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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Peanut Butter Ganache & Nutter Butter Cookie Crust

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chocolate pb cheesecake

 

I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when I downloaded these photos. So I decided that life is unexpected, sometimes with a silly sense of humor, and told myself to just laugh and move on. Does that not look like a mouse or what?? Very funny. Ha. Ha.

A professional photographer/food stylist I will never be! It seems no matter how hard I try, something always goes wrong. And this day was a very difficult one to get through all the way around. It was hot. I mean HOT hot. Like 95 degrees hot AND humid. 90%+ humidity! The heat doesn’t really bother me anymore, not like it used to, and we’ve almost done completely without the A/C on at all this summer. I’m actually proud of my hubby and I for that! But the humidity can just plain be nasty disgusting. That is a whole ‘nother monster. 

So stubborn me kept the A/C off. Not the wisest decision. But stubborn is as stubborn does, I guess! So I set out to make a cheesecake. I knew getting there would not be a fun journey on a hot day, but the cool and creamy destination would be well worth the trip! 😉

I love to make up different fun cheesecake concoctions, and lately I’ve been on a nostalgic peanut butter trek down memory lane! Every now and then, I just get cravings for plain ol’ PB & J sandwiches, PB cookies, and even just PB on Ritz crackers! So I decided to go all out and do a PB and Chocolate Cheesecake loaded with lots of goodies and surprises! 😉  

 

nutter butter cookie crust

 

Starting right off the bat with a Nutter Butter Peanut Butter Cookie Crust! 😀 I drug out the food processor, whirled the broken up cookies until nice fine crumbs, drizzled in some melted butter and wah-lah! 😉 Homemade crust! The above photo is after baking and cooling. It came out perfect! Confidence was high! 😀  

 

chocolate pb cheesecake 2

 

The filling was next using almost three whole packages of cream cheese. I decided that I wanted some peanut butter in the filling itself, so I sliced off 1 ounce of cream cheese from one of the packages before adding, and made up the difference with 2 tablespoons of creamy peanut butter! 

I was really working up a sweat so I cracked a beer to cool down a bit! 😉 I checked the pantry and had some mini chocolate chips left over from the holidays and a completely unopened bag of peanut butter chips! So in went some chips! I saved the rest of the PB chips for later. 😉  

But I didn’t stop there. I was starting to get a little edgy from the heat, so I got into the liquor cabinet. 😉 I thought a little splash or two of some nice liqueurs would be fun! 😀  

So in went some hazelnut Frangelico, and some Bailys Irish Cream! Liqueurs make everything better. 😉  

I then poured the filling into the prepared cookie crust that I had made, and realized that I had made too much filling! I was NOT going to just pitch the rest, I had more cookies, so I decided to just make some mini cheesecakes to use up the rest! No biggie. 30 minutes later, angry and frustrated, I sent my hubby next door to see if the neighbors had any cupcake papers after looking in every. Single. Cabinet. Three times.

Definitely called for another beer.

Finally the main cheesecake was baking away in the upper oven and the mini ones were in the lower one. Totally guessing on times and temps, I started to really worry when the main cheesecake looked like the crust was going to get WAY overdone and possibly even burn. Confidence totally deflated.  

 

chocolate pb cheesecake 3

 

It looked too dark on the very edges and I just hoped that it tasted “toasted” but not burnt. Since it wasn’t one of the prettiest cheesecakes I’ve ever made, (it looked pretty ugly actually), I decided to try to do a peanut butter ganache on top. I mean, if you can make it with chocolate chips, why not PB ones, right? 

Luckily it worked! I celebrated my newly renewed confidence with another beer! By this time I was drenched and my clothes were sticking to me. Believe me. I earned it. 

 

chocolate pb cheesecake 4

 

But this cheesecake was still far from presentable. Even to just myself and my hubby! In the back of the fridge, I knew I had some leftover chocolate frosting that already had the same liqueurs in it. I just hoped that I had enough! I lucked out a second time. 😉 Chocolate frosting fixes everything. 😉    

 

chocolate pb cheesecake 5

 

It seemed to still be missing something, though. By now I didn’t care and was feeling loopy from the heat…or maybe the beer….but I decided to keep going on it. I used the last dab of chocolate chips, melted them in the microwave in a little freezer bag, snipped off the corner and piped some squiggly lines onto some parchment paper. And into the freezer they went! I knew that they were going to have to be ICE cold to hold up long enough to try to get a photo as quickly as possible before they’d melt like me! I was turning into a puddle!   

