Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

A cocoa almond flour crust makes an addictive base for fluffy cheesecake kissed with goat cheese and sour cream and smothered in Earl Grey tea poached pears and ruby pomegranate arils. Gluten-free and adapted from Alternative Baker: Reinventing Dessert with Gluten-Free Grains and Flours. 

drizzling sauce on Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

Today’s post is extra special as it features not only a dessert loaded with CHEESE, but also because I’ve teamed up with the lovely folks at Rodelle and KitchenAid to give away a KitchenAid® Artisan® Mini Stand Mixer, a box of delicious organic baking ingredients, and a copy of my book! See below for details.

patting down crust

I love cheesecake (and really anything sweet made with cream cheese) but I’ve always shied away from making large cheesecakes, favoring smaller bars, or just putting cream cheese frosting on everything. Among the perils of large cheesecakes lurk tricksy water baths, leaky springform pans, stale store bought cookie crusts, lumpy filling, changing oven temperatures, cracking, breaking… the list goes on.

cheesecake filling spread on cake

But a few months ago, Sarah and I styled this cheesecake for The New York Times, an old family recipe from Amanda Hesser. It boasts a chocolate cinnamon crust and an easy-peasy filling laced with vanilla bean. Its shorter size means it cooks evenly without any problems, with a good crust-to-filling ratio. It’s perfectly creamy, not too sweet, a little tangy, and completely addictive.

hot water into jug

The crust reminded me of something else addictive: the cocoa almond tart crust from my book. So I decided to mash up a couple of different recipes (cocoa almond crust and chevre cheesecake bars) and flavor loves (Earl Grey, pears, and pomegranate) from my book and brave a full-grown cheesecake. I’m so glad I did.

poaching pears

The crust may be made from scratch but, once you have the ingredients on hand, it’s nearly as easy to mix up as a cookie crust: just toss all the ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer, and paddle until it comes together in moist clumps, then press into the sides and bottom of the pan. Freeze, parbake, and voilà: a crispy, crumbly crust that tastes like deep chocolate wafer cookies, but fresher and naturally gluten-free. The crust creates an airtight barrier to prevent leaking, and a sturdy springform pan, such as the KitchenAid® Springform Pan that I used here, helps, too.

overhead shot of Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

Sarah and I are particularly enamored of Rodelle’s dutch process cocoa powder – it’s soft and dark, with a creamy chocolate flavor. (Stay tuned for a couple of videos that we made in collaboration with Rodelle and KitchenAid highlighting this lovely product!) Rodelle also makes divinely tasty vanilla extract and plump vanilla beans, both of which flavor this luscious cheesecake from top to bottom in every layer – vanilla extract in the crust and sour cream topping, vanilla seeds in the filling, and vanilla pods in the poached pears. It’s a chocolate and vanilla lover’s dream come true.

top of Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

Both the crust and the filling are easy to whip up with the help of a stand mixer. I grew up with a KitchenAid® stand mixer and can’t imagine life without one. I inherited my grandmother’s avocado green stand mixer which dates back several decades and never failed me. Then I bought one used from a colleague in pastry school 12 years ago – it lives on top of our refrigerator and works beautifully, though it takes a bit of hefting to move it to the counter when needed. Thus I was thrilled to learn that KitchenAid came out with a smaller stand mixer that’s about 20% smaller and 25% lighter than the full size KitchenAid® tilt-head stand mixer but gets the job done for most home projects. I’m smitten with my new mini.

sliced Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

The cheesecake requires a few steps – baking the crust, making and baking the filling, mixing up the sour cream topping, and poaching the pears – but all can be done ahead of time, including the whole cheesecake which keeps beautifully, refrigerated airtight, for several days. The cheesecake pops out easily with the help of the sturdy crust. To slice, just be sure to use a large chef’s knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean between each cut.

4 slices of Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

Top slices with the poached pears, pomegranate arils, and a drizzle of the reduced poaching syrup. The cocoa crust crunches in your mouth as the fluffy cheesecake dissolves into a puddle of creamy lusciousness, vanilla and tangy dairy playing off the subtle flavors of citrusy bergamot, floral black tea, and bright pops of pomegranate. The whole thing is well-balanced and completely addictive. I use a fairly mild chèvre made by Sierra Nevada Cheese Company, and it makes an especially divine filling that doesn’t taste at all funky or savory; it just tastes like the best cheesecake you’ve ever had.

Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free} on plate

I fact, I think I’ll have another slice.

Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free} with mixer on table


TO ENTER: Leave a comment below about your favorite holiday dessert.

THE DETAILS: Open to residents in the U.S. only. Giveaway will run from Tuesday, November 22nd through Tuesday, November 29th, 2016. A winner will be chosen at random and notified by email by Sunday, December 4th.

Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free} and cook book

Also! If you’re in the San Francisco area, I’ll be at Green Apple Books tonight (Tuesday 11/22) with my pal Irvin Lin, signing our books and sharing sweet treats. We’d love to see you there! And if you’d like to order a signed copy, we’re offering a special deal over at GFF Magazine.

slices of Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

More Cheesecake Recipes:

*Bojon appétit! For more Bojon Gourmet in your life, follow along on Instagram,  Facebook, or Pinterest, purchase my gluten-free cookbook Alternative Baker, or subscribe to receive new posts via email. And if you make this gluten free chocolate cheesecake recipe, I’d love to know. Leave a comment and rating below, and tag your Instagram snaps @The_Bojon_Gourmet  and  #bojongourmet.*

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Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}

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A cocoa almond flour crust makes an addictive base for fluffy cheesecake kissed with goat cheese and sour cream and smothered in Earl Grey tea poached pears and ruby pomegranate arils.
Prep: 30 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 20 minutes
Total: 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings: 10 -12 servings



  • 1/2 cup (80 g) sweet white rice flour
  • 1/2 cup (60 g) blanched almond flour (such as Bob’s Red Mill)
  • 1/2 cup (45 g) cocoa powder (preferably dutch-process)
  • 2 tablespoons (12 g) tapioca flour
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) organic granulated cane sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon plus 1⁄8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 5 tablespoon (70 g) cold, unsalted butter, diced into 1⁄2” cubes
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 8 ounce (230 g) fresh soft goat cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 ounce (230 g) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (165 g) organic granulated cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (15 g) sweet white rice flour
  • Seeds from 1-2 vanilla beans (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) sour cream


  • 1 ½ cups (355 ml) sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons (40 g) organic granulated cane sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

Poached Pears:

  • 4 cups (950 ml) boiling water
  • 3 tablespoons loose Earl Grey tea leaves
  • ¾ cup (165 g) organic granulated cane sugar
  • 2 scraped vanilla pods (from above)
  • 4 medium, firm-ripe pears (such as Bosc), peeled, halved, cored
  • juice of 1 large lemon


Make the crust:

  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 375ºF.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the almond and sweet rice flours with the cocoa powder, tapioca starch, sugar and salt. Scatter the butter pieces over the top and drizzle with the vanilla extract. Turn the mixer to medium-low and run until the dough comes together in clumps and the butter is worked through, 3–5 minutes. (It will seem as though the dough won’t come together, but don’t worry – it will!)
  • Dump the crumbs into a 9-inch springform pan and press the dough evenly into the bottom and 1 ¼ inches up the sides, starting with the sides and then moving to the bottom, keeping the edges square. (It usually takes me about 5 minutes to make it look pretty.) Freeze until firm, 15–30 minutes.
  • Place the pan on a rimmed baking sheet (to catch any drips) and bake until slightly puffed and firm to the touch, 18–22 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and, while it’s still hot, press the sides and bottom with the back of a spoon. This will help it hold together when cool. Decrease the oven to 325ºF.

Make the filling:

  • Wipe the bowl of the stand mixer clean and add the softened goat cheese, cream cheese, sugar, rice flour, vanilla seeds, and salt. Mix on medium low until smooth and creamy, 2-3 minutes, scraping the bowl and paddle a few times. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing on medium-low until combined and scraping the bowl and paddle well between each egg, then stir in the the ¼ cup sour cream.
  • Pour the filling into the cooled crust and bake at 325ºF until gently puffed and mostly set when you give it a wiggle, 40-45 minutes. Remove from the oven.

