Sopaipilla Cheesecake

Merry Christmas, readers!  I hope you all are reading this in the company of family and friends.  I hope you’re reading this in warm homes and with full bellies.  Most of all readers, I hope you’re reading this and thinking about what a wonderful year you’ve had.

Here in Arizona, the Southwestern influence is especially strong during Christmas.  Many people celebrate with a candlelight church service and a big family dinner of posole and tamales.  This year, I’m bringing dessert and I wanted to make sure it would be one to impress.  I took inspiration from another New Mexican treat–sopaipillas.  Cinnamon sugar, Mexican vanilla, and honey meet cheesecake.  Que delicioso!

Sopaipilla Cheesecake

an “Apple a Day” original

printer-friendly recipe


For the crust:

12 honey graham crackers, processed into crumbs

1 TBSP vanilla sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

3 TBSP butter, melted

For the cheesecake:

3 (8-oz.) bricks cream cheese

1 c. sour cream

1 c. vanilla sugar

4 eggs

1 TBSP Mexican vanilla extract

1/3 c. honey

1/4 c. cinnamon sugar mixture

For the garnish:

honey, for drizzling

confectioner’s sugar, for dusting


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Wrap a springform pan with foil.  (This will prevent water from the water bath getting into the pan.)

2.  Combine all ingredients for the crust and press into a springform pan, going halfway up the sides.  bake for ten minutes.  Allow to cool.

3.  While crust is cooling, beat cream cheese and sour cream until well combined.  Add vanilla sugar and beat on medium speed until creamy, about three minutes.

4.  Add in eggs, one at a time, and beat until thoroughly combined.

5.  Add Mexican vanilla, honey, and cinnamon to cream cheese mixture.  Pour over cooled crust.

6.  Place springform pan in a water bath and bake for approximately one hour. 

7.  After one hour, remove cheesecake from the oven.  (The center will still be jiggly and the outer edges of the cheesecake will be pulling slightly away from the sides of the pan.)  Sprinkle cinnamon sugar mixture evenly over the top of the cheesecake.

8.  Turn oven to broil and place cheesecake back in the oven.  Watch carefully and pull the cheesecake from the oven as soon as the cinnamon sugar has caramelized.  Place on a wire rack and allow to cool, uncovered, for three hours then cover and place in the refrigerator for at least three hours before serving.

9.  To serve, cut into 12-16 pieces.  Place each slice on a plate, then drizzle with honey and sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired.

two years ago: Red velvet cake with cream cheese frosting, one of my most popular posts.

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  1. ann
    December 25, 2010 / 3:51 pm

    Wow, what a beautiful looking dessert. You are very lucky to have such wonderful family in your life! Happy and healthy New year!

  2. ErinsFoodFiles
    December 27, 2010 / 6:55 pm

    HOW RANDOM! Over the holidays my sister made "Sopaipilla Cheesecake" twice for two of our gatherings. Except, her recipe was NOTHING like yours. Hers included crescent rolls. And yes, my cooking style is completely opposite of hers. Finally I called her out and said "That is not cheesecake."ANYWAYS… I would rather of had your version! YUM!

  3. Kelsey
    December 27, 2010 / 7:27 pm

    Erin, I saw the recipe you're talking about on It was helpful in figuring out some ratios and amounts for ingredients, but I'm with you on the crescent rolls. I figured I could do a little better than that…especially for Christmas!

  4. Ashley
    December 30, 2010 / 3:48 pm

    This is beautiful!

  5. Bridget
    January 2, 2011 / 12:24 am

    Love it!

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