Cranberry Mousse No-Bake Cheesecake

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This cranberry mousse no-bake cheesecake is a must for the holidays! The mini cake features a creamy layer of no-bake cheesecake topped with beautiful and vibrant cranberry mousse – all set on Biscoff cookie crust.  The 6-inch cheesecake evokes the holidays with medley of sweet, tart, and spicy flavors!

The perfect slice of bright and cherry holiday cake on a a cake server.

Mini Cranberry Mousse Cheesecake

If you’re a fan of creamy, dreamy cheesecakes and the irresistible tartness of cranberries, then you’re in for a treat!  This cranberry cheesecake takes its flavor cues from the creamy-tart combination of the cranberry granita pudding parfaits.

We take the creamy goodness of a cheesecake and top it with a stunning cranberry mousse.  And, if you are looking for more beautiful cranberry desserts, you can enjoy its natural beauty in cranberry frosting, beautiful cranberry granita, and with tons of texture in cranberry crumble bars!   

Everything To Love About This Cheesecake

  • Beautiful holiday cake – The cranberry mousse on top of the cheesecake is what makes this cake so dazzling.  Imagine the pretty presentation on your holiday dessert table!
  • No-bake cake – It’s the holidays, and your oven may already be reserved for other dishes.  This cake will give you and your oven a rest!
  • Creamy cheesecake – The no-bake cheesecake filling is light, soft, and delicately sweetened.  And for more dreamy cheesecake that doesn’t need to bake, try the caramel apple cheesecake bars, cherry cheesecake parfaits, and orange creamsicle mini cheesecakes!
  • Tart cranberry combination – There is something special about combining a lush cream dessert with sweetened tart fruit.  And the cranberry mousse on this cheesecake is no exception!  
  • Holiday flavors – You have just about every flavor you imagine for the holidays in this little cake – cranberry, cozy spices, and a spiced cookie!  
Vibrant cranberry cheesecake slice topped with candied cranberries.

Key Ingredients to Make a Cranberry Cheesecake

  • Cranberries – Fresh or frozen will work since we are cooking them down and straining them.  Though, you may want fresh so you can toss a few through sugar to garnish!
  • Maple Syrup – I use maple syrup in the cranberries for the buttery flavor.  Though, any sweetener will work.
  • Orange Juice – The bright citrus is a wonderful complement to the tart cranberries.  Fresh or carton juice work.
  • Ground Cinnamon – We add a little spice to the cranberries, but not overboard.  We’re not making cranberry sauce!
  • Fresh Ginger – I find fresh grated ginger is the best way to impart full ginger flavor.  
  • Powdered Gelatin – We use a little gelatin in the cranberry mousse to make sure it sets firm.  
  • Heavy Cream – Cream is used in the cheesecake and cranberry mousse.  The key to making both light and airy.
  • Cream Cheese – I recommend full-fat cream cheese – at room temperature! – to get the rich cheesecake filling.
  • Powdered Sugar – A little powdered sugar in the cheesecake for sweetness.  You can swap in granulated sugar, though I like the structure and stability powdered sugar adds.
  • Lemon Juice – Just a little lemon juice in the cheesecake filling to give it a delicate cheesecake tang.
  • Biscoff Cookies – The same Biscoff cookies I use in my apple crisp!  I love the crunchy texture of the cookies, along with their spiced flavor.  
  • Butter – A little melted butter to make the no-bake cookie crust!
Biscoff cookies

Biscoff cookies make the delicious no-bake cookie crust for this cranberry cheesecake.  The cookies are delightfully crunchy and have a cinnamon and spice flavor!

Velvety and creamy interior of a cranberry cheesecake on a cake stand.

Tips For Success

  • Line your springform pan – The removable bottom and the the sides.  Even though we use a non-stick springform pan, I like the added comfort of knowing the cake won’t stick to the pan.
  • Cook the cranberries like you are making cranberry sauce – We want the cranberries to pop and all of the thick pectin to release from the berries.
  • Add unflavored gelatin to make the mousse sturdy – Even though it is a no-bake cheesecake, we still want to be able to slice it!  The gelatin in the cranberry mousse will make is sturdy to slice.  
  • Cool the cranberries before folding in the whipped cream – You’ve gone through the step of creating pretty stiff peaks with your whipped cream, so let’s make sure we don’t deflate them in hot liquid!
  • Chill the cheesecake – The filling and mousse need time to set, so time in the refrigerator is a must!
  • Warm a knife in hot water to slice – The warm knife will give you clean cuts!
Top of a pretty holiday colored fruit cheesecake on a cake stand.