Make the topping:

  • While the cheesecake bakes, whisk together the 1 ½ cups sour cream, sugar, and vanilla. Gently spoon the sour cream mixture over the cheesecake, spread smooth, and return to the oven for 10 minutes. Remove the cheesecake and allow it to cool completely at room temperature, 1-2 hours, then chill until cold, 4 hours and up to 1 or 2 days.

Make the pears:

  • In a large, heatproof measuring pitcher, pour the boiling water over the tea leaves and let steep 5 minutes. Strain the tea into a wide skillet with high sides, or another large pot. Add the sugar and vanilla pods and bring to a boil. Add the pears and lemon juice (the liquid should just cover the pears, but you can add more water if need be) and simmer the pears until just tender but still holding a shape, 8-12 minutes, turning the pears over halfway through. Remove the pears to a plate and simmer the poaching liquid until thick and syrupy, 10-20 minutes. Let cool. Cut the pears into chunks.
  • To serve the cheesecake, release the edge of the springform pan and slide the cheesecake onto a platter or cutting board. Cut into slices with a large chef’s knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean between each cut. Serve slices topped with the poached pears, pomegranate arils, and a drizzle of poaching syrup. Extra cheesecake keeps well, refrigerated airtight, for up to several days (if you can make it last that long).


Don't fear the unusual ingredients in this recipe – almond and sweet rice flours, goat cheese, and Earl Grey tea. The result tastes familiar and comforting.
Be sure to make this cheesecake several hours ahead so that it chills through before serving; or better yet, make it the day before - it keeps beautifully refrigerated airtight. The crust and pears can also be made ahead.
The chèvre adds a bit of tang without tasting overly funky, but feel free to trade it out for more cream cheese if you prefer. I use a mild chèvre from Sierra Nevada Cheese Company, but other good brands include Laura Chenel and Cypress Grove.
Extra poaching syrup can be mixed with bourbon, fizzy water, and a squeeze of lemon for a tasty cocktail.
In the summer months, try this cheesecake topped with fresh berries and honey in place of the fall fruits.
Components of this recipe are adapted from Alternative Baker.
Nutritional values are based on one of ten servings.


Calories: 550kcal | Carbohydrates: 65g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 120mg | Sodium: 331mg | Potassium: 271mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 48g | Vitamin A: 1055IU | Vitamin C: 4.5mg | Calcium: 134mg | Iron: 1.8mg
Making this? I'd love to see!Tag your snaps @The_Bojon_Gourmet and #bojongourmet!

top down shot of Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}



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132 thoughts on “Chocolate Crusted Chèvre Cheesecake with Earl Grey Poached Pears & Pomegranate {gluten-free}”

  1. My favorite holiday dessert is pumpkin ‘dump’ cake.. pumpkin pie with dry cake batter dumped in before baking.. topped with caramel. The most amazing.
    Can’t wait to try this cheesecake!

  2. My favorite holiday dessert is pie. I am partial to Apple pie with a buttery flaky crust served with my homemade vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce.

  3. I love a spiced apple pie with mixed berries ala mode of course! That said, I’m going to make your cheesecake for Thanksgiving. It sounds delish!

  4. This looks immensely tasty! I love earl grey in desserts. And I would love love love to add a mini KitchenAid stand mixer to our kitchen – we’ve been looking at them for ages, but they’re still outside of our budget right now.

    My favorite holiday dessert has always been shortbread cookies with icing. The aunt and cousin that my family always visits make shortbread cookies in a variety of holiday shapes – angels, wreaths, sleighs – and when I was a kid we would ice them with pastel green, red, and white icings. It has always been one of my favorite traditions.

  5. Thank you for so many delicious recipes. As my family transitions away from gluten we are amazed to find a whole world of creative and satisfying dishes…mostly from Bojon Gourmet! You have opened our eyes to so many new flavor choices. Our favorite holiday dessert had been A Greek specialty called bougatsa until I tried your blood orange and corn flour ricotta cake…we can’t get enough. Happy Holiday!

  6. I’m a total pie person for Thanksgiving. Apple’s my favorite, but honestly any pie will do. While on the topic of pies, I just made two from your book to celebrate an early Thanksgiving with my reluctantly gluten-free mother-in-law. I was nervous until she took the first bite and closed her eyes. They were both delicious.

