- Cooking Time: 75 minutes
- Servings: 12
- Preparation Time: 30 minutes
- For pumpkin seed brittle:
- ½ C sugar
- ½ C water
- ¾ C raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- For crust:
- 1 ½ C chocolate wafer crumbs
- ½ C pulverized walnuts
- ½ t cinnamon
- 1 stick butter, melted
- For filling:
- 24 oz. (3- 8oz. pkgs.) cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 ½ C sugar
- 4 eggs
- 15 oz. canned pumpkin
- ½ C sour cream
- ½ t cinnamon
- ¼ t ground cloves
- ¼ t ground allspice
- 1 t vanilla
- To make brittle:
- Grease a baking sheet and set aside.
- Combine sugar and water in saucepan and place over medium heat.
- Swirl gently until desired caramel color is achieved.
- Add pumpkin seeds and immediately remove from heat, stirring vigorously. Quickly pour onto greased baking sheet and spread out. Set aside to cool.
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Place spring form pan on a double layer of heavy duty aluminum foil and fold up the outsides to seal the base.
- To make crust:
- Combine chocolate crumbs, walnuts, and cinnamon in mixing bowl.
- Add melted butter and stir to combine.
- Press crust evenly into a 9” spring form pan.
- Use a measuring cup to press into corner and up the sides (I usually get about ½ way up the sides with the crust).
- Place pan in refrigerator for 5-10 minutes to set crust.
- To make filling:
- Place room temperature cream cheese in mixing bowl and beat on low speed until smooth (1-2 minutes).
- Add one egg at a time, fully incorporating before adding next egg.
- Add sugar and sour cream.
- Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes.
- Add pumpkin and stir mix well.
- Add cinnamon, ground cloves, ground allspice, and vanilla.
- Mix until incorporated.
- Pour filling into crust and place spring form into a roasting pan.
- Fill roasting pan with hot water until half-way up the side of the cheesecake pan.
- Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.
- The cheesecake should still be jiggly in the center.
- Remove the roasting pan from the oven and leave cheesecake in water bath for 30 minutes. (The carryover heat will help the cheesecake set without overcooking).
- Remove cheesecake pan from water bath and loosely cover with plastic wrap.
- Refrigerate for a minimum of 4 hours.
- To plate, remove plastic wrap and run a knife around the inside rim before releasing the spring.
- Transfer cheesecake to serving platter.
- Break pumpkin seed brittle into shards.
- Take ¼ of the brittle and break into small pieces (2-4 seeds per piece) and sprinkle over the top of the cheesecake.
- Place remaining shards around the base of the cheesecake for presentation.
NotesI created this recipe for Thanksgiving, 2008. I wanted all the traditional flavors of Thanksgiving, but I wanted to present it in a nontraditional . This was my twist on pumpkin pie. I originally thought the chocolate/walnut crust might not be the best pairing with pumpkin, but it turned out to be my favorite part.
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