An easy strawberry crunch cheesecake recipe with golden Oreo base! This light and creamy vanilla and strawberry no bake cheesecake with a strawberry and vanilla Oreo crunch topping is the ultimate summertime dessert. Plus my strawberry crunch is all natural flavour and colour - no Jell-O or food colourings!
The ingredients for strawberry crunch cheesecake can be divided into three groups:
- Golden Oreo cheesecake base
- Creamy vanilla bean and strawberry filling
- Strawberry crunch crumble topping without Jell-O
Golden Oreo Base
This cheesecake uses a quick two ingredient vanilla Oreo base - the detailed guide to making this crust is available here.
You will need:
- Golden Oreos - or other vanilla sandwich cookie, crushed to a fine crumb. This is best done by blitzing in a food processor.
- Butter - unsalted butter, melted. You can use salted butter here, but you may find that it leaves a light salty flavour in the finished product.
Strawberry and Vanilla Bean Filling
- Cream cheese - I use spreadable cream cheese in all of my recipes due to ingredient availability in the UK. If you want to read more about this, I discuss the ingredient more in my spreadable cream cheese frosting recipe. This is best left out of the fridge to come to room temperature before using, but unlike block cream cheese, if you forget to let it warm up it won't be a problem!
- Mascarpone cream - the mascarpone provides a bit of a bite to the cheesecake, like sour cream in traditional New York style cheesecakes. You can also use crème fraîche here or replace with sour cream. The sour cream is a thinner consistency which may impact the final set of the cake. I have not tested this recipe with sour cream.
- Sugar - either superfine granulated or caster sugar will work well in this recipe.
- Vanilla bean paste - I highly recommend using vanilla bean paste in this recipe, both for the stronger flavour and the aesthetic of vanilla bean flecks in the cream. You can, however, substitute with vanilla extract if needed.
- Strawberry powder - use a freeze dried strawberry powder made of pure berries, such as this one.
Strawberry Crunch Crumble Topping
My strawberry crunch topping is made without Jell-O and instead uses strawberry powder to add natural colour and flavouring. To make this topping, you'll need:
- Golden Oreos - or similar vanilla sandwich cookies. These should be crushed into pieces, not as finely crumbed as for a cookie base. It is best to do this by hand using a sealed plastic bag and a rolling pin.
- Strawberry powder - freeze dried strawberry powder. In many recipes for strawberry crunch topping, you will find strawberry Jell-O powder being used. This can be used as a substitute, but the freeze dried strawberry powder is a more natural alternative and will provide flavour without additives.
- Butter - unsalted butter, melted. You can use salted butter instead, but this will leave a slightly salty taste.
How to Make a Strawberry Crunch Cheesecake
Start off by making the cheesecake base. This is a quick two-ingredient golden Oreo crust. For a detailed guide to making this, see my recipe here.
You'll simply need to mix the crushed biscuits together with the melted butter and press into a lined springform pan. Chill this while you prepare the filling.
To make the cheesecake filling for this recipe, begin by whisking the cream cheese, mascarpone and sugar together in a large bowl. Add the vanilla bean paste and mix until smooth.
In a separate mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment), add the heavy cream and powdered sugar. Beat this on a medium to high setting until you reach stiff peaks. Try to not over-beat as this will cause the cream to separate and will make it unpleasantly stiff. There is a fine balance between well whipped whipped cream and butter!
Once the cream is whipped, add this to the cream cheese mixture and fold together using a spatula. Avoid beating or stirring as you do not want to remove all of the air from the cream.
Now, to make the strawberry layer in this cheesecake, spoon out about half a cup of your filling mixture and place it in a smaller mixing bowl. Add freeze dried strawberry powder to this half a cup of cheesecake filling. Gently fold to incorporate. Again, you don't want to beat the air out of this and overwork it, but you want to ensure the strawberry powder is well distributed. This cream should turn light pink (colours may vary based on the type of powder used).
Add half of the vanilla filling to your golden Oreo cheesecake crust and spread in an even layer. Then add the strawberry filling and spread in an even layer, leaving about an inch around the edge. Finally, spoon the remaining vanilla filling over top and smooth into an even surface.
Place the cheesecake in the refrigerator while you make the crumble topping.
Tips on Whipped Cream for Cheesecake
No bake cheesecakes are an easy creamy dessert, where the whipped cream is vital. The consistency of the whipped cream will essentially dictate how firmly your cheesecake sets. If you under-whisk the cream, you run the risk that the cheesecake will not be firm enough to slice. Likewise, if you over-beat, you will most likely have a very solid cheesecake that is not as creamy as you would expect.
If in doubt, the test for beating cream is the same as meringue, you should be able to turn the bowl over and the cream hold without moving. If you notice, as you turn the bowl on its side, that the cream starts to slip, return to beating it for another 30 seconds and check again until ready. You may also want to reduce the speed of your electric whisk so you have more control at this stage.
Making a Natural Strawberry Crunch Crumble Topping
So, strawberry crunch is pretty much what it says on the tin - a crunchy topping with a strawberry flavour.
