What does pudding mix do to cheesecake?! We weren’t sure before this recipe. Now we know what makes cheesecake incredibly creamy and extra tasty. If you can’t find banana cream, vanilla works.
YIELD: 12 SERVINGS
PREPARATION TIME: 0 HOURS 15 MINUTES
TOTAL TIME: 7 HOURS 45 MINUTES
FOR THE BARK
2 c. Finely crushed Nilla wafers (from about 60 wafers)
6 tablespoons of melted butter
Pinch the kosher salt
FOR THE CHEESECAKE AND THE TOPPING
4 (8-oz.) blocks of cream cheese, softened
3/4 c. granulated sugar
1 box of banana cream pudding mix
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
1/4 c. sour cream
2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 c. Cold whip, for decoration
1 banana, sliced, for garnish
1/4 c. crushed Nilla wafers, to decorate
Preheat the oven to 325° and grease an 8 or 9-inch pan with cooking spray. Make a crust: In a large bowl, mix the crushed wafers, butter and salt. Press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan and onto the sides.
Make the cheesecake: In a large bowl with a hand mixer (or in the bowl of a stand mixer), beat the cream cheese, sugar and pudding mix until smooth. Add the eggs, one by one, and then add the vanilla and sour cream. Add the flour and salt and beat until well combined. Pour the mixture over the crust. Wrap the bottom of the tray in aluminum foil and place in a large roasting pan.
Pour enough boiling water to rise to the middle of the pan. Bake until the center of the cheesecake moves only slightly, about 1 hour and 30 minutes.
Turn off the heat, open the oven door, and let the cheesecake cool in the oven, 1 hour. Remove the aluminum foil and refrigerate the cheesecake for at least 5 hours and into the night.
Before serving, spread the cold whipped cream on the cheesecake and garnish with banana slices and crushed wafers.