Can You Put A Cheesecake Back In The Oven: How To Tell Done

Classic cheesecakes have been a favorite dessert for a very long time. The graham cracker crust and cream cheese center make this dessert irresistible.

Here’s the scoop on can you put a cheesecake back in the oven!

cheesecake in a pan with slices and crumbs

Although many cheesecake lovers may be wondering, is it a good idea to reheat your cheesecake bake?

The good news is yes. Whether reheating a classic new-york style cheesecake or one of your very own cheesecake recipes, this specific reading will address how to reheat the frozen dessert and get the best results.

Here’s the scoop on some simple ways to achieve a well-baked cheesecake when rebaking in just a little time as well as how to do so.

Rebaking a Cheesecake

plate of cheesecake with a slice taken out

Deciding to Re-bake

A simple method for re-baking cheesecake is the jiggle test.

If your cheesecake appears undercooked or jiggly even after following the recipe and proper baking time, you might consider putting it back in the oven. You don’t want to have a runny cheesecake.

A good indicator of undercooked cheesecake is the presence of a liquid or custard-like consistency in the center of the cake. 

Keep in mind that a slight wobble or the right amount of jiggle in the center is normal. Although, if it seems overly raw, it may need additional baking time.

Proper Techniques

cheesecake in a pan with a plate of cheesecake and fork

When rebaking a cheesecake, it’s essential to ensure that you won’t burn or overcook it in the process. Follow these step-by-step instructions for a successful re-baking experience:

  1. Preheat your oven to a low temperature (around 150°F / 66°C) to avoid scorching the cheesecake. Cheesecakes don’t bake well on a high temperature.
  2. The next step is to place the cheesecake either in a water bath or directly on the oven rack. A water bath can help keep the moisture balanced and prevent cracks while baking.
  3. Monitor the cheesecake closely during the rebaking process, checking on it every 5 minutes. Usually an oven door has a built-in light so you can peak through without opening the oven and letting out heat. It shouldn’t take more than 15-30 minutes to finish cooking depending on its degree of undercookedness. It should look golden brown once it is finished.

Remember that it’s better to be cautious when you bake cheesecake. Overbaking can lead to a dry and unappealing dessert with a burnt top.

Also, be cautious of using too much water as it can create a soggy cheesecake. Follow the guidelines above to ensure a successful and delicious outcome for your undercooked cheesecake.

Preventing Undercooked Cheesecake

slice of cheese cake

Checking for Doneness

When baking cheesecake, it’s important to know how to check for doneness to avoid undercooking. One popular method to test a cheesecake is the wobble test.

Gently give the pan a little shake, and if the edges look firm while the middle of the cheesecake has a slight jiggle, you have the perfect cheesecake.

The center of the cheesecake will set as it cools. Another method is using the toothpick test. Insert the toothpick into the center, and if it comes out mostly clean, the cheesecake is done.

To ensure accurate cooking, the best way is to use a cooking thermometer to find the temperature of the cheesecake.

The ideal internal temperature for a cheesecake is around 150°F. Keep the oven temperature at 350°F and be sure your cheesecake batter doesn’t have any bubbles, as this could result in uneven cooking.

Once the quick-read thermometer is showing the right temperature, use oven mitts and pull it out of the oven. 

Adding ingredients like whipped cream, heavy cream, gelatin, or a natural thickener (e.g., cornstarch) to the batter is the best method to achieve the desired custard-like texture.

Using a Water Bath

cheesecake slice on plate with graham cracker crumbs

A water bath can help control the temperature and moisture in the oven, preventing the cheesecake from getting overcooked or undercooked.

A cheesecake benefits from a warm water bath as it creates a more even and gentle cooking environment.

Follow these steps to create a water bath for your cheesecake:

  1. Wrap the sides of the pan and bottom of the pan with aluminum foil to prevent leakage.
  2. Place the wrapped cheesecake pan into a larger baking dish.
  3. Fill the larger dish with hot water until it reaches halfway up the sides and outer edges of the cheesecake pan.
  4. Bake the cheesecake at 350°F until the internal temperature reaches 150°F or passes the wobble test.

Using a water bath can help achieve a smoother and creamy cheesecake while greatly reducing the risk of undercooking.

By using these checks and implementing a water bath, you can prevent it from being undercooked and ensure a delicious, perfectly baked cheesecake.