You will find many people use strawberry Jell-O powder in their strawberry crunch topping to add a strawberry flavour to crushed biscuits. Powdered, flavoured gelatine is not the easiest to come by in the UK and I also wanted to find a bit more natural alternative. For this recipe, I use freeze dried strawberry powder. This powder is made from strawberries and only strawberries, which means you can almost consider this cheesecake to include legitimate fruit!
You'll want to roughly crumble the cookies for the topping - these don't need to be a fine ground like for the base and in fact have some irregular sized bits makes the crunch topping better. In mixing bowl, sprinkle the strawberry powder over top and then add the melted butter. Stir to coat.
Sprinkle the strawberry cookie crumble over the cheesecake and return to the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or until set. It is best to leave overnight.
Once well chilled and set, carefully unmould the cheesecake from the springform pan and remove the parchment paper.
Before serving, top with a few dollops of stabilized whipped cream. You can find a detailed recipe for vanilla stabilized cream here. Add a few fresh strawberries for a decorative finish.
This easy no bake strawberry crunch cheesecake keeps well in the refrigerator for about 3 days. You can also freeze the cheesecake for up to three months.
If intending to freeze, I recommend not adding the crumble topping until you defrost to preserve the best crunch. Follow the instructions for making the cheesecake filling, then allow to set in the refrigerator overnight before unmoulding from the springform pan. Place the cheesecake on a lined pan and flash freeze for a couple of hours until solid. Wrap this in plastic wrap and store in a freezer safe container or sealable bag. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months. When ready to serve, allow to defrost before adding the crunch topping and serving.
This recipe includes a guide to making a small amount of strawberry crunch crumble (also known as strawberry shortcake crumble) for the topping. Many recipes will use strawberry Jell-O powder to achieve the strawberry flavouring. Instead, this recipe is a more natural strawberry crumble alternative using pure strawberry powder, made from finely ground freeze-dried berries.
Strawberry crunch refers to an ice cream, also known as a strawberry shortcake. This ice cream bar has a strawberry centre, vanilla ice cream and crunch coating, mixing crisp vanilla and strawberry bits in an outer layer.
This strawberry crunch cheesecake recipe takes inspiration from the ice cream classic!
Need more easy no-bake dessert ideas? Try one of these:
Strawberry Crunch Cheesecake
- 8" springform baking pan
- Parchment paper
- 2 large mixing bowl
- hand held electric beater
- small mixing bowl
- offset spatula
Ingredients for Golden Oreo Crust
- 28 Golden Oreos crushed into fine crumb
- 7 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
Ingredients for Vanilla and Strawberry No Bake Cheesecake Filling
- 12 oz cream cheese spreadable cream cheese at room temperature
- 5 oz mascarpone cheese at room temperature
- ¼ cup superfine granulated sugar or caster sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
- 1 cup heavy cream or double cream
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar or icing sugar
- 1 teaspoon freeze dried strawberry powder
Ingredients for Strawberry Crunch Crumble Topping
- 14 Golden Oreos crushed to a rough crumb
- 3 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
- 3 teaspoon freeze dried strawberry powder
Ingredients for Optional Decoration
- ½ cup heavy cream or double cream
- ½ tablespoon powdered sugar or icing sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract
- fresh strawberries or freeze dried strawberry pieces
Instructions for Golden Oreo Cheesecake Crust
- Begin by lining an 8" or 9" round springform cake pan with parchment paper.
- Place the finely crushed Golden Oreos in a large mixing bowl and pour in the melted butter. Stir to create a moist crumb and then press into the base and about 1" up the sides of the lined cake pan. For more detail, see my recipe for Golden Oreo Cookie Crust. Set in the refrigerator to chill while making the filling.
Instructions for Cheesecake Filling
- In a large mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, mascarpone and sugar. Add the vanilla bean paste and beat until smooth.
- Meanwhile, place the heavy cream and powdered sugar in a separate large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Beat until stiff peaks form (see note).
- Add the whipped cream to the cream cheese mixture and gently fold to combine.
- Reserve about ½ cup of the filling mixture and place in a small bowl. Add the strawberry powder to this and fold to incorporate. This will create a light pink strawberry flavoured cheesecake mixture.
- Spoon about half of your plain vanilla cheesecake filling on top of the prepared golden Oreo base and spread evenly. Next add the strawberry cheesecake mixture and spread in an even layer (see note). Finish with the remaining vanilla cheesecake filling, spread evenly and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Place in the refrigerator while you make the crumble topping.
Instructions for the Strawberry Crunch Crumble
- Place the roughly crushed Oreo pieces in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the strawberry powder over top and then pour the melted butter into the mix. Stir to coat the Oreo crumble in an uneven light pink.
- Sprinkle the crumble over top the cheesecake and return to the refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours (better overnight) until set.
- Prior to serving, add any optional toppings, such as a few dollops of quick stabilized vanilla whipped cream (see detailed recipe here) and strawberries.