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Japanese Cheesecake Recipe - Make a soft, jiggly Japanese Cheesecake with my simplified method!

Japanese Cheesecake Simplified

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My simplified Japanese Cheesecake Recipe is as soft as cotton and full of jiggle, reimagined without the complexity.


Hi Bold Bakers!

Whatever you know and love about cheesecake is about to change after you try my Japanese Cheesecake recipe! Think cheesecake but with the volume on high. Think “not just impressive,” but pro level. Think rich, creamy taste and light fluffy texture, but to the absolute max. 

What is Japanese Cheesecake?

Japanese bakers have refashioned one of my most beloved desserts and somehow made it even better. Japanese Cheesecake (otherwise called a “Japanese cotton cheesecake” or “jiggly cheesecake”) maintains the same tangy sweetness of the popular American dessert but is known for its signature ultra-fluffy texture and custard-like wobbliness.

What makes this cheesecake jiggly?

The not-so-secret secret to my fluffy cheesecake is plain ol’ meringue. Yep, you read that right. Instead of mixing whole eggs into cream cheese, sugar and heavy cream, separate your eggs and whip the them into a glorious glossy meringue. Just at the point when your meringue is done, gently fold it into your warm mixture of melted cream cheese, eggs, sugar, flour, milk and cornstarch. This introduction of the meringue into the cheesecake mixture adds loads of structure and air into your Japanese Cheesecake. Through the baking process, the meringue will set into a tall and fluffy cake that requires no crust, no special toppings, and no bells and whistles. My cheesecake is that impressive on its own!

How to avoid a cracked cheesecake

While this recipe is truly fool-proof, I understand that these steps may be a bit of a departure for those that are used to American cheesecake recipes. That being said, here are things you can do to ensure your Japanese Cheesecake comes out perfectly every time:

  • First off, LIBERALLY grease and line your tin as this will ensure you can get the delicate cheesecake. Secondly, it’s essential that you make sure to properly make the meringue mixture to give the cheesecake its texture.
  • The next thing you need to do to buy insurance is baking the cheesecake in a water bath. This means baking the cheesecake in a large tin filled with boiling hot water. Water creates steam around the cake, keeps it super moist, and helps it rise like a souffle – this is exactly what you want.
  • The baking temperature plays a really important role. In the instructions for this recipe, I explain that you start the cheesecake at 400 degrees then lower to the temperature 320 degrees after 18 minutes. It is vital to the success of this cheesecake that you do this exactly on time – definitely a step you’ll want to use your timer for!
  • Precisely 12 minutes after lowering the temperature, turn off the oven and crack open the door. Leave the cheesecake in the oven for 30 minutes exactly. The purpose of this is to allow the baking process to stop gradually. Your cheesecake will continue cooking on the outside from the residual heat while the inside of the cake remains creamy and custard-like. This also ensures the top of the cheesecake doesn’t crack from the shock of the temperature change or from the moisture in the air that would be caused by taking it right out of the oven.

I promise that your Japanese cheesecake will look and taste like it was made by a pro if you follow all of these steps. Have no fear Bold Bakers, you’ve got this!

For more incredible cheesecake recipes check out my:

4.34 from 213 votes
Japanese Cheesecake Recipe - Make a soft, jiggly Japanese Cheesecake with my simplified method!
Japanese Cheesecake
Prep Time
25 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
55 mins
 

My simplified Japanese Cheesecake recipe is as soft as cotton and full of jiggle, reimagined without the complexity so any Bold Baker can make it.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Japanese
Servings: 12 slices
Author: Gemma Stafford
Ingredients
  • 1 cup (8oz/225g) cream cheese
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 7 tablespoons milk
  • 6 large eggs , separated
  • 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup (6oz/170g) granulated sugar, divided
  • ¾ cup (3 3/4oz/105g) cake flour
  • 2 ½ tablespoons corn starch
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
Instructions
  1. Grease and line an 8-inch springform tin. A 9-inch round cake pan will also work. Line a deep baking tray with kitchen cloth. The baking tray has to be larger than the springform tin. You are creating a water bath to bake your cheesecake in. You want to have everything ready to go so you can bake off your cheesecake straight away.

  2. Melt together the cream cheese, butter and milk in the microwave for roughly 1 1/2 minutes. Whisk the mix until there are no more lumps.
  3. Next, whisk in the egg yolk, lemon juice, vanilla extract and half the sugar.
  4. Place a sieve over the bowl and add in the cake flour, corn starch and salt and sieve into the cream cheese mix. Whisk in the dry ingredients until there are no more lumps. Set aside.

  5. Using a stand mixer or hand mixer, whip the egg whites with the whisk attachment on medium speed. When the meringue starts to take shape, add the cream of tartar. Once thick and at soft peak stage, slowly add the remaining sugar. Whip until meringue turns glossy, has increased in volume and holds a stiff peak.
  6. Using a thin edged metal spoon, take 1/3 of meringue and fold it into the cream cheese batter to loosen the mixture. Cut and fold the meringue swiftly but gently to minimize deflation of the meringue. Fold in the remaining meringue until blended. The resulting batter be light and airy at this point should.