Fixing a Dry or Overbaked Cheesecake

close up of a slice of cheesecake

Adding Moisture

If you have a dry or overbaked cheesecake, don’t worry, there are several methods to rescue it. One way is to add moisture back into your cheesecake.

To do this, first, allow the cheesecake a longer period. Cool completely and allow for it to reach room temperature. Then, spread a thin layer of sour cream on top.

The sour cream not only adds moisture, but also provides a tangy flavor that complements the cheesecake well.

Another option to add moisture is by using a water bath. Place the dry cheesecake in a larger pan filled with an inch of hot water. Wrap each side of the baking pan with foil to prevent water from seeping in.

Bake the cheesecake in the oven at a low temperature for 15-30 minutes, checking every 5 minutes to avoid overcooking the cheesecake.

This slow cooking method helps to reintroduce moisture into the cheesecake and produces a perfectly cooked cheesecake.

Covering Cracks

cheesecake slice on a plate with a fork

The last method is covering cracks. Cracks whether in a small area or in the top of the cheesecake can also be a sign of overbaking.

To prevent cracks, try using a hot water bath during the initial baking process, as it helps to evenly distribute heat and provides a moist atmosphere, reducing the chance of the cheesecake drying out and cracking.

If you already have cracks in your cheesecake, there are ways to cover them up. Gently press the cracks together to close them as much as possible.

You can also smooth them with a small offset spatula if needed. 

A topping like whipped cream, fruit, lemon juice, or a thin layer of melted chocolate can be added to hide the cracks and enhance the cheesecake’s overall appearance.

top view of cheesecake on a platter with knife and forks

Remember to avoid overbaking in the future by using a water bath and ensuring your cheesecake is baked through but not overcooked. The ideal internal temperature should be around 150°F. 

For the cooling process, allow your cheesecake to slowly cool after baking. Chill on a cooling rack in the refrigerator before slicing.

This will also help prevent cracking and maintain a moist, delicious texture.

New York Cheesecake Recipe 

scooping a piece of cheesecake onto spatula

A new york cheesecake is like any other regular cheesecake but is a bit heavier with cream cheese to create a thick and creamy texture.

While this is not the only way to make a cheesecake, follow these steps and tricks for the perfect bakes each time you make and reheat your cheesecake. 

  1. To start, make sure you have clean hands and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line the outside of your pan with aluminum foil.
  2. In a food processor, crush up graham crackers into crumbs.
  3. In a medium bowl combine crushed graham crackers, butter, sugar, and salt. Stir well until combined.
  4. Empty the mixture into the pan. Scrape the sides of the bowl and scrape the bottom of the bowl for any leftover crumbs. Press the crumbs into an even layer on the bottom of the prepared pan. 
  5. Take out your hand mixer or a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment or beaters combine flour, sugar, and cream cheese on low speed. 
  6. Once mixed, add in sour cream. 
  7. Pour the batter into the crust cake’s center.
  8. Set the unbaked cheesecake in a large roasting pan or bain marie. Pour boiling water into the roasting pan until it comes about one inch up the side of the cake pan.
  9. Bake on residual heat until the cake is just set, 1 hour and 30 minutes to 1 hour and 45 minutes.

For a fun twist and added flavor on the surface of the cheesecake use Smuckers magic shell for a chocolate shell on your cheesecake.

Final Thoughts

pouring strawberry sauce over cheesecake on a plate

When considering whether to put a cheesecake back in the oven, several factors and techniques come into play.

A springform pan, commonly used for baking cheesecakes, offers the advantage of easy removal.

However, if the cheesecake requires additional baking, using an instant-read thermometer can help evaluate its doneness by checking the internal temperature.

Egg proteins, which provide structure to the cheesecake, need proper cooking to ensure stability.

If the cheesecake needs more time, carefully place it back in the oven, taking precautions such as removing any plastic wrap.

Classic New York-style cheesecake is known for its dense and creamy texture, and may benefit from a longer cooling period to set properly.

Conducting a pressure test by gently pressing the center of the cheesecake can help determine if it needs further baking.

Additionally, considering the fat content of the cheesecake is important, as higher-fat recipes tend to require longer baking times.

By combining evaluation skills, proper techniques, and an understanding of the specific cheesecake recipe, one can make informed decisions about whether to put a cheesecake back in the oven to achieve the desired texture and taste.

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