Few pairings are quite as delicious as coffee and chocolate! That’s what makes this decadent mocha cheesecake recipe the perfect pick-me-up. And if, like me, you’re a fan of coffee-based desserts, this is one recipe you do NOT want to miss!
Products you need for this recipe
Here are some of the things you’ll need for this mocha cheesecake recipe:
- 23cm (9 inch) springform pan – the ONLY way to make a cheesecake is to use a springform pan. It’s so much easier. Use it once and you’ll be sold for life. I prefer a 9 inch springform pan, as it’s just about the right size
- KitchenAid stand mixer – you can use any stand mixer, but this is my personal favorite!
- Food processor – the best way to get that luscious biscuit base is to whizz your biscuits with butter in a food processor
- Vanilla paste – I really like the flavor of vanilla paste and think it adds real depth to this cheesecake. You can also use vanilla extract
- Cocoa powder – quality cocoa powder makes all the difference
Mocha cheesecake recipe
This recipe is like a dream combination of three of my favorite things. A holy trinity of treats that make me weak at the knees.
Chocolate? Check. Coffee? Check. Cheesecake? Check me out as I eat the whole freakin’ lot.
Cheesecakes are all about bringing joy. Sweet comfort food at its best, cheesecakes are simple and effective – they never fail to bring smiles all-round.
While they are easy to make – especially the “no bake” kind like this mocha cheescake recipe – they aren’t something you can whip up and devour in a moment. They take time.
And the wait? Oh, it’s more than worth it!
The real secret of a great cheesecake is the balance of flavors. For me, it’s what makes this one extra special.
If you’re a coffee fiend – or even if you’re a coffee dabbler – you’ll know that a “mocha” is a chocolate flavored caffè latte.
The name “mocha” refers to a popular coffee bean with a slight chocolate taste. Moka beans come from the Yemen port city Al Moka – once a key city in the global coffee trade.
Caffè Mocha soon became a mid-morning must for many Americans in the mid-part of the 20th century.
Beyond the drink, the term “mocha” became known as the marriage between coffee and chocolate as ingredients. Genius chefs and pastry masters took mocha out of the cup and onto the plate.
Today you’ll find everything from mocha muffins to mocha cookies and every sweet treat in between. Most deliciously of all, of course – mocha cheesecake!
Ever wondered what’s the difference between a baked and a no bake cheesecake? Well, traditionally, cheesecakes have always been baked.
Like regular cakes, this kind of cheesecake has eggs in it. It’s baked in the oven using a water bath. A good baked cheesecake is velvety, dense and rich. It’s also quite hard to get right.
What about a no bake cheesecake? Well, just a few years ago the term “no bake cheesecake” would be enough to make a baking geek throw their apron down. These no bakes had a reputation as being “processed”, “artificial” and “tasteless.”
What a load of utter codswallop!
Trust me… a no bake cheesecake can be a beautiful thing. It’s nothing to do with the readymade cheesecakes you buy in the freezer aisle at the store. You know, the ones full of additives.
It’s about putting together a mouth watering cheesecake using good ingredients and, instead of baking it in the oven, you let it set in the fridge.
A no bake cheesecake is softer and creamier than a baked cheesecake, which is more “set.” Also, there’s no getting around it, no bake cheesecakes are a lot easier and less time consuming. Hence their massive rise in popularity.
The best way to make sure your no bake mocha cheesecake sets properly is to use the full-fat kind.
If you really want to, you can opt for the low-fat variety. Be careful though – the cheesecake batter splits all too easily with the low-fat kind. Stir the mixture carefully to avoid splitting.
For most cheesecakes, I’d opt for plain, good old-fashioned digestive biscuits. My advice is to keep it simple and let the other layers of the cheesecake do their thing.
Graham cracker crumbs also make a great base for a no bake cheesecake.
If you really want to push the indulgence factor of this mocha cheesecake recipe to another level, you could always break out the Oreo cookies. There are something like a thousand flavors to choose from, so pick your favorite.
If you do go for a chocolatey biscuit, leave out the cocoa powder.
Standard milk chocolate works best for the chocolate ganache in this cheesecake. Baking chocolate chips are sold in all good supermarkets and online (I recommend these Callebaut chips if you want the BEST tasting chocolate).
If you’re a fan of that intense chocolatey taste, you could also use dark chocolate. For me, it’s a little overpowering and could cancel out the coffee flavor.
Maybe you’re a coffee connoisseur, but for this simple no bake mocha cheesecake recipe I’ve gone for instant coffee granules. They bring the perfect subtle coffee taste to the chocolate cheesecake.
If you really want to use the quality stuff, no problem. Just mix 1 tbsp of coffee powder with 1 tbsp of hot water, stir, then let it dissolve and cool completely. Add to the mocha cheesecake filling as per the recipe below.
This mocha cheesecake is dangerous tasty – there’s a chance you and those lucky enough to get a slice might devour it in one sitting.
