This strawberry jelly cheesecake is made with a graham cracker crust, light and airy no-bake cheesecake, and topped with fresh strawberries suspended in cranberry jelly.
For some reason, I never really thought the textures of jelly and cheesecake would go well together but they really do! The lightness of the jelly balances with the creamy, rich cheesecake and both layers have the same melt-in-your-mouth kind of feeling.
This strawberry jelly cheesecake recipe is entirely no bake and comes together very easily. The hardest part is waiting for it to set in the fridge. Hear me out - this cheesecake needs to set for at least 12 hours or preferably overnight for the best results. I always prefer setting it overnight so that I don't have to wait all day for it. And it's really worth it when you slice into a perfectly firm no-bake cheesecake that's lighter and airier than a baked cheesecake.
The undeniable star of this jelly-topped cheesecake is the see-through jelly layer showcasing an arrangement of sliced fresh strawberries just under the surface. It looks beautiful but it's really simple to make.
How to make a strawberry jelly cheesecake
For the graham cracker crust
In a small bowl, stir together graham cracker crumbs and brown sugar. Pour in melted butter and stir until the crumbs are saturated and it looks like wet sand.
Line a 6" springform cake pan with a strip of parchment paper around the sides. Pour the graham crumbs into the bottom of the pan and use a spatula to firmly press the crust into a flat, even layer, making sure to press into all the edges of the pan. Chill in the fridge while you make the cheesecake layer.
For the cheesecake layer
In a mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat whipping cream until it comes to stiff peaks. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, beat together cream cheese, greek yogurt, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until it becomes very smooth and creamy.
Add the whipped cream to the cream cheese mixture and gently fold together with a spatula until combined. Fold in an upward motion to prevent deflating too much air from the whipped cream.
Add this cheesecake filling on top of the graham crust and use an offset spatula to smooth into an even layer, making sure to push the cheesecake into the sides of the pan. Let chill in the fridge while you make the jelly layer.
For the jelly layer
Fill a small bowl with 50ml of cold water. Sprinkle gelatin powder into the water and let it sit for 5 minutes to let the gelatin bloom. It should become a thick gel.
Microwave for 30 seconds and give it a stir until the gel dissolves into a clear liquid. Pour the gelatin into a glass of pink cranberry juice and stir well to mix. Set aside.
Arrange your strawberry slices on top of the cheesecake layer. This works best if each strawberry slice has another slice on top of it to hold it down.
Pour half of the juice mixture on top of the cheesecake layer until it covers about half of the strawberries. Let this layer chill in the fridge for about 15 minutes until just barely firm to the touch. This is to prevent the strawberry slices from floating up to the surface. Pour in the rest of the juice mixture and chill in the fridge for at least 12 hours or overnight until completely set before releasing the cake from the pan.
To release the cake, slowly release the spring lock on the pan. Peel off the parchment paper around the sides of the cake.
Ingredient substitutions and alternatives
- Graham crackers - Honey graham crackers are most commonly used in classic cheesecake recipes but they can be replaced with digestive biscuits, gingersnaps, Lotus cookies, speculoos cookies, or even Oreo cookies.
- Pink cranberry juice - I've used a pink cranberry juice blend (mix of white cranberry and red cranberry juice) that caught my eye in the grocery store for its light pink colour but you can use any transparent juice such as white cranberry juice, red cranberry juice, white grape juice, etc. For a boozy alternative, you can also use a sweet white wine like a riesling or rosé and it would taste amazing.
- Strawberries - Yes, this is a strawberry jelly cheesecake but this recipe is really flexible. You can use any fruit that pairs well with cheesecake, like peaches and cherries. You can also slice the strawberries in a different way or simply cut the tops off and arrange whole strawberries on top of the cheesecake with the cut side down.
Notes on this recipe
This cheesecake can be stored wrapped or in a container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
No-bake cheesecake and crust can definitely be frozen. Wrap it well and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight. However, the jelly layer on this cake cannot be frozen so any leftovers will need to be stored in the fridge.
The jelly topping made with gelatin cannot be frozen. Desserts made with gelatin don't freeze well and will become a liquid once thawed. If you need to, you can freeze and thaw just the cheesecake portion and add the jelly layer a few days before serving (you will have to return the cheesecake to its original springform pan or freeze with the pan in order to add the jelly layer).
Yes! This cheesecake is actually better if you let it set for more than a day. The no-bake cheesecake will have a firmer texture that makes slicing the cake much easier. You can make the entire strawberry jelly cheesecake about 2-3 days in advance and just store it in the fridge, either in the springform pan or without it, until you're ready to serve it. You can also make the crust and cheesecake portion in advance and add the jelly layer the day before you plan on serving.
Other strawberry recipes you might like
- Strawberry Cheesecake Macarons
- Strawberry Matcha Latte
- Strawberry Soju Cocktail
- Strawberry Hand Pies
- Strawberry Lemon Curd Tartlets