  7. Pour the cheesecake batter into the prepared cake pan. Place the cake pan in the larger dish then place both in the oven. Pour hot water into the water bath until about half way up the sides of the cake pan. Be careful not to splash water into the batter.

  8. Bake on the bottom rack in a preheated 400oF (200oC) oven for 18min, then lower to 320oF (160oC) for 12 mins only. Then turn off the oven and open the door of the oven slightly for 30 minutes only. Then remove from the oven completely to cool at room temp.
  9. Turn out the cheesecake from the pan onto a cake plate and serve. Store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
Recipe Notes

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Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I’m passionate about sharing my years of experience to show you how to make game-changing baking recipes with over-the-top results! Join more than 1 Million other Bold Bakers in the community for new video recipes every week!

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483 Comments

Write a Comment and Review

  1. Marilyn Le on July 2, 2019 at 7:49 pm

    Hi Gemma, this recipe looks awesome. I am making this in a few days. Is it important to have a kitchen cloth in the pan or can I omit that?

    • Gemma Stafford on July 3, 2019 at 2:17 am

      Hi Marilyn,
      the purpose of the cloth is to anchor the pan and prevent it from jiggling when the water gets under it. However it is not vital, it is security.
      The real issue is that the pan you use is watertight. That is so very important. If it is not you need to wrap it carefully in one sheet of foil, no joins in this, to make the pan waterproof. Some people would say use two sheets of foil, but it matters that there are no joins for the water to get through.
      Other than that you can carry on, the foil too will help to anchor the pan.
      I hope you enjoy this cake,
      Gemma 🙂

  2. Daanish on June 27, 2019 at 4:19 pm

    Hello!

    Thanks for the delicious recipe! Is it possible to split this recipe and make it in 2-6in pans? How would the cooking time be adjusted? Thank you

    • Gemma Stafford on June 29, 2019 at 1:15 pm

      HI,

      Yes you can do that but I can’t give you a time as I haven’t done that myself. I reccomend checking it after 30 minutes and go form there.

      Best,
      Gemma.

  3. JoAnne McCrone-Ephraim on June 23, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    WOW,…it came out of the oven looking SPECTACULAR, and I haven’t even decorated it as yet.
    No doubt kudos will be received during Sunday family dinner/dessert.

    Presentjng Asian fare today, as a Welcome Home from Tokyo for our grandson.

    • Gemma Stafford on June 24, 2019 at 3:14 am

      Hi JoAnne,
      How lovely, your grandson will appreciate the effort I am sure, there is nothing quite like a Grandma to a grandchild, of any age!
      Thank you for letting us know, do let us see it too, you can submit a photo at the end of the recipe,
      Gemma 🙂

  4. Cam on June 19, 2019 at 6:27 am

    My first time trying the Japanese style souffle cheesecake and it went well!
    I suspect the 200 deg Celcius was a non fan forced oven temperature as we noticed the top becoming too brown after 10-15 mins so quickly lowered the temperature to 160 deg (fan forced) for the rest of the duration.
    The result was a cheesecake that ticked boxes texture and taste wise 🙂 The bottom middle section was not as cooked as the rest of the cake but it wasn’t pudding like/eggy.
    I am keen to repeat the recipe and adjust the temperature settings to compensate for a fan forced oven (perhaps 180 deg celcius then 140 deg celcius) and see if the same result is obtained!

    • Gemma Stafford on June 19, 2019 at 3:54 pm

      Hi Cam! Well done! Is there a way you can turn off the fan in your oven? The fan may have caused your cheesecake to cook on the outside much faster, which is why the center was not as cooked. Gemma 😊

  5. Noora Kazi on June 15, 2019 at 8:46 pm

    Hi Gemma,
    I followed the instructions exactly but my cheesecake cracked and did not brown as well. It was white on the top and cracked. The center was a bit raw but otherwise the taste was awesome.
    What could I do to make it look like yours next time.

    • Gemma Stafford on June 17, 2019 at 8:35 am

      Hi Noora! Happy to hear you gave my recipe a go. One of the key reasons cheesecakes crack is because of the drastic change in temperature. Resist the urge to keep opening your oven door to check as well as leave the cheesecake in for a while before removing from the oven. As your cheesecake’s center is still raw, it may have needed more time in the oven. Give it another go! This is good as you are learning. Gemma 😊

  6. Penny McClard on June 2, 2019 at 6:53 pm

    Can gluten free all purpose flour be used? If so, any other changes, adjustments required?

    • Gemma Stafford on June 3, 2019 at 8:49 am

      Penny, I think that would be the best alternative choice for this cake, though the results may be a little different, I think it will work well for you,
      Gemma 🙂

  7. Debbie on June 2, 2019 at 4:45 pm

    Hi Gemma,
    I always follow you recipes , so easy to follow ,I like that Japanese cheese cake ,love the taste and texture.
    Thanks
    Love
    Debbie

    • Gemma Stafford on June 3, 2019 at 8:41 am

      Hi Debbie,
      That is good to hear, thank you. This can be a bit tricky so well done to you,
      Gemma 🙂

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