This ube basque cheesecake is a twist on the classic burnt basque cheesecake. It's has a beautiful purple color, caramelized surface, and a silky smooth, gooey center. Crustless and no need to be baked in a water-bath, this is one of the easiest cheesecakes to make!
We're both big fans of cheesecake desserts. Just look at our Japanese cotton cheesecake! We did over 10 trials to perfect it 🙈.
Well, this ube cheesecake is nothing like a classic New York cheese cake. Nor is it like the jiggly Japanese cheesecakes. This ube basque cheesecake is so much easier to make, almost fail-proof.
And did I mention? This ube basque cheesecake is gluten free! No flour and no cornstarch is needed!
What is basque cheesecake?
Basque cheesecake, or burnt cheesecake, originated from Spain and has recently gained popularity. As its name suggests, basque cheesecake is scorched on the top from being baked at a high temperature.
The burnt exterior adds a nice caramelized and bitter note to the rich, creamy, gooey interior. Unlike classic New York Cheesecake, basque cheesecake is not smooth and is crustless. This makes basque cheesecake one of the easiest cheesecake to make!
What does basque cheesecake taste like?
Basque cheesecake is rich and creamy on the inside, with notes of caramel and some bitterness from the scorched top. Also because basque cheesecake is baked at a high temperature, the exterior is baked quickly, leaving the center silky smooth and creamy. Similar to the texture of custards.
This ube basque cheesecake is incredibly easy to make and requires only 5 ingredients!
- Cream cheese - Any brand of cream cheese is fine, as long it is full fat. Make sure to have it softened!
- Granulated sugar - Plain granulated white sugar is perfect.
- Whole eggs - This recipe is based on using large, whole eggs.
- Heavy cream - Cream is used to help thin out the basque cheesecake batter and also to add creaminess and richness to the cheesecake.
- Ube extract/flavoring - We've tried hayala paste, but the result was mediocre. We found that ube extracts provide the best flavors, color, and texture. We used this Butterfly brand ube flavoring.
Make the ube basque cheesecake batter:
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F and line a 6 by 4 inch round cake pan with parchment paper.
🌟 Pro tip: Keep the parchment paper whole. Just push the middle of the parchment to the bottom of the pan then crinkle and fold the rest of the parchment to line the sides of the pan. You'll have an inch or two of parchment sticking out, just fold it down. The parchment will later help you remove the cake.
2. Place the softened cream cheese and sugar in a large mixing bowl. With a hand mixer, blend on medium speed until the sugar and cream cheese are smooth and no more lumps are visible. Scrape down the sides as needed.
3. Add the eggs and mix on medium speed until everything is well combined. Scrape down the sides as needed.
4. Next, add the cream and mix on low until the cream is incorporated.
5. Add the ube extract and mix on low until the batter is uniform in color. Make sure to also scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl!
6. (Optional) Pour the cheesecake batter into a mesh strainer. Stir the batter to help it strain. Scrape the bottom of the strainer to collect all of the batter and discard any lumps.
Bake the basque cheesecake:
7. Pour the cheesecake batter into the lined caked pan. Give the pan a couple of firm taps on your counter to pop large bubbles.
8. Bake the cheesecake for about 35 to 45 minutes, or until the center of the cheesecake jiggles while the top is browned and the sides are puffed up.
9. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and let it cool at room temperature on a rack.
10. Once the pan is only warm to the touch, transfer it to the fridge and let it cool completely for about 2 to 3 hours. You can also let it chill overnight. Just cover the top with plastic wrap after it's completely cooled.
11. Gently tug around the entire parchment to release it form the cake pan. You can lift the cheesecake out of the pan using the excess parchment. If the cheesecake is chilled and firm enough, you could flip it out of the cake pan instead.
12. Let the cheesecake slightly warm up at room temperature for about 5 to 10 minutes.
13. Pull away the parchment paper and cut into your preferred sizes. Enjoy!
Should my ube basque cheesecake be gooey?
One of the iconic and unique features of basque cheesecake is its gooey, custard-like center. This is possible because basque cheesecake is baked at a high temperature.
If you prefer a gooey center, bake for about 35 to 40 minutes. For a firmer center, bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Do note that bake time will vary based on your oven, as all ovens are different.
Why is my basque cheesecake wet?
While the basque cheesecake is cooling, condensation will collect in the pan. It'll be most noticeable at the bottom and sides. The only way to prevent that is to remove the cheesecake soon after it comes out of the oven, but we advice against that.
The basque cheesecake will still be hot and soft. So trying to remove it may break the cheesecake. You can always use a paper towel to dap off the moisture. But if it really bothers you, you can bake the ube basque cheesecake in cake pan with a removable bottom.
