What Is Kahlua® Cheesecake?

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  • Written By: Angie Bates
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 24 October 2019
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Kahlua® cheesecake is a type of cream cheese cake flavored with Kahlua®, a Mexican coffee-flavored liqueur. The crust for a Kahlua® cheesecake is usually made with crushed vanilla or chocolate wafer cookies. This type of cake is most often homemade, and any other type of alcoholic coffee flavoring can be substituted for the name brand liqueur with similar results.

Whether in the crust or the filling, Kahlua® cheesecake usually has a chocolate twist to compliment the coffee flavoring of the liqueur. Chocolate chips or cocoa are often mixed into the filling, and chocolate wafer cookies or vanilla wafers mixed with cocoa can be used for the crust. Additionally, Kahlua® comes in a mocha flavor. French vanilla, hazelnut, and peppermint are also flavors of the coffee liqueur that can be used to give the cheesecake a special taste. Most recipes simply call for the original Kahlua® flavor, however.

In addition to chocolate and liqueur, Kahlua® cheesecake filling also contains cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and whipping cream. Sour cream and vanilla extract are also often added. The crust generally combines butter and sugar with crushed cookie crumbs. Additional spices, such as cinnamon, may also be added to the crust.


The crust is simply made by combining the dry ingredients with melted butter and then pressing the mixture into the bottom of a pan. Often, the crust is baked briefly before the filling is included. Usually, a springform pan is used for baking cheesecake because its sides are removable.

The filling is made by first beating the cream cheese and sugar, and then adding the rest of the ingredients. Once the filling is complete, it is poured into the crust and the cake can be baked. During baking the alcoholic content of the liqueur is cooked away, so the finished cake should not be alcoholic. When finished, the cake is normally briefly cooled before being refrigerated.

Some Kahlua® cheesecake versions will add a topping to the cake after it is baked but before it is chilled. Toppings usually mix whipping cream with flavorings such as Kahlua and melted chocolate and then spread the mixture over the cake while it is still warm. After the cheesecake has been chilled, it may also be garnished. Garnish may include whipping cream, chocolate shavings, or powdered sugar. Although both garnish and topping add to the taste of the cake, garnish is primarily designed to add an aesthetic appeal and so is generally optional.


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