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Butter Pecan Cheesecake

Butter Pecan Cheesecake is filled with buttery, toasty pecans for a dessert that’s completely crave-worthy!

Butter Pecan Cheesecake topped with toasted pecans

Butter Pecan Cheesecake

Do you love cheesecake? How about butter pecan? If you’re like me, then the answer is a resounding yes! So why not combine two favorite things into one amazing dessert? This Butter Pecan Cheesecake is sure to amaze your taste buds. It’s creamy, decadent, and downright delicious. And the best part? It’s really easy to make!

One of my favorite ways to toast pecans involves butter and sugar (and sometimes a bit of cinnamon). With minimal effort, you’ll get a batch of buttery, toasty, sweet, caramel-y pecans. They’re perfect for a sweet snack, but I also love to think of ways to use them in baking. (Helloooo, cookies!)

And now I’ve added them to one of my absolute favorite things – cheesecake!

The no-bake filling is a simple combination of cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and whipped cream. Perfectly delicious all on its own. But! Then a whole bunch of those buttery, toasty pecans get stirred into the filling to give it a fantastic nutty twist.

The flavor of this cheesecake is remarkably reminiscent of butter pecan ice cream. If we share a mutual adoration of that wonderful ice cream, then this may very well become your favorite cheesecake. It’s like a wonderful mashup of that ice cream and cheesecake. And I have to say that I am 100% okay with that.

slice of Butter Pecan Cheesecake

What You’ll Need

Don’t let the long-ish ingredient list give you pause. Many of these ingredients are repeated in the different components of the recipe, and they’re all common baking ingredients.

For the crust:

  • All-purpose flour – Be extra sure to measure the flour accurately, as a shortbread crust is not very forgiving. For best results, measure by weight. If you don’t have a scale, use the spoon and sweep method.
  • Granulated sugar
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter – The butter for the crust needs to be cold for mixing. I usually cut it into cubes and return it to the refrigerator while I gather the remaining ingredients.

For the pecans:

  • Pecans – Pecan halves make for a pretty garnish on top of this cheesecake, but you only need pecan pieces for the filling.
  • Unsalted butter
  • Granulated sugar
  • Salt

For the filling:

  • Cream cheese – Full-fat cream cheese works best. Let it come to room temperature so it will mix smoothly.
  • Granulated sugar
  • Brown sugar – Light brown sugar works well here to give a little caramel-like flavor without overwhelming the pecans.
  • Vanilla extract
  • Heavy cream – Look for heavy cream or heavy whipping cream.

How to Make Butter Pecan Cheesecake

Despite preparing three separate components, this cheesecake is really simple to make. No special equipment, no water bath, and no long bake times! If you want to simplify further, see my notes below for changing the crust.

To make the crust:

Prepare for baking. Heat the oven to 350°F.

Mix the ingredients. Combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Mix the butter into that mixture with a pastry blender, a fork, or your fingers until combined. It should form crumbs that hold together when pinched.

Bake. Press the crust mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch round tart pan with a removable bottom. If you like, place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper to catch any potential leaks from little gaps in your pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until the crust is lightly browned. Be sure not to over-bake. Place on a wire rack to cool.

To make the pecans:

Melt the butter. Place the butter in a large skillet over medium heat, cooking until the butter melts.

Continue cooking. Stir the pecans, sugar, and salt into the melted butter, and cook until the pecans are toasted and the sugar sticks to them. This should take 7 or 8 minutes. Set aside to cool. If you like, set aside some of the pecans for garnish.

To make the filling:

Start mixing. With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the cream cheese, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl until combined and smooth.

Whip the cream. With an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, whip the cream until soft peaks form.

Add the whipped cream and pecans. Fold about a third of the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Then gently fold in the remainder. Don’t over-mix. Stir in the chopped pecans.

Fill the crust. Transfer the filling to the cooled crust, and spread evenly. Garnish with reserved pecans.

Chill. Cover and refrigerate the cheesecake at least 4 hours before serving.

Other Crust Options

I like to pair this luscious filling with a basic shortbread crust, but you can make things simpler and try a cookie crust instead. The classic graham cracker crumbs crust is always a good choice. Or try a cookie crust made from Pecan Sandies, vanilla wafers, or another of your favorite store-bought cookies. Be sure to see my tips for making a cookie crumb crust.

