This red, white, and blue mini 4th of July cheesecake recipe is the perfect patriotic dessert! Each bite-sized treat has a sweet crust, a deliciously creamy cheesecake, and a rich topping with cream and berries!
I’m kind of obsessed with mini bite-sized foods. They’re just perfect for serving at parties, plus I feel like I can eat a bunch of them without feeling like I’m stuffing myself!
So instead of making a regular size cheesecake for 4th of July this year, I’m making these red, white, and blue mini cheesecakes instead! They’ll be a perfect treat to make after we do this 4th of July scavenger hunt!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Bite-sized treats – these little mini cheesecakes are perfect for serving at parties where you don’t want to deal with cutting a full-size cheesecake. Plus, everyone loves cute little mini things!
- Amazing flavor – the cheesecake layer in the middle is absolutely delicious, especially when topped with the creamy topping and fresh fruit!
- Easy to make – while they take a bit of time (for the cheesecake to set), these are super easy to make! You can even let the kids help!
- Vanilla wafers – you can either use the full-size wafers or the mini ones; you’ll be crushing them in a food processor so it really doesn’t matter. I also like making these with shortbread cookies for the crust like I did with my Easter mini cheesecakes!
- Cream cheese – make sure this is softened to room temperature so you don’t end up with lumps in your cheesecake mixture. I recommend taking it out about an hour before you need to use it.
- Instant cheesecake pudding mix – if you can’t find this or don’t have it, you can use vanilla instant pudding mix as well, it just won’t have the same distinct cheesecake filling.
How to Make 4th of July Cheesecake
Okay so the first you need to do is preheat you oven to 350 degrees and line muffin tins with cupcake liners.
Then it’s time to make your crust. Toss all the Vanilla Wafers in a food processor and let them process until you have Vanilla Wafer crumbs.
Add the melted butter into the mix and pulse a couple of times to incorporate the butter into the crumbs to get your crumb mixture.
Fill each of the cupcake liners with about a tablespoon of the mixture and press it down lightly with the back of our tablespoon just to set it all together.
Next, make your filling by creaming the cream cheese and sugar together in a stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Mix them together until completely smooth.
Add the sour cream, lemon juice, vanilla, and eggs to the mixture and mix again – you’re going for a nice smooth batter. It should only take a minute or two if your cream cream is soft like it should be.
Fill each of the muffin cups with about a 1/4 cup of the mixture, pouring it right on top of the crust. This should fill the cups up about 3/4 full, giving you about 1/4 left to add your topping once they’re baked.
Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes. When it hits 25 minutes, turn off the oven and crack the oven door. Leave them in the turned off oven (with the door cracked) for another hour to let the cheesecakes set completely.
After the hour is up, remove the cheesecakes from the oven and allow them to cool to room temperature. Once they’re at room temperature, put them in the fridge to chill for another hour before topping.
Why do they need to cool to room temperature before putting them in the fridge? They’ll crack otherwise – if you go directly from heat to cool.
They’ll still lightly sink slightly, but that’s okay because you’re going to fill in that cavity with toppings anyway!
Once they’re completely cooled, it’s time to top them! I like to top them right before serving since the whipped cream tends to go a little flat otherwise.
Whip the heavy cream, instant cheesecake mix, and powdered sugar together until fluffy. This typically takes just a few minutes and you’ll notice peaks beginning to form, just like a normal whipped cream.
Pipe a little dollop of whipped cream onto each of the mini cheesecakes with a spoon or a piping bag if you want to get fancy!
Then finally top them with fresh berries – blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries are great. If you’re going for the flag look, I do a mix of blueberries, strawberries, and then just plain cheesecakes, or cheesecakes topped with just the whipped cream for the white stripes!
Oh and one word of warning, the mini cheesecakes will go quick, so make sure to get a picture right when you set them down or you’ll never see that flag again!
Serve ideally from chilled but they should be fine sitting out for a while at say a 4th of July party!