I made enough to decorate every other swirl of chocolate frosting plus one in the middle! I planted the first one smack in the middle and went to take a photo. The chocolate squiggle starting melting immediately. Obviously my plans of decorating the whole cake was not going to happen. But I did manage to get ONE to stand up long enough on a slice to get a single shot! 😉 The rest went back into the freezer to be used for another adventure. On a MUCH cooler day. 😉  

 

chocolate pb cheesecake

 

So four beers later, totally soaked and slightly tipsy, I emerged from the kitchen to show my hubby what all the fuss was about! I just hoped that the crust didn’t taste burnt and the cheesecake was ok!! 

Alls well that ends well! Everything was DELICIOUS!! The crust had no burnt taste at all, the cheesecake wasn’t overdone on the edges, the flavors were incredible, and even the ganache was wonderful! Even the mini cheesecakes turned out! WHEW. 

But NEVER again on such a hot and humid day! Not just one oven on – – but TWO??! I don’t know what I was thinking. 

You all have a wonderful day, and I’ll see you next week! Have a great weekend! 😀   

 

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Peanut Butter Ganache & Nutter Butter Cookie Crust

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Peanut Butter Ganache & Nutter Butter Cookie Crust

Ingredients

For Peanut Butter Cookie Crust:

  • 12 Nutter Butter Peanut Butter Cookies, snap in half and ground fine
  • 2 Tbl. melted butter
  • [br]

For Cheesecake:

  • 3 (8 oz.) pkgs. cream cheese minus 1 ounce, room temp
  • 2 Tbl. creamy peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 extra-large eggs
  • 1/2 Tbl. Baileys Irish Cream
  • 1/2 Tbl. Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 cup peanut butter chips, I used Reese's
  • 2/3 cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • [br]

For Peanut Butter Ganache:

  • 1/3 cup good peanut butter chips, I used Reese's
  • 2 Tbl. heavy whipping cream
  • [br]
  • *Optional Toppings:
  • Chocolate buttercream frosting (spiked with Frangelico and Baileys if desired)
  • chocolate filagrees

Instructions

  • For Cookie Crust:
  • Break 12 cookies in half and place into food processor. Process thoroughly until fine crumbs. While running, drizzle in melted butter. Thinly and firmly pat crumbs onto bottom and sides of a 9" pie dish. Bake in 350 degree oven for 5 minutes. Cool completely.
  • For Cheesecake:
  • In large mixer bowl, beat cream cheese, peanut butter and sugar until creamy. Scrape bowl and beater. Add eggs, liqueurs and vanilla beating well, scraping bowl and beater as needed. Beat in chips on low just until mixed in.
  • Pour filling into pie dish to within a 1/4" from top of crust edge. Pop into preheated 450 degree oven and bake for 8 minutes. Without opening oven door, reduce heat to 250 degrees and bake for 30 minutes or until just set. (*Use rest of batter to make mini cheesecakes in regular paper-lined muffin tins. Place a broken-up cookie on bottom and fill 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-33 minutes. Oreos or Nilla Wafers can also be used for this.) Cool all on racks, then chill completely. (*You should get about 7 mini cheesecakes.)
  • For PB Ganache:
  • In small bowl, heat chips and cream in microwave on High for 20-30 seconds, remove and stir until melted, combined and creamy. Cool slightly, stirring, until thicker but pourable, and spread over top of chilled cheesecake. Chill until set, about 15-20 minutes.
  • Decorate with chocolate frosting and chocolate filigrees if desired. *Serve mini cheesecakes topped with a little whipped cream or frosting.

  •  

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    KP

    Friday 14th of February 2020

    Every year I make a cheesecake to take to a super Bowl party. Everyone always looks forward to what new recipe I find. So I saw the ingredients and was excited. Once I read the recipe I made some tweaks. I have only ever made cheesecakes in Spring Form pans so i used more Nutter Butters for the crust with more butter and put in the bottom and up the side of the pan. i made the recipe based on the instructions. the only thing I did different was just took the melted chocolate and made designs on the top of the ganache. I was told it was the best cheesecake they had ever had. It was delicious. Thanks!

    DanaPNY

    Saturday 19th of July 2014

    WOW Kelly, that looks super duper fantastic! I never thought of a nutter butter cookie crust before, awesome idea! I totally love the chocolate squiggle thing on the top too. B-E-A-utiful! :)

    Kelly

    Saturday 19th of July 2014

    Bless your heart!!! :D Thank you, Dana! You can use just about any cookie you like for things like this. Store-bought or homemade! "Nutter Butters" were easily decided upon for this, though, because they're one of my hubby's FAVES! :D

    Katie @ Pearls + Girls

    Thursday 17th of July 2014

    Whatever you do, don't cry! ;) This looks gorgeous, and I want a slice for breakfast!!

    Kelly

    Friday 18th of July 2014

    Thanks, Katie!! :D Stop on by for a slice! We'll both have some for breakfast! ;) :D

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