Chocolate Lover’s Cheesecake

This Chocolate Lover’s Cheesecake recipe is full of chocolate flavor for the ultimate chocolate lover! The thick and creamy chocolate cheesecake is topped with homemade chocolate ganache, chocolate whipped cream and even more chocolate for decoration!

And if you love chocolate cheesecakes, you won’t want to miss out on this Guinness Chocolate Cheesecake or this decadent German Chocolate Cheesecake recipe. So much chocolate!

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The Best Classic Chocolate Cheesecake Recipe

Today is all about the classic chocolate cheesecake. When the craving hits, this baby is the perfect cure. I’m pretty particular about what makes the perfect cheesecake consistency for me and this cheesecake fits the bills. Thick, creamy, so good!

How To Make The Cheesecake Crust

To start out we’ve got the crust. I often like to use Oreos for a chocolate crust, but I switched it up this time. I went with a pure chocolate cookie – these chocolate wafer cookies to be specific. Sometimes the extra moisture from the filling of the Oreos can make the crust more sticky, so this time I went with something more straight forward. If you want to use Oreos, you can remove the filling and keep the same amount of butter. If you leave in the filling, you’ll want to reduce the butter so that it’s just enough to pull the crumbs together.

The crust is pre-baked, then the pan should be prepared for a water bath. I am a true believe in water baths, despite the fact that they are more of a pain. Without it, you get a drier cheesecake that cracks and falls in the center and tends to brown around the edge. It’s ok, but not my idea of the perfect cheesecake. If you’re putting in all the effort, why not just add that little extra to make it great?

Chocolate Cheesecake with Ganache Ultimate Chocolate Cheesecake Recipe

For the filling, I used a mix of two kinds of cocoa – both regular unsweetened and Hershey’s Dark Cocoa blend. I love both of them and you could certainly just use one or the other, but I loved mixing them together for a richer chocolate cheesecake that wasn’t super rich. There really isn’t a wrong way, just a preference.

When mixing everything for the filling together, be sure to mix on a lower speed and not to over-mix things. Another culprit to cracks in a cheesecake is air bubbles that are added when mixing and mixing at a high speed.

Once the cheesecake is baked, it’s topped with chocolate ganache and chocolate whipped cream. We are seriously layering on the chocolate here, friends. Because why not?!? You could certainly choose to forgo them if you want, but why?

How To Decorate This Chocolate Cheesecake

The final topping and decoration is the chocolate curls. They look great and I’m a fan, but you could also just add some sprinkles or a drizzle of chocolate sauce. No wrong way here! If you need a little help making chocolate curls, you will soon be in luck – I’ve got a tutorial coming your way soon!

This chocolate cheesecake is sure to be a hit! With several layers of chocolate, there’s no shortage of awesome here. The next time you need to get your chocolate on, you know where to go. 🙂

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Read transcript

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slice of Chocolate Lovers Cheesecake

Chocolate Lover’s Cheesecake

  • Author: Life, Love and Sugar
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: 12-14 Slices
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American


This Chocolate Lover’s Cheesecake recipe is full of chocolate flavor for the ultimate chocolate lover! The thick and creamy chocolate cheesecake is topped with homemade chocolate ganache, chocolate whipped cream and even more chocolate for decoration!




  • 24 oz (678g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup (207g) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (85g) natural unsweetened cocoa*
  • 1 cup (230g) sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 eggs, room temperature


  • 6 oz (1 cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy whipping cream


  • 1 cup (240ml) heavy whipping cream, cold
  • 5 tbsp (37g) powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp (21g) natural unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Chocolate Curls



1. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Line a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan with parchment paper in the bottom and grease the sides.
2. Combine the crust ingredients in a small bowl. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan.
3. Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool.
4. Cover the outsides of the pan with aluminum foil so that water from the water bath cannot get in (see how I prepare my pan for a water bath). Set prepared pan aside.


1. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F (148°C).
2. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and cocoa on low speed until well completely combined and smooth. Be sure to use low speed to reduce the amount of air added to the batter, which can cause cracks. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
3. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix on low speed until well combined.
4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
5. Pour the cheesecake batter evenly into the crust.
6. Place the springform pan inside another larger pan. Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
7. Bake for 1 hour 5 minutes. The center should be set, but still jiggly.
8. Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
9. Crack the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
10. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate until firm, 5-6 hours or overnight.
11. When the cheesecake is cool and firm, remove from the springform pan and set on a serving plate.
12. To make the chocolate ganache. Put the chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.
13. Microwave the heavy whipping cream until it just begins to boil, then pour it over the chocolate chips. Allow it to sit for 2-3 minutes, then whisk until smooth.
14. Pour the ganache onto the cheesecake and spread into an even layer.
15. To make the chocolate whipped cream, add the heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, cocoa and vanilla extract to a large mixer bowl. Whip on high speed until stiff peaks form.
16. Spread the whipped cream on top of the chocolate ganache.
17. Add chocolate curls to the top of the cake and sprinkle with cocoa, if desired. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Cheesecake is best for 3-4 days.

* I used half natural unsweetened cocoa and half Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa.

Keywords: chocolate dessert recipe, cheesecake recipe, best cheesecake recipe, chocolate cheesecake recipe, easy cheesecake recipe, ganache recipe, how to make chocolate cheesecake


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Best Chocolate Cheesecake Recipe

Chocolate Cheesecake! Full of chocolate flavor and topped with chocolate ganache and chocolate whipped cream! So good!

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Recipe rating

  1. Diane

    If I need the cheesecake for a Saturday, can I make it Thursday, cool overnight in frig and do the ganache and whipped topping on Friday, ( the day before I need it)?

  2. Shunte Sanders-Beasley

    Cam you make the Gamache and the whipped icing the night before while cheesecake is cooling

    1. Lindsay

      You can make the ganache ahead but will need to warm it bag up to be able to spread it. The whipped cream is best made just before adding, since it can deflate a bit if you let it sit for a long time and then re-stir it.

  3. Morgan Bobo

    So I tried to make the cheesecake today, and granted I didn’t get the chance to cool it overnight with the way my schedule worked out but I let it cool for 6 hours. I thought it had cooked long enough, I let it cook for the full amount suggested and the cheesecake itself was very dark colored, and almost the consistency of pudding. I assume I probably went wrong somewhere but I’m not really sure what could be changed. I usually work with cake and cupcakes so cheesecake is new to me. 

    1. Lindsay

      It sounds like it was under baked. Another possibility is that an ingredient was measured incorrectly or some thing. But most likely it was the baking time. There can be variation between ovens so you may have just needed a little bit more time.

  4. Karen

    I made this for a potluck at work and it was a hit, gone in about an hour. Thank you for the tip about the slow cooker bag , the crust was perfect.

  5. Heather

    Just made this; my first actual full-blown cheesecake that I’ve ever made, and it turned out *beautifully*!!
    I’ve been afraid of the cheesecakes, to be honest, but this was–well, almost fun.
    And the best part was that it converted a chocolate cheesecake hater into a fan.
    Thank you *so* much; now I’m gonna try all the rest of the cheesecakes in my cookbook! <3


    This recipe is delicious. Except i have one problem. I followed the measurements for the whipped cream and it did not thicken up? Any suggestions? Should i add more of something?

    1. Lindsay

      Hmm, that’s strange. You could try adding some additional powdered sugar, or even gelatin. But if it’s whipped well at a high speed it should be fine. It might take about 5 minutes.

  7. Linda Curtis

    I just baked this cheesecake and it was a HUGE hit!! I used an Oreo crust (thanks, Safeway, for your sale on Oreos 3/$10), and took Lindsay’s suggestion and used some dark chocolate in the cheesecake and whip cream. Delish! Since I don’t have a pan large enough to make a water bath, I did not use one and everything turned out great! Worth the effort!

