peanut butter-chocolate cheesecake on pretzel crust

Peanut butter-chocolate cheesecake on pretzel crust.
This is how you do a peanut butter-chocolate cheesecake.
No more graham crust, use pretzel.
The first cheesecake did not come out well as I used those Pretzel Thins--those do not make a good crust.  Make sure to get normal pretzels that are thicker than the popular Pretzel Thins.
Trial and error, all bakers go through it to find the right recipe; the right balance of flavors.
I tried to get the pretzel crust to go up the side of the cake pan, no luck there either.  I'm a firm
believer in having as much crust as possible in my pies and cheesecakes.
Up the sides, on the bottom--yes indeedy.
Wanting a deep peanut butter flavor in this cheesecake I used not only peanut butter in the batter, but also the swirls are made with a chocolate-peanut butter from The Peanut Butter Company.
This worked perfectly!
The chocolate-peanut butter swirls will not melt away, nor will they bleed out or dissolve; they stayed perfectly in tact.  (notice the before baking and after baking photos--perfection!).
So I highly recommend picking up a jar of for achieving the perfect cheesecake swirls!
Cheesecakes aren't that hard to make.
I firmly believe that it's all about the oven temperature.
Please read my cook notes (in the recipe) on baking: to water bath or not to water bath--
that is your decision. Plus a few other tips on getting the perfect swirls.
Couple of cheesecake tips: I did find, that using a bit of flour does help with having less cracks, and baking cheesecakes with low heat (300 or 285) and slow time does help with no cracks in the end.

chocolate-peanut butter cheesecake with pretzel crust
print recipe

2 ½ cups crushed pretzels
½ cup + 2 TB butter, melted
4 (8 oz) blocks cream cheese, softened
½ cup sour cream
¼ -1/2 cup peanut butter (chunky or smooth)
1 cup granulated sugar
generous pinch of salt
3 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
2 TB flour
¼ cup heavy whipping cream

for the chocolate swirl:
 ¼ cup ( +/- )  chocolate-peanut butter from The Peanut Butter Co.

cook notes:
Use small pretzels, they are easier to crush up in the food processor.
DO NOT use pretzel thins, they are not good at forming a crust, trust me I tried!
I have never baked my cheesecakes with a water bath, if this is what you prefer then please go right ahead.  I always bake my cheesecakes with low temps—low and slow. And of course you can use any type of chocolate swirls you wish, I just loved using the chocolate-peanut butter from Peanut Butter Company because it’s so convenient & easy, plus is does NOT dissolve or bleed than say regular melted chocolate would.

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9 or 10-­inch springform pan on bottom/sides.
Set aside.
Mix crushed pretzels with melted butter. Press firmly and evenly into prepared springform pan. Bake crust for 8-10 minutes or until its set.
Turn oven down to 300F.  (if you want a water bath then place large pan of water on lowest rack).
In bowl of stand mixer, combine softened cream cheese, sour cream and sugar. Mix until smooth and creamy. Add eggs, egg yolks, and peanut butter. Mix until smooth, then add in the heavy cream, mix once more, then add in the flour. Final mix until all is nice and incorporated.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
For the chocolate swirls, take a few tablespoons of the chocolate peanut butter, place as gobs on top of cheesecake, then take a chopstick or something similar and make swirls in the batter.  Do not push swirls down! Put as many swirls as you wish.
Place springform pan on large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake in center rack, until filling seems mostly set, about 40-50 minutes.
It’s ok if there is a bit of jiggle in the center, it will set up once it’s chilled.
You know the cheesecake is done with the edges are all set up and the center is not gooey.
I turn off the oven, leave the oven door open, and let it come to room temp for about an hour or 2. Then place the cheesecake in fridge for a few hours or overnight to let it truly set up.  You can try to slice it, but it might be a bit gooey, but hey that could be your thing!
When ready to serve, if you see the edges are sticking to the sides you can either use a very thin knife that is slightly wet and run it around the edges or place in freezer for a few minutes to shrink and release.  With a little prayer and luck release the springform latch, slice and serve with fresh whipped cream and/or melted chocolate.


  1. Wowser! This looks amazing! :)

  2. I am wondering if there is some way to incorporate the Peanut Butter Powder you used in your Twix recipe into the pretzel crust.

    1. Matt you are thinking correctly.
      Go for it!! Awesome. And tell us!

  3. Dawn, this cheesecake recipe is PERFECT! Love it. Can't beat chocolate, peanut butter, and pretzels.

  4. Your recipes just keep getting better and better! I love that pretzels are in it. :) I made chocolate chip cookies with crushed pretzels and those were delish! I can't imagine what this tastes like!

  5. Wow, this looks absolutely incredible! I need a piece right now! I bet it taste amazing!

  6. Mmmm nothing makes peanut butter and chocolate better than pretzels!

  7. Could a cheesecake get any better? I think not. I love everything about it!

  8. a pretzel crust is perfect for this cheesecake! delicious creation. :)

  9. I love the idea of pretzel crust! I don't think I've had that before -- very creative. And peanut butter in cheesecake? Yes. Please. And probably I'd want seconds. ;-) This looks great -- thanks.

  10. Beautiful cheesecake! Hey, I saw your tweet about PB&Co not being responsive. I have found them to be super blog friendly. They work with me all the time. Shoot them an email to see if you can get a better response. But it's Peanut Butter and Company not the peanut butter company. I'm sure they are lucky about their name being right.

  11. The.Boy (bless his heart) DOESN'T EVEN LIKE CHEESECAKE. So I'll be polishing this off myself this weekend. It's quite the masterpiece.

  12. whoa...love the idea of a pretzel crust! yum!

  13. fabulous. i bet it also would be great with peanut butter pretzels :)


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