A quick and easy recipe for keto/low carb cheesecake made in the Instant Pot pressure cooker with a gluten-free almond flour crust.
This low carb Instant Pot cheesecake is one of the best cheesecakes I’ve ever had. It reminds me of New York style cheesecakes that I had while growing up on Long Island — rich and creamy, with a dense and smooth consistency. Cheesecakes are dubbed “New York style” when they’re made with heavy cream (for that firm and silky texture), and often they’re baked in extra tall cheesecake pans.
The advantage of cooking cheesecake and other traditionally baked desserts in the Instant Pot is that pressure cooker recipes are less susceptible to the vagaries of ovens. Some ovens run too hot, some run too cold, and baking often involves some intuition on the part of the baker. With the Instant Pot, you get more reproducible results.
I enjoying making cheesecake in the Instant Pot. Some days are too hot, so I don’t want to hear up my house with the oven, and some days I just don’t feel like messing with the oven at all.
Cheesecakes are one of the few desserts that are very easily translatable to a low carb version without any loss in taste and texture. The low carb version tastes exactly like the real deal. The first low carb cheesecake I made was in the form of pumpkin cheesecake bars for Thanksgiving last year, and this Instant Pot cheesecake uses the same almond flour crust and similar filling without pumpkin flavors.
For this recipe, you’ll need a round pan that’s six inches in diameter and 3 inches tall. It can either be a pan with removable bottom — I use Fat Daddio’s aluminum 6-inch round cheesecake pan — or a springform pan. I prefer the pan with a removable bottom, which fits well in my 6 quart Instant Pot. The sides and bottom of the pan should be lined with parchment paper, no greasing needed. You’ll also need the trivet that came with your Instant Pot or a steam rack with handles; if yours doesn’t have handles, you can make a foil sling to help you transfer the cheesecake out of the Instant Pot when it’s done.
Lining the cheesecake pan with parchment paper:
Make sure that you remove cold ingredients like cream cheese, heavy cream, and eggs from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before starting the recipe. You want to give them time to come to room temperature, helping to ensure a smooth and creamy batter. Otherwise you might end up with a lumpy batter.
It’s also important that you don’t overmix while beating the batter. At every step, the batter should be mixed until the ingredients are incorporated and smooth, and no more. I provide electric mixer time estimates in the recipe so that you’ll have an idea of what to do. If you overmix, you will end up with a lighter and fluffier batter, which means an airier and puffier cheesecake.
I prefer Philadelphia’s brand cream cheese, and I would watch out for other brands — sometimes they have other additives. Philadelphia cream cheese has only 1 g carbs per ounce, and other brands may have more. I’ve used several different brands for almond flour and I like the ones sold at Trader Joe’s and Costco, which have 2 g net carbs per 1/4 cup serving.
Making low carb cheesecake batter and almond crust:
I use a low carb sweetener called erythritol because it’s healthiest, and I use its powdered form. You can buy erythritol online on Amazon and use a Nutribullet or similar blender to powder it. You can also substitute with other types of dry sweeteners, but note that pure erythritol is 70% as sweet as sugar. If you use a sweetener that has a 1:1 substitution ratio for sugar (such as Swerve), you’ll need to make a conversion. I recommend using the provided weight measurements, not volume, when performing the conversion.
Note that the cheesecake should be chilled in the refrigerator at least 24 hours before serving. This is non-negotiable. Cheesecakes take time to develop flavor and a dense texture. Personally, I think this cheesecake tastes best after it has chilled for at least 48 hours.
You can also store cheesecake in the freezer for up to several months — lucky for you, cheesecakes freeze incredibly well. You can thaw by placing in the refrigerator overnight.
I’ve also made versions of this cheesecake with other flavors — my favorite is key lime where I add 2-3 tablespoons key lime juice and lime zest in place of the lemon juice.
Low Carb Instant Pot Cheesecake (Keto Recipe)
For the crust:
- Remove cold ingredients (cream cheese, eggs, heavy cream) from the refrigerator and allow them to warm to room temperature. Start this 30 minutes before proceeding with the rest of the recipe.
- Prepare a steam rack or the trivet that came with your pressure cooker, ideally with lifting handles.
Make the crust:
- Combine melted butter and erythritol in a mixing bowl, and stir together. Add almond flour, stirring until the butter is absorbed and forms a dough.
- Transfer the dough to the cheesecake pan. Use a spoon or measuring cup to firmly press down to form a flat and smooth crust covering the entire bottom of the pan.
- Transfer the pan to the freezer to chill the crust for 20 minutes while you work on the filling.
Make the filling:
- Add cream cheese and erythritol to a large bowl. Use a hand mixer to beat on low speed until well-mixed, about 1 minute.
- Add heavy cream, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Beat on low speed until smooth, about 30 seconds.
- Add eggs one at a time, beating on low speed until just combined, about 30 seconds each. Don’t overmix the eggs.
- Remove the pan with chilled crust from the freezer. Pour the batter over the crust, careful not to leave trapped air gaps. Flatten the surface using a spatula.
Cook and cool:
- Add 1 cup of water to the bottom of the pressure cooker. Place the trivet over the water, with its handles resting on the sides of the pot. Place the cheesecake pan on top of the trivet.
- Secure and seal the lid. Cook for 30 minutes at high pressure, followed by a 15 minute natural release. Manually release any remaining pressure by gradually turning the release knob to its venting position.
- Carefully lift the lid to avoid dripping condensation on the cheesecake. The top of the cheesecake should be jiggly but not liquid. If needed, use a paper towel to carefully dab at the cheesecake to absorb any condensation on its surface. Turn off the pressure cooker.
- Let the cheesecake cool uncovered in the pressure cooker. After about an hour, lift it from the pot using the trivet’s handles to continue to cool on the countertop.
- After it has cooled, loosely drape a paper towel over the cheesecake pan and refrigerate for at least 24 hours. Do not seal tightly because the cheesecake needs to dehydrate.
- Carefully remove the chilled cheesecake from the pan. Peel off the parchment paper. Slice and serve.
|Nutrition Facts Per Serving|
|Total Fat 45g||69%|
|Saturated Fat 23g||114%|
|Trans Fat 0g|
|Total Carb 6g||2%|
|Dietary Fiber 1.5g||6%|