  8. Annie Arj

    Hi Lindsay, 

    I made the mini version of this cheesecake and loved it! I would like to make the full-sized version of it. The mini version recipe calls for 4 oz of melted chocolate in the filling, but I don’t see it listed in the full-sized version. I loved the addition of the melted chocolate and would like to include it in the full-sized version. Do you happen to know how much melted chocolate I would include? Thank you! 

    1. Lindsay

      Yes, this version uses just cocoa powder. If you’d like to do it similar to the minis, just double the chocolate used. So rather than 3/4 cup cocoa, use 8 oz melted chocolate and 4 tbsp cocoa. I hope that helps!

  9. Irina

    I made this cheesecake for New Year’s eve and we loved it. Rich, elegant and delicious. Thank you for the recipe, Lindsay.

  10. Shelley Lopez

    You can make this keto by swapping in erythritol (Swerve) for the sugar (the crust is more work to keto-ize so I just don’t eat the crust when my guests do)). I also swap in mascarpone for 1/3 if the cream cheese. 

  11. ashleigh

    Hi Lindsay! i love your recipes they are absolutely amazing!!! 

    Im from Cape Town,South Africa  and i have a few questions
    When you say powdered sugar “is it the same as icing sugar? or Castor sugar? 
    Hershey’s special cocoa what can i use as a replacement as i dont think we have that here 
    Lastly baileys … what can i use as a replacement.  thank you so so much xx ashleigh

    1. Lindsay

      Thanks Ashleigh!

      Yes, powdered sugar is icing sugar. And you can just use regular cocoa without a problem. As for Baileys, are you looking for an alcoholic or nonalcoholic replacement? I know in South Africa you have Amarula, so that would work for an alcoholic option.

  12. Robin

    Hi i made your cheesecake for a friend they said it rocks so now i want to make some 4 inch ones do you know how to adjust the baking time for the smaller pans. Thanks

    1. Lindsay

      So glad everyone enjoyed it! I actually haven’t made that size cheesecake, so I’m not sure of the adjustments.

    2. Barbara Baker

      I use 4 inch spring form pans and I usually will do 4 at a time using the amount of 1 9 inch recipe and divide it same with crust.If you bake all your cheesecakes at 225 degrees for exactly 3 hours you will never need a Bain Marie just turn oven off and leave in with it cracked for 1 more hour and it will turn out perfectly every time 

  13. Vanessa

    I doubled this recipe and made a very nice and thick 10 inch round cheesecake. I baked it for 1 hour 40 minutes and then followed the directions #8 and #9. My customer LOVED it. Thanks for a wonderful recipe!

  14. Genie

    Hello! Thank you for this cheesecake! I don’t have a smaller springform… Can I use silicon form for crust baking and then for cheesecake filling?

  15. Rosana

    I was just wondering if this cheesecake is good when your on a diet ????can u use graham Cracker crumbs for the crust and and will it still work if you use no sour cream or is there a substitute 

  16. Ann

    Cheesecake turned out amazing! I used chocolate Teddy Grahams for the crust (took the entire box in case anyone wants to know) and they were just perfect. My chocolate curls weren’t lovely, even with the tutorial, but chocolate “shards” worked just fine and no one complained. The combination of all of the chocolates and the different textures just made the cake. Delicious!

  17. Jackie

    Absolutely THE BEST cheesecake I have ever made. I didn’t use a water bath and it still turned out perfectly smooth and creamy and wonderful. Thanks for making me look like a genius in the kitchen!!

  18. Melanie M

    Lindsay you are a NINJA.  This cheesecake recipe takes some time,  but your instructions walked me through it with ease. It was absolutely perfect and delicious. I cannot for the life of me bake a decent biscuit, but today , thanks to your detailed instructions and tips, i  created a chocolate cheesecake that put The Cheesecake Factory to shame. My birthday boy was delighted. 
    Thank you!

