Matcha cheesecake is rich, creamy and packed with that green tea flavour you love. With white chocolate in the batter and an Oreo cookie crust, it’s sure to become your new favourite matcha dessert.
(Love baking with matcha? Try these matcha brownies. Perfectly fudgy and chocolatey with matcha cream cheese swirls.)
Matcha has come a long way since the early days when it was considered a specialty and, sometimes, a very strange drink.
I’ve always been a big fan of green tea and it’s spilled over into my baking. I love incorporating matcha everywhere.
This matcha green tea cheesecake is the latest in my ever growing matcha desserts collection. Enjoy!
What does baked matcha cheesecake taste like?
I’ve incorporated melted white chocolate in the cheesecake batter because the sweetness of the white chocolate complements the earthy, complex flavour profile of green tea so well.
Add an Oreo cookie crust into the mix, plus the tangy cream cheese, and what you have is a delicious cheesecake party in every bite.
I like my green tea strong so this cheesecake has a strong matcha flavour but you can always adjust to suit your tastes.
Why you’ll love making this cheesecake recipe
Our friends and family love this cheesecake.
- It’s very unique and unlike any cheesecake you’ve had before. It’s texture is similar to the dense and creamy New York cheesecake but the flavour is so unique! So if you’re tired of the same old and want to try and serve something new, this is it.
- It has an Oreo cookie crust, instead of the usual graham cracker crust, which complements the white chocolate and the matcha so much better.
- The recipe is easy and doesn’t involve a water bath, which is +100 points in the win column in my opinion!
- It’s freezer-friendly so make ahead when you have the time and thaw when you’re ready to serve.
How to make green tea cheesecake
Another reason to love this recipe is the simplicity of its ingredients.
- Oreo cookie crumbs — I use pre-crushed crumbs but you can also buy cookies and crush them yourself
- Unsalted butter
- Cream cheese — use full-fast cream cheese as much as possible for the creamiest texture and a richer taste
- Granulated sugar
- White chocolate — you’ll want to use baking white chocolate and not white chocolate chips
- Vanilla extract
- Matcha powder — see below for tips on how to choose which kind to use
As far as tools go, you’ll need:
- 9-inch round springform pan with removable bottom
- Hand mixer or stand mixer
- Roasting pan
- Fine mesh sieve
- Measuring cups and spoons
I also always recommend investing in an oven thermometer to make sure you’re baking at the correct temperature at all times.
Recipe with step-by-step photos
1 PREHEAT. Preheat your oven to 325F and line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper on the bottom.
2 CRUST. In a small bowl, stir all crust ingredients together until evenly moist and resembling wet sand. Transfer and press this mixture firmly and evenly onto the bottom of your pan and set aside.
3 BEAT. In a large bowl using a handheld mixer, or using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and sugar on medium speed until smooth and creamy (about 2 minutes).
4 EGGS AND WHITE CHOCOLATE. Add eggs one at a time, mixing just until blended after each addition. Add white chocolate and vanilla extract and stir until combined.
5 MATCHA. Scoop about 1 1/2 cups of cheesecake batter into a smaller bowl and sift matcha powder into it. Stir until incorporated.
6 SWIRLS. Transfer the rest of your cheesecake batter to your pan and dollop your matcha mixture on top of the batter. Make cheesecake swirls using a thin knife.
7 TAP. Gently tap the pan on your counter a few times to help the batter settle and release any air bubbles.
8 ROASTING PAN. Place a roasting pan on the bottom shelf of your oven and fill with hot water.
9 BAKE. Place cheesecake on the middle rack and bake for 30 minutes or until set.
10 COOL. Turn the oven off but keep the cheesecake in the oven with the door slightly open for another 30 minutes. Take out of the oven, run a thin sharp knife around the edge of the pan, and allow to cool on the counter completely.
13 CHILL. Chill the cheesecake in the fridge for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, before serving.
Baking with matcha
How to bake with matcha
It’s very easy to bake with matcha and incorporate it into your recipes.