If, however, you have temptation under control, this mocha cheesecake will last in the fridge for 3 days in an airtight container.
If you manage to keep a mocha cheesecake uneaten in the fridge for more than three days I’ll eat my chef’s hat.
Absolutely! Most cheesecakes will keep for a month or two when frozen in an airtight, freezer-friendly container.
As I said before, using a reduced fat cream cheese is not a great idea. Still, there are plenty of other ingredients that you can swap out for healthier alternatives.
- Use reduced fat digestive biscuits or crackers for the biscuit base
- Use 50–100g instead of 150g of icing sugar
- Choose a healthier chocolate for your chocolate ganache. You could even use carob powder in place of cocoa powder
Tips for a top cheesecake
This no bake mocha cheesecake is an absolute cinch to make! Follow the recipe step-by-step and you’ll end up with a delicious dessert to make the mouth water.
Still, there are a few great little tips that you should follow. Keep these in mind and you’ll end up with a 10 out of 10 mocha cheesecake every time.
- Use a stand mixer! Using an electric hand-held whisk is fine, but can lead to over-whisking, while using a standard balloon whisk is waaay too much effort. Stand mixers hit the sweet spot – you’ll have a wonderful creamy mixture.
- Cream cheese softened is the way to go. Bring it to room temperature before mixing it with the other ingredients.
- Don’t guess the measurements! Use kitchen scales.
- Make sure the base of the springform pan is the right way round. It should be raised-side-up, with the lip at the bottom.
- Line the base of your springform pan with greaseproof paper. This will make it easier to remove your mocha cheesecake after it has cooled.
- After you’ve poured the chocolate ganache over the chilled biscuit base, drop the cheesecake onto the counter 5–10 times to let any air bubbles out.
- Don’t be tempted to skimp on the chill time!
Loved this mocha cheesecake? Check these out
- African prince pie – rich, elegant and downright irresistible
- Fruits of the forest cheesecake – this recipe is what midsummer night dreams were made of
- Sopapilla cheesecake – a golden brown beaut, this South American cheescake is different from the average
- Oreo cheesecake – if you’re a chocoholic – especially if you’re a fan of Oreos – you won’t want to miss this one
- Kinder Bueno cheesecake – one for the chocoholics. You won’t forget this in a hurry!
- Apple pie cookies – the taste of America! These are actually mini apple pies. Easy, delicious and, best of all, they’ll please the whole family
- Don Pedro drink – creamy, rich and utterly irresistible. Sip this on a lazy summer afternoon and you’re good to go
- 3 cups digestive biscuits
- ⅔ cup unsalted butter, melted
- ¼ cup cocoa powder
Mocha Cheesecake filling
- 3 ⅓ cups cream cheese
- 1 tsp vanilla paste
- 1 ⅕ cup icing sugar
- 1 tbsp instant coffee powder
- 1 cup milk chocolate
- 1 ¾ cups double cream
- ½ cup heavy (double cream)
- 1 tsp instant coffee powder
- 2 tbsp icing sugar
For the Biscuit Base:
- lace the digestive biscuits in your food processor and blitz into a crumb and add the cocoa powder. While the food processor is still running add the melted butter and allow to combine which should only take about 15 seconds then turn off.
- Prepare your 23cm (9 inch) springform pan by putting a layer of greaseproof paper over the base and then clasping the springform ring around the outside as I find this easier when removing the cheesecake at the end.
- Pour you crumb into the pan and flatten evenly - I use the bottom of a large glass. Place in the fridge for around 10 minutes to chill.
Mocha cheesecake filling:
- In a bowl, beat the cream cheese and vanilla paste - I use a KitchenAid stand mixer on level 2 or 3 as I find this so much easier, until smooth.
- Add the icing sugar and instant coffee powder a bit at a time and continue to mix.
- Melt the milk chocolate in the microwave on 10 second blasts, stirring between each blast. When completely melted add to the cream cheese mixture and then mix until combined.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the heavy (double) cream until you achieve soft peaks and then fold the cream cheese mix and heavy (double) cream together till the cream is fully incorporated.
- Remove the tin from the fridge and cover the whole base with the cheesecake filling, then gently drop the tin onto the kitchen counter 5 to 10 times to let any bubbles out.
- Place the cheesecake in the fridge for at least 6 hours, or preferably overnight.
- Remove the cheesecake from the tin. Tip: I use a kitchen blowtorch to loosen the sides.
- Alternatively, I use a cloth dipped in hot water to complete the job.
- Place the heavy (double) cream, instant coffee powder and the icing sugar into a mixing bowl and whisk until you achieve soft peaks. Fill a piping bag with this mixture and decorate as you see fit. Enjoy!
- If you like a bit more of a richer taste then you are more than welcome to use a 50:50 ratio of milk and dark chocolate, respectively - i.e. ½ cup (100g) of each. You can even substitute the milk chocolate for dark chocolate but you might lose the coffee flavour.
- If you just have vanilla extract by all means exchange, I just prefer the flavour of vanilla paste.