These decadent mini chocolate cheesecakes have a chocolatey mint cookie crust and are topped with a swirl of chocolate whipped cream. Any chocolate mint cookie will suffice for this recipe but if you happen to find a box of frozen thin mints stashed in the fridge, here's a perfect excuse to use those up instead of eating a whole sleeve by yourself! But that is perfectly acceptable as well :-).
I look forward to girl scout cookie season every year. There are quite a few of the cookies that I always like to stock up on and thin mints are one of those favorites. I like to place the box in the freezer and then try to not eat a whole sleeve of cookies each time I dig in. There is just something about freezing the thin mints that make them so much better!
For these mini chocolate cheesecakes, I thought thin mint cookies would be the best vehicle for the creamy chocolate filling. If you don't have any thin mints on hand, feel free to substitute any mint chocolate cookie you can find in the grocery store. If you can't find mint cookies, then just use whatever cookies sounds best to you!
How to make mini cheesecakes
This is a pretty simple recipe that doesn't take long to make. You'll start these off by making the cookie crust with crushed cookies. I like to either place the whole cookies in a food processor and grind them up or place them into a zip-top bag and use a rolling pin to crush them into fine pieces. You'll add some melted butter to the crushed cookies, stirring until the butter coats the cookies. Line a muffin tray with paper liners and then place about a tablespoon and a half of crushed cookies into each cup. I use a shot glass to tamp down the crumbs.
Next, comes the silky filling! You'll mix together the softened cream cheese, eggs, sugar, melted chocolate, whipping cream and vanilla until smooth and creamy. Be careful not to overmix at this step. Just mix until all the ingredients are combined.
You'll scoop about 2 tbsp of filling on top of the unbaked cookie crust in each muffin cup. Bake these at 350 for about 18-22 minutes until the middle is mostly set. Once they've cooled you can top them with a dollop or swirl of chocolate whipped cream. To make the cream, you simply whip together powdered sugar, heavy cream, cocoa powder and vanilla until medium stiff peaks form.
How to prevent the cheesecakes from sinking in the middle?
Sinking in the middle can be caused by multiple reasons. One of the biggest causes is from overmixing your filling. Try not to whip too much air into the cheesecakes. When too much air is incorporated into the filling, the cheesecakes will rise quickly when baking and then fall causing the middle to sink. Ideally, if using a stand mixer, use a paddle attachment for the filling instead of the whisk attachment to reduce the amount of air when mixing.
The second reason this happens is related to the first. Make sure your ingredients are room temperature so that you don't have to overmix the cream cheese to get it to soften. This will incorporate too much air in the mixture and will cause the cheesecake to sink.
One additional ingredient that can help provide more structure to the cheesecake and prevent sinking is a little bit of flour. I didn't include it in this recipe but if you are still having trouble with sinking middles, try adding 1 tbsp of flour to the filling.
How to tell when they are done
To test for doneness toward the end of cooking, simply wiggle the pan slightly. If the mini chocolate cheesecakes jiggle slightly only in the center but the edges are set, then your cheesecakes are likely done. If they jiggle in more than the center or jiggle a lot in the center, then give them another couple minutes in the oven.
How to store the cheesecakes
These will keep well in the refrigerator for about 5 days if they are stored in an airtight container. Another great thing about these is that they can be made ahead and then easily frozen. Place the fully cooled cheesecakes in a ziptop bag or airtight container in a single layer and place in the freezer. Defrost them overnight in the refrigerator and then top with the whipped cream before serving. They will keep well in the freezer for up to 3 months if stored properly.
For other Marble Kitchen cheesecake recipes, check these out! Please tag me on instagram @tarakringlen if you make any of these recipes.
- Carrot Cake Cheesecake Cupcakes
- Raspberry Cheesecake with a Brownie Crust
- Frozen Strawberry Cheesecake with a Pretzel Crust
Mini Chocolate Cheesecakes with Thin Mint Crusts
- 1 9 oz box of thin mint cookies (or other chocolate mint cookies) crushed (about 2 cups)
- 4 tbsp unsalted butter melted
- 2 8 oz packages of cream cheese room temperature
- 2 eggs room temperature
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
- 4 oz bittersweet chocolate chopped and melted
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ½ cups heavy whipping cream
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tsp vanilla
- Combine crushed cookies and melted butter in a small bowl until combined.
- Line muffin tin with paper liners. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat together the softened cream cheese, eggs, sugar, melted chocolate, whipping cream and vanilla until creamy and smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Do not whip too much air into the mixture.
- Scoop about 1 ½ tbsp of cookie crumb mixture into each cup and use a small glass or your fingers to pack it down slightly.
- Scoop about 2 tbsp of the cream cheese filling over the cookie crust and smooth the tops.
- Bake for about 18-22 minutes or until the middles are mostly set. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes and then transfer the cheesecakes to the refrigerator to chill for 1-2 hours.
- Once completely chilled and ready to serve, top with a dollop of chocolate whipped cream or pipe a swirl of whipped cream.
Chocolate Whipped Cream
- Combine all ingredients and whip with an electric or stand mixer until medium stiff peaks form.
- Cool in the pan for 15 minutes and then transfer the cheesecakes to an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. If you leave the cheesecakes in the muffin tin, the bottoms make stick to the pan and make it difficult to get them out.
- These keep for about 5 days in an airtight container in the fridge or can be frozen for up to 3 months, tightly covered.