Chicka Chicka Peeps Mini Cheesecakes
Easter is right around the corner, and I seriously can’t believe it. I feel like Valentine’s Day was only a week ago. So, of course I am scrambling last minute to catch up on all my Easter things: from Easter party goodies to all the Easter basket fillers. I am always down for a fun Easter-themed recipe. I may not be of the norm, but I love Peeps. Since I do have a love for them, I decided that they would be the inspiration for my Easter dessert recipe, Peeps Mini Cheesecakes.
Peeps are more than just cute marshmallows.
As I mentioned above, I am here for all the Peeps. I am also the one who loves candy corn and those oh-so-good orange circus peanuts. Of course I can only eat so many at a time. Using Peeps in this mini cheesecake recipe cuts the sweetness of the Peeps. You honestly wouldn’t know that I used Peeps if I didn’t tell you. The texture of these mini cheesecakes is still creamy. I used almond extract as the flavoring, which I believe cuts down on the sugary sweetness.
You could substitute the Peeps for a jar of marshmallow creme, but that wouldn’t be as much fun! We are trying to be festive for Easter, right? The Peeps are used in the actual cheesecake batter as well as a fun topping. One thing to note is that the bunnies are a lot better for melting than the chicks in case you were wondering 😉
Layers of bright colors.
Another fun thing about this recipe is the layers of bright colors. If you don’t want the layers to be as bold as the ones I have here, you can use less food coloring. The coloring of the Peeps alone is not enough to bring color to the cheesecakes. This is why I decided to add food coloring for a little boost. It is easy to get the layers! You just layer each color on top of another after dividing up the cheesecake batter and adding the food coloring.
- 2 - 8oz block of cream cheese, softened at room temp
- 1 1/4, 1 tablespoons cup of granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon of almond extract
- 2 eggs
- 8 graham crackers, crushed
- 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter, melted
- 4 different colors of Peeps
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
- Bright food coloring gel
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Prepare the graham cracker crust; add the crushed graham crackers and 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar to a medium sized bowl; mix well then add the melted butter
- Mix the graham cracker mixture until the butter is mixed in with the crumbs; Add 2 tablespoons of the graham cracker crust mixture to a 12 muffin pan- in the bottom of each cupcake liner.
- Press the crust mixture down good with the back of a spoon and bake for 10 minutes
- Remove from oven and allow the crusts to cool while you mix together the cheesecake batter.
- To a large mixing bowl, add the softened cream cheese and mix it until its creamy. Next add the 1 1/4 cups of granulated sugar and almond extract. Mix until it is all incorporated.
- Add the 2 eggs, mixing enough to incorporate the eggs into the batter. You don't want to over mix the batter
- Divide the Peeps by color, adding 3 Peeps/color to small microwaveable bowls. Heat each color of Peeps for about 30 seconds or until they have melted.
- Next add any additional food coloring to brighten the color and allow to cool before adding the cheese cake batter.
- After about 5 minutes, divide the cheesecake batter among the different colors of melted Peeps. Mix well.
- One color at a time, add about 2 tablespoons of each cheesecake batter color on top of the graham cracker crusts.
- Don't mix the different batter colors. You will just simply pour it on top of the previous batter color.
- Once you have added all the cheesecake batter colors to the cupcake liners, tap the muffin pan on the counter a few times to release any air bubbles that may have gotten trapped.
- Place the muffin pan in a 1/2 water filled 13x9 cake pan
- Bake the mini cheesecakes for 17-20 minutes, or until the edges of the cheesecakes are set; the middle will still be a little jiggly
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for at least 1 hour before removing from cupcake liners. The more chilled the cheesecakes are, the easier it will be to remove the cupcake liners.
- While the mini cheesecakes are cooling, prepare the whipped topping: Add the heavy cream and powdered sugar to a large mixing bowl and beat until a fluffy whipped topping is reached, about 2-3 minutes
- If you want to create the striped coloring detail to the whipped topping, add a line of each color of food coloring to a pastry bag or plastic storage bag. Then add the whipped topping
- Pipe the whipped topping on top of each mini cheesecake and add sprinkles and Peeps!
Hoppy that its almost Easter!
I truly love this holiday for many reasons. It is such a beautiful holiday following Christmas, and I am always thankful to be able to celebrate. These Peeps Mini Cheesecakes are so good for all the celebrating! You don’t have to be a huge Peeps fan to love these.