Mini cheesecake recipes include a crust made with crushed graham crackers or vanilla wafers mixed with melted butter. The cake itself generally combines softened cream cheese with sugar, eggs and vanilla extract. Optional extras include citrus zest or flavored extracts, such as almond or lemon.
To make a graham cracker or vanilla cookie crust, mix crushed grahams or cookies with 2 tablespoons sugar and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Press the mixture into the bottom of 12 lined muffin cups. For a shortcut, simply place a vanilla wafer at the bottom of each cup for a quick no-fuss crust.
Make the cheesecake mixture by beating 2 8-ounce packages of softened cream cheese with 2 eggs, 2/3 cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract. Optionally, add an additional 1/2 teaspoon of a second flavored extract or citrus zest. Spoon the cheesecake mixture into each muffin cup, filling each cup approximately two-thirds full. Bake the mini cheesecakes for 22 to 24 minutes at 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool. Once the cakes are cool to the touch, transfer them to the refrigerator.
Refrigerate the mini cheesecakes for at least four hours before serving them. Garnish each cake with fresh berries and whipped cream, or spoon lemon curd, melted chocolate or pie filling over top.