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Pistachio Cheesecake

Macheesmo Recipe by
(9 reviews)
Pistachio Cheesecake
  • Prep Time 45 min
  • Total Time 6 hr 0 min
  • Servings 12
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Pistachio Cheesecake

A wonderful homemade cheesecake with ground pistachios baked right in!



cups graham crackers, ground
tablespoons sugar
tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
teaspoon cinnamon
pinch salt


pounds cream cheese, soft
1 1/3
cups sugar
cup pistachios, ground
teaspoons almond extract
large eggs
cup sour cream
cup heavy cream
drops green food coloring (opt.)


  • 1 Grind graham crackers or crush them finely and combine with sugar, salt, cinnamon, and butter.
  • 2 Using a 9-10 inch springform pan, line the pan really well with foil on the outside. Then pack the graham cracker mixture in the the bottom of the springform pan.
  • 3 Pack the crust up the sides of the pan about 1 inch all the way around. Use a large measure cup to pack the crust so it's even and firm all around.
  • 4 Bake crust at 350°F for 12 minutes. Then let cool.
  • 5 In a large mixing bowl, whip the cream cheese and sugar until it's smooth.
  • 6 Add the eggs one at a time and mix well.
  • 7 Mix in the ground pistachios, almond extract, and food coloring.
  • 8 Finally, stir in the sour cream and heavy cream.
  • 9 Set your springform pan in a larger baking dish that has at least an inch of room around the edges. Pour filling into the springform pan. Depending on the size of the pan, you might have some leftover.
  • 10 NOTE: You can make this in a normal pie dish or in a tart pan, but reduce the filling by 3/4s.
  • 11 Add the larger dish and springform pan to the oven at 325°F.
  • 12 Pour boiling water around the edges of the dish making sure to not get any in the pie. It's very important that your foil is tightly wrapped around the pie so the springform pan is water tight.
  • 13 Bake for 90 minutes at 325°F. Then turn off the oven and let the pie slowly cool for an hour in the oven.
  • 14 Remove the pie from the water bath. Remove the foil and pop the pie out of the springform pan. Let cool at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  • 15 Cover the pie and chill for at least 2 hours before serving!
See Step By Step

Step By Step  

Pistachio Cheesecake

As prepared by Macheesmo,

What if you put one of the most addictive foods into another one of the most addictive foods?

You would pretty much have something that’s completely irresistible.

I don’t know about you, but I can never eat just one pistachio. If I have one, I’ll have the whole bag.

While I can have just one piece of cheesecake, it’s always a very big piece!

So this pistachio cheesecake is really just a combination of two things that I find impossible to resist.

One of the most important things about making a good cheesecake is to cook it in a water bath. This keeps the filling moist as it sets slowly in the oven.

Of course, the problem is that you can’t just set a spring form pan (with a removable bottom) in a water bath. Water will almost definitely get into the pan and ruin your pie.

The way to prevent this is to wrap the pan very tightly in foil before you even start making the pie.

Pan prepped

Once you have your pan water-proofed, go ahead and mix your crust ingredients together and then pack them into the pan. I like to use a large measuring cup to press on the crust.

It makes it easy to press around the edges firmly and get a nice evenly packed crust.

Crust pressed

Bake this crust at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes and then let it cool.

Meanwhile, you’ll need to make the filling.

Step one is dealing with the pistachios. You’ll need to shell about a cup of them, or buy them pre-shelled.

Pistachios shelled

Then just grind up the pistachios in a food processor or spice grinder. The finer the better!

Pistachio ground up

Making the filling is actually pretty easy assuming you have a hand mixer or stand mixer. Just beat together the cream cheese with the sugar until it’s nice and light.

Then mix in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the ground pistachios, almond extract, and food coloring. The food coloring is optional, but I like the light green color that that just a few drops will give the cheesecake.

Finally, stir in the sour cream and heavy cream and you’ll be left with a wonderfully delicious filling.

Filling mixed

The amounts in this recipe assume you are using a large spring form pan that’s 10 inches wide and 2 inches high. If you are using a smaller pie pan or tart pan to make this (I actually used a tart pan for the photos that I took), reduce the filling by 3/4s.

Once you have the filling made, just pour it into the prepared crust. You can fill it to the top of the crust or even a bit over it if you are using a large spring form pan.

Ready to bake

Now for the steam bath. Put your spring form pan in a larger baking dish and then stick the whole thing in a 325 degree oven. Once the pan is in the oven, add enough boiling water to come about 1 inch up the side of your pan.

I was silly and poured my boiling water into the pan before putting it in the oven. Don’t do this. Wait until the pan is steady in the oven and then pour in the water.

Steam bath

Bake this guy at 325 degrees for 90 minutes. It might brown slightly on top and crack a bit, but it should stay pretty smooth.

Once it’s baked, kill the heat in the oven, but leave the pie in the oven to cool slowly. This will also help prevent it from cracking.

I peeked into my oven just to see how it was looking.

Peek in the oven

Let it cool for an hour in the oven and then remove the pan from the water bath. Peel off the foil and pop out the cheesecake!

NOTE: I’ve made cheesecakes a few times like this and sometimes I haven’t done a great job of waterproofing the pan. If you have some water in your pan, don’t freak out or throw it away. Most likely the cheesecake is still very good and edible if a little water gets in.

Piece out of pan

While you could serve the pie right now, it’ll be very soft. It’ll have a much better consistency if you chill it for a few hours and then slice it up.

Slice of pie

That’s all there is to it. Try this out and make sure you invite friends. It’s impossible to stop eating it if left alone!

Nick loves this recipe because it left him with a half bag of pistachios to snack on. Oh and it’s one of the best cheesecake recipes out there! Check out his blog, Macheesmo, and follow him from his Tablespoon profile.
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