Small Size Lemon Pistachio Baked Cheesecake, now how good does that sound? Now I know what some of you may be thinking, small-sized who needs that? Well sometimes we all do, sometimes a dessert that will feed 10 people is just too much. So here we have a baked cheesecake that is perfect for 2 to 4 people. Perfect size for a small get together or dessert for two for 2 nights.
Small Batch Desserts.
As there are only two of us in my house (most of the time) smaller desserts are a necessity. And it helps with self-control as well! I get a lot of my ideas from one of my all-time favourite websites ‘Dessert For Two‘ Christina has the most amazing small-batch desserts and this small-sized lemon pistachio baked cheesecake is heavily based off of her delicious Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake, which is amazing for the record. I just made a few tweaks to suit the flavours I was using.
Lemon and pistachio are great partners. The rich, earthy nutty flavour of the pistachios pairs so well with the sharp, fresh flavours of the lemon. I also sprinkled a few food-grade rose pelts over the top for a slight Middle Eastern flare, but this is optional and only adds a minute floral hint of flavour.
Bake it up.
I have always had a bit of a phobia about baked cheesecakes. Fear that they crack in the oven, fear that it would have a gritty texture and so on. But this recipe is absolutely fail-proof. It doesn’t crack and it’s incredibly smooth and as an added bonus it cuts like a dream.
This cheesecake is just so easy and there is nothing weird in it either. Cream cheese, obviously and full-fat. Sugar, one egg, a dash of vanilla and of course lemon. I also added a little sour cream, for me this is the magical ingredient. It adds a perfect touch of tanginess to all that richness and it balances out the flavour perfectly. It also helps create the creamiest, dreamiest texture.
So seriously, when you need a smaller dessert for an occasion or just because. I can’t recommend this Small Size Lemon Pistachio Baked Cheesecake enough. It’s my new go-to favourite dessert.
A quick word about pans.
Christina from Dessert For Two gave me the idea of using a 2-pound loaf tin for a small cheesecake and its a stroke of genius. It gives you 4 incredibly generous slices, 5 normal size slices or 6 smaller slices. Depending on how many people you have to feed, or how many slices you want to devour.
I also bake this cheesecake in a very simple water bath. Nothing fancy and no special equipment is needed. All I did was place my loaf pan in a larger roasting dish and added a couple of cups of boiling water to it. While this step is not in the original recipe, I find it helps to stop it cracking and to keep its texture super creamy.
Small Size Lemon Pistachio Baked Cheesecake
- For the base.
- 105 grams digestive's (6 Graham cracker cookie sheets)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter – melted
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 50 grams pistachio's (1/2 cup)
- 455 grams full fat cream cheese (2 x 8 ounce packs)
- 110 grams sugar (1/2 cup)
- 70 grams sour cream (1/4 cup)
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- zest of 1 lemon
- Preheat you oven to 170C/325F/Gas mark 3 and lower one of the racks to the lower third of the oven. Line a 2 pound loaf tin with baking parchment, make sure to leave a little overhang for easy removal.
- Pulse, using a food processor or bash the digestives/graham crackers and until they are a fine crumb.
- Then pulse or bash the pistachio's until they are in a coarse crumb.
- Mix the cookie crumbs, pistachio's and melted butter together. Then press the mix into the bottom of the loaf pan, pressing down to make sure everything fully sticks together.
- Pop the base into the oven and bake for 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, mix the cream cheese, sugar, sour cream, the egg, vanilla extract and the lemon juice and zest until you have a smooth batter.
- Take the base out of the oven and reduce the heat down to 150F/300F/Gas mark 2 then pour the batter over the base. Don't worry if the base is warm.
- Place your loaf pan into a roasting dish and add a couple of cups of boiling water to the roasting pan and place the whole thing into your oven.
- Bake for 40-45 minutes, you are looking for your cheesecake to be starting to pull away from the edges and still have a slight wobble in the middle. Once baked allow your cheesecake to cool down to room temperature in its tin before placing it into the fridge for at least 6 hours.
- This cheesecake is perfect plain or you can sprinkle a few crushed pistachio's, rose petals and extra lemon zest on the top.
- This cheesecake will keep for 3 to 4 days perfectly in the fridge.
- You will get 4 generous slices, 5 good slices or 6 small slices from this cheesecake.
always in the mood for lemon-y, citrus-y goodness, especially if there’s cheesecake involved (:
Couldn’t agree more!
This is just so pretty, Emma!
How did I miss this recipe. I love pistachios in desserts and now I am going to try in a cheese cake.
Thanks, Balvinder. Pistachios are fantastic in desserts they have such a great flavour.
Oh my god this is pretty! I’ll check out her blog, but I’m just not a baker or even much of a dessert eater. You wouldn’t know by looking at me… but cheese and just about everything savory is more my thing!
Thanks, Mimi. Christina’s blog is definitely worth checking out she does a lot of savoury dishes as well. My hubby has a savoury tooth, I actually cook a lot more than bake but for some reason, I never really share my savoury dishes.
pistachios are my FAVORITE! this is lovely!
Thank you, Grace 🙂
I should take a cue from you and make smaller versions of my desserts. Some we eat for over a week to finish! This lemon cheesecake looks fabulous!!!!
Thanks, Liz. I find that too sometimes, hence why its good to have a few down-sized desserts in your back pocket for smaller crowds.
This is a show-stopping crowd pleaser, FOR SURE!
Thank you, GiGi 🙂
I JUST bought a bag of shelled pistachios – you have good timing 🙂 Looks wonderful!
Thank you, Ashley, and it can easily be made dairy-free by replacing all the dairy with Vegan versions.
Love this idea for a small cheesecake so that we are not tempted to eat this every day. Because of course we would want to eat this every day but maybe our clothes may not want us too. LOL
This is why I must shrink a lot of my desserts, I can’t keep affording to buy new clothes… lol
How stunning, this is a decadent dessert dish or perfect with a cup of tea 😀
Thank you, Merryn, it’s gorgeous with a cup of Earl Grey.
It’s hard for me to resist any kind of cheesecake, but lemon is my favorite. So this is definitely irresistible. 🙂 Good recipe. Thanks!
Thanks, John. Lemon is the best in a cheesecake, cuts right through all that richness perfectly.
I absolutely LOVE small sized desserts – they keep ME from eating to much after the guests leave! And this one sounds amazing – lemon and pistachio together are a dream!
Thank you, David, I love lemon and pistachio together. I do prefer to make a dessert which can be finished on the night otherwise I find myself eating it for breakfast the next day! Not the healthiest move… lol
Small sounds ideal! I just finished off a full-sized cheesecake that I was eating for a week straight, and although I very much enjoyed it, I’m not sure my clothes fit the same! Ha. This is the perfect recipe for those of us with less mouths to feed and/or family members who don’t share our sweet tooth. 🙂 Love that this recipe doesn’t crack, too!
So true about the clothes not fitting so well. I love full-size desserts but there is just no need for them in my house most of the time. It just encourages me to eat far too much!
The cheesecake turned out beautiful, Emma. I love the pistachio and rose petal as the garnishing…simple yet very chic.
Thank you, Angie, I’m all for simple when I can get away with it.