Butter Pecan Cheesecake

Tips for Success

  • Don’t over-mix the crust. Too much mixing can lead to a tough, hard crust. Be sure to mix just until the mixture is combined. It will be crumbly, but it will hold together when pressed or pinched.
  • Want to use a different pan? A tart pan with a removable bottom works really well, but you can use a 9-inch springform pan or pie pan if that’s what you have.
  • Don’t over-mix the filling. When adding the whipped cream, fold it gently and with minimal mixing. If it’s mixed too much, the whipped cream will deflate and your cheesecake won’t have that light, fluffy texture.

How to Store Leftovers

Keep the cheesecake covered and refrigerated. It should keep 2 or 3 days.

Can This Cheesecake Be Frozen?

Yes! After the cheesecake has set sufficiently in the refrigerator, wrap it well with plastic wrap and then wrap again in aluminum foil or place in a freezer-safe container. Properly stored, it should keep up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.

Video Tutorial: Butter Pecan Cheesecake

Butter Pecan Cheesecake

Yield 8 to 10 servings
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Additional Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 55 minutes

Buttery toasted pecans add big flavor to this Butter Pecan Cheesecake!

If butter pecan is your favorite ice cream, then this Butter Pecan Cheesecake may very well be your favorite cheesecake! It's filled with buttery, toasty pecans, and it's absolutely fantastic! - Bake or Break

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • 1 & 1/4 cups (150g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

For the pecans:

  • 2 cups pecan halves and pieces
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • pinch of salt

For the filling:

  • 16 ounces (453g) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (237ml) heavy cream

Instructions

To make the crust:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the butter, and mix with a pastry blender, a fork, or your fingers until thoroughly combined. The mixture will be crumbly but should hold together when pinched.
  3. Press the crust mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.*
  4. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until the crust is lightly browned. Do not overbake, or the crust will become too hard. Set aside to cool.

To make the pecans:

  1. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the pecans, sugar, and salt.
  2. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the pecans are toasted and the sugar sticks to them (about 7 or 8 minutes). Set aside to cool.
  3. If desired, set aside some of the pecans for garnish. (I used about 20 pecan halves for the garnish you see in the above photos.) Once cooled, roughly chop the remaining pecans.

To make the filling:

  1. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the cream cheese, sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla until thoroughly combined and smooth.
  2. In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer with a whisk attachment to whip the cream until soft peaks form.
  3. Fold about a third of the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Then gently fold in the remaining whipped cream.
  4. Stir in the chopped pecans.
  5. Spread the filling evenly in the cooled crust. Garnish as desired. Refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.

Notes

*This cheesecake can also be made in a 9-inch pie pan or a 9-inch springform pan.

A note about the crust: Shortbread crusts can be temperamental. Be sure your butter is cold and that you've measured the ingredients accurately. Avoid dark pans. Don't over-mix or over-bake. If at all possible, make sure your oven temperature is correct with an inexpensive oven thermometer.

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Love butter pecan? Be sure to try these great recipes, too!

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    138 Comments on “Butter Pecan Cheesecake”

  1. Try Butter Pecan Ice Cream with a little Praline Liqueur poured over it.

  2. This looks amazing! Even better that it’s no bake…I can’t wait to try it!

  3. I love every one of your recipes. This looks delicious. Thanks!

  4. Great ingredients.  I’ll be making this recipe.  

  5. I made this and everyone LOVES it!! The only thing is that the crust came out rock solid to the point where it was extremely difficult to cut it into slices. I followed all directions and the baking time exactly. Any ideas as to what happened?? Overall DELICIOUS recipe and I would definitely love to make it again! 

    • Hi, Brooke. It sounds like the crust got over-baked. If you used a dark pan, that could be the problem. Or it’s not uncommon for oven temperatures to be inaccurate. I have an inexpensive oven thermometer I use to routinely check my oven’s temperature.

      • How could I change this from a no bake recipe to a baked cheesecake? My husband prefers baked lol.

