These Skinny Mini Maple Pecan Cheesecakes are a light, healthier take on classic cheesecakes with a maple pecan twist for a fun, healthier Fall dessert.
Do you LOVE pecans?
How about MAPLE PECAN?
I know right, it’s a great flavor combination. Nutty and sweet are winners in my book.
You see, I was raised by a Mom that says basically every time she eats any baked good: “It’s good, but it would be GREAT with nuts..”
So, my love for crunchy nuts in baked goods runs deep! The crunch gives a fantastic texture to any soft, moist baked good. And cheesecake? Ugh, cheesecake.
A little too soft for this texture-eater gal, but paired with a crunchy maple pecan crust? The combo is out of this world.
I’d take these Skinny Mini Maple Pecan Cheesecakes to any dinner party. Die-hard cheesecake fans will appreciate the maple pecan flavor bomb, and the “meh” cheesecake people will love the crunchy crust! Something for everyone here 😉
I think I’ll be bringing these Cheesecakes to a Thanksgiving dinner this year too when I celebrate with family. Easy, gluten-free, and you can make them in advance! Does it get any better?! 🙂
So, what’s important to know about these Skinny Mini Maple Pecan Cheesecakes…
Do you have to use “light” cream cheese?
No, you can use a regular block of cream cheese as well. My husband prefers these with the regular block, and I prefer the light, so it’s all taste preference here.
Do you have to use Greek yogurt? Or can I use regular yogurt?
I would highly recommend that you stick with Greek yogurt. The thicker texture of the Greek yogurt helps to mimic more cream cheese. Regular yogurt isn’t thick enough and may not give you the same creamy texture you’re looking for in a cheesecake.
I also recommend using plain Greek yogurt. I know, plain Greek yogurt kinda tastes like sour cream, and may be especially weird if you aren’t used to it. But the neutral flavor is great for baking with!
I also use plain Greek yogurt in other recipes too, like my Cinnamon Sugar Scones or Apple Cinnamon Waffles. I’m a big fan! Besides how flexible the neutral flavor is, plain Greek yogurt usually has less junk in it compared to flavored yogurt too.
However, you can use vanilla flavored Greek yogurt if you prefer. You may want to reduce your vanilla to 3/4 teaspoon then, instead of 1 teaspoon.
The egg: Do NOT over beat the egg in your cheesecake filling!
I can’t stress this enough. Barely mix it in. Leave it at that, or your cheesecake texture may not be quite right!
Last, but not least, the best part: Toppings!
I like to top each Skinny Mini Maple Pecan Cheesecake with a big doll-up of cool whip, if you like whipped cream. I’m breaking the internet here but ugh I’m not a big fan of whipped cream. Sorry, don’t hate me! 😉
After the cool whip, you can stick a whole pecan in the side (like pictured) for a pretty presentation.
And then, drizzle a little maple syrup on top. Yum. Drooling yet?! 😉
Help! My cheesecakes sunk a little after cooling, is that normal?!
Yes. When you pull the cheesecakes out of the oven they will look glorious, and as they cool they will sink in the center a bit. That’s OK and what you want actually!
Putting all the toppings, as mentioned above, on top is what hides the “sinkage” and make these cheesecakes pretty again! 😉 The sunken in center is the PERFECT indent for toppings after all. 🙂
You see that little bit of maple syrup drizzled down the right side of that Skinny Mini Maple Pecan Cheesecake? YUM!! 🙂
I hope you eat these, share them with family and friends, and enjoy the sweet, nutty, creamy and crunchy flavors in these cheesecakes.
- 1 cup pecans, finely chopped
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 tsp water
- 1 tsp butter
- 8 oz light cream cheese (or regular, if preferred)
- 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (I prefer Fage 2%)
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 egg
- 3/4 cup cool whip (optional)
To begin, preheat your oven to 325. Fill a muffin tin with 12 cupcake liners.
In a small bowl, add your pecans, maple syrup, water and butter and stir them together till well combined.
Spoon an overflowing teaspoon into each cupcake liner, evenly distributing the maple pecan mixture among the cupcake liners.
Using the back of your teaspoon, press the pecans down into the bottom of the cupcake liner till you have a flat, even layer along the bottom to create the crust.
Bake in the oven for 13-14 minutes, or till the crust feels a bit firm to touch, and the edges are gaining a little color. While your crust is in the oven, make your cheesecake filling.
Preheat your oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl, using a hand mixer, beat your cream cheese for a minute or two till its creamy and smooth.
To the bowl, add your Greek yogurt, maple syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon and blend again till everything is well incorporated.
Lastly, add your egg to the bowl and blend briefly, only till the egg is mixed in. Do NOT over beat the mixture!
After your crusts have baked, fill each cupcake liner almost full to the top with the cheesecake filling.
Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes, or till the cheesecakes are set (jiggle your pan and the center of the cheesecakes should have only a slight wiggle to them).
Let your cheesecakes cool for 30 minutes on the counter. Then, move them to an airtight container in your fridge.
Serve with cool whip on top with a drizzle of maple syrup! Devour!
These mini cheesecakes last in the fridge about 5-6 days.