How To Make a Cranberry Cheesecake THat Is No-Bake

With three components to this cheesecake, you will want to read through the entire recipe card, but I’ve given you a snapshot of how easy this beautiful cake comes together.

  1. Make the cookie crust – Pulse the cookies in a food processor and drizzle in the melted butter.
  2. Press the cookies into the lined bottom of the pan – You can use the bottom of a small measuring cup, or your fingers work great too!
  3. Make the cranberry sauce – Cook the cranberries with the sweetener, juice and spices – until the cranberries start to pop and a sauce forms.
  4. Strain the cranberries – You can omit this, but if you want a mousse that is cranberry-pulp free, strain the berries.
  5. Make the cheesecake filling – First, beat the cream cheese until it is smooth, then fold in whipped cream.
  6. Pour the cheesecake onto the chilled cookie crust – Then let it chill while you finish the mousse.
  7. Finish the cranberry mousse – Fold whipped cream into the cooled cranberry sauce.
  8. Add the cranberry layer – On top of the cheesecake, and carefully smooth out evenly with a spatula.
  9. Refrigerate the cheesecake – Time in the fridge is required to get all of the layers to set.
Super creamy interior of a cranberry cheesecake on a pretty cake stand.

FAQ

Can I double the recipe to make a larger cake?

Yes! The recipe is easily doubled and you can make the cake in a 9-inch springform pan.

I don’t have a springform pan/want to buy one. Can I use a regular cake pan?

You can. You will want to make sure the pan is well lined with parchment paper, and with enough to hang over the sides of the pan. The overhang will help you lift the delicate cake out of the pan.

Will another berry work?

Yes! Any berry will work great. Like blackberry (like my blackberry mousse), cherry, strawberry, or even mango mousse if you want to make the cake in the summer.

Can I use a different cookie for the cookie crust?

Yes! Graham crackers, gingersnaps, and even sandwich cookies will work.

Can I swap in a gluten free cookie for the crust?

Absolutely!

How do I store a no-bake cheesecake?

Cover and store the cheesecake in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Beyond that, and the cake may start to loosen.

Can I freeze the no-bake cheesecake?

Technically, you can for up to 3 months, if you wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. However, I caution that the cheesecake filling may have different not-as-creamy texture when frozen and thawed.

Pretty cranberry cheesecake on a serving plate and topped with cranberries.
The perfect slice of bright and cherry holiday cake on a a cake server.
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5 from 2 reviews

Cranberry Mousse No-Bake Cheesecake

Yield: 1 6-Inch Cake
This cranberry mousse no-bake cheesecake is a must for the holidays! The mini cake features a creamy layer of no-bake cheesecake topped with beautiful and vibrant cranberry mousse – all set on Biscoff cookie crust.  The 6-inch cheesecake evokes the holidays with medley of sweet, tart, and spicy flavors!
Prep40 minutes
Chill8 hours
Total8 hours 40 minutes

Ingredients
 

Biscoff Cookie Crust

  • ¾ cup Biscoff cookies, ground (about 16 cookies)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Cranberry Mousse

  • 10 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
  • ¼ cup pure maple syrup (or any preferred sweetener)
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice (fresh or carton)
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • ¾ teaspoon unflavored gelatin powder
  • ¼ cup heavy cream

No-Bake Cheesecake Filling

  • 5 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon juice
  • ¼ cup heavy cream

Instructions

Biscoff Cookie Crust

  • With the springform pan dis-assembled, line the removable bottom with a piece of parchment paper. Re-assemble the pan. Optional – Line the inside of the pan with a strip of parchment, so cake doesn't stick to the springform ring when you remove the cake. I recommend this if your pan isn't non-stick.
  • In a food processor, add the Biscoff cookies and pulse until they are the size of small pebbles. Drizzle in the melted butter and pulse until the cookies are finely ground and fully coated with the butter.
    ¾ cup Biscoff cookies, ground, 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • With the back of a small measuring cup, or your fingers, press the cookie crust firmly and evenly into the bottom of the springform pan. Place in the freezer to set while you prepare the cranberry mousse and cheesecake filling.

