Lemon Cheesecake Recipe

Classic Lemon Cheesecake tastes even better when it’s topped with homemade lemon curd. Creamy and sweet with a bright lemon flavor, this cheesecake tastes like a slice of sunshine!

It’s no secret that I find lemon desserts 100% irresistible. If you love today’s cheesecake recipe, try our Lemon Poke Cake recipe next!

Lemon Cheesecake: creamy Lemon Cheesecake with a cookie crust and homemade lemon curd!

Why This Recipe Works

I can’t stop singing the praises of this cheesecake. It satisfies both my insatiable craving for lemon desserts AND my chocolate cravings all in one.

  • The crust is made from Oreo cookies, adding an amazing chocolate element to the citrusy cheesecake.
  • Did I mention there’s white chocolate in the filling too? White chocolate and lemon are a perfect pair!
  • In case there wasn’t enough lemon for you, I also topped the whole thing with a layer of Homemade Lemon Curd.

Seriously. Make the Lemon Cheesecake now–thank me later.

Ingredient Notes

Lemon zest. This ingredient brings intense lemon flavor and aroma to the cheesecake filling. Use a microplane grater to remove the zest from a whole lemon.

Lemon curd. You can use homemade lemon curd, like I did, or store bought. Both are delicious.

Sour cream. Be sure to use full fat, unflavored sour cream for best results.

Oreo cookies. I used classic chocolate sandwich cookies, as noted. If you prefer a more vanilla focused flavor, golden Oreos make a perfect substitute.

Easy Instructions

For the crust:

Blend cookies in a food processor to form fine crumbs. Add melted butter and combine to create a crust.

Press it into a springform pan. Pop it in the freezer while you make the filling.

For the lemon cheesecake filling:

Melt white chocolate with the heavy cream. Combine the remaining filling ingredients (except for the eggs) in a separate bowl.

Then, slowly add the white chocolate mixture. Finally, beat in the eggs.

To bake:

Pour the cheesecake filling into the chilled crust. Bake in a preheated oven over a water bath for 60 minutes.

Turn off the oven. Leave the cheesecake inside the warm oven for 45 minutes.


Remove the baked cheesecake. Chill in the fridge overnight. Top with lemon curd before serving.

Lemon Cheesecake: creamy Lemon Cheesecake with a cookie crust and homemade lemon curd!

Tips and Tricks

  • Use softened Cream Cheese for your filling. Seriously, you want the creamiest cheesecake? Start with room temperature cream cheese!
  • Water Bath. You can still get the benefit of a water bath without actually putting the pan IN the water. Just put your broiler pan of water on the lowest rack instead.
  • Bake cheesecake according to directions. When it’s done baking, DON’T open the oven. Just turn the oven off and leave your cheesecake in there for about 45 minutes. This helps cut down on those cracks on top of your cheesecake!
  • Remove cheesecake from oven after 45 minutes and allow to set in refrigerator. Add your lemon curd and slice and serve. (for nice clean slices, run knife in hot water and wipe with paper towel after each slice).
  • If your cheesecake cracked…don’t worry! You’ll be topping it with lemon curd. You can also try this Vanilla Cheesecake recipe topped with lemon whipped cream and fresh berries.

Recipe FAQs

Why did my cheesecake crack?

Cheesecakes can crack for a variety of reasons. Often it’s due to incorrect oven temperatures or overbaking. As mentioned earlier, cheesecakes will also crack with a sudden change of oven temperature (like when you open your oven immediately after baking).

What is a water bath?

A water bath is simply a pan of water added to an oven to create humidity. Cheesecakes love a humid environment!
In this recipe, you don’t add the cheesecake pan right to the water. Instead, it’s placed above the boiling water on the rack as it bakes.

Do I have to store cheesecake in the fridge?

Yes, this cheesecake should be stored in the refrigerator. It tastes wonderful chilled!

How long does homemade lemon cheesecake keep?

This cheesecake is best enjoyed within 3 days. We always gobble it up long before then, though!

This easy Lemon Cheesecake recipe is a lemon and chocolate lover’s dream come true! Topped with lemon curd and baked on an Oreo crust, it’s the perfect blend of creamy, sweet and tart.