You can add and sift the powder directly into the dry ingredients or dissolve it in milk and add that mixture to wet ingredients. Or in this case, sift the matcha powder directly into the batter.
What’s important is you use a green tea powder you like and adjust the flavour according to how strong you want your green tea flavour to be.
What kind of matcha should I use for this recipe?
There are two kinds of matcha powder — culinary grade and ceremonial grade.
Ceremonial grade matcha is more expensive, very fine and silky, and has a vibrant green colour. It’s designed to be naturally sweet and strong and is usually the kind used in Japanese tea ceremonies.
Not very many people appreciate the strong matcha flavour though. It’s definitely an acquired taste.
Culinary grade matcha is a more versatile powder that’s more commonly used to make lattes and baked goods. This is the matcha flavour we’re probably more used to.
I used to think that I needed to splurge for the ceremonial matcha powder but after many recipes and years of baking, I realized that for the goodies that I make, culinary grade works just as well.
So don’t worry about it. Just make sure the matcha powder you use for baking is the matcha powder you enjoy drinking.
I would recommend buying pure matcha powder though, and not those already sweetened with sugar.
I personally like Elan Organic Matcha Powder which I can usually get at Costco for a steal.
Expert baking tips
How to make a smooth cheesecake with no cracks
While cheesecakes are admittedly more finicky to bake than a regular cake, here are little things you can do for a perfectly smooth, creamy, crack-free cheesecake every time:
- Start with room temperature ingredients. This ensures a smooth cheesecake batter that’s easy to incorporate.
- Don’t over-mix. You want the ingredients incorporated but be careful not to over do it. Over mixing leads to unnecessary air bubbles in the batter which would then rise to the surface while baking, leading to cracks.
- Strain. If your cheesecake batter is more lumpy than smooth even after the ingredients have been incorporated, instead of continuing to mix you can strain the batter through a fine mesh sieve to remove the lumps and end up with just the smooth, creamy parts.
- Tap. Before putting your cheesecake in the oven, gently tap your pan on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles hiding in the batter.
- Patience is key. Don’t be tempted to open the oven door to check on your cheesecake. It will mess with the temperature which we want to remain constant. Just peek through the oven door glass.
- Cool gradually. You want your cheesecake to cool gradually too. Once it’s done baking, turn the oven off but keep the cheesecake in the oven for 30 minutes to an hour with the oven door slightly open.
- Chill properly. And remember to chill the cheesecake completely too. Wait until it’s completely set before cutting into it.
Cheesecake still cracked? Don’t worry, it will still taste delicious. You can simply cover the cracks up with whipped cream (or heavy cream whipped with sugar until stiff). Problem solved.
How to bake cheesecake without a water bath
Traditionally, cheesecakes are baked in a water bath — you wrap your springform pan with aluminum foil and place it on a roasting pan halfway filled with water. The idea is to create a gentle and even heat around the cheesecake.
My problem with this method has always been seeping — water would always get into my cheesecake no matter how well I wrapped it.
Happily, I discovered a new way to bake cheesecakes without all this mess and fuss.
I simply place a roasting pan with hot or boiling water on the lower rack of the oven with my cheesecake baking on the middle rack.
No cracks, no seeping, just perfect creamy cheesecakes every time!
Of course, you can continue baking cheesecakes using a water bath if you like but I hope you try this new method too. It’s a game changer for me.
How to know when the cheesecake is done baking
Usually, you can tell if a cake is done if a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. We can’t do that with cheesecakes.
To tell if a cheesecake is done baking, here are signs to look for:
- The edges of the cheesecake should be slightly puffy and the centre should be almost set but still slightly wobbly (not soupy though).
- To be sure, gently shake the pan, the centre should jiggle ever so slightly (think: Jello). This centre part will set as the cheesecake cools.
Not quite there yet? Continue baking but watch your cheesecake closely because a lot can happen in a minute.
Frequently asked questions
You can keep leftover cheesecake in an airtight container in the fridge. It should last up to a week.