    I bet this cheesecake is absolutely delicious as well. I’m bookmarking this for the next time I need to make a cheesecake.

  7. This sounds delicious! I love goat dairies, in desserts too!
    Well, we don’t have a lot of holiday desserts in Italy, especially in our region, but I think that Panettone is the one that brings me to my teenage the most ^_^

  8. My mother always makes a crocembouche for Christmas, all stacked up like a Christmas tree. She stuffs the cream puffs with spiked whipped cream and drizzles the tower with icing. She’s been doing this since the seventies–such sophistication in a time when Jello desserts reigned supreme. It’s a beautiful, elegant and delicious tradition.

  9. My favorite holiday dessert is pecan pie. I’ll let my mom handle that, but this year I will be making your Apricot, Almond, and Brown Butter Buckle–using persimmons. (Fingers crossed that turns out well–I never have good luck getting good apricots on the east coast, but I have some perfect Fuyu persimmons). I’m also pondering trying the fig and olive oil cake with the persimmons. Happy Thanksgiving!

  10. My favorite holiday dessert is Rum Cake. My mother always made the Bacardi rum version of the cake using a yellow box cake. A few years ago I directed my attention to making a gluten-free version from scratch that my entire family loved, even mom. That being said, I love cheesecake too with raspberry sauce. I purchased your gorgeous cookbook last week and am looking forward to trying your recipes. In particular, the persimmon cake caught my eye. I already have persimmon pulp resting in the freezer that is ready to be incorporated into something delicious.

  11. Oh my goodness! That cheesecake! I commented on IG that I love peppermint bark brownies. But I am having a hard time narrowing it down! I really love tarts in any shape or form. And I can’t wait to make this recipe over the weekend! Your post sold me!

  12. Wow, does this looks yummy! My favorite holiday dessert is caramel pecan pie i first tasted at my bff’s wedding 2 years ago. Her grandma made pies for the wedding and she gave me the recipe!

  13. I have to make this! I am particularly fond of goat cheese in desserts; this looks divine.
    My favorite dessert, always, is pie, pie, pie. I’m partial to apple (October birthday here! lol) but as long as the crust is good, I’ll eat it, and probably half of it, at that!

  14. My favorite Thanksgiving dessert is a classic Pumpkin pie. Christmas, though, is a French Silk. My mother made one every year and it was amazing…even my calorie counting uncle ate it!

  15. Hands down my mum’s brown sugar cinnamon kringle. Rumor has it that she isn’t making it this year — for the first time in my 30-some years of life — so the baking might fall on me. It wouldn’t be Christmas without it! Maybe some poached pears on the side…

  16. Pumpkin pie is my favorite holiday desert but this cheesecake looks fantastic. I think I’m going to try the recipe this holiday.

  17. My favorite holiday dessert is homemade mini pumpkin cheesecake (baked using muffin tin). I usually make this a few days after I have made gingerbread cookies and use crushed cookies for the bottom of the cheesecakes.

  18. Pumpkin pie is my favorite holiday dessert. We usually only eat it for Thanksgiving and Christmas, so it’s a special dessert to us.

  19. I am planning to make the chocolate cranberry pecan tart for Thanksgiving but now I may have to switch gears. The cheesecake sounds wonderful. Maybe I’ll make both…

  20. This is a gorgeous cheesecake Alanna, I absolutely love cheesecake so much.

    Oh I cannot stop looking at these photos.

    P.S. I’m outside of the US and just commenting because I love this, it’s not a competition entry. Although I’d love a KitchenAid min and copy of your book :-)

  21. Pizzelles (Italian cookies) are my favorite holiday treat. Anise, Chocolate, and Orange Rum are some of the types I make for my family!

  22. My favorite Thanksgiving dessert is homemade, Apple Pie. After Thanksgiving it’s all about cookies. It’s a tradition my mom started and I’m happy to follow along. The must make cookies are Russian Tea Cakes, Lemon Bars, Chocolate Chips and Peanut Butter Pillows. After making the traditional recipes it’s a free for all! In keeping with the holiday spirit, the products of the cookie marathon are meant for sharing!

