otherwise, keep mixing.
- Pure vanilla extract: A little hint of vanilla goes a long way with pretty much any flavor!
- White chocolate: It wouldn't be a white chocolate cheesecake without it, right? I don't use a lot of white chocolate in this recipe, mostly because I think it should be a cheesecake with a back note of white chocolate and not the other way around. You run the risk of it getting too sweet if you add more.
- Lemon juice and zest: Some summery freshness to the cake. It could feel a little too heavy without some acid to cut through it all. If you want less lemon flavor, omit the zest.
- Earl Grey tea bags: Earl Grey is fantastic with flavors like lavender, lemon, honey, and cream. Earl Grey is black tea infused with the oils of bergamot orange. I infuse the lemon juice with Earl Grey, as we don't want to add too much liquid to the cheesecake.
- Gelatine sheets: To get the right consistency of the cake. It should be possible to make a cheesecake without gelatine, but I have not tried this so I wouldn't know how to alter the recipe. However, you can use gelatine powder instead.
- Heavy cream: Whipped to stiff peaks and then folded into the cream cheese to make a fluffy and creamy cake!
And then there are the ingredients for the cookie crust (butter and cookies), and the jelly lid (gelatine, lemon, butterfly pea powder for color, lavender honey, and more lavender if desired).
Melt butter and crush the digestive cookies (1). I like to crush them in a food processor because it is easier, but you can add them to a plastic bag and pound them with something heavy like a rolling pin.
Combine the butter with the crushed cookies (2), making a uniform paste (3).
Lightly spray an 8-inch (20 centimeters) springform pan with non-stick cooking spray to make it easier to get a nice slice with crust, when serving. You can also add parchment paper to the bottom.
Press the crust down into the pan to make an even layer (4). I also usually add a little up the edges too. This is, however, more important for a baked cheesecake.
Place the pan in the refrigerator while you prepare the rest.
Step 2: Cheesecake
First, prepare the gelatine (5). Add gelatine sheets to a bowl or glass of cold water and let it sit for 5 minutes to soften. If you use powdered gelatine, use 2 ½ teaspoons powder and let it bloom in a bowl with 2 ½ tablespoons cold water.
Melt the white chocolate (6). I prefer to do it in a water bath so as to gently melt it, but you can also melt it in a microwave. Just make sure you nuke it at no more than 30 seconds intervals and stir in-between each. Set aside to cool while you continue with the rest.
In a small saucepan, gently heat up the lemon juice, lemon zest, and Earl Grey tea bags (7) (you can also use 2-3 teaspoons of loose tea leaves). Let the Earl Grey infuse for at least 5 minutes before you strain the mixture (8). Whisk in the gelatine.
Whip the heavy cream to stiff peaks (9).
In a large bowl, whip softened* cream cheese and goat cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar until fluffy and until the sugar has dissolved (10). You can check it by rubbing some of the mixture between your fingers and see if you can feel any granules.
* It is important to use softened, room temperature cream cheese, otherwise, you run the risk of the cream cheese not being properly incorporated, resulting in a lumpy texture. No thanks!
In the bowl of the cream cheese mixture, slowly add the melted white chocolate and lemon gelatine while you mix (11). Then, fold in the whipped cream (12) and pour it into the prepared pan with the cookie crust.
Make an even layer of the cream cheese mixture and put it back in the refrigerator (13). Let it sit for at least an hour before you do the gelatine.
Step 3: The lemon and lavender honey jelly
Place the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water for 5 minutes. I used 3 leaves for these photos, but you can increase it to 4 if you want to make it more sturdy. However, if you're patient enough, 3 leaves are actually enough. To substitute gelatine powder, use 1 ½ teaspoons of gelatine powder and 1 ½ tablespoons of cold water.
In a medium saucepan, add the lemon juice, water, lavender honey, and butterfly pea powder (14). The butterfly pea powder is just for color, so you can substitute it with food coloring if you want.
If you haven't made lavender honey yet (which I recommend you do ASAP anyway!), you can add 2 teaspoons of dried lavender buds to the saucepan along with regular honey. Then you would need to let the mixture infuse for at least 30 minutes and then strain it, before adding the gelatine.
If you use lavender honey, you only need to heat up the mixture. Then add the gelatine. Let the honey lemon jelly thicken for about 20-30 minutes before you pour it over the cake.
I prefer a thin layer of jelly, so I added about ⅔ of the mixture (0.2 inches or 0.5 centimeters) and put the other ⅓ in a dessert bowl. This is delicious with a generous helping of crème anglaise or vanilla custard sauce!
Place the cake immediately back in the refrigerator and let it sit, for at least 4 hours. Sometimes it can seem like the gelatine will never set, but then suddenly it does. I think it took about 10 hours with 3 leaves of gelatine.
I would make this cake the day before serving it to be completely sure!
No-bake cheesecakes can last for 1 week in the refrigerator, without any change in either texture or flavor. It is best to keep it in a cake box or tightly covered to ensure that other flavors from the refrigerator don't infuse the cake. Yuck.
It is not a cake that can be frozen with great results. The water content in the cheese can separate from the milk curds, resulting in a grainy texture when thawed. In addition, the jelly lid will also not freeze so the life span will not get prolonged in the freezer.
What's the difference between a baked cheesecake and a no-bake cheesecake?
The main difference between a baked cheesecake and a no-bake cheesecake (apart from the obvious), is that the baked cheesecake is made with eggs. The eggs are what make the baked cheesecake set, whereas the no-bake cheesecake sets by the low temperature in the refrigerator.
The textures are also different. A baked cheesecake is a lot denser and, in my opinion, drier. A no-bake cheesecake is soft and mousse-like. Two very different cakes, actually!
How do you harden a no-bake cheesecake?
As you can read above, a no-bake cheesecake is supposed to be soft. However, if by harden you mean setting, a no-bake cheesecake sets in the refrigerator. In addition, I use gelatine in my cheesecake to get the right consistency, but it's essential not to overdo it.
Is it supposed to be soft?
Again, read above. Yes, it is supposed to be soft, but it shouldn't collapse because of its softness.
You can use any type of jelly lid for this recipe. You can also use this berry jello! I usually use raspberry jelly, but this time I wanted another flavor profile.
You could also switch up and use other types of cookies in the crust. Oreos are a popular choice, as well as sweet oat cookies.
If you want, you can omit the white chocolate in the cheesecake without doing any other alterations. This will make it a little lighter and more classic.
It is easier to get a nice slice of the cake if you let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes first. That way the butter in the crust will soften a bit.
Did you like this recipe? Here are more summer cakes I think you’d love:
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Saturday 9th of July 2022
This is so elegant and I totally love the lavender color jelly on top. I love working with gelatin sheets. Could not find goat cheese cream cheese but this is still tasty. Great recipe.
Stine Mari | Ginger with Spice
Friday 22nd of July 2022
Thank you so much. Regular cream cheese works well too!