Pickles are an item you sometimes crave on occasion or use as a garnish to put on your burger, rather than something around which you center a dish. So when I came across Delish’s recipe for pickle cheesecake, I thought this would be just one more of those questionable savory-sweet desserts.
But then I watched Delish’s how-to video for the dish and realized it actually didn’t look half bad. Though it may have initially sounded like a not-so-tasty dessert, it showed promise as a savory dip or appetizer.
Delish’s pickle “cheesecake” includes a pretzel and butter crust. Cream cheese, goat cheese, sour cream, pickle juice, eggs, parmesan, chopped pickles, garlic, dill, salt and pepper, red pepper flakes and onion powder make up the batter.
Delish uses a springform pan, and I had one, too. But there are alternatives if you don’t have one, like lining a regular pan with parchment paper so you can lift the “cake” out after it’s done. You can also just leave it in the pan when you serve it, though you won’t have as impressive of a presentation.
On to the recipe!
Preheat your oven to 325 F. Spray the sides and bottom of the pan to prevent sticking. Crush up your pretzels (I used a food processor).
Add the melted butter and mix.
Pack down your pretzel crust in the bottom of your pan.
Next, mix the softened cream cheese, goat cheese, sour cream and pickle juice (yes, pickle juice).
Add three eggs to this mixture, beating them in one at a time.
Add seasonings and fold them into the cheese batter.
Mix in a half cup of finely chopped dill pickles.
Pour half the batter on top of the pretzel crust, then add a cup of the chopped dill pickles.
Side note: I thought the large jar of pickles I bought would be enough for the recipe, but I ended up needing more for the garnish. This could be because I minced the pickles in a food processor, which reduced their size more than if I’d hand-chopped them into slightly bigger pieces. Still, it’s worth making sure you have plenty of pickles on hand before you start baking!
Add the rest of the cheesecake batter on top of the pickle layer and pop the pan into the oven.
Delish says to cook the cheesecake for about an hour until the edges of the cheesecake are starting to brown and the center is set.
Some cheesecake recipes say that to avoid cracks, you should cook the cheesecake in a water bath and slowly cool it. I failed to read this until after my cheesecake was done. Whoops!
Delish also recommends chilling the finished dish for at least two hours.
After it cools, remove the sides of the springform pan and top the cheesecake with more minced pickles and dill.
Serve with toasted bread or crackers.
Verdict? I can’t imagine wanting to eat this by the slice, or at least not a very big slice. But as a spread, it was good!
If you’re a fan of pickles, dill and dairy, you’ll love this recipe. Those who like to snack on fermented food or add extra brine to their martini (like me) will, too.
For a less pickle-y version of the cheesecake, I’d skip the chopped pickle layer in between the two layers of cheese batter. You’ll still get the pickle essence, but the taste will be a little less predominant.
Of course, the lactose-intolerant dairy detractors and pickle haters will want to pass on Delish’s recipe.
However, I think this would be the perfect pickle appetizer to serve at someone’s baby shower. Hold the ice cream.