Mini Lemon Cheesecakes

Easy mini lemon cheesecakes are bright, decadent, and creamy. They are the perfect balance of sweet and tart!

These mini lemon cheesecakes are perfect for spring holidays, baby and bridal showers, and of course, brunch! For a sweet bite-size brunch, try serving these with Egg Muffins, Mini Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting, and French Toast Muffin Cups.

Mini Lemon Cheesecakes stacked on top of each other

Bite-Sized dessert

Mini lemon cheesecakes are adorable, cheerful bites of sunshine. They are the perfect treat to serve at all the things. Serve them as-is or top them with homemade lemon curd or fresh fruit. YUM!

If cheesecake isn’t on your must-make list for all things summer, you’re going to want to add it! Whether it’s a full size cheesecake, an Instant Pot cheesecake, no-bake cheesecake or these dainty little bites of sunshine, cheesecake is a must!!

Back in the day, I was obsessed with my mini cheesecake pan (affiliate link). Ok, I still am. What changed? I lost one of the bases and now I can only make 11 instead of a full dozen!?

That forced me to start using my springform pan, 9×9 baking pan, and my regular muffin pan. I’m sure most of you have a muffin pan laying around, so that’s probably really good news!

Lemon Cheesecake Cupcakes on a plate

Graham Cracker Crust

PREP. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a standard size muffin tin with 12 paper liners, set aside.

MIX. In a small mixing bowl, combine the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, and salt. Mix until the crumbs are moist.

PRESS. Scoop 1 ½ tablespoons of the graham mixture into the bottom of each liner. Press to create a firm, even crust. Bake for 6-8 minutes, then remove and allow to cool.

Note: I prefer using grease-proof liners, however, if you can’t find them foil ones will work too (they just might stick a little more). If you prefer thinner crusts, you may want to halve the recipe. 

Lemon Cheesecake Filling

CREAM. In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer), add the cream cheese, sugar and flour. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes until smooth.

BEAT. With mixing speed on low, gradually add the sour cream, vanilla, lemon juice and zest. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Beat for an additional minute on medium speed.

BAKE. Divide the batter between the 12 muffin liners. They will be full, just make sure they have at least ⅛ inch of liner showing. Tap the pan on the counter 3 times. Place into the oven and bake for 24-26 minutes.

Note: They will still look moist in the center but will set as they cool. Crack the door to the oven and allow the cheesecakes to rest for 10 minutes before transferring the pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

CHILL & SERVE. Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving. Top with freshly grated lemon zest, homemade lemon curd, a slice of lemon, or fresh fruit for garnish.

Graham cracker crust mixture for mini lemon cheesecake recipe

Tips + Variations

Top the mini cheesecakes with candied lemon pieces to give an extra tanginess and a change in texture. You can candy the lemon slices by following these directions:

  1. Slice lemon into very thin slices (⅛ inch)
  2. In a large pan bring 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, and 2 tbsp of lemon juice to a boil
  3. Reduce to a medium-low heat and then place the lemon slices in the pan
  4. Simmer for 15 minutes, flip them twice, and remove when they are translucent 
  5. Keep them refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Variations/Additions

  • Use Meyer lemons
    • If you want a sweeter taste you can use Meyer lemons instead of traditional lemons. 
  • Crumble vanilla wafers for the crust
  • Top the cheesecake layer with lemon curd
  • Sprinkle crushed lemon Oreo crumbs on top
Mini Lemon Cheesecake Bites on a plate

Store + Freeze

STORE leftovers in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Wrap all of the mini cheesecakes in plastic wrap and FREEZE in a freezer safe bag.

Because these last for a few days, and taste best after being refrigerated, they are perfect to make ahead the night before serving.

Lemon cheesecake bites topped with fresh lemon

FOR MORE CHEESECAKE RECIPES:

Mini Lemon Cheesecakes | lifemadesimplebakes.com

Mini Lemon Cheesecake Recipe

Easy mini lemon cheesecakes are bright, decadent, and creamy. They are the perfect balance of sweet and tart!
4.75 from 4 votes
Pin Rate
Course: Cakes & Cheesecakes
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 25 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 50 mins
Servings: 12
Calories: 326kcal
Print Recipe

Ingredients

For the crust:
  • 5 tbsp. unsalted butter - melted
  • 1 c. graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tbsp. granulated sugar
  • pinch salt
For the filling:
  • 12 oz. 1 ½ blocks original cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • ½ c. sour cream OR ricotta - room temperature
  • 1 ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ¼ c. fresh lemon juice
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 2 large eggs - room temperature

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a standard size muffin tin with 12 paper liners, set aside.
  • In a small mixing bowl, combine the melted butter, graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, and salt. Mix until the crumbs are moist.
  • Scoop 1 ½ tablespoons of the graham mixture into the bottom of each liner. Press to create a firm, even crust. Bake for 6-8 minutes, then remove and allow to cool.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl with a hand mixer), add the cream cheese, sugar and flour. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes until smooth.
  • With mixing speed on low, gradually add the sour cream, vanilla, lemon juice and zest. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed.
  • Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Beat for an additional minute on medium speed.
  • Divide the batter between the 12 muffin liners. They will be full, just make sure they have at least ⅛ inch of liner showing. Tap the pan on the counter 3 times. Place into the oven and bake for 24-26 minutes. They will still look moist in the center but will set as they cool.
  • Crack the door to the oven and allow the cheesecakes to rest for 10 minutes before transferring the pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.
  • Top with freshly grated lemon zest, homemade lemon curd, a slice of lemon, or fresh fruit for garnish.

Nutrition

Calories: 326kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 240mg | Potassium: 108mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 636IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 61mg | Iron: 1mg

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About the Author

Natalie

Wife, mother, baker and photographer. Recipe developer & author of Life Made Simple. A self-professed peanut butter lover and fond of anything that involves pumpkin, cookie dough, or sprinkles

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Comments:

  1. 5 stars
    These came out perfect! I LOVE this recipe… The cheesecakes were very creamy and the lemon flavor was just perfect. I’m definitely making these again!! Thank you Natalie!

    1. Thank you! They would probably still be great a couple days ahead. I personally, would prob keep it to 24 hrs ahead, but that’s me 😉

  2. 5 stars
    I made these last weekend and they were so good! It was my first time making cheesecake, and it couldn’t have been easier. The lemon zest and juice did a great job of balancing out the rest of the cake. I used those kind of fancy cupcake parchments that have extra volume so I could add lots of toppings- strawberries, blackberries, and more zest. They were the perfect size/amount so I didn’t end up with too much leftover. I’m tweaking the recipe to make a mini cookie butter cheesecakes for a birthday this weekend.