Meyer Lemon Cheesecake with Biscoff Crust

January 14, 2012
25 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
Author Notes

A friend needed a cheesecake, and so I made one. And not just a plain vanilla cheesecake, this one is flavored with the juice and zest of Meyer lemons. Have you found the Meyer lemons in your supermarket produce section? (I'm asking this question of my local friends, not my California friends, who all seem to have Meyer lemon trees, leaden with fruit, and the "problem" of too many Meyer lemons. )

This is the second year that I've found the lemons in my suburban Kroger, $1.99 a bag. What is the magic of a Meyer, you ask? Well, it's like a lemon, but not. It's like an orange, but not. It's somewhere in between - not quite as tart as the lemon, not quite as bold as the orange, but a pleasant in-between.

For my lemon cheesecake, I used Biscoff cookies for the crumb crust, instead of the usual graham crackers. Biscoff have a deeper, more molasses taste that suits the Meyer lemons well. Plus, they are just exotic enough to go with the slightly-left-of-center lift of the Meyers. If you fly Delta, save up your little packs, or just visit Kroger, like the rest of us.

This is the best cheesecake I've ever made. Astute recipe readers will note that it's a riff on the classic Three Cities of Spain cheesecake from Gourmet. That is the best basic cheesecake recipe in the world, and is very adaptable. I added the zest and juice of two Meyer lemons, for just the right amount of zip.
Lucy Mercer

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: Lucy Mercer is a freelance writer who cooks, writes, and carpools.
WHAT: A creamy, lemony, celebratory cheesecake.
HOW: Blitz Biscoff cookies for the crust, bake it off, and then pour in a lemony, cream cheese-y filling. Bake, top with sour cream, and bake some more. Ogle at your creation.
WHY WE LOVE IT: We love the combination of zest, juice and lemon extract, which packs a very lemony punch without too much acidity. The sour cream topping adds a great balance to the richness of the filling and looks lovely flecked with lemon zest. And Biscoff cookies as a crust? Sign us up. —Food52

  • Prep time 10 minutes
  • Cook time 45 minutes
  • Serves 10
  • Biscoff crust
  • 5 ounces Biscoff cookies, crumbled
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • Meyer lemon cheesecake filling
  • 3 8-oz. packages cream cheese (low-fat is ok, no-fat is not)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 2 Meyer lemons, zest removed and juice reserved
  • 1 16 oz. carton sour cream (low-fat is ok, no-fat is not)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
In This Recipe
  1. Biscoff crust
  2. Heat oven to 350°F. Prepare a 9-inch springform pan.
  3. In a food processor, blitz Biscoff cookies until finely ground. Add sugar and salt and continue to process. Slowly pour in melted butter and process again.
  4. Press mixture into bottom and up sides of springform pan. Bake in 350 oven for 10 minutes. Remove and let crust cool to room temperature.
  1. Meyer lemon cheesecake filling
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  3. In a mixing bowl, place cream cheese and beat with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add the sugar and mix well, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  4. Add 1/2 of the zest to the cheesecake batter, reserving the remainder. Add all of the juice and the extracts to the batter, and continue to mix. Pour batter into prepared crumb crust. Place pan on baking sheet and bake at 350 for 45 to 55 minutes or until cake is just set in center. Remove cake from oven but do not turn off oven.
  5. Whisk together sour cream, 1 tablespoon sugar and remaining lemon zest. Spoon mixture onto the cheesecake and spread with an offset spatula or knife. Return the cake to the oven and bake for 10 to 15 additional minutes. Remove cheesecake from oven and let cool to room temperature. Store cheesecake, well-wrapped in refrigerator.
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134 Reviews

Elizabeth F. March 22, 2021
Hands down best cheesecake ever!!! I agree that it improved with time. I also baked it in a water bath and it was gorgeous! Two things I will do differently next time is one, line the bottom of the pan with parchment to prevent sticking, (and yes, I sprayed it well, but the crust was a bit sticky-maybe I sprayed it too well?) Two, I’m going to double the Biscoff crust because it was so amazingly, perfectly yummy we couldn’t get enough of it.
Author Comment
Lucy M. April 4, 2021
@Elizabeth, thank you for the kind words about this recipe. I love the tip about the parchment in the bottom of the pan! Happy cooking ~
[email protected] February 3, 2021
This cheesecake was okay the first day but really really good the 3rd day.
I highly recommend making this in advance and serving several days later.