Lemon Cheesecake: creamy Lemon Cheesecake with a cookie crust and homemade lemon curd!

More Cheesecake Recipes

Yield: 12 servings

Lemon Cheesecake

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Chill Time 6 hours
Total Time 7 hours 15 minutes

Creamy, delicious Lemon Cheesecake has the perfect consistency and is topped with a homemade Lemon curd!



  • 16 Chocolate sandwich cookies (Oreos)
  • 4 Tablespoons unsalted butter, melted


  • 1 ½ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup white chocolate morsels
  • 2 packages (8oz each) Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs


  • 1 cup lemon curd


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Add a thin roasting pan or broiler pan to the bottom shelf and add about 1-2 inches of water in the pan.
    2. To make crust, blend cookies in food processor until fine. Incorporate melted butter until evenly blended. Press crust into bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Freeze while you make the filling.
    3. In a saucepan with an inch of boiling water, place a double boiler, metal bowl, or glass bowl on top to heat heavy cream. Once warm, add white chocolate chips and remove from heat. Whisk until chocolate is smooth. Set aside to cool (about 15 minutes).
    4. For the filling, beat cream cheese, lemon zest, sugar, cornstarch, sour cream, and vanilla.
    5. Slowly add cooled white chocolate mixtures. Finally, add eggs, one at a time until mixture is smooth.
    6. Pour into prepared crust and place cheesecake pan into the preheated oven. No need to place it IN the water bath, just the shelf above.
    7. Bake 60 minutes. Turn off oven and let sit undisturbed for about 45 minutes. Remove and allow to cool in refrigerator about 6-8 hours (or overnight).
    8. Top with prepared lemon curd, slice and enjoy!

    Nutrition Information:



    Serving Size:


    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 563Total Fat: 35gSaturated Fat: 19gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 137mgSodium: 340mgCarbohydrates: 57gFiber: 1gSugar: 42gProtein: 8g

    *Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

    Did you make this recipe?

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    About Aimee

    Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

    Learn more about Aimee.

    Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

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    Posted on August 25, 2019

    Comments & Reviews

    1. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I really like and would love to try it. 5 stars for this recipe because I like it <3

    2. this recipe looks devine. Would I be able to use Splenda or another sugar substitute and omit the white chocolate?

      1. It definitely adds a creaminess and richness to the cheesecake! I haven’t tried this recipe without it, but if you do, let me know how it works out for you!

    3. I’ve recently been putting lemon curd on top of all things dessert! Lemon curd just cheers everything up. Love it! And these cheesecake looks amazing. 🙂

    4. If you ever come to Sacramento, I MUST take you to Rick’s Dessert Diner. It’s a 50’s style diner in downtown Sac that has the most amazing cakes, cheesecakes, pies, tortes and other treats that are so delish. One of my favorites is their lemon torte which is baked on a chocolate cookie crust — and looks striking similar to this beauty! Eating my favorite cheesecake tart at home could be really dangerous … or really AWESOME! Pinned 😀

    5. I’m loving this Aimee! Lemon is the best. And thanks for the tips on the water bath–I make cheesecake all the time but I just accept the cracks and make peace with it, haha. Because water baths are scary. But maybe I’ll try it next time!

    6. Ooh, if only I’d seen this before I used up my lemon curd! Still, one can never have enough curd around the house. I always love a light balance to the intensity of cheesecake–this recipe has me so excited. Thanks for sharing it, Aimee! Awesome to celebrate with you!

    7. This looks amazing, Aimee! I am a sucker for lemon desserts and love the sound of this lemon cheesecake! Can’t wait to give it a try – pinning 🙂

    8. I love that you made a chocolate crust. I do love the traditional graham cracker, but I like the color contrast!!! And duh, chocolate…

    9. Aimee, this cheesecake is perfection! and hello. . I always use Philadelphia cream cheese. . is there really any other brand?!

    10. I absolutely love your lemony cheesecake creation! And your tips are so useful. I do get a little freaked out about making a cheesecake (even though I make macarons all the time, wtheck??), but I’ll feel a lot less nervous after reading this 😉

    11. What a fabulous cheesecake!! I love your cheesecake tips – I’ve definitely followed them to a T before for a perfect cheesecake!

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