The Grape Thing Cheesecake (aka Grape Salad Cheesecake)

Grape Salad Cheesecake

So for a while now I’ve had this idea to make a cheesecake based off of The Grape Thing. What is The Grape Thing you ask? It’s red grapes mixed with cream cheese, brown sugar and pecans. Basically, it’s a grape salad. I’ve seen a couple of recipes for it on Pinterest recently, but other than that most people don’t know what it is and when they see it they cringe and go “eww” and you have to force it down their throat just to get them to try it. That’s when they finally realize it’s SUPER delicious. Not that I’ve tried that or anything… just a guess.

Grape Salad Cheesecake

 

Anyway, as I mentioned above, I’ve had this brilliant idea for a while now to turn it into a cheesecake. I mean, it makes perfect sense, right? It’s cream cheese based, just like a cheesecake. So this past weekend I finally had some time to sit down and come up with a recipe for it and actually try to make it. I contemplated roasting the grapes, per the wonderful Erika’s idea at The Pancake Princess and the Protein Prince, but I chickened out. I’ve never roasted grapes before so I wasn’t sure how it would affect the cheesecake and since I really didn’t think the cheesecake would turn out on the first try anyway, I figured I shouldn’t tinker around with it too much.

I’m not sure if “The Grape Thing” is the actual or proper name for the dish, but that’s what I’m calling it. So in turn, this cheesecake shall be The Grape Thing Cheesecake. Oh, and for all of you out there that are afraid to make cheesecakes, don’t be! It’s actually pretty easy. Just be sure to follow some of my tips below, which can be used when making any type of cheesecake.

The Grape Thing Cheesecake (aka grape salad cheesecake)

Meal type Dessert
A brown sugar and pecan cheesecake base with grapes on top, inspired by grape salad.

Ingredients

Crust

  • 1 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 4 tablespoons butter (melted)
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar (packed)
  • 1/2 cup pecans (chopped finely)

Filling

  • 3 packages Philadelphia Cream Cheese (room temperature)
  • 3 eggs (room temperature)
  • 1/4 cup sour cream (room temperature)
  • 1 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup pecans (chopped)

Topping

  • grapes

Directions

Crust
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a springform pan with spray or softened butter. Combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, brown sugar and finely chopped pecans in bowl.
2. Pour graham cracker mixture into the springform pan and press down and up the sides to form the crust. It's helpful to use either a rounded measuring cup or a mason jar to form the sides of the crust. The crust should go up the side of the pan about an inch or inch and a half.
3. Put the springform pan in preheated oven and bake for 5 minutes.
Filling
4. Take the springform pan out of the oven and reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees.
5. With a mixer, beat cream cheese, flour, sugar and vanilla extract on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add in sour cream and chopped pecans, beating on high until creamy and smooth.
6. With a rubber spatula, gently stir in the eggs, one at a time, by hand. This step is important because the eggs add volume to the cheesecake, but you don't want to overbeat the eggs because it causes cracking.
7. Pour the filling onto the crust in the springform pan. Gently pat the springform pan against the counter to release any air bubbles.
8. Place the cheesecake in the oven on a center rack. I also put an oven-safe dish with water on the lower rack to help prevent cracking.
9. Bake for 1 hour. The cheesecake will be done when the edges are slightly browned, the sides are set and the center jiggles slightly. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack until completely cool. Once cool, put into the refrigerator covered with plastic wrap for at least 6 hours.
Topping
10. Clean grapes and dry thoroughly. Cut in half lengthwise and place in a circular pattern on top of the cheesecake. I think I used around 10 grapes total.

Note

Bring eggs, cream cheese and sour cream to room temperature by setting them out 30 minutes prior to baking.

 

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Comments

  1. 1

    The Grape Thing Cheesecake Rocks. Love the taste of pecans, cheesecake, and grapes in a single bite. It was yummy!

  2. 3

    Awww thanks for the mention :) I don’t blame you for chickening out on roasting the grapes–I wouldn’t want to mess this phenomenal thing up either! This. Looks. FABULOUS. I love, love, love both photos! Is this what made it onto FoodGawker? If so, I’m not surprised at all!

    Also, this definitely looks more inviting than The Grape Thing. I might have to ease in with this…
    Erika recently posted..Spaghetti PrimaveraMy Profile

  3. 5

    I second the “great photos” comment. There’s no way your mom is getting her camera back now!
    Jeni recently posted..Creating Content Pinterest Users will LOVEMy Profile

  4. 7

    This is BEAuTiFUL!!
    Shiloh Barkley recently posted..Pignoli CookiesMy Profile

  5. 9

    I’ve never met a cheesecake that I haven’t loved, so I’m certain The Grape Thing would win me over :)
    Liz recently posted..Spice-Poached Pears…French Fridays with Dorie~My Profile

  6. 10

    I made your grape cheese cake dessert yesterday. I didn’t have a spring form pan so just used a 9×13 cake pan. It worked just fine although I probably should have taken it out of the oven 5 minutes sooner. It was easy to make, my company loved it and there’s enough left for two days for us. Yum!

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