Anusha R. September 21, 2020
Loved this recipe but the prep/ cook time up top seems way off.
- base to cook: 10 minutes
- base to cool: 30 minutes
- batter: 55 minutes
- sour cream: 15 minutes
hankdula December 28, 2019
Amazing Cheesecake!!! I also baked it in a water bath. The next time I make it will use half the butter in the crust. Way too much butter; and I used 8oz of Biscoff. I tried to soak some butter up with paper towels before I baked the crust, and after baking the crust there was butter pouring from the pan. Even after baking the cheesecake there was more butter int the water bath pan. Next time I will use 2 or 3tbs butter rather than 5tbs. Overall it is a good recipe. The Meyer Lemons added a more mellow less tart taste to the cake. Thanks.
Kristina C. December 25, 2019
In full disclosure I am one of those Californians that has the "problem" of having too many meyer lemons growing in my backyard, so I'm always looking for ways to use them. I also was searching for a recipe with a biscoff crust (because I had a costco sized supply at home). What a win/win. This cake was such a crowd pleaser! I replaced one of the 8 oz blocks of cream cheese with 8 oz of mascarpone cheese, something I like to do with my cheesecakes to make them a bit lighter. I baked in a water bath for about 60 minutes. Everyone loved it. It will be my new go-to for cheesecakes, for sure.
Dferris12 December 21, 2019
Amazing! My friend in Phoenix sends me Meyer Lemons from his trees each year. I made this cheesecake and it’s Devine. I followed the recipe exactly. It feeds many due to the rich flavor.
Fran August 18, 2019
So I made this with a few changes and it was outstanding. Can’t wait to make again. I also baked it for a longer time, 60 minutes. I also baked it in a water bath like I bake the other cheesecakes I bake. I could not find Meyer lemons or the Biscoff biscuits, so improvised. I used the rind and juice of both an orange and a lemon. In Costco I found Meyer Lemon Moravian cookie thins and I used them for the crust. This was absolutely by far the best cheesecake I have ever made. I made it for a friend’s 60 th Birthday surprise. All the guests went wild for it. Thank you for a terrific recipe. Still want to try it with the Biscoff biscuits and the real Meyer Lemons.
Author Comment
Lucy M. August 19, 2019
@Fran Thanks for loving this cheesecake!
8675309 March 13, 2019
My recent experience with this recipe was the third time I made it. The first time I followed the instructions exactly. It was a bit too undercooked in the center. The second time I added five minutes cooking time to the first oven time, and it was still not quite there. The third time made a MAJOR difference in the quality of the outcome. i added ten minute to the first oven time and five minutes to the second oven time, and it was perfect! My guests were over-the-top complimentary. With this added time adjustment this will be my go-to desert for dinner parties.
Author Comment
Lucy M. March 13, 2019
Thanks for the comment and I'm so glad you enjoyed the cheesecake!
jc January 6, 2019
OMG! Scrumptious and easy! Everyone loved! Made this for desert after New Years brunch. I will be thinking of this all year...I think it my become a permanent fixture in my holiday favorites.
Author Comment
Lucy M. March 13, 2019
So happy you enjoyed the cheesecake! I'm thinking about making it for Easter ~
ellen December 28, 2018
I thought this was delicious - love the Meyer lemon flavor. However a few comments: I agree with the commenter below who said we should be given an approximate quantity on the yield of the two lemons as they do vary. Secondly, a word of advice to others..I was distracted when I pulled the cake out to add the sour cream and I didn't realize the top was not fully set. Mine definitely need at least another 10 minutes. Unfortunately I put the sour cream on anyway as I wasn't paying full attention. As the top was not set, when I spread it out it just sank into the cake. This led to a goopy top and unattractive look. I ended up making candied lemon peel to put all over the top of cake to hide it which looked great but would not have been necessary if I had done the topping correctly. So make sure your top is set!
Author Comment
Lucy M. March 13, 2019
Thanks so much for the feedback on baking time. I'm editing the recipe to add a time range for doneness.
Therese July 24, 2018
This is outstanding and may be the best cheesecake I’ve ever tasted. Lined with foil after reading the comments about butter leaking which did the trick. Highly recommend.
Author Comment
Lucy M. July 26, 2018
Thanks so much for the comment and I'm so happy you enjoyed the cheesecake recipe ~
FrugalCat June 6, 2018
Biscoff! Genius!
Carly H. May 30, 2018
Thank you for this wonderful recipe!
FYI: For those in the Midwest, I have found Meyer lemons in the "organic" produce section of the Dierbergs grocery chain. Whole Foods has them as well, but Dierbergs is a bit cheaper. :)
HalfPint May 7, 2018
Made this with graham crackers because I didn't have any Biscoff. Added some pumpkin pie spices and more cinnamon to mimic the flavor of Biscoff. Other than adding 2 TB sugar to the sour cream, I followed the recipe as written. The yield on my 2 meyer lemons was ~1/4 cup. Cheesecake baked to a light jiggle in 45 minutes. Strangely, though not unpleasantly, 1 cup of sugar in the batter was not very sweet. It was the most perfect looking cheesecake that I have ever baked. The flavor was tangy and not overly sweet. I didn't have any problems with butter leakage which might have to do with using grahams instead of Biscoff. I learned that I may have been over-cooking cheesecakes in the past. The texture of the baked cheesecake was smooth and almost silky. I think the sour cream topping could probably do with a little more sugar, maybe another tablespoon. This is a really nice cheesecake and easy to make.
lisa April 16, 2018
Made without lemon extract and very good flavor but, as previous comment, wish there was a measurement for the lemon juice. My 2 meyer lemons gave 100 ml. juice. maybe that was too much? I baked a bit more than 'just set' before applying topping and baking again yet end result was too soft and a bit runny in the center. liked the shiny finish of the topping. Made with graham cracker crust (Three Cities of Spain Recipe) with 4.5 T of butter, covering the bottom only, not sides, and butter did not leak. will make again but will adjust volume of juice next time.
styletrend March 28, 2018
Could I substitute Ricotta Cheese and if so is it equal to the amount of cream cheese?
Kay February 1, 2018
My 2 Meyer lemons yielded just over 1c of juice. I wish the recipe would indicate just how much juice is required rather than just "juice of 2 lemons". It took nearly an hour to bake, not a problem really, the flavor is wonderful.
Rita December 23, 2017
If you omit the lemon... is this cake delicious as vanilla cream cheeses cake as well?
dedododo December 10, 2017
Took almost twice as long as the recipe indicated to bake until the cake set. Seems like a lot of lemon juice in the batter slowing down the set time (and working with a new, perfectly calibrated oven.) But a pleasant cake nonetheless.
steven P. May 9, 2017
i made recipe as stated,took longer to bake @15-20 . minutes +sour cream time
i used 8 inch spring form pan. u can use any cookie crumb as base because those listed are pricey. great flavor with those lemons. I needed to make larger cakes and doubled recipe that completely filled 10 in spring form pan
longer cook time, actually dropped oven temp to 300 f good results nice tasting cheesecake