Scottish Cranachan Cheesecake Recipe

by Phil & Sonja
Cranachan Cheesecake Recipe - Cranachan Cheesecake on a plate topped with raspberries

The idea of making a Cranachan Cheesecake recipe wasn’t really a stretch. After all, Cranachan is already a cream/cheese-based dessert! It’s traditionally a simple dessert made of layers of sweet raspberries sandwiched between whipped cream or crowdie (a type of soft Scottish cheese) laced with whisky and honey and mixed with toasted oats. 

For a Cranachan cheesecake recipe, we figured we could incorporate all of those ingredients into a cheesecake to give the simple dessert a bit of a twist! 

The beauty of a traditional Cranachan, like many Scottish foods, is that it uses simple ingredients but brings them together in a way that makes for something really delicious.

With our cheesecake, it was tempting to consider adding extras, change it up a little, or make it fancier, but we decided that Cranachan is so good normally that we would stick to all the same ingredients, and just add some cream cheese to make it into a cheesecake!

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Things you’ll need to make Cranachan Cheesecake

  • Springform cake tin (we used a 10inch tin and it fit perfectly)
  • An electric whisk/beater
  • 2 large bowls

Ingredients for Cranachan Cheesecake

We’ve laid out the ingredients and the method here, but you can also find a shorter version in the recipe card at the end of the post!

Base

  • 300g Hobnobs (or other oaty biscuits. If you don’t have these, you can substitute but it adds to the oat flavour)
  • 100g butter

Cheesecake

  • 400g cream cheese (1 ⅔ cups)
  • 600ml double cream (or heavy cream in the US – 2.5 cups)
  • 7tbsp runny honey
  • 7tbsp whisky
  • 100g oats (approx 1 cup)

Topping

  • 400g raspberries (can be a mixture of fresh/frozen)
  • 3tbsp icing sugar (powdered sugar)

Oats

We used standard porridge oats for ours. If you use pinhead oats they have a coarser texture, but we quite liked how the oats soften into the cheesecake for a subtle flavour. If you want a more oaty taste then we’ve added a bit under “Variations” about how you could make a granola to sprinkle over the top as well. 

Whisky

Of course, you should use Scottish whisky ideally! How much you need will depend on how much you like whisky, and also the type of whisky used. We used a Glengoyne 10-year-old, the higher the quality the better in our opinion, if you can spare it! 

Raspberries

We mentioned over on our original Cranachan recipe that it was traditionally a Scottish dessert made to celebrate the end of the harvest. Scottish raspberries are juicy and sweet, and well known to be the best!

If you’re making this with raspberries from elsewhere then you’ll probably need to sweeten them up with a little more sugar than mentioned. Just make it to your taste! We like the raspberries tart, but we know some people prefer a much sweeter mix. 

Slice of Scottish Cranachan Cheesecake on a plate with fork

How to make Cranachan Cheesecake step by step method

The method is very similar to our tablet cheesecake recipe, and uses the same base recipe, as well as our Cranachan recipe of course!

Grease the cake tin lightly with butter and set aside.

Using a pan on the top of the stove, or a tray in the oven, toast the oatmeal until it starts to give off a nutty smell, then set aside to cool.

Crush the Hobnobs in a food processor or in a ziplock bag with a rolling pin. Add the melted butter and mix very well, press into the bottom of the cake tin, using the back of a large spoon to make sure it’s smooth and compact. Put it in the fridge to set.

Beat the cream cheese with a wooden spoon so it’s soft. Add the honey and whisky. Start with smaller amounts and you can then try the mixture later and add more to taste.

Beat the cream to stiff peaks. Fold in the cream cheese mixture, taking care not to take too much air out of the cream. You can now taste the mixture, and if necessary, add a little more whisky or honey and fold into the mixture.

Fold in the cooled oats carefully.

Put half of the mixture into the cake tin and make sure it’s smoothed right down into the bottom and to the edges. Add the other half on top and smooth out.

Put in the fridge to set for 6-8 hours minimum.

Just before you’re ready to serve you can make the raspberry mix for the top. Raspberries aren’t always in season or the cheapest, so it’s up to you whether you want to do frozen or fresh. We like to do a combination of both.

Either way, take about half of the berries (defrosted in a pot on the stove if frozen) and crush them with a fork or masher. If you want a smooth sauce you’ll need to push it through a sieve to remove the pips, but we prefer the more rustic look, like Cranachan! You can then add the other half of the berries whole.