If you want to prepare ahead of time, make the cheesecakes and topping and refrigerate those. Add the toppings just before serving.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.
The crust will soften after being in the fridge for 24 hours. They’ll still taste fine, just know that the crust will be a bit softer after 24 hours. If you know you want to make them ahead of time and worried about a soft crust, you may want to do a graham cracker crust instead.
If you want to make a full 24 cheesecakes (instead of the 18 it’s written for), put 2 tsp of crust into each cup and 2-3 TBS filling. They’ll be a little smaller but still have a good ratio of filling to crust.
Bake mini cheesecakes in cupcake liners to make it easy to remove them from the pan and to keep the crust together while it bakes. Use silicone muffin tins to make it even easier to pop them right out!
If the cheesecake looks soft but not wet, it’s done. You shouldn’t have any issues with them being underdone if you cook 25 minutes then let them sit in the warm oven for an hour to finish cooking/fully set.
More Fruity Treats
If you like desserts with fruit, you’ll love these other yummy treats!
- 4th of July chocolate covered strawberries – red, white, and blue strawberries covered with chocolate, sprinkles, and delicious flavor!
- Pineapple bread – a soft and flavorful bread that will have you wishing you were somewhere tropical!
- Lemon poppyseed bread – another quick bread with a strong citrus flavor that is complemented perfectly by the delicious icing!
- Strawberry cream cheese danish – a semi-homemade strawberry danish recipe with an absolute killer cream cheese filling!
- Strawberry scones with glaze – sweet scones made out of fresh strawberries and topped with a simple yet delightful icing.
Mini 4th of July Cheesecake
- 5 ounces Vanilla Wafers
- 2 TBS butter melted
- 16 ounces cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 TBS powdered sugar
- 1 TBS instant cheesecake pudding mix dry
- fresh berries cut into bite-sized pieces
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Line two muffin tins with cupcake liners for 18 cheesecakes.
- Add Vanilla Wafers to food processor and pulse until fine crumbs form.
- Add butter and pulse again until the crumbs and butter are fully combined and form a thicker mixture.
- Fill prepped cupcake liners with about 1 TBS of the crust mixture and press down into the cup gently with the back of the tablespoon.
- Cream together the cream cheese and sugar until smooth using a paddle attachment in a stand mixer. Scrape down the sides as needed to make sure the ingredients are well mixed.
- Add sour cream, eggs, lemon juice, and vanilla to the creamed mixture and beat until smooth.
- Add 1/4 cup on top of each of the crusts in the cupcake liners, leaving about 1/4 inch at the top of each of the cups.
- Bake in the preheated oven at 350 for 25 minutes. Turn off the oven, crack the oven door, and leave the cheesecakes in the oven for another hour until fully set.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature. Once at room temperature, put the cheesecakes in the fridge to chill for another hour.
- Just before serving, whip heavy cream, powdered sugar, and instant pudding mix together until the mixture turns fluffy.
- Pipe a large dollop of topping onto each of the mini cheesecakes.
- Top each of the cheesecakes with fresh berries (or just topping for white cheesecakes).
- Serve immediately and enjoy chilled!
Tips & Notes:
- Instant cheesecake pudding filling – you want this to be dry, not already mixed together.
- Heavy whipping cream – make sure this is cold, straight out of the fridge, for the best consistency.
- Powdered sugar – also known as confectioners sugar
- Vanilla Wafers - you can use either the regular size or the mini ones
- Cream cheese – this needs to be at room temperature so that you don’t end up with lumps in your cheesecake. I recommend taking it out about an hour before you’re ready to start making your filling!
- Instant cheesecake pudding mix – can also substitute this with vanilla instant pudding mix, it just won’t have the same distinct cheesecake filling.
Note: This recipe was originally written as a protein packed mini cheesecake recipe using Vital Proteins. It has since been totally changed. If you would like the original recipe, you can get a printable copy here.