    Have been wanting to ask, will you be doing a book signing down my way? Bookshop Santa Cruz?

  23. My favorite Holiday desert is cheesecake. it is so versatile. You can use many different toppings , or create your own.

  24. My favorite is our mom bakes a chocolate cake ice cream cake roll and fills it with peppermint ice cream the kind with the peppermint candies. She’ll make hot fudge sauce and whipped cream to top it off

  25. My favorite holiday dessert depends on the holiday but all of my favorites evoke memories of my mom taking out the @kitchenaidusa classic grey mixer and helping her bake by spooning in the vanilla and other ingredients. I love chocolate cheesecake for my birthday, pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving , and carrot cake for Christmas. I hope to relive old memories and try new dessert recipes from the Alternative Baker in my little apartment with a kitchen aid mixer and Rodelle ingredients !

  26. My grandmother always made a “date pudding” -which is a version of sticky toffee pudding. I have adapted it as a paleo cupcake (with almond flour), served with a caramel sauce. My family insists it is better than the original. Less sugar means more date flavor!

  27. Looks delicious! My favorite holiday dessert is homemade apple crisp. It always tastes better when we’ve picked the apples ourselves.

  28. Hi Alanna, thank you so much for your wonderful recipes. It’s so encouraging to see that gluten-free baking can be delicious and not complicated!

    My family is Korean so we enjoy both American and Korean desserts every holiday. My grandmother doesn’t bake but she always serves ricecakes (naturally gluten-free) or sweet steamed glutinous rice mixed with dried fruits and chestnuts (also GF) during the holidays. When I became older and taught myself how to bake, I started incorporating American ingredients to Korean-style sweets to combine the two cultures that I grew up with and love dearly; for example, for Thanksgiving I’ll make a sweet kabocha pumpkin mochi ricecake in addition to classic pumpkin pie. I love pumpkin so I would say both are my favorite holiday desserts.

  29. Every year I’ve made a foolproof pumpkin cheesecake from the Santa Fe Cooking School cookbook my mom gave me when I moved away from home. Really. Foolproof! This year however, I’ll be making Bill Smith’s Atlantic beach pie, a lemon-lime pie with a saltine cracker crust. This cheesecake is also going in the mix sometime this year, maybe for Christmas dessert!

  30. I made a delicious persimmon pudding with whiskey sauce (and healthy flour substitutes) last Christmas, and I think it’s my new favorite dessert!

  31. I love pumpkin pie. Actually I am crazy about anything pumpkin; pie, cake, bars, bread etc… I can’t wait to make my GF, dairy free pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving. I’m counting the hours until tomorrow’s baking marathon of píe making! Your recipe looks amazing I will make that another day since I live up in the mountains and my pantry doesn’t have all the ingredients otherwise I certainly would make it. I’m so glad I found your blog!

  32. I am lying in bed, recuperating from spine surgery, reading this recipe and dreaming of standing in my kitchen to make this my new favorite holiday recipe. I will have to recruit someone hale and hardy to move my 30 year old Kitchen Aid mixer to my kitchen island. Can’t wait!

  33. This looks so pretty and fresh. I love chocolate peppermint crinkle cookies or a well made cup of chocolate peppermint cocoa is really delicious and satisfying.

  34. What a stunning cheesecake! For the holidays my favorite dessert to make is my mom’s Red Velvet Cake recipe. It doesn’t have cocoa in it and tastes more like a spice cake. Oh and the icing is incredible – it’s made with milk that’s warmed then cooled.

  35. My favorite holiday dessert has always been mom’s apple dumplings with vanilla ice cream. They are a LOT of work, and every time I make them I wonder if it is really worth the effort….until that first bite when all of those thoughts disappear!

  36. Your recipe looks amazing, Wow. My favourite Holiday treat is the Original Gingerbread Loaf and a Raisin Pie, my mom used to make an incredible amazing beautiful runny raisin pie, Butter Tarts and I can’t forget my Rolly Pollys. We all love those. Thankyou and Rodelle for this chance for a gift I’ve always wanted

  37. I always look forward to gingerbread and ginger snaps around the holidays. This year I let myself make them before thanksgiving, because it’s just not necessary to wait until December! I cannot wait to make this cheesecake – it looks so good!

