New York Style Cheesecake Recipe Without Sour Cream

This is a cheesecake recipe without sour cream. The sour cream is replaced with heavy cream, resulting in a milder flavor and a lighter texture.

Variations on the New York Cheesecake: Cheesecake Recipes Without Sour Cream or With Sour Cream

This is a variation on a classic New York style Cheesecake. For those of you who really love and know New York Cheesecakes, this version is closer to Junior’s. Our classic New York Style Cheesecake Recipe more closely resembles the Carnegie Deli’s. Carnegie Deli style cheesecake has a crust made of graham cracker crumbs and uses sour cream in the batter. Junior’s uses a sponge cake base and includes heavy cream in place of the sour cream in the batter. Both recipes provide a classic cheesecake experience. Just as we can’t pick a favorite child, we can’t pick a favorite cheesecake. If you happen to like your creamier cheesecake filling with a more toothsome graham cracker crust, or are just feeling intimidated by the idea of baking a sponge under your cheesecake, feel free to substitute in the graham cracker crust featured in our New York Style Cheesecake Recipe.

Hand Wringing about Water Baths

While the Carnegie Deli cheesecake is a little more sturdy, the Junior’s style is a bit more delicate and definitely requires a gentle hot water bath to keep it from cracking. If you hate water baths that much, consider sticking with the Carnegie Deli version. However, if the whole notion of turning your oven on to produce a cheesecake is just too much for you, this Whipped Cheesecake recipe requires no baking! If you have mastered your fear of water baths and really wanted something a bit lighter but still cheesecake tasting, our Japanese Style Cheesecake is the way to go.

cheesecake recipe without sour cream

Cheesecake Recipe Without Sour Cream

This cheesecake recipe is made without sour cream. Instead, we use heavy cream for a milder flavor and creamy texture.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Cool Time 6 hours
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 10


  • 1 8-inch cake pan
  • parchment paper
  • aluminum foil


For the sponge cake crust

  • 1/4 cup cake flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 eggs separated, at room temperature
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter melted
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar

For the cheesecake batter

  • 3 packages of cream cheese (8 oz each) at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar divided
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3/4 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

To decorate:

  • 1/4 cup fresh berries
  • 2 tbsp pomegranate seeds
  • 2 tbsp white chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp mint leaves


For the sponge cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350 F.Butter the bottom and side of an 8-inch springform pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper. Wrap the outside with aluminum foil, extending all the way up the side.
  • In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer or electric mixer using the whip attachment, beat the egg yolks on high for three minutes. Slowly add in 1 tbsp of sugar and continue beating until thick, light yellow ribbons form in the bowl, about 5 minutes. Beat in the vanilla extract.
  • Sift the flour mixture over the batter and fold in by hand.Fold in the melted butter.
  • Pour the mixture into a separate bowl and clean and dry your stand mixer bowl and beaters. Beat the egg whites and cream of tartar on high until frothy. Gradually add in the 1/4 cup of sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form.
  • Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into the batter, then fold in the rest until well incorporated.
  • Gently spread the batter over the bottom of the prepared pan and bake until just set and golden, about 10 minutes. Don't let the top brown. To test cake for doneness, touch the cake gently in the center. If it springs, back, it's ready!
  • Place the cake on a wire rack to cool. Leave the oven on while you prepare the cheesecake batter.

For the cheesecake batter:

  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, beat 1 package of softened cream cheese and 1/4 cup of sugar, and the cornstarch together on low speed until creamy, about 3 minutes.
  • Add in the remaining cream cheese, one package at a time, beating well and scraping down the bowl after each block.
  • Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat in remaining sugar, then vanilla. Add in eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the heavy cream until just blended. The filling should look light and have a creamy texture. Be careful not to overmix and incorporate too much air.
  • Gently pour the batter into the crust. Place the cake pan in a large roasting pan. Make a hot water bath by pouring enough boiling water so that the water line is halfway up the side of the springform pan. Return the cake to the oven and bake until the top is light golden brown and the center barely jiggles, about 75 minutes. If the cake still feels soft around the edge, let it bake an additional 10 minutes. The cake will just begin to pull way from the sides of the springform pan when it is ready.
  • Remove the cheesecake from the water bath and let the cheesecake cool for 2 hours. Leave the cake in the pan, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until completely set, at least six hours (overnight is fine). Release the cake from the sides of the pan and remove the cake fully from the pan. Refrigerate until ready to decorate with fruit, mint leaves, and white chocolate chips, and serve.


To get the cleanest cuts, use a very sharp large chef’s knife, rinsing the knife with warm water between pieces.
This cheesecake is very rich, so it’s a good thing it keeps well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for several days.
There are so many ways to decorate this cake – please don’t allow your creativity to be limited! You could easily drizzle on a chocolate ganache or caramel sauce (or both!). Warmed lemon curd could also be drizzled over the top.
Keyword cheese cake, cream cheese, heavy cream
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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