  19. Ann

    I was wondering if this chocolate cheesecake does well freezing for lets say 30 days? I have company coming and I try to make all I can ahead so I do not have to spend lots of time in the kitchen.We do not like going out to eat,with food restrictions,so I was going to make this ahead if I could. Thanks!

    1. Lindsay

      I haven’t tried, but well wrapped, it should do alright. I’d suggest wrapping it in clear wrap, then aluminum foil. Defrost it in the refrigerator.

  20. Kathy Rea

    Well, my FIRST ever cheesecake is in the oven now – and I’m 62 years old!!! ???????????? My husband loves chocolate, so wish me luck!!

  21. Marissa

    I would really like to make this cake but dont have any cookies that i can use to make a crust with on hand. Could i just not have a crust at all? please reply ASAP 🙂

  22. Jenna oak

    Ok yep just tried it OOOOOOOHHHHH MYYYYYY SWEET BABY JESUS! This is the best freaking cheesecake everrrrrrr… I’m not good at baking at all and this turned out amazing, didn’t so water bath and no cracks 🙂

  23. Jenna

    Making this cheesecake now. I’m so excited to try it! I couldn’t find a pan big enough for my water bath though 🙁 sooo ill probably have cracks, but I’m sure it will still taste good! I’ve never made ganache or whipped cream before so this is exciting lol

  24. Darnell Moser

    This has to be the most gorgeous chocolate cheesecake I’ve ever seen, and I’ve made a copy of the recipe for my file.  You’re a cheesecake genius, Lindsay!     Darnell   🙂

  25. Kristin

    I made the cheesecake portion of this recipe today, so I’m hoping you can answer my question quickly. How well does the chocolate whipped cream hold up over time? I usually stabilize regular whipped cream to be on the safe side, especially if the dessert doesn’t get eaten in one day. What about this chocolate whipped cream? Thanks for any input!

    1. Lindsay

      The chocolate whipped cream should be stable for days. Just be sure to use the amount of powdered sugar and cocoa it calls for – that’s how I stabilize my whipped cream as opposed to gelatin or something else.

      1. Kristin

        I wanted to report back on my thoughts on this cheesecake now that I’ve gotten to try it. I’ve made LOTS of cheesecakes, and in the past, I haven’t loved chocolate cheesecakes. But yours just looked SO good, so I had to try it. It is DELICIOUS! I loved all the chocolate elements–the crust, the cheesecake, the ganache, the whipped cream, the curls. I loved all of that together. I will say that 2 1/4 cups of chocolate wafer crumbs did not equal 302 grams for me. Perhaps it was processing them that caused the crumbs to be extra fluffy? I had a lot more crumbs than what fit in 2 1/4 cups. I decided to start with 2 1/4 cups, and when the crumbs still looked too moist, I ended up putting in the total 302 grams, so I would suggest following the gram measurements instead of the cup measurements. This is definitely worth adding to my cheesecake repertoire. Thanks for such a fantastic recipe!

  26. Emily

    I can’t wait to try this, all of your recipes look incredible!!  I’m also really enjoying reading both of your cookbooks, thanks for sharing your recipes!  I was wondering what kind of springform pan you use, the brand I have now leaks filling and I would love a good recommendation :). Thanks!

    1. Lindsay

      I’m glad you’re enjoying everything! I’ve had trouble finding a non-leaking pan too. I recently got one at Target, but I had to buy two and test them at home. One was good, one wasn’t. I wish there was a better option. Have you seen this tutorial? It helps with leaky pans.

  27. Melissa Howell

    I want to make this so much right now! Do you have a tutorial for the chocolate curls? Yours are the thickest and nicest I’ve seen!

  28. Louann

    This looks amazing!  Just one question…in step 2 of the directions you mention flour, but there is no flour in the ingredient list…was it accidentally omitted?

    1. Jenna

      This has become my go to cheesecake to make for events. Everyone LOVES it. Its my favorite thing to bake. Thank you for the recipe!!

  29. Alison

    I believe that might satisfy my chocolate fix for a month! Yum! I must make this! 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing Lindsay!

About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12