- Strain the batter for silky smooth texture. Although straining is an optional step, we highly recommended it. It'll ensure your cheesecake is silky smooth!
- Cut the softened cream cheese into smaller chunks. It is much easier to mix smaller chunks of cream cheese than a whole slab. Also it is very important that the cream cheese is softened!
- Soften the cream cheese in the microwave. If you forgot to take your cream cheese out of the fridge ahead of time, no worries! You can heat it in your microwave.
- Cut the cream cheese into 1 inch-ish cubes and microwave in 5 to 10 second increments. Make sure to flip and rotate the cream cheese in between to evenly heat it up. Make sure to not burn it!
- Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. It is good practice to scrape down the bowl in between each mix to prevent uneven distribution and lumps in the batter.
How to enjoy
This ube basque cheesecake is best after it's refrigerated for at least 2 to 3 hours, or until completely chilled and set.
After chilling, let the basque cheesecake slightly warm up at room temperature before enjoying. This will ensure that the cheesecake is custardy in the center and enjoyed with the best texture.
This ube basque cheesecake will be good for up to 7 days if stored properly in the fridge. You can also freeze the basque cheesecake for up to 1 month. Just make sure the cheesecake is wrapped well or stored in an airtight container.
If you freeze the ube basque cheesecake, simply let them defrost in the fridge overnight or for a couple of hours at room temperature.
Yes! A gooey, custard-like center is an iconic and unique feature of basque cheesecake. But if you prefer, you could bake the cheesecake 5 to 10 minutes longer for a firmer center.
To ensure the basque cheesecake is gooey and custardy in the center, remove the ube basque cheesecake when the center is still jiggly, the edges are puffy, and the entire top surface is browned.
Unlike NY cheesecakes, basque cheesecake is not smooth nor does it have a crust. Basque cheesecake is iconic for its caramelized, burnt surface and gooey, custard center that's both rich and creamy.
Unfortunately, basque cheesecake will slowly start to deflate once removed from the oven. This is because the center of the cheesecake is not fully cooked, therefore no structure to hold itself up. The edges are cooked, which will stay puffed.
If you’ve made this recipe or any recipes from our blog, please tag us on Instagram using #twoplaidaprons! You can also tag us in your Instagram stories using @two_plaid_aprons. We would love to see your creations! It absolutely makes our day! 🥰
Ube Basque Cheesecake
- Preheat the oven:Preheat the oven to 425°F and make sure the rack is position in the middle of the oven. Also prepare a 6 by 4 inch pan lined with parchment paper. Leave about 1 to 2 inches of parchment above the pan.
- Prepare the cheesecake batter:In a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese and sugar. Using a hand mixing, blend on medium low speed until the sugar and cream cheese is well combined, smooth, and no more lumps are visible. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Add the eggs and blend on medium until the eggs are well incorporated. Scrape down the sides as needed.*The batter will take a minute or two to become cohesive, but just keep mixing until it comes together.*
- Once the eggs are incorporated, add the heavy cream. Mix on low speed until everything is well combined.
- Add the ube extract and mix on low until the cheesecake batter is even in color. Make sure to scrape down the sides in between.
- (Optional) Strain the batter:Using a mesh strainer, strain the ube cheesecake batter into another bowl. Scrape the bottom of the strainer and discard any lumps remaining in the strainer.*This step is not necessary, but it will ensure that your cheesecake is velvety smooth and without lumps.*
- Bake the basque cheesecake:Pour the cheesecake batter in to the prepared cake pan and give it couple of a firm taps on the counter to remove any large bubbles. Bake the cheesecake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the center of the cheesecake is jiggly while the sides are puffy and the entire top is brown.
- Cool and serve:Remove the basque cheesecake from the oven and let it it cool at room temperature, on a rack, until warm to the touch. Place the cheesecake in the fridge for at least 2 to 3 hours, or overnight.
- When ready to serve, remove the ube basque cheesecake from the cake pan. Let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for 5 to 10 minutes then unwrap and cut to desire sizes.
- Use only one whole piece of parchment paper. So push a sheet of parchment to the bottom of the cake pan then crinkle the sides to line sides of the pan. Leave 1 to 2 inches of parchment above the pan for easier remove after baking.
- During baking, do fold the excess parchment down to prevent burning in the oven.
- When removing the basque cheesecake out of the cake pan, make sure to release the parchment from the cake pan first. Just gently all around the parchment until completely loose.
- You can remove the cheesecake two ways: 1. use the excess parchment and carefully lift the cheesecake out of the pan. 2. Turn the cheesecake onto a plate or rack.
- You may notice that the parchment paper around the bottom of the cheesecake may be a little wet. That is from condensation forming when the cheesecake is cooling. Simply dab it dry with a paper towel.