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Banana Cream Cheesecake

This banana cream cheesecake is so decadent and beautiful. The tender cheesecake is topped with a smooth and velvety banana Bavarian cream, fresh bananas and billowy whipped cream. It’s such a refreshing dessert that can be made in advance.

Ingredients

Scale

Crust:

6 1/2 oz vanilla wafers, about 1 1/2 cups of crumbs (graham crackers can be used instead too)

4 Tablespoons melted butter (plus an additional 1/21 Tablespoon melted butter for springform pan)

1/8 teaspoon salt

Cheesecake:

4 (8 oz each) packages cream cheese, room temperature

1/23/4 cups granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup sour cream

4 eggs

Bavarian Cream:

2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin

2 Tablespoons water

3/4 cup milk

3 egg yolks

3 Tablespoons granulated sugar

1 cup heavy cream

1 Tablespoon powdered sugar

1 teaspoon banana extract

Toppings:

12 fresh bananas

1/21 cup heavy cream

1 Tablespoon powdered sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla or banana extract

Instructions

Crust:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Brush a 9 inch springform pan with melted butter. You can also line the bottom and sides of the springform pan with parchment paper. In that case, you don’t have to brush it with butter. 
  2. Make crumbs from the vanilla wafers or graham crackers by placing them in a ziplock bag and using a rolling pin/mallet, or use a food processor and pulse until you have small even crumbs. You should have about 1 1/2 cups of cookie crumbs.
  3. Combine the crumbs with the melted butter and salt, mixing until they are evenly mixed and have a sandy consistency. Press the crumb mixture into the springform pan, covering the bottom and partially up the sides of the pan. Bake in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven. 

Cheesecake:

  1. Meanwhile, in a stand mixer or using a hand held mixer, mix the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Don’t over mix.
  2. Add the vanilla extract and sour cream and mix to combine.
  3. Add the eggs, one at a time until each one is incorporated. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl in between each step.
  4. Pour the cream cheese batter into the springform pan over the crust. Bake for about 55-65 minutes until the cheesecake is cooked. (Read my Tips of How To Bake the Perfect Cheesecake for the best results.) Cool to room temperature or store overnight in the refrigerator. 

Bavarian Cream:

  1. Sprinkle the unflavored gelatin over the water and set aside to bloom for about 5 minutes. The gelatin will absorb all of the water.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the milk until it is just simmering using a medium saucepan.
  3. In a stand mixer or using a hand held mixer, mix the egg yolks with the sugar until pale yellow and fluffy, 3-5 minutes.
  4. Slowly stream in the hot milk into the egg mixture to temper, whisking to combine the whole time until all the milk is incorporated into the eggs.
  5. Return the egg and milk mixture to the same saucepan and heat on medium low heat, using a rubber spatula to mix gently the whole time. This will be a quick process. Cook just until the mixture thickens and starts to become thicker on the bottom. you should see it look like pastry cream on the tip of your spatula. Do NOT boil, otherwise it will scramble. If you have a thermometer, it should be about 175 -178 degrees Fahrenheit. Turn off the heat.
  6. Add the bloomed gelatin, mixing to combine, until it’s completely melted and mixed evenly. Add the banana extract and mix to combine. Cool completely. Strain the pastry cream through a fine mesh sieve to make it extra smooth. 
  7. When the pastry cream is cool, mix the heavy cream with the powdered sugar using a mixer until soft peaks form. Gently fold in the whipped cream into the pastry cream, a few spoonfuls at a time, until both are evenly combined. 
  8. Pour the Bavarian cream over the top of the cheesecake and smooth out the top. Refrigerate for about 4 hours or overnight before serving.

Serving and Storing the Cake

Top with more whipped cream and fresh sliced bananas or bananas foster. If you are using bananas foster, make sure to cool the bananas completely before placing on the cake. 

Store the cake in the refrigerator for up to a week, or wrap really well and freeze for up to 3 months. Bring to room temperature for 20-30 minutes before serving for the best results. 

Notes

You can make a Bananas Foster topping for the cheesecake for an extra special touch and even more unique flavor. 

Bananas Foster: 

4 Tablespoons butter

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 Tablespoon rum, optional

3-4 bananas

Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the brown sugar and mix to combine. Cut the bananas into circles and add to the skillet. Cook until golden on both sides. Add rum or vanilla extract. Mix to combine.