This triple chocolate cheesecake is for chocoholics only. With chocolate in every layer, this rich and creamy cheesecake is a blissful dessert. Follow along for some tips to make a creamy, no-fail cheesecake that will make your chocolate dreams come true.
Nothing is more rewarding than baking a cheesecake that is perfectly smooth, creamy, decadent and full of chocolate. While it can seem intimidating since it’s a custard type of cake that is prone to cracks and lumpy fillings, learning how to use a simple waterbath (think of it like a steam room for your cheesecake) will put your nightmares to rest and make your cheesecake dreams a reality.
This chocolate cheesecake recipe is inspired by the Godiva chocolate cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory. It has a deep chocolate flavor that complements the tanginess from the cream cheese. As someone who loves baking with chocolate, I’ve used it in every layer of this chocolate cheesecake recipe. A triple chocolate threat, this one is for true chocolate lovers out there.
Prepare the crust
I start this chocolate cheesecake recipe with a simple chocolate cookie crust. You can use any chocolate wafer cookie, making sure to pulse them in a food processor until finely ground. The crust gets pre-baked for 8 minutes to firm up and help ensure a crisp, non-soggy bottom once you pour in the creamy filling.
Make the chocolate cheesecake
The cheesecake filling is a classic recipe (similar to what I’ve used in previous cheesecakes) enriched with chocolate and cocoa powder. Make sure to get high quality chocolate (you can use Godiva for a similar flavor to the one at the Cheesecake Factory) since it is an essential ingredient in this recipe. You combine the chocolate with heavy cream and cocoa powder in the microwave to get a silky-smooth mixture.
While the chocolate is cooling, beat the cream cheese on medium-low speed until smooth and free of any lumps. This is an important step as any lumps at this stage will lead to a lumpy filling. Once it’s smooth, add the sugar, eggs, and finally the chocolate mixture and vanilla. Be careful not to overbeat the batter; beat only until just combined. Pour into the crust and get ready to bake!
Waterbath Baking Process
This step is an essential part of a perfect cheesecake. A waterbath is a cooking method that creates a steamy environment in the oven, so the surface of the cheesecake doesn’t get too dry and cracks. It’s very easy to do, and really makes this chocolate cheesecake recipe one of the best.
To make a waterbath, you’ll need to place your cheesecake pan inside a larger roasting pan. Fill the roasting pan with boiling water, enough that it comes about halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan. It’s very important that you wrap the sides of the cheesecake pan in foil so that water doesn’t seep through the cracks of the pan.
I like to place the empty roasting pan in the oven first, filling it with boiling water only once it is settled on the rack. This helps me prevent any accidental spills of boiling water, but you can always prepare it on the counter and very carefully place it in the oven.
Bake the chocolate cheesecake for 60-70 minutes, until the sides are slightly puffed and set but the center is slightly wobbly and jiggles like Jell-O. Remove the pans from the oven, being careful not to spill the hot water, and let the cheesecake cool completely before adding the topping. Leave it to cool slightly in the roasting pan until it’s easy to handle, then transfer to a wire rack.
Finishing Touches and Optional Chocolate Topping
This chocolate ganache topping is entirely optional, but if you’re going all-in on chocolate why not add a final chocolate topping? The ganache is simply made by melting together chocolate and heavy cream in the microwave. You pour this over the cooled cheesecake for a smooth finishing touch.
Cover the chocolate cheesecake (with or without the topping) with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. This step is necessary for the cheesecake to set completely to give you that velvety, smooth and decadent texture you expect from a perfect cheesecake. Another added bonus of letting it rest is that the chocolate and tangy cream cheese flavors have more time to meld together for a delicious bite.
Once properly rested, enjoy the cheesecake for up to 5 days, but it will likely be gone long before then!
More Favorite Cheesecake Recipes:
- Super Creamy New York Cheesecake
- No Bake Nutella Cheesecake
- Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Bars
- Carrot Cake Cheesecake
- Oreo Cheesecake
- 1 1/2 cups (150g) chocolate wafer crumbs (pulse in a food processor until finely ground, then measure)
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick/55g) unsalted butter, melted
- 340 g (12 ounces) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 3/4 cup (180 ml) heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons natural (not Dutch-processed) cocoa powder, optional
- 680 g (24 ounces) full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs , at room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons chocolate or coffee liqueur , optional
- 8 ounces (240g) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup (240 ml) heavy cream
Preheat oven to 325°F/160°. Wrap the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan with one large piece of foil, then repeat with another piece. This will ensure that water from the bath doesn’t seep into the cake.
Make the crust: In a medium bowl combine crumbs and melted butter and mix until crumbs are evenly moistened. Press mixture into the bottom of the pan to form an even layer. Bake crust for 8 minutes. Set the pan on a wire rack and allow the crust to cool completely before adding the filling. Leave oven on.
Make the cheesecake: In a medium heatproof bowl, combine chocolate, heavy cream, and cocoa powder if using. Microwave in 20- to 30-second increments, mixing in between, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool slightly. In a mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese on medium-low speed until smooth and lump-free, about 1-2 minutes. Add sugar and beat until blended. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add eggs and beat until batter is smooth. Mix in chocolate mixture. Add vanilla extract and liqueur if using, and beat just until combined. Don’t overbeat. Pour batter over the baked crust.
- Place the pan inside a large roasting pan, then pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Place very gently in the oven (if i’s easier for you, you can first place the roasting pan in the oven, and then pour in the water). Bake for 60-70 minutes, until the sides are set but the center is still slightly wobbly. Let cake cool completely to room temperature before adding the topping.
Make the topping: In a medium heatproof bowl, combine chocolate and heavy cream. Microwave in 20- to 30-second increments, mixing in between, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Let cool slightly, then pour over the cake.
- Cover cheesecake with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, until completely set. The cheesecake tastes best a day after it’s made. Keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.