Cranberry Cheesecake – no bake

My delicious no-bake Cranberry Cheesecake is a beautifully fruity and creamy dessert, packed with iconic Christmas flavours of cranberry and orange. A Christmas cheesecake is a wonderful alternative (or addition) dessert to a Christmas fruit cake, while still having all the flavours of the festive season.

Finished cranberry no bake christmas cheesecake on a white plate on a blanket

This easy no-bake Christmas cheesecake can be made ahead of time to save time when preparing for a festive dinner, to bring to a family meal, or for a Christmas party dessert. I’ve also worked out ways for you to make this into cranberry orange cheesecake bars, and clemantines can be used in the place of oranges.

It’s safe to say that I am a bit addicted to making cheesecakes at the moment like this no-bake cranberry cheesecake. How can you blame me! They’re super easy to make and taste wonderful. They work for a casual pudding or can be dressed up to be super wonderful centre pieces for events.

Top Questions

Why you’ll love this cranberry cheesecake recipe

  • This cranberry cheesecake is packed full of Christmas flavours and spices.
  • It is a great make ahead dessert which you can make 2 days before you need it.
  • Cheesecake is a non traditional Christmas dessert but is loved by the family. It can easily be made gluten free too.
  • Creamy cheesecake is a delicious flavour after a rich Christmas dinner.

Cranberry compote

There is definitely a cheesecake for all occasions and for Christmas I had to make something special with iconic flavours. For this no bake cranberry cheesecake recipe I combined fresh cranberries and orange juice to drizzle over the cream layer.

I mushed down the cranberries in a saucepan with the orange and some sugar. I did this on a low heat until half of the cranberries had squished down and half were still holding their shape. This gives a great texture to the finished cheesecake. You get a great texture of the cranberries but also they are softer and ready to eat.

You can make the the cranberry cheesecake layer sweet or leave it slightly sour. It’s a great flexible topping. I often like it a little sour as you get a good mix with the sweet creamy cheese layer. I promise you will enjoy this. Taste the cranberry mix as you’re adding the sugar and make it to your exact taste.

TOP TIP – make sure to use the cranberry compote on the Christmas cheesecake when it has cooled. Otherwise it will melt the cream layer.

Cranberry and orange cheesecake

The cranberry and orange topping is beautifully zesty and slightly sharp against the creamy sugary. When the topping has been sat on the cheesecake the red juices start to drizzle through the cream which looks marvellous.

I completely agree to the idea that you eat with your eyes, and this cranberry cheesecake is both a beautiful sight to behold and a delicious treat to be loved at Christmas and all year round.

spooning cranberry compote over the cranberry cheesecake

Just look at those colours. Gorgeously vibrant red contrasts against the white cheesecake layer and the dark chocolate biscuit base to create an easy to make piece of art for your dessert table.

Cranberry Cheesecake Ingredients

For the full recipe and instructions scroll to the bottom of the page for the recipe card.

Everything for the Cranberry no bake cheesecake can be found in all good supermarkets all year round.

From the Dairy aisle, you’ll need a block of unsalted butter; you’ll need for the cheesecake base and the rest for other Christmas bakes, a tub of Soft cream cheese, and Double cream.

Then go to the fruit aisle and select an orange and fresh cranberries.

You’ll then need a bag of Caster sugar from the baking aisle, and a packet of Bourbon biscuits from the biscuit aisle; or buy two, I won’t tell!

Lastly you’ll need water, but you can get that from a tap unless you really want to use mineral water.

For an easy list of the exact measurements, the recipe card at the bottom of this post will give you all you need to make the Cranberry Orange Cheesecake.

Top Tips

Serve cheesecake and drizzle over the cranberries when you’re ready to serve.

Add orange zest to the top of the cranberry mix as you serve. It looks beautiful and adds a lovely smell.

Take the cheesecake out of the tin an hour or so after you put it on the base to set. This will help the cheesecake come out of the tin easily.

Turn this into a larger 8 inch cheesecake but adding 50% of the ingredients to the amounts in the recipe card below. For example 100g would increase to 150g.

Cranberry Cheesecake Serving Suggestions

Serve with a orange zest or mint sprig and enjoy after you Christmas dinner.

This Christmas cheesecake recipe is also brilliant as a Christmas party dish. It can feed a lot of people and the cold weather will help it stay set.

Equipment

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Substitutions and variations

  • Make it gluten free using GF biscuits (see below for more details).
  • Add extra Christmas flavours with ground cinnamon and ground cloves in to the cranberry compote.
  • Add white chocolate to the cream layer to add even more extravagance.
  • Stir in dark chocolate to the cranberry compote to create a black forest flavour.

Gluten Free No Bake Cheesecake

To easily make this a gluten free christmas cheesecake all you need to do is change the base for gluten free biscuits. Add your favourite type.

Slowly add the melted butter as some gluten free biscuits don’t need as much butter to help make the base. You want it to stick together but not be greasy.

