This Earl Gray cheesecake recipe makes the creamiest bergamot and tea flavored baked mini cheesecakes. With a decadent chocolate crust, whipped cream topping and pretty lavender buds garnish, these Earl Grey cheesecakes are simply the best and perfect as party treats!
Making these mini cheesecakes is pretty easy. It is similar to making a typical baked cheesecake like the New York cheesecake except that these are generously flavored with Earl Grey tea.
For maximum Earl Grey flavoring, I processed the Earl Grey leaves into fine powder and let it steep it in hot cream that is added to the cheesecake batter. The tea-infused cream is strained before being added into the cheesecake batter, but since I processed it into fine powder, a noticeable amount of the finely ground leaves escape the mesh sieve and create lovely specks of tea in the Earl Grey cheesecake.
I used Earl Grey in tea bags and used a total of 2 bags, but the cake can also be made with loose leaves.
And while I made the Earl Grey cheesecake into mini sizes that are perfect for individual sizes, you can easily make this recipe into a larger single cheesecake. The recipe below is sufficient for a 7 inches round cake tin. Increase the baking time to 60 minutes. If you wish to make a larger 9 inch Ear Grey cheesecake, simply double the recipe below and keep to the 60 minutes baking time.
How to Make Earl Grey Cheesecake
- Digestive cookies (or Graham Crackers)
- Castor sugar
- Butter (melted)
- Cocoa powder
- Cream cheese (softened)
- Castor sugar
- Plain flour
- Whipping cream
- Earl Grey tea leaves
- Whipping cream
- Lavender buds (food grade)
Preparing the Earl Grey tea infused cream
The first step in making the mini Earl Grey cheesecake is to prepare the tea itself. I used Earl Grey from tea bags (2 tea bags for this recipe).
- Cut the tea bags open and pour the leaves into a food processor. Since the amount of the leaves is too little for the food processor, add a few tablespoons of the sugar (from the sugar measured for the cheesecake filling).
- Process the Earl Grey tea leaves and the sugar until fine. At this stage, it may not be possible to grind all the tea leaves to a fine powder, and that is fine. Suffice if the processing is able to break the leaves to smaller particles.
- Next, measure the cream into a small pot. Add the processed tea leaves and heat up the cream until it starts bubbling around the sides.
- Stir to mix the tea powder into the cream. Cover the pot with a lid and let the tea steep in the hot cream while you prepare the crust and the cheesecake filling.
Making the chocolate cheesecake crust
- Melt butter over low heat and set aside to let it cool down. Crush the cookies in a food processor until fine (or place the cookies in a ziplock bag and crush with a rolling pin). Transfer the fine cookie crumbs into a bowl.
- Add the sugar and cocoa powder. And mix to combine well.
- Pour in the melted butter and mix thoroughly.
- The crust will appear wet and that is normal.
- Divide the crumbs into 12 cupcake casings.
- Press them down with the back of a spoon and compress further with the ends of a small rolling pin. Set the chocolate crust aside.
Making the Earl Grey cheesecake filling
- Start by measuring the cream cheese into a medium sized bowl.
- Beat it until it turns creamy. Constantly scrape the sides of the bowl to make sure there are no lumps of the cream cheese left out. This creaming process should take about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Next, add the sugar, flour and salt. Continue beating until the mixture is all smooth and creamy. Constantly scrape the sides of your bowl.
- Add both the eggs and beat again until all traces of the egg are no longer visible and the cheesecake filling is smooth and creamy. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Set aside.
- Strain the Earl Grey tea infused cream into a cup. Press out all the cream as much as you can from the strainer.
- Pour the strained concentrated Earl Grey tea into the cream cheese mixture and beat until the tea and the cream cheese are well combined. Scrape the sides of the bowl half way through.
Baking and assembling the mini cheesecakes
- Pour the cheesecake batter into the prepared cupcake casings with the chocolate crust. Pour until each casing is full. Bake the mini Earl Grey cheesecakes in a water bath, in a preheated oven at 160 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes. To make the waterbath, simply place a bowl of water (make sure the bowl is waterproof) in the oven while baking the cheesecake. Bake the Earl Grey cheesecakes on the lowest rack (You can place the bowl of water on the floor of your oven or on a rack above the cheesecake). To check if the cheesecakes are baked, check to see that the sides are firm but the centers still wobbly. Turn off the oven and let the cheesecake rest in the oven for 10 minutes.
- Remove the cakes from the oven and let them cool to room temperature before placing them in the refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours. Remove the cheesecakes from fridge and carefully peel off the casings.
- Whip the cream until stiff. Transfer it into a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. Pipe the whipped cream onto the top of each Earl Grey cheesecake.
- Garnish with lavender buds.
Keep the cheesecakes chilled.