        • Hi, Elizabeth. The batter for a baked cheesecake is fairly different. I don’t currently have a recipe for a baked version of this cheesecake, but there are several baked cheesecake recipes in the Recipe Index.

        • Easy…when adding the regular sugar to your cheesecake batter add light brown sugar instead. You can also add half vanilla extract and half butter extract or my favorite…butter rum extract….this is how I’m making ours for Thanksgiving.

    • make a graham cracker crust, receipe is on the back of the graham cracker box, do not over cook, do not press the ingredients to hard on the bottom of the pan

    • The same thing happened to me. I will just substitute with a graham cracker crust next time. It’s very easy to make

  6. This cheesecake looks and sounds amazing! I don’t really know why, but I have always been a little intimidated by making cheesecake, even though I’ve been baking for over forty years. This one is the one I’m going to start with. 
    Butter pecan is my second favorite ice cream flavor, (after vanilla). Cheesecake is one of my favorite desserts, so, it is too tempting to pass up.
    Wish me luck! 😀

  7. To make with pecan sandier cookies- how to make crust?

  8. This looks absolutely amazing. I can not wait to make it. Your blog is awesome.

  9. Lovely! Do I need to weighed down wi h baking stone when I bake the shortcrust base?  Also is it necessary to prick the base?

  10. I love this recipe it very simple and easy just a tip for anyone with a lactose problem the 16oz might be to much so use 8

  11. Could I use cool whip instead of whipping cream?

  12. I want to make the no bake butter pecan cheesecake.,
    How can I substitute the flour and sugar for wheat flour and Splenda without changing the taste? Or just use original. I am diabetic just asking.

    • Hi, Tonja. I’ve never tried this cheesecake making either of those substitutions, so I can’t give you any specific advice. In my general experience, most any change to a recipe will change the taste. If you’d like to make the substitutions, I recommend following the guidelines of the manufacturers.

  13. Can you use some kind of prepared crust?

  14. My daughter  just ask me to  make this dessert  for thanksgiving, butter  pecan is my favorite  ice cream.  I love trying  new Recipes.  This  will  be one of my dessert for Thanksgiving  . Thank for sharing.  

  15. My daughter wants me to make this for her birthday cake. I will she’s my only girl and gets whatever she wants.

  16. My boyfriend loves butter pecan ice cream– except for the actual pecans in it! :O He says if he could find an ice cream with the same flavor but without the nuts, he’d buy it, lol… So I’m wondering: would this cheesecake have the flavor he enjoys if I made it without the pecans, or would it be missing something essential to that buttery flavor, you think? Any suggestions on how I could replicate this flavor without adding the pecans? (I’m not a huge pecan fan either, so I’m at a loss on this one…) Thanks- and the recipe does sound and look delicious!

    • Hi, Hope. The flavor of the cheesecake comes from the buttery pecans. The rest of the cheesecake is a fairly basic vanilla cheesecake. It’s plenty good on its own but it won’t have the flavor of butter pecan.

      • Thanks- that’s what I sort of figured… But I talked to him and a relative who’s more experienced in the kitchen than me, and we came up with an idea to try this recipe as is– except after toasting the pecans, giving them a whirl in the food processor to chop them more finely, since I think it’s primarily the texture of the pecans that he doesn’t like. 🙂

        • You can buy walnut favoring(next to vanilla extract in grocery store), but I have never seen Pecan. I have used this in Walnut Pound Cake. ( My Mother can’t eat nuts)  It taste great!  You might could try that.

  17. This looks and sounds amazing….I think I’m going to try this for Thanksgiving. Thanks for the recipe.

  18. Do you think I could use half n half in this recipe instead of the  heavy cream? 

  19. I don’t have a tart pan, what other kind of dish could I use?

  20. The filling consistency was more like a whipped icing. The texture wasn’t as thick as typical cheesecake filling. Is is suppose to be this way, or did I do something wrong to where mine didn’t set properly?

    • Hi, Truly. A no-bake cheesecake filling is generally less dense than a baked cheesecake. The no-bake variety is lighter and fluffier. It should still set well, though. If you use any low-fat or no-fat ingredients, that will affect the outcome.