Close up of the cranberry cheesecake compote layer with shiny cranberries

Fresh Cranberries

Using fresh cranberries for this no-bake cheesecake is a lot easier than you might think. Using fresh cramberries gives the cranberry compote a juicy fresh flavour and looks so lovely. I would definitely recommend using fresh for this cheesecake. It wouldn’t work as well with dried cranberries.

Orange Zest and Juice

Adding the freshly squeezed orange juice and the freshly grated zest to the cranberries really adds such a wonderful flavour. It also helps make the compote really juicy.

Cranberry and orange is a beautiful flavour combination and works so well with the creamy mix of the no bake cheesecake.

How to make cranberry cheesecake

How to make a cranberry compote step by step

adding fresh cranberries to a saucepan
adding fresh orange orange zest on to the fresh cranberries
  • Place the cranberries in a sauce pan with the zest and juice from 1 orange, water and caster sugar.
  • On a low heat allow the cranberry mix to reduce down.
  • Keep an eye on the mix and stir regularly.
  • When they have softened and a mushy sauce remove from the heat and allow to cool.
fresh orange juice being poured into the cranberries
adding sugar to the cranberries to make them sweeter.

How to make the bourbon biscuit cheesecake base

Bourbon biscuits in a plastic bag
bourbon biscuits bashed up with a rolling pin
  • Crush the bourbon biscuits in a food processor, or put it in a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to break them up (my preferred method, and a fun way to get the kids involved).
  • Put the biscuit crumbs in a bowl and add the melted butter.
  • Stir until all the biscuits are coated in the butter.
  • Scoop the crumbs into the tin and push down to make a hard layer.
  • Place the cake tin in the fridge and leave to harden while you make the cream layer.
bourbon biscuits in a bowl mixed with melted butter
bourbon biscuit cheesecake base in a 6 inch cake tin.

How to make the no-bake cheesecake cream cheese layer

  • In a bowl cream together the cream cheese and caster sugar until the sugar has dissolved and is well distributed.
  • In a new bowl lightly whip the double cream until it starts to thicken.
  • Stir in the double cream and cream cheese mixture together.
  • Remove the cake tin from the fridge and add the cream cheese to the base and put back into the fridge to set. It takes roughly about 45-60 minutes.

Christmas no bake cheesecake

Bright red cranberry compote layer on a christmas cheesecake

Cranberry and Orange Cheesecake Recipe

This cheesecake was so delicious however, surprisingly like the other cheesecakes, it didn’t last long once the first slice was served.

The zesty and tart cranberries is a flavour of Christmas because it works so well with savoury dishes but also wonderful with sweet dishes too.

It’s so easy to make, simple add the cranberries, orange zest and juice, sugar and water to a saucepan and allow to mush down. Making sure you keep stirring it. If you want to add some extra Christmas flavour I’d recommend a pinch of mixed spice.

Cranberry Orange Cheesecake Bars

It is easy to turn this cranberry orange cheesecake into Cranberry Orange Cheesecake Bars. I would recommend using a tart tin or cake tin which is rectangular or square. Make the recipe below with that and when it’s removed from the fridge you can slice it up into bars and then add the cranberry compote to the top to serve. It would look lovely and be a cute addition to the Christmas table.

Cranberry Orange Cheesecake Bars would also be lovely gifts for friends and neighbours over the holidays. Pop them in a nice gift box or tupperwear with a bow and I know a lot of my neighbours would love it!

spooning the top layer on to the cranberry cheesecake

Clementine and cranberry cheesecake

If you have Clementines you can use their juice instead of oranges. It adds a much more delicate flavour which is so iconic of Christmas. Clementine and cranberry cheesecake is a beautiful show stopping dessert perfect for a festive dinner party. If you do want to replace the orange with clementines then add the juice from 2 clementine’s to replace that of the 1 orange.

Bourbon Biscuits

The bourbon biscuit base was super and added a new flavour to the finished cheesecake. I definitely think I will try it again with other recipes. You can pop the bourbon biscuits into a food processor to make crumbs or you can pop it into a bag and hit with a rolling pin to make chunkier crumbs. I like the thicker crumb but worth work very well in this recipe.

If you don’t like bourbon biscuits, digestives or shortbread work really well too.

cranberry cheesecake with glossy red topping, white cream layer on base of chocolate biscuits

White chocolate and cranberry cheesecake

Want to make this no-bake Christmas special even more special? If yes, then add some white chocolate.

Chocolate works well with almost everything, but white chocolate and cranberry is a natural pairing. Just break up some bars of white chocolate and mix them into the creamy mix to turn this Christmas cranberry cheesecake into a white chocolate and cranberry cheesecake!

You can use a bar chopped up, white chocolate chips or even a break up some white chocolate truffles and mix them in.

Your guests will absolutely love the surprise of finding sweet white chocolate in the already delicious creamy middle.

Click here for my no bake Cheesecake Round Up

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Storing / Making ahead of time options

The best part about this Christmas cheesecake is that you can make the cheesecake and cranberry coulis in advance.

I would recommend keeping the coulis seperate until you are ready to serve or prepare a few hours before on the day you want to serve it. This is because the cranberry will start to colour the cheesecake and the clean white cream cheesec layer looks so lovely with the red cranbery layer dripping over the sides.