  38. Love the sound of the cheesecake as I am looking for a gluten free base for my stepdaughters ,my favourite holiday dessert is lemon meringue roulade

  39. My favorite holiday dessert is a white cake that I decorate differently every year. I only ever make it for our Christmas Eve party and my sisters birthday. I also enjoy experimenting with different cookie recipes and I can’t wait to try out this cheese cake but the white cake is my favorite.

  40. This recipe looks amazing! One of my favorites are spiced persimmon galette with nutmeg, cardamom, and sweetened with dare honey.

  41. The more I look at this cheesecake, the more delicious looks and the flavors sound amazing , that chocolate crust filled with tangy goat cheese…… mmmmm.
    Hard to pick a favorite holiday dessert when you like them all… have to go with old fashioned apple pie for thanksgiving, as well for the holiday’s love a spicy gingerbread cake with chocolate ganache and whipped cream! Your recipes always look amazing. Happy Thanksgiving! :)

  42. Hello! My favorite holiday baked treat from my childhood onward is my mother’s Mexican wedding balls. She always made them with walnuts. Seeing those perfect small cookies with their golden-brown bottoms hidden by that outer layer of powdered sugar made me salivate. I got to help by rolling them in powdered sugar while they were hot from the oven. Sometimes my Mom would spoil me for my birthday by sending me an entire batch, even though it was out of season.

    Thank you for the opportunity to be in the drawing, and happy holidays!

  43. I like various desserts at the winter holidays – keflies, sugar cookies, cheesecakes, etc. The holiday season and anytime a regular FULL meal is served at my house – is dessert time – I like many different kinds – as long as it is somehow a good transition to from the dinner to the dessert.

  44. I have celiac, so I don’t usually get to have dessert at family gatherings unless I make something – which is usually gingerbread cupcakes from the king arthur flour website, or my new favorite is a triple chocolate peppermint trifle from Martha’s website. I think I will try this cheesecake this holiday season!

  45. My favorite holiday dessert is cheesecake. Plain cheesecake drizzled with melted but cooled white chocolate, topped with raspberries and sprinkled with cinnamon .

  46. used to make a hazelnut cheesecake in a chocolate wafer crust. looking forward to trying it with the cocoa-almond crust.

    favorite holiday dessert: so many choices; all involve chocolate. but, the most memorable is one i used to make for my late parents’ christmas eve open house: chocolate-croissant bread pudding with raspberries.

    visually, it was stunning: vanilla custard studded with dark brown chocolate and red raspberries. and the custard was rich — egg yolks, heavy cream and half-and-half — but not overly sweet.

    one year, i noticed my uncle wrapping a piece in aluminum and slipping it into his pocket. when he saw me he winked and said, “don’t tell your aunt.”

  47. For Thanksgiving it’s pumpkin pie in a gingersnap crust, apple pie with cranberries and walnuts (or just apple) and the favorite of the nieces and nephews, a chocolate chip pecan pie.

    For Christmas, it’s the chocolate wafer icebox cake with crumble peppermint stick and shaved chocolate on top. Looking forward to making this cheesecake!

  48. This looks amazing! Every year I always make this totally over-the-top cheesecake that is a normal cheesecake on the bottom, chocolate mousse in the middle and chocolate ganache on top. It’s like a boom chicka wow wow in your mouth and always a big hit. On a side note, I just tried The Sweet and Simple Kitchen’s Chewy Ginger Molasses cookies and may or may not have eaten them all by myself. Those will become my new go-to cookie for sure! Can’t wait to get your book!

  49. Looks scrumptious!
    I would love to try to make this cheesecake.
    My Favorite holiday dessert is Vanilla Sponge Cake with Blackberry Tarragon Jam.

  50. Our family’s holiday favorite is snowball cookies- we have loved the twist with the pistachio lime and maths snowballs from your book!

  51. Apple pie will always be my absolute favorite! After baking cookies and smaller pastries all year, it feels a little more special for the holidays. Always always always with vanilla bean ice cream, and it has to be warm!

