This incredibly light and delicious no bake strawberry creme fraiche cheesecake makes an easy, elegant summer dessert.
In just a few days, summer will be officially gone! As sad as I am to say goodbye to summer, I won't miss the triple digit temperature or smoky air from the wildfires ravaging the west coast. To celebrate the end of summer, I’m sharing the recipe for this easy no bake strawberry creme fraiche cheesecake. It tastes incredibly light with a mousse-like consistency!
Creme fraiche: for this cheesecake recipe, I used creme fraiche, a popular French-style cultured cream. It has a fat content of about 30% with complex, richer flavor and less tangy taste compared to sour cream. My favorite brand for creme fraiche is Bellwetherfarms. You can find this brand at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Once in a while when I can’t find creme fraiche at the store, I use this homemade recipe from Splendid Table .
Gelatin sheet: to thicken the filling, I used gelatin sheets for this cheesecake recipe. Gelatin sheet works similar to granular gelatin found in your local grocery store. I love using gelatin sheet because it produces desserts with purer flavors and there is minimal chance of undissolved granules. My favorite brand is PerfectGel with platinum strength. You can find them easily on Amazon. If you can’t find the sheet, look for plain, unflavored gelatin, which is usually found among the baking supplies. You can successfully substitute sheet gelatin for powdered gelatin in any recipe by using the following ratio. 1 (0.25 oz.) envelope granulated gelatin = 1 tablespoon powdered gelatin = 3 sheets leaf gelatin. The gelatin sheet needs to be softened prior to cooking in a process called blooming. Bloom the gelatin or soak it in cold water for 5 minutes.
How to make the crust
This strawberry creme fraiche cheesecake has a Graham cracker crust and it requires no baking! Yes, you read it right! It’s no-bake because who wants to turn on the oven during triple digit temperature. Definitely not me! The only thing holding this crust together is melted butter.
How to make the cheesecake filling
The filling is a mixture of cream cheese, creme fraiche, heavy cream, strawberry puree, and sugar. To get the smoothest texture, strain the strawberry puree and the cooked mixture before pouring it into the pan. Fresh strawberries are preferred over frozen. Frozen strawberries have a higher water content so it will alter the consistency of the cheesecake.
Since this is a no-bake cheesecake, I used gelatin to thicken the filling. Once everything is cooked, take it off the stove and stir in the bloomed gelatin sheets until they completely dissolve. Taste the filling and adjust the sweetness to your liking before pouring it into the crust. The cheesecake needs at least 8 hours in the fridge to set.
How long can the cheesecake be made ahead
For the best tasting cheesecake, you can make it two days ahead or even the day of. The cheesecake needs at least 8 hours in the fridge to set. Once made, the cheesecake can be stored in the fridge up to a week.
After 8 hours in the fridge, you get an incredibly light and delicious no bake strawberry creme fraiche cheesecake. It has a tangy, mousse-like strawberry filling with a delicious Graham cracker crust. Simply top it with fresh strawberries and you have a crowd pleasing elegant summer dessert.
No bake strawberry creme fraiche cheesecake
- 9 inch spring-form pan
Graham cracker crust
- 10 ounces Graham cracker, coarsely ground
- 2 tbsps granuated sugar
- 8 ounces unsalted butter, melted
- 1.5 lbs strawberries, hulled and sliced
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 16 ounces cream cheese
- 15 ounces creme fraiche
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 6 gelatin sheets, cut into 1 inch strips
- extra strawberries for serving
- To make the crust, in a large bowl, combine graham cracker, sugar, and melted butter. Pour into a 9-inch springform pan and press the mixture into the bottom firmly. Refrigerate for 15 minutes as you prepare the filling.
- In another bowl, add the strawberries and ¼ cup of sugar and let the strawberries macerate for 15 minutes. Process the macerated strawberries in a food processor until smooth. Strain the strawberry puree and discard the solids.
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the cream cheese and remaining sugar until smooth.
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, add the cream cheese mixture, heavy cream, and strawberry puree. Cook until the mixture starts to bubble around the edges. Whisk in the creme fraiche. Remove the pan from heat.
- While the mixture is cooking, put the gelatin sheets in a bowl of cold water and leave for 5 minutes to soften or "bloom."
- Once the gelatin is softened, squeeze out the excess water and whisk the gelatin into the cream mixture until completely dissolved.
- Strain the cream cheese mixture and pour the filling into the springform pan. Refrigerate the cheesecake for 8 hours or overnight for the filling to set.
- When ready to serve, use a knife to loosen the chilled cheesecake from the rim of the springform pan, then remove the rim. Cut the cheesecake into slices. Top the slices with additional fresh strawberries. For neat slices, wipe the knife clean between each slice.