Once you’ve made the cranbery cheesecake then keep it stored in the fridge in an airtight box or wrapped in film and eat within 3 days.

Cranberry cheesecake FAQS

What is the difference between New York style cheesecake and regular cheesecake?

The difference between New York style cheesecake and regular cheesecake is that one is baked and one is a fridge set version.

The New York cheesecake is more of a batter and is cooked in the oven. A regular cheesecake is a cream cheese layer on a biscuit base which sets in the fridge.

What is the most popular type of cheesecake?

The most popular type of cheesecake is the no bake cream cheese cheesecake. It’s easy to make, cane be made in advance and can be left in the fridge to set. They are also easy to adapt with flavours.

Is cheesecake a Christmas tradition?

Christmas cheesecake is a tradition in some countries but is becoming a more and more popular Christmas dessert. This is because it’s easy to make and more importantly make in advance so you don’t have to spend more time in the kitchen on Christmas Day.

What is the secret to making good cheesecake?

I think the secret of making a good cheesecake is crumbly biscuit base and a smooth cream cheese layer.

I use a rolling pin to bash the biscuits into crumbs so they stay chunky but will still stick together with the butter.

For the cream cheese layer the secret is making sure the double cream is whipped up thick and delicately mixing it to the cream cheese so it sets really firmly but is still easy to slice and eay.

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Recipe

Cranberry Cheesecake – No Bake

Sisley White
My delicious no-bake Cranberry Cheesecake is a beautifully fruity and creamy dessert, packed with iconic Christmas flavours of cranberry and orange. A Christmas cranberry cheesecake is a wonderful alternative (or addition) dessert to a Christmas fruit cake, while still having all the flavours of the festive season. This easy no-bake Christmas cheesecake can be made ahead of time to save time when preparing for a festive dinner, to bring to a family meal, or for a Christmas party dessert.
To make this an 8inch cheesecake then add half again to the ingredients.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Fridge Bake 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, English, International
Servings 10 slices
Calories 326 kcal

Equipment

  • 6 inch Cake Tin
  • Mixing bowl x 2
  • Wooden spoon
  • whisk
  • spoon

Ingredients
 
 

  • 45 g Unsalted butter
  • 150 g Bourbon biscuits
  • 300 g Soft cream cheese
  • 60 g Caster sugar
  • 150 ml double cream / heavy cream
  • 300 g Fresh Cranberries
  • 1 Orange
  • 4 tbsp Water
  • 60 g Caster Sugar

Instructions
 

Making the cranberry compote

  • Place the cranberries in a sauce pan with the zest and juice from 1 orange and the water.
  • Stir in the sugar.
  • On a low heat allow the cranberry mix to reduce down. Keep an eye on the mix and stir regularly.
  • When some of the cranberries are still holding their shape remove from the heat and allow to cool.

Making the no-bake Cheesecake

  • Lightly grease an 6 inch loose base cake tin. (I also added a greaseproof paper circle at the bottom to help it off the base later).
  • Melt the butter gently in the microwave or in a pan and then take off the heat.
  • Crush the bourbon biscuits in a food processor, or put it in a plastic bag and use a rolling pin to break them up (my preferred method).
  • Put the biscuit crumbs in a bowl and add the melted butter. Stir until all the biscuits are coated in the butter.
  • Scoop the crumbs into the tin and push down to make a hard layer. Place the cake tin in the fridge and leave to harden while you make the cream layer.
  • In a bowl cream together the cream cheese and caster sugar until the sugar has dissolved and is well distributed.
  • In a new bowl lightly whip the double cream until it starts to thicken.
  • Stir in the double cream and cream cheese mixture together.
  • Remove the cake tin from the fridge and add the cream cheese to the base and put back into the fridge to set. It takes roughly about 45-60 minutes.
  • Remove the cheesecake from the tin and place on a plate. Spoon the cool cranberry mix over the top and serve.

Video

Notes

  • You can store the Christmas cranberry cheesecake for up to 4 days in a container in the fridge.
  • The cranberry compote will start to stain the cream cheese after a few hours so it’s best added when you are ready serve it.
  • If you want to add clementine juice instead of orange juice, use the juice of two clementines. Approximately 60ml.
  • To make it an 8inch add half again the mix for the recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 326kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 3gFat: 23gSaturated Fat: 14gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 63mgSodium: 149mgPotassium: 135mgFiber: 2gSugar: 22gVitamin A: 786IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 57mgIron: 1mg

Please note that the nutrition information provided above is approximate and meant as a guideline only.

Keyword Christmas, Christmas Cheesecake, Cranberry, Cranberry and Orange Christmas Cheesecake, cranberry cheesecake, no bake cheesecake, no bake cheesecake recipe, orange
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

15 thoughts on “Cranberry Cheesecake – no bake”

  1. I want to try this because it looks so delicious! Is there a way I can get the amounts in cups and not metric measurements? I’ve tried conversion charts and they just confuse me.

    Reply

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