Carnegie Deli’s cheesecake is renowned for its creamy texture and rich flavor, with roots dating back to 1937 in New York City. A velvety cream cheese filling that melts in your mouth. For generations, dessert enthusiasts have been delighting in it!

Only the finest cream cheese is used, creating a harmonious blend of sweetness and tanginess. Sour cream adds a layer of richness that cannot be beaten. Baking techniques are crucial to achieve the signature texture.

Take your cheesecake to the next level with a topping of fresh fruit compote or chocolate ganache. Enjoy the magic of Carnegie Deli’s recipe and savor every moment. Whether you’re treating yourself or entertaining guests, this legendary creation will always leave a lasting impression.

History of Carnegie Deli and its famous cheesecake

The Carnegie Deli has long been a New York City icon. Known for their famous cheesecake, it has earned a devoted following over the decades. Milton Parker and Leo Steiner founded the deli in 1937, and while the menu featured traditional Jewish cuisine, the cheesecake set them apart.

Using a secret recipe that was passed down through generations, this delectable treat is a perfect balance of creamy goodness and velvety smooth texture. Each slice is crafted with love and attention to detail, ensuring an unforgettable experience.

High-quality ingredients are key to the cheesecake’s distinct flavor. From cream cheese to fresh eggs, every component plays a crucial role. Even celebrities have been known to indulge when visiting the Big Apple.

The late Anthony Bourdain himself declared Carnegie Deli’s cheesecake as “The food of the gods“! This praise from an esteemed expert only further solidifies its status as a true masterpiece.

The Carnegie Deli’s commitment to excellence has allowed them to stay strong. Though they closed their doors in 2016, their legacy lives on through recipes like their legendary cheesecake, which continues to be celebrated around the world.

Ingredients required for Carnegie Deli cheesecake

For that iconic Carnegie Deli cheesecake taste, gather these essential ingredients.

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1⁄4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp grated lemon rind
  • 1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1⁄2 cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/4-inch bits

For the filling

  • 1 1⁄4 lbs softened cream cheese
  • 3⁄4 cup sugar
  • 1 1⁄2 tbsp flour
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream

Step-by-step instructions on how to make Carnegie Deli cheesecake

carnegie deli cheesecake

To make Crust:


In a large mixing bowl, add butter, egg yolk, sugar, flour, grated lemon zest, and vanilla extract.


Mix the ingredients together with your fingers to form a dough until well combined.


Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.


Using a 9 x 2-inch spring form pan, press the dough mixture at the bottom and sides. Use a piece of dough that is 1/4 inch thick to cover the lower part of the pan.


Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and bake the crust until lightly browned (approximately 10-15 minutes).


Allow the crust to cool completely on all sides. Spread a little butter around the edges of the pan.


Spread more cookie dough around the edges and line them up. Cut any excess dough around the edges of the pan.

To make Filling:


In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese with a wooden spoon until smooth and creamy.


Adding a few tablespoons of sugar at a time while continuously stirring will make it creamier.


Once the sugar is well incorporated, mix in the flour, lemon juice, eggs, vanilla, and egg yolks.


Preheat the oven to 485-500°F (250-260°C) (hotter oven enhances browning). Yes, this is the correct temperature.


Using a cookie dough-lined pan, place the filling in the center of the oven and bake until deep golden brown. The cake should have a slight jiggle to it.


After removing the cake from the oven, allow it to cool for 30 minutes.


Lower the oven temperature to 350°F (175°C).


When the cheesecake has cooled for 30 minutes, return it to the oven for the final baking stage (this process creates a set cheesecake).

Now you have the recipe to make this indulgent dessert! Follow these flavors and techniques to recreate the New York favorite cheesecake and bring smiles to your lucky loved ones with your homemade masterpiece.

Variations and modifications to the recipe

Bring your Carnegie Deli cheesecake to life! Try different crusts, like graham cracker crumbs mixed with melted butter or crushed chocolate cookies. Flavor the batter with vanilla, lemon zest, or almond extract. Topping options are limitless – fresh fruit, chocolate ganache, whipped cream, and toasted nuts.

Mix it up with different fillings. Opt for Nutella or peanut butter for a rich treat. Or try Greek yogurt for a tangier flavor. Incorporate fruits like strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries for a refreshing twist.

Display your creation with style. Pipe whipped cream around the edges and garnish with mint leaves or edible flowers. Layer batters and fillings in different shapes and sizes. Get creative with designs on top with fruit slices or chocolate shavings.

For a crack-free cheesecake, wrap the bottom of the springform pan in foil before baking. This prevents moisture loss and ensures an even temperature throughout the cake. Enjoy your masterpiece!

Serving and storing suggestions

For the ultimate Carnegie Deli cheesecake experience, serve it at room temperature or slightly chilled. Top with fresh whipped cream or cocoa powder for added elegance. Keep leftovers in the fridge, and don’t freeze them as it affects the texture. Let it return to room temperature before serving again. For a perfect pairing, enjoy with coffee or dessert wine.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can I substitute low-fat cream cheese for regular cream cheese?

Yes, you can substitute low-fat cream cheese for regular cream cheese, but it may affect the texture and flavor of the cheesecake slightly.

Q. Can I use a different type of crust instead of graham cracker crust?

Yes, you can use a different type of crust such as cookie crust or Oreo crust if you prefer. However, graham cracker crust is the traditional choice for Carnegie Deli cheesecake.

Q. How long should I refrigerate the cheesecake before serving?

It is recommended to refrigerate the Carnegie Deli cheesecake for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, to allow it to set properly before serving.

Q. Can I freeze the Carnegie Deli cheesecake?

Yes, you can freeze the Carnegie Deli cheesecake. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil, and it should keep well in the freezer for up to a month.


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