3. Low-Fat Cheesecake

Low-Fat Cheesecake

Okay, I die for cheesecake.

I like every possible kind, except for chocolate, strangely enough.

This recipe uses strawberries – or, really, any topping you like.

There are many ways to make cheesecake low fat, from the use of reduced fat graham crackers to fat-free cream cheese.

With the addition of sour cream and Neufchatel, this version is creamy, dreamy, wonderfully thick, and still low in fat!

Yay!

Ingredients:

9 whole low-fat cinnamon graham crackers, broken in half

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cooking spray

2 8-ounce packages Neufchatel cream cheese, softened2

2 8-ounce packages fat-free cream cheese, softened

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup reduced-fat sour cream

2 large eggs plus 3 egg whites

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Assorted toppings

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Pulse the graham crackers in a food processor until crumbled.

Add 1 to 2 tablespoons water and the butter;

pulse until moistened.

Wrap the outside of a 9-inch springform pan with foil to prevent leaks.3

Coat the inside of the pan with cooking spray and press the crumbs onto the bottom.

Bake until browned, about 8 minutes.

Let cool, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, beat both cream cheeses and the sugar with a mixer on medium-high speed until smooth, 5 minutes, then beat in the sour cream on low.

Lightly whisk the 3 egg whites in a bowl, then add to the cheese mixture along with the 2 whole eggs, flour, vanilla and lemon zest.

Beat on medium speed until fluffy, 3 minutes.

Pour over the crust.

Place the cheesecake in a roasting pan and add enough warm water to come one-quarter of the way up the sides of the springform.

Bake until the cake is set but the center still jiggles, about 1 hour 10 minutes.2

Turn off the oven;

keep the cheesecake inside with the door closed for 20 minutes.

Remove the cake from the water bath and transfer to a rack.

Run a knife around the edge, then cool completely.

Chill until firm, at least 8 hours.

Top as desired.

Frozen Peanut Butter Pie
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