  52. This sounds so delicious! One of my favorite holiday desserts is a Russian Honey Cake. It has tons of thin layers of cake with a caramel cream between them. It’s the best :)

  53. This looks delicious! My favorite holiday desserts are the NYT’s plum cake and a version of nigella lawson’s chocolate pudding with pears.

  54. This cheesecake looks so smooth, I can’t wait to try it.

    I’ve lived in the U.S. for a long time but I I I grew up in Australia, so I’m used to celebrating Christmas at one of the hotter parts of the year.

    My favourite Christmas dessert is an ice cream my sister makes, freezing it in a star-shaped pan before turning it out, which combines the best parts of a Christmas pudding (brandy soaked mixed dried fruit; toasted, slivered almonds, and a little finely chopped dark chocolate) with a rich vanilla ice cream in place of the cakey part of a traditional Christmas pudding. She serves it with Mum’s brandy sauce ands it’s delicious.

  55. I love the flavor of cardamon and inevitably make something like a cardamon flavored buns around this time of year!

  56. OMG Alanna, that cheesecake is absolutely gorgeous and I can’t wait to make it! Heavenly! My favorite holiday dessert is buttermilk pie. The recipe was handed down to me by my amazing mother in law. I switched it up a little bit this year and used your amazing piecrust and it was even better than the original!
    KitchenAid, Rodelle and Alternative Baker???!!! Yaasss!!!

  57. Mmmm this cheesecake recipe looks and sounds fantastic!
    Pumpkin Pie is the classic holiday dessert I always look forward to, but variety and trying something new is fun. This year I made your Alternative Baker pie crust from scratch and Meyer Lemon Buttermilk Vanilla Bean pie, and it was the clear win at Thanksgiving! Just the right amount of yummy citrus flavor without being overly sweet, and the creamy buttermilk gave it a subtle and delicious rich flavor. Everyone loved it. Even the kids asked for seconds. I’m excited to add more of your recipes to my repertoire.

  58. My grandmother’s black walnut fudge is my favorite holiday treat. Simple yet not easy to make, my one attempt at her recipe is also my single biggest baking fail! (To date.)

  59. I love pumpkin pie and sweet potato pie. My friend made the Cook’s Illustrated pumpkin pie recipe that you later adapted on your web site. It was fantastic and I’m going to make your version soon.

  60. I love this site. Your recipes are beautiful as well as delicious! My favorite holiday dessert has to be anything my kids help me bake. Cookies are always on top of the list!

  61. This looks absolutely divine as do all of your recipes! This year the favorite at our table for Thanksgiving was the gingersnap pumpkin spice pie (gf) and at Christmas I usually love having some type of trifle but I am a also a sucker for cheesecake and pie…I am not sure what I am making yet for Christmas (probably whatever is least time consuming while I chase after the 4 children under 4 I have at the moment!)

  62. This looks gorgeous and inspiring. Sharing recipes should be just that!! My favorite holiday desert is classic pumpkin pie, but i also love to make my daddy’s chocolate oatmeal cookies for his recipe goes all into a cast iron skillet, combined and dumped on a dinner plate ♡ the hardest part is waiting!!!

  63. My favorite holiday dessert is gingerbread cake with lemon- ginger glaze. I make it every year. Your cheesecake looks absolutely stunning and I am bookmarking it for my birthday!

  64. Hey Alanna!

    Making this for a party on Friday and wondering if it can be done successfully without a springform pan? If I froze it the night before and then did a waterbath to loosen it and tease it out. Or, I have a 8″ springform and also small individual 4.5″ springforms. But, oddly, and sadly, the 9″ is missing from my arsenal. Please advise.

    1. Scratch that. I just unearthed my pan from the depths of my upper cabinets. Sorry, I lose my mind when I’m hosting/cooking for a party. By the way, love your blog and your cookbook! I did some recipe testing for you and knew it would be a triumph.

      Happy Solstice and New Year:)

  65. My favorite holiday dessert, which is mostly served at Christmas time, is my great-great grandmother’s plum pudding. While I can’t make it exactly like she did, because I lack some of the fresh ingredients, the very process of making it reminds me of her and the stories of life in Ireland.