Just before you’re ready to serve put the raspberry mixture on top of the middle of the cake, or keep it aside to spoon onto each piece. How you decorate it with the berry mixture is really up to you, as long as you have a decent amount per slice to get it that raspberry flavour, and make it a true Cranachan Cheesecake!

Slice of Scottish Cranachan Cheesecake recipe with raspberries on top and a piece on a fork

Variations

Extra Oats

Add a granola mix to the top for some more crunch – Use large oatmeal, drizzle with equal measures of honey, and some coconut or canola oil, and toast in the oven.

Raspberry Sauce

For a smoother sauce, you can sieve the raspberries, but we wanted a rustic look in keeping with traditional Cranachan.

Slice of Scottish Cranachan Cheesecake Recipe on a plate
Yield: 16

Scottish Cranachan Cheesecake Recipe

Cranachan Cheesecake Recipe

This delicious recipe combines two amazing desserts - Scottish Cranachan and cheesecake! Cranachan combines cream, whisky, honey, oats, and sweet raspberries, which all come together to make an amazingly tasty Cranachan cheesecake too!

Prep Time 35 minutes
Chill Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 35 minutes

Ingredients

Base

  • 300g Hobnobs or other oaty biscuits
  • 100g butter (7tbsp)

Cheesecake

  • 400g full fat cream cheese (1 and 2/3 cups)
  • 600ml double cream (2.5 cups heavy cream in the US)
  • 7 tbsp runny honey (or more to taste)
  • 7 tbsp whisky (or more to taste)
  • 100g oats (approx 1 cup)

Topping

  • 400g raspberries (approx 4 cups and can be fresh/frozen or mix)
  • 3 tbsp icing sugar (powdered sugar)

Instructions

  1. Grease the cake tin lightly with butter and set aside.
  2. Using a pan on the top of the stove, or a tray in the oven, toast the oats until it starts to give off a nutty smell, then set aside to cool.
  3. Crush the oaty biscuits either in a food processor or place them in a plastic bag and beat with a rolling pin.
  4. Melt the butter and mix into the crushed biscuits
  5. Press the mixture into the bottom of the cake tin using the back of a large spoon to make sure it's smooth and compact. Put it in the fridge to set while you continue with the recipe.
  6. Beat the cream cheese with a wooden spoon so it's soft. Add the honey and whisky. Start with smaller amounts and you can then taste the mixture later and add more if necessary.
  7. In another bowl use an electric whisk/beater to beat the cream to stiff peaks.
  8. Fold the cream cheese mixture into the whipped cream, taking care not to take too much air out of the cream. You can now taste the mixture, and if necessary, add a little more whisky or honey and fold into the mixture.
  9. Fold in the cooled oats carefully.
  10. Put half of the mixture into the cake tin and make sure it's smoothed right down into the bottom and to the edges so there are no air pockets. Add the other half on top and smooth out flat on top.
  11. Put in the fridge to set for 6-8 hours minimum.
  12. Just before you're ready to serve you can make the raspberry mix for the top. We used a combination of frozen and fresh raspberries. Defrost the berries if frozen.
  13. Take about half of the berries and crush them with a fork or masher. If you want a smooth sauce you'll need to push the crushed mixture through a sieve to remove the pips, but we prefer the more rustic look, like Cranachan.
  14. Add the other half of the berries whole.
  15. Just before you're ready to serve put the raspberry mixture on top of the middle of the cake, or keep it aside to spoon onto each piece. How you decorate it with the berry mixture is really up to you, as long as you have a decent amount per slice to get it that raspberry flavour, and make it a true Cranachan cheesecake!

Notes

The measures for whisky and honey are an estimate based on our taste (and our taste tester friends!). You can add more or less of both, especially depending on the type of whisky you use. We would, of course, recommend a Scottish whisky!

You can use fresh or frozen raspberries or a combination of both, as we did. Scottish raspberries are known to be sweeter than those found in North America, so you will need to add more or less sugar to taste as well.

Don't be tempted to freeze the cheesecake to set it faster as it won't work.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

16

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 444Total Fat: 32gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 82mgSodium: 207mgCarbohydrates: 32gFiber: 3gSugar: 18gProtein: 6g

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2 comments

11 of the Best Scottish Desserts and Sweet Treats - Scottish Scran August 7, 2020 - 9:14 am

[…] But since we also like trying more modern versions of traditional Scottish desserts, we also took the fantastic taste of Cranachan and made it into a cheesecake with another tasty recipe, which can find that here. […]

Reply
Yvonne August 7, 2020 - 9:52 am

Oh lordy how did I miss seeing this recipe! I must try it!

Reply

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