Basil Cheesecake with Chocolate Sauce

Basil Cheesecake with Chocolate Sauce (via I have a theory, and I doubt I’m the first, that sweet and savory were meant to be enjoyed together as often as possible. It keeps things interesting and not too sweet, you know? I just love the balance of working with flavors that compliment each other. One thing I’ve been working on this month is a basil cheesecake to share with you all. 

Basil Cheesecake with Chocolate Sauce (via The first attempt was too light on the basil flavor and ended up having large cracks in the final cheesecake surface. Boo! Although cracks aren’t the end of the world, I prefer they not be there. But, I do have some tips if you are sometimes plagued by cheesecake cracks (or excessive sinkage). Also I changed up my method for incorporating the basil flavor, and the good news is it’s even easier than my original attempt. 

Basically, if you like cheesecake, or interesting desserts, or basil, or all three, then you really need to make this. It’s SO good!

Basil extractBasil Cheesecake with Chocolate Sauce, makes one.

1 cup crushed chocolate wafers or graham crackers
3 tablespoons melted butter

(3) 8 oz. packages of cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup greek yogurt
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 eggs
1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons Basil Extract
green food coloring (optional)

Use a food processor to crush the chocolate wafers into a fine powder. Mix with the melted butter and press into a greased springform pan so the crust covers the bottom completely. Bake at 325°F for 8-10 minutes.

Chocolate crumb crust

In a mixing bowl (or with a stand mixer), whip together the softened cream cheese, sugar, salt and greek yogurt until well combined. Our goal here is to get rid of any cream cheese lumps and really mix these ingredients together. 

Next stir in the basil extract. Make sure to read the package directions as sometimes they will suggest a certain number of “drops” as an equivalent measurement to a teaspoon. Taste and adjust as you like here. 

Fold the eggs into the batter one at a time. Fold just enough to incorporate but do not over mix. You don’t want to incorporate air into the eggs or the batter at this point as this is what can cause your cheesecake to rise while baking and then deflate (often cracking) as it cools. If you want your cheesecake to be tinted a little more green, then you can also fold in a little food coloring here as well.

Cheesecake batterPour the batter over the baked crust. Before popping the cheesecake into the 325°F oven, add an aluminum baking pan filled half or two thirds full of water to the bottom rack of your oven. This is an alternative to baking in a water bath and helps ensure your oven is an even temperature throughout. 

Bake the cheesecake for 50 minutes. Try not to open the oven door while it bakes. (It’s hard! I know!) Turn the oven off, crack the door just slightly and allow the cheesecake to cool in the still warm oven for an hour. Then allow to cool on the countertop until it’s at room temperature. Then refrigerate for a couple hours or overnight.

Basil Cheesecake with Chocolate Sauce (via For the chocolate sauce, I simply melted 2/3 cup chocolate chips with 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in the microwave in 30 second increments (stirring in between) just until melted. Drizzle over the top of the chilled cheesecake.

Basil Cheesecake with Chocolate Sauce (via a fancy touch, you can dip a few basil leaves in sugar and place on top of your cheesecake. This is a fun garnish, but I also think it’s a nice touch because otherwise this cheesecake could easily get mistaken for key lime (in looks…NOT taste). Don’t want to disappoint anyone. 🙂 Enjoy! xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

  • Yum! That looks so good. Your food photography is amazing! I love your style. I can’t wait to try making some cheesecake!


  • Say what?! Basil extract?! How did I miss this?! Yes please!

    Also, where did you get those forks??

  • I love so many of your recipes, most recent fave is the Tikka Masala. I have a request – can you develop a vegetarian chile relleno recipe? Thanks!

  • there is a gelato place in london that sells this flavor and im always interested to try it, even more interested as a cheesecake! love it!

  • Never heard of cheese cake with basil. But it does look so yummy!


  • That cheesecake looks divine! ! Basil extract?! How sweet is that?! Now I want cheesecake. ..

  • Basil extract?! What a creative combination of chocolate and basil! Your ideas are always so inspiring!

    Juju Sprinkles

  • Oh yum. I love the light green hue the cheesecake has to it. Basil sounds like a really interesting flavor to add. :]

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  • What an interesting combination – I never would have thought. I may have to give this a go – if nothing else it sure looks pretty! 🙂

  • Sweet herbal flavors, Emma, I love the way you think! I’ve been googling and searching pinterest for basil in desserts and here you go handing me just what I was looking for. Also, I didn’t know basil extract was a thing. Yum.

  • I’ll be making a market run on Saturday. So, I can enjoy this over the weekend. Thanks for the recipe, Emma 🙂

    Happy Thursday!

  • It seems so odd to me to put basil in cheesecake but it looks extremely delicious!

    The Peculiar Trouth

  • This sounds too crazy to be true! basic and cheesecake?! That’s insane and so creative! Can’t wait to try this recipe out – you made it look delicious.

    xx, Mel

  • yum!! I would never think to put basil in a cheesecake but I love basil and I love cheesecake so what could go wrong?! haha

    Danika Maia

  • Dude, I love basil and had no idea there was such a thing as Basil Extract. How cool is that? I think you just changed my life!


    Laurali Star

  • One of my favorite ice creams is a dark chocolate sweet basil from a local scoop shop, so I’m guessing that this is probably equally amazing…Super excited to make it!

  • This seems like a really strange combination, but I’m a huge fan of cheesecake so I might have to try it!

    The White Corner Creative

  • I did not know basil extract was a thing.

    I love basil and cheesecake. Though this makes me a little nervous, I might have to try it.

  • Basil is my life.
    Cheesecake is my life
    This recipe IS MY LIFE!!!!!!

  • This looks amazing! I love the contrast in colors. I’ll have to try this out soon!


  • What an interesting flavor combination for cheesecake. Before for this amazing springtime weather we have been having (with a glass of basil limeade, of course).

  • Everytime I come onto your blog I get hungry and need something I never knew I needed before.

    My Little ‘Dream’ Box REVIEW | April 2015 UK

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