Pumpkin Walnut Cheesecake


gluten-free note: use nut crust recipe in place of zwieback cracker crust.

  • 6 oz Zwieback crackers, crushed
  • 1 c Sugar
  • 3/4 c Brown sugar
  •  6 T Butter, melted
  • 24 oz Cream cheese, softened
  • 5 Eggs
  • 16 oz Pumpkin
  • 1 3/4 tsp Pumpkin pie spice
  •  1/4 c Heavy cream
  •  Topping:
  • 6 T Butter, softened
  • 1 c Brown sugar
  • 1 c Walnuts, coarsely chopped

Blend zwieback crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar, and the 6 tablespoons melted butter. Press firmly over bottom and up sides of a lightly buttered 9-inch spring-form pan. Chill. Beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the 3/4 cup sugar and the 3/4 cup brown sugar, beating until well mixed. Beat in the eggs one at a time, until mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in the pumpkin pie spice and the heavy cream at low speed. Mix in the pumpkin. Pour into prepared pan. Bake in a slow oven (325) for one hour and 35 minutes. While pie is baking, mix the topping ingredients (the last 3 ingredients), first the butter and brown sugar until crumbly, then blending in the nuts. After the one hour and 35 minutes, remove the pie from the oven. Spread the topping over it, and return it to the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate for several hours, or overnight. This cheesecake is rather large, and incredibly rich. Everyone always wants more than they can fit in their stomach! And the recipe! :-) Serving suggestion: Some like this garnished with whipped cream and more walnuts, or with whipped cream and pecans. From Geminis MASSIVE MealMaster collection at www.synapse.com/~gemini


Nut Crust

  • 2 1/2 cups ground pecans (11-29-09 note: added some ground, toasted blanched almonds to the pecans)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Mix and pat into spring form pan. Follow direction above EXCEPT bake cheesecake in water bath.
Note for 11-29-09: removed from oven after 1hour 35 min and didn't put nut topping on or return to oven for additional 10 min. Crust wasn't as browned/crisp as it could have been? Maybe try below directions for prebaking crust?? (or maybe prebake for only 5-10min.?

  1. Stir together ground nuts, cinnamon, and sugar. Mix in melted butter.
  2. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch, deep-dish style, pie pan. Chill the unbaked crust in the refrigerator for about 30 to 45 minutes.
  3. Place pie crust on a cookie sheet, and position on the middle rack of a preheated 350 degree F (175 degree C) oven. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until lightly browned. WATCH it carefully, as nut crusts burn easily; they DON'T have to turn black to taste burnt! Cool completely before filling.