You can also store them in the freezer.
To store this cheesecake (or any cheesecake, minus any toppings) in the freezer, wrap the cake in plastic wrap and aluminum foil then place in a freezer-safe container or Ziploc bag.
You can freeze cheesecake slices or the whole cake. If you’re freezing the whole cake you’ll want to place it on a cardboard cake board for support.
Frozen cheesecakes should last up to a month.
To thaw, place the cheesecake (or cheesecake slices) in the fridge overnight or on your counter about 2 hours before you’re planning to serve it.
The best way to get clean neat slices is to:
– Use a very sharp knife and
– Keep that knife clean and smooth while in use
We usually fill a tall container (tall enough to cover the knife blade) with hot water and dip the knife there, dry with a tea towel, then slice. Repeat after every slice.
You can slice the cheesecake in traditional triangles or make them squares for matcha cheesecake bars.
To make mini cheesecakes, instead of using a 9-inch springform pan, you can bake the cream cheese batter in a mini cheesecake pan or in a cupcake / muffin pan lined with paper liners.
This recipe should be enough for 12 mini cheesecakes.
Note that mini cheesecakes bake quicker so check halfway to see how much longer you have to go.
Other delicious and easy cheesecake recipes
If you love cheesecakes as much as I do, you’ll enjoy making (and eating!) these:
- No bake lemon cheesecake is light, creamy and so easy to make. Lemon curd filling, scrumptious Oreo cookie crust, whipped cream topping. Perfect!
- Apple crisp cheesecake has a buttery shortbread crust, a layer of cinnamon apples and salted caramel sauce, creamy cheesecake filling, and crunchy pecan apple crisp topping. A fall dessert doesn’t get any better than this.
- Ube cheesecake is everything you ever wanted in an ube dessert. Luxurious ube cheesecake filling on a bed of crunchy coconut cookie crust then topped with creamy coconut whipped cream.
- While these no bake mini cheesecakes are for those days when you want luxurious, creamy, New York-style cheesecake but without all the work.
Matcha cheesecake is easy to make, delicious and one of the most unique cheesecakes I’ve made and tasted. It’s perfect for Easter, Christmas, birthdays, and any celebration.
It’s great with coffee and yes, green tea. Enjoy!
Baked Matcha Cheesecake Recipe
For the Oreo Cookie Crust:
- 2½ cups Oreo cookie crumbs
- ½ cup unsalted butter melted
- Preheat your oven to 325F and line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper on the bottom.
- In a small bowl, stir all crust ingredients together until evenly moist and resembling wet sand.
- Transfer and press this mixture firmly and evenly onto the bottom of your pan and set aside.
- In a large bowl using a handheld mixer, or using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese and ¾ cup sugar on medium speed until smooth and creamy (about 2 minutes).
- Add eggs one at a time, mixing just until blended after each addition.
- Add white chocolate and 1 tsp vanilla extract and stir until combined.
- Scoop about 1½ cups of cheesecake batter into a smaller bowl and sift 2 tbsp matcha powder into it (see notes). Stir until incorporated.
- Transfer the rest of your cheesecake batter to your pan and dollop your matcha mixture on top of the batter
- Make cheesecake swirls using a thin knife.
- Gently tap the pan on your counter a few times to help the batter settle and release any air bubbles.
- Place a roasting pan on the bottom shelf of your oven and fill with hot water.
- Place cheesecake on the middle rack and bake for 30 minutes or until set.
- Turn the oven off but keep the cheesecake in the oven with the door slightly open for another 30 minutes. Take out of the oven, run a thin sharp knife around the edge of the pan, and allow to cool on the counter completely.
- Chill the cheesecake in the fridge for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, before serving.
- You can also use the same amount of white chocolate chips if you can’t find baking white chocolate.
- Adjust the amount of matcha powder according to how strong you want the matcha flavour to be.
- See post for lots more tips and FAQs.
Nutritional information are estimates only.
Did you make this baked matcha cheesecake recipe? I’d love to hear from you in the comments section below.