Cranberry Mousse

  • In a medium saucepan, add the cranberries, maple syrup, orange juice, ground cinnamon, and grated ginger. Cook the cranberries over medium heat until all of the cranberries pop and release their fruit juices. About 8 to 10 minutes.
    10 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries, 2 tablespoons orange juice, ¼ cup pure maple syrup, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • With 5 minutes left to cook the cranberries, bloom the gelatin. In a small prep bowl, add the lemon juice and sprinkle the powdered gelatin over the top. Let sit for 5 minutes, or until the gelatin gets thick. When the cranberries are just about done, pour in the gelatin mix and stir until it melts and is fully mixed in.
    2 teaspoons lemon juice, ¾ teaspoon unflavored gelatin powder
  • Pour the cranberries into a fine-mesh strainer set over a medium mixing bowl. Press the cranberries through the strainer using the back of a spoon or spatula until you have gotten all of the juice out of the cranberries. Scrape the bottom of the strainer as well to get all of those juices too! Discard the pulp. Set the cranberry sauce aside to cool at room temperature.

No-Bake Cheesecake Filling

  • While the cranberry sauce is cooling, make the cheesecake filling. In a medium mixing bowl add the cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla, and lemon juice. Use a hand held mixer on medium speed to beat until smooth. Set aside.
    5 ounces cream cheese, room temperature, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, ¼ cup powdered sugar, ¼ teaspoon lemon juice
  • In another small mixing bowl, add the heavy cream. Use a hand held mixer on high speed to whip the heavy cream until stiff peaks form.
    ¼ cup heavy cream
  • Using a spatula, gently fold the whipped cream into the cheesecake filling until combined. Make slow folds so the whipped cream does not deflate. Tip – Save the whipped cream bowl to make the whipped cream for the cranberry mousse. One less bowl to wash!
  • Remove the cookie crust from the freezer. Pour the cheesecake filling over the crust and smooth out evenly with a spatula. Place the cheesecake in the refrigerator while you finish the cranberry mousse.
  • Finish the cranberry mousse. In the bowl you used to make the whipped cream for the cheesecake, make the whipped cream for the mousse. Use a hand mixer on high speed and whip the cream to stiff peaks.
    ¼ cup heavy cream
  • Very gently, use a spatula to fold the whipped cream into the cooled cranberry sauce – until no white streaks remain. Make slow folds so the whipped cream does not deflate.
  • Remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator. Pour the cranberry mousse on top use a small spatula to spread the mousse evenly. Cover the cheesecake with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, or overnight. Note – If you lined the inside of the pan with parchment and it is sticking out the top of the pan, gently fold it back so you can cover the pan to refrigerate.
  • When ready to serve, release the spring on the springform pan. Carefully peel away the parchment on the sides if it stuck (if you didn't use parchment inside the pan, run a sharp knife around the outside of the cake to release it). Lift the cheesecake off the removable bottom using a large spatula and with the help of the parchment. Place on your serving platter and gently wiggle the parchment out from under the cake.
  • To slice the cheesecake, warm a sharp knife with hot water (wipe off the water), to get clean cuts. Garnish with cranberries rolled in sugar and whipped cream and Enjoy!
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RECIPE NOTES

  • Serving Size – This recipe is easily doubled and made in a 9-inch springform pan.
  • Yield – You can get 4 to 6 slices from the 6-inch cake.
  • Line the Springform Pan – To get the cake to release from the removable bottom of the pan, you need to line it with parchment.  Otherwise, the cookie crust will most likely stick to the bottom.  I also recommend lining the inside with a strip of parchment so the cake doesn’t stick to the sides of the pan.
  • Cookie Crust – Swap in any other cookie, graham cracker, or gingersnap if you prefer.
  • Maple Syrup – I like to use maple syrup to make the cranberries for the buttery flavor, but swap in any sweetener of choice.
  • Chill – This cake does require ample time to chill so the cheesecake and mousse can set up.  This is a great make-ahead dessert!
  • Storing – Cover and store the cake in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Freezing – The fully set cake can be frozen for up to 3 months.  Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag.  Thaw in the refrigerator.
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Erin Cernich
Nutrition information is calculated by a third-party and should only be considered an estimate and not a guarantee.
About the author photo.

about the author ...

I'm Erin and I'm all about desserts - and a little bit of butter!

I've tested, written, and photographed hundreds of recipes on my website. Here you'll find the tastiest small batch gluten free and traditional desserts - all homemade, all simple, and all for you!

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