Why do you need to bake the cheesecake in a slightly reduced temperature compared to normal cakes?
- The main reason is to avoid the cheesecakes from cracking. Baking the cakes at a slightly reduced temperature (reduce by 10 degrees Celsius) will help avoid the cracked cheesecake issue.
Is it ok to not grind the tea leaves into a fine powder?
- Yes, it is ok to not grind the tea leaves. You can simply steep the Earl Grey tea in the hot cream and then strain and discard the leaves.
- I like my Earl Grey cheesecake to have the tiny specks of tea leaves in the filling, hence the grinding, but this grinding process can be omitted.
Can you bake this mini cheesecakes into a single Earl Grey cheesecake?
- Yes, you can. The recipe provided below can be baked in a round 7 inches cake tin. If you wish to make a larger, 9 inches Earl Grey cheesecake, double the recipe below. The cakes would require a longer baking time of 60 minutes instead of 20 minutes as indicated in the recipe for mini cheesecakes.
Why should you take extra care to not overbake the cheesecake?
- Over baked cheesecakes tend to have 2 problems. They tend to crack and the texture turns rubbery (instead of being creamy). Hence it is important to not overbake the cheesecake.
What is water bath and is it necessary?
- Water bath (or bain-marie) is a process of baking with a dish of water placed in the oven. This method is often used for baking cheesecakes to keep the interior of the oven moist. This in turn is to avoid the cheesecakes from cracking.
- As the water gets heated up, it turns into steam and the steam helps keep the oven interior moist.
How long do these cheesecake last?
- These cheesecakes can last in the fridge for a good 4 to 5 days (without the cream topping). It is advisable to add the cream topping before serving. Always keep the cheesecakes chilled.
Like this Earl Grey Cheesecake recipe? Here are my other posts you might want to check out:
- Easy Cheesecake Recipe - A Simple Baked Cheesecake
- Ultimate Chocolate Peanut Butter Cheesecake with Oreo Crust
- Mini Christmas Cheesecake - Pretty Festive Treats
- Oreo Strawberry Cheesecake - Creamy Cheesecake with Fresh Strawberries
- Baked Pineapple Cheesecake with Coconut - Easy Homemade Recipe
Here is the full printable version of my baked Earl Grey cheesecake recipe with chocolate crust, and lavender-whipped cream topping.
Earl Grey Cheesecake
- 100 g Digestive Cookies or Graham Crackers
- 15 g granulated sugar
- 30 g butter melted
- 14 g cocoa powder
- 450 g cream cheese
- 150 g granulated sugar
- 20 g flour
- 100 g whipping cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla essence
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 4 g Earl Grey tea leaves
Topping & Garnish
- whipping cream
- lavender buds food grade
- Preheat oven to 160°Celsius.
Making the crust
- Place cupcake casings in a muffin tray.
- Crush the digestive cookies to a fine crumb. Add sugar and cocoa powder. Mix well. Pour in the melted butter and mix until the crumbs are well moistened.
- Divide the crumbs into the prepared cupcake casings. Press down firmly with the back of a small spoon or the ends of the small rolling pin. Set aside.
Preparing the Earl Grey tea
- Pour the cream into a small pot. Heat it up on medium heat until the sides start to bubble.
- Place the Earl Grey tea leaves into a food processor. Add approximately 2 to 3 tablespoons of sugar (from the cheesecake filling measurement) and process the leaves and the sugar until fine.
- Add the processed sugar-tea leaves into the hot cream and stir well. Turn off the heat and let the tea steep in the hot cream. Set aside.
Making the cheesecake filling
- To make the filling, add cream cheese to a medium-sized bowl and beat until creamy for 30 to 60 seconds. Beat longer if the cheese is not creamy. Scrape the sides of the bowl half way through the creaming process.
- Mix the flour and sugar in a small bowl and add into the creamed cheese. Beat until the flour is well incorporated.
- Add the eggs and beat again, scraping the bowl after every 20 seconds.
- Next, strain the Earl Grey tea infused cream into a cup. Add the strained tea into the cream cheese mixture. Beat until well combined.
- Divide the filling into the prepared crust until almost full.
- Bake the mini cheesecakes in the lowest rack in the oven with a water bath for 20 minutes.
- Once baked, let them rest in the oven for about 10 minutes before removing onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Chill the cheesecakes for at least 4 hours before serving. Add the topping and garnish right before serving the cakes.
- To make the topping, whip the cream until peaks form. Transfer into a piping bag fitted with a large star tip.
- Pipe a large whipped cream star on top of each cheesecake and garnish with the lavender buds.
- Serve immediately. Keep leftovers refrigerated.
And that's my easy baked Earl Grey cheesecake recipe for you.
Happy Baking 🙂