  21. I love the sound of this but wondering if the amount of sugar in the cheese cake can be cut in half?

  22. This sounds wonderful! I can’t wait to try it! I am wondering though if it may be a candidate for make ahead and freeze? I want to bring it to thanksgiving and we travel several hours to the next state over.

  23. I can’t wait to try this recipe as I love cheesecakes.

  24. My cheesecakes that are baked always shrink in size while it is cooling?
    What is the problem?

    • If it’s falling in the center, that usually means the outside is baking too fast. If you’re using a dark pan, that can be the culprit. You might also use an oven thermometer to check the accuracy of your oven’s temperature.

  25. Hi,
    I was wondering if it was possible to bake this to have that dense cheesecake instead of the fluffy cheesecake? And would it taste the same?

  26. Pie recipe sounds delicious!

  27. Yummy

  28. Don’t like pecans could I use walnuts? 

  29. Do you have a sugar free way of making this?

  30. I love the Recipes! Looking forward to making them for family. 

  31. I make a Pumpkin Chiffon pie with a Pecan crust. I think the Pecan crust would also be good with this Cheese Cake. It is just a Gram Cracker crust, with ground Pecans replacing the Gram Crackers. It has a Toffee taste, and is one of my family favorites.

  32. I will make this fir thanksgiving.

  33. I made this last night and it was yummy…,,however I used a store bought gram crust and didn’t realize that one block of cream cheese is 8oz! So I cut the recepie in half and it still filled the store bought shell…it taste great, but if I had the 16 oz of cream cheese and remaining whipped cream, no way could it have fit in one pie shell…did I miss something?

    • Hi, Rachel. Often, store-bought graham cracker crusts are not as deep as a traditional 9-inch tart or pie pan, and they have fairly slanted sides, so there’s less room for filling. I know that for some of my mother’s old recipes that used a store-bought crust, I’ve had to increase the amount of filling to use a standard 9-inch pan. The recipe as written here works in a 9-inch pan. It domes a bit higher than the edges, as you can see in the photos.

  34. Could you share your toasted pecan recipe?

  35. I just made it. It was a disaster. After I started i discovered I only had 8oz of cream cheese. Slightly burnt the pecans. Discovered that my Dad’s mixer had no wire whip attachment. But in the end It was like Jesus with the fishes and loaves. It turned out perfect! Delicious!

  36. Silling question, but here goes. I would like to try this, but I’m not sure what the one cup of heavy cream is that is needed for the filling. What do I ask for at the grocery store?

  37. Could plain greek yogurt be substituted for heavy cream It is a very heavy yogurt?

    • Hi, Linda. The cream is whipped and folded into the cheesecake mixture, so it’s a question of texture. You can theoretically whip yogurt, but I’ve not tried it. If you do, let me know how it works.

  38. This recipe looks so good!! I just made it, and it is in the refrigerator cooling for 4 hours.

    How do you get it OUT of the pan???

    Thanks!

    • Hi, Dianne. If you used a tart pan with a removable bottom, removing it should be easy. If you set the pan on something elevated that’s slightly smaller than the pan (hold the sides until you’re ready to remove), you can just ease the side rim off and down. With some tart-pan-removing experience, you can usually just hold it in the palm of your hand and gently remove the sides. 

  39. Does the crust get harder after you put it in the fridge?

  40. Thank you I love this site great recipes 

  41. Could I make this in a muffin tin to make individual cheesecakes? Would they hold up ok in paper muffin cups?

  42. Hi the recipe sounds delicious and great I finally use my lovey ceramic oven safe tart pan, but the bottom of course is not removable can I still use it, thank you in advance.

  43. Hi i have a question. When it says 1 cup heavy cream is that like heavy whipping cream or like whipped cream in a can? Help please asap

  44. Hi! Thank you so much for the recipe. I want to make this for Thanksgiving, but I was thinking about making it tomorrow to get dessert done in advance. Will it still be good on Thursday?

  45. Hi, I am making this cheesecake for Thanksgiving using the pecan sandies crust you linked. I followed the directions and popped it in the oven to brown slightly, however rather than browning it got mushy and the butter all pooled in the bottom of the crust. Any suggestions about what I may have done wrong?

