Strawberries have always been one of my favorite things about summer.
Much like my obsession with pumpkin in the fall, we always have plenty of strawberries on hand during the summer. I look for any excuse to eat them or use them in recipes!
Now it seems our Mini has inherited this love as well, except she refers to them as "strawbees."
Not long ago she went strawbee picking with some of her cousins, and apparently took her job very seriously.
She made up for it at home of course, but I was still able to snag a few to adorn these mini cheesecakes.
I am loving this recipe because you get to enjoy the creamy richness of a cheesecake without having to deal with the fickleness of baking one that's full-sized.
And... you get to cover them with blueberries and "strawbees" (or any other fruit of your choice.) But of course, I love the red, white & blue theme for the 4th of July!
Red, White, & Blue Mini Vanilla Cheesecakes
- 1 1/2 C. graham cracker crumbs
- 5 T. melted butter
- 3 T. sugar
- Pinch salt
- 2 (8-oz. packages) cream cheese*, room temperature
- 2/3 C. sugar
- 1 vanilla bean, split and seeded
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 2 t. pure vanilla extract
- Sliced strawberries & blueberries, for decoration
Preheat oven to 325°F. Line one 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.**
Mix together graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, 3 T. sugar, and salt. Place 2 tablespoons of the graham cracker mixture into bottom of paper liners. Using the bottom of a small juice glass or your hands, press mixture down firmly into each cup.
Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese, 2/3 C. sugar, and vanilla bean scrapings until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla extract, and beat well.
Divide batter evenly amongst cups (each should be about 3/4 full). Bake for 22 to 24 minutes, or until the centers are just set. Cool in pan on wire rack, then transfer to plate and chill for 4 hours or overnight in an airtight container.
Before serving, top with sliced strawberries & whole blueberries. Makes 12 cupcakes. Cupcakes are good for 3-5 days when refrigerated.
*You can substitute Neufchâtel for some or all of the cream cheese, that is what I used for a slightly lower fat version.
**I really like the Reynolds StayBrite® baking cups (available in most grocery stores) for these, because they are thick and peel away from the cheesecakes easily.
Recipe Adapted Slightly from Bree at goboldwithbutter.com