    • Hi, Caleigh. I’m sorry you had troubles! My first thought is that there was too much butter. If that’s not the case, then it could be the pan. Dark pans bake faster, which could alter the crust. My only other suggestion would be to chill the crust 15 or 20 minutes before baking. As an alternative, you can chill an unbaked cookie crust for about an hour and skip the baking time.

  46. I made this for our family thanksgiving. The filling was too much for my tart pan but we didn’t mind eating the leftovers! Absolutely delicious! I almost hope no one at the party eats any so that we can bring it home and devour it!

  47. Just made this and can’t wait to eat it!!  I was going to buy a graham crust but found a premade shortbread crust and got that instead.  I wonder how my family will feel about skipping Thanksgiving dinner and going straight to dessert!

  48. I just finished making this but i used a spring form pan and im worried about what its gonna look like when i remove it from the pan… Does anyone have some tips on how i can free it from the pan without ruining they cheese cake.

  49. I made this last night and it is so beautiful. I nailed it 🙂 I wish I could post a picture on here. I keep having to remind myself that today is about giving every time I look at it.

  50. I made this for Thanksgiving using the pecan sandie crust. Delicious!!!

  51. I was just passing through & now after seeing this amazing Dessert my tounge is slapping around like crazy in my mouth. I have to have one of these.

  52. Since this is very rich and I will be making this for a crowd, is it possible to double the recipe and make in a 10X15 jelly roll pan? I was not sure about the crust and baking time. Could you please advise me.

    • If you double, I’d recommend a 9″x 13″ pan, as that’s roughly twice the volume. The crust should be the same thickness, so I wouldn’t adjust the baking time. If it were me, I’d just make two cheesecakes, but I also understand the appeal of bars.

  53. You used granulated sugar and light brown sugar in ur cheesecake part ,, wud that give that crunchy texture of sugar in ur cheesecake or does it some how just melt and blend right in while being mixed? 

    Just wondering 

  54. Butter pecan is a favorite flavor of mine too! It’s a perfect combination with cheesecake. Thanks for sharing!

  55. I make this (I don’t like crust, so I make mine without) in paper muffin cups to give to people, sell at fundraisers, and just generally make it easier to store and serve.
    I have made it many, many times and have yet to meet anyone who didn’t like it.
    The recipe is so easy to make, takes such little time and is guaranteed to make a splash no matter where it is served.
    I have shared the link to it bunches of times and my friends all loved it.
    Just wanted to thank you for one of my “go to” recipes.

  56. I’ve literally just finished making this cheesecake, it’s resting in the fridge as I type! I have to say, I do have one problem with this: it was INCREDIBLY difficult not to eat the filling straight out of the bowl. I mean, seriously, how there was any left to put onto the crust is beyond me!!

    Thankyou so much for sharing this with the world!

  57. I have a crust that has 1 stick butter, 1 c flour and 1 + c chopped pecans to make a short bread crust that does not get too tough. Just do not press too tightly.

  58. How about using a no-bake shortbread crust using shortbread cookies??

  59. I’ve made this cheesecake twice now 
    The whole family LOVED  it!!! ❤️
    Thank you for the recipe!!!

  60. Jennifer, thank tou for sharing this recipe!  I’ve made it twice now and it’s a BIG hit with family and friends.  I did add some butter extract on the second time and it was wonderful too!

  61. Yummy hope to have it made at home if not try to get at good bakery one recently opened some distance from my place

  62. My crust was rock hard after I let the pie chill in the fridge overnight. I could barely cut it. I only baked it for 20 minutes so I’m not sure what went wrong. The flavor of everything was good tho. Next time I will just buy one of the ready made crusts from the store.

  63. I did this cheesecake. It turned out delicious! Maybe a bit too nutty for me though. But, only a very little bit. I honey roasted my pecans and added a teaspoon of maple. I also added brown sugar and maple to the tart shell. And I added a bit of sour cream. I was trying to make enough for a 12 inch tart shell and made too much. However, I took the remainder, added one egg, put it in a ready made graham cracker crust and baked it. It actually turned out pretty fantastic with a strong maple flavor to it. My one other suggestion, though probably my personal preference, is to add a bit of lime juice. Lemon may be a bit too strong.

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