This rich and creamy german chocolate cheesecake will bring any chocolate lover to their knees. I’ll show you how to make this decadent dessert with lots of step-by-step photos.
I created this recipe for my husband who loves chocolate and especially German chocolate cake. Tall, creamy and rich chocolate cheesecake topped with sweet gooey frosting and more chocolate, just the way he likes it!
What’s German chocolate cake?
German chocolate cake, or, in this case, cheesecake, has nothing to do with Germany.
In fact, this cake is named after an American chocolate maker, Samuel German, who created the dark chocolate that’s used in this cake.
So, it actually should be German’s chocolate cake. But anyway, I don’t really care what we call it, as long as it involves good rich chocolate cake, sweet and gooey pecan-coconut frosting.
How to make this recipe:
You might already know that I like my cheesecake tall and, most importantly, creamy. To achieve that, I had to work on this chocolate cheesecake a few times. No regrets though, every trial was delicious and I did came up with perfect recipe.
For extra creaminess, we’re using sweetened condensed milk (my addiction!) and Greek yogurt. Condensed milk alone didn’t provide the creaminess I was looking for, the cheesecake was a bit too dry and way too rich. Greek yogurt added that perfect creamy texture and cuts down the richness. Don’t skip it!
For pecan-coconut frosting, I used the same recipe as for my German chocolate brownies. It’s sweet, it’s gooey, and it’s easy!
As usual, this step-by-step photo collage gives you a quick visual guidance.
Oh my, look at that tall chocolate goodness!! Did I mention it’s rich? A small slice goes a long way.
So, are you going to make this cheesecake? Tempting, isn’t it? I sure hope you try it, it’s so worth it!
German Chocolate Cheesecake
- 8 full sheets (140g) graham crackers
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1/3 cup (75g) unsalted butter melted
For cheesecake filling:
- 8 oz (225g) bittersweet chocolate
- 24 oz (700g) cream cheese softened
- 14 oz (400g) sweetened condensed milk
- ½ cup (130g) plain Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs at room temperature
For coconut-pecan topping:
- ½ cup (65g) chopped pecans
- ¼ cup (30g) sweetened coconut flakes
- 1 large egg yolk
- ¼ cup (50g) brown sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoon (30g) unsalted butter softened
- ½ cup (120ml) heavy whipping cream
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- To make the crust, in a food processor, pulse the graham crackers until fine crumbs. Add sugar, cocoa powder and melted butter and pulse until combined. Press the mixture evenly onto the bottom and slightly up the sides of an ungreased 9-inch spring form pan. Refrigerate while preparing the filling.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
- To make the filling, break the chocolate into small pieces and place in a medium heatproof bowl. Slowly melt the chocolate over simmering water, aka double boiler. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. If desired, reserve a small amount (about 3 tablespoons) of melted chocolate for drizzling.
- In a large mixing bowl with paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until fluffy on medium speed, about a minute. (Or you can also use electric hand mixer.) Add condensed milk and Greek yogurt, and continue to beat for about 2 minutes, or until smooth, scraping the sides of the bowl once. Stir in melted chocolate, vanilla extract and salt. Beat in the eggs one at a time and mix just until combined on low speed. (Don’t beat the mixture too long and too fast after you add the eggs. Otherwise too much air will incorporate to the batter, which might cause a crack in the cooked cheesecake.) Pour the batter into the prepared crust.
- Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until the edges of the cheesecake is set, but the center is slightly wobbly. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Carefully run a knife around edge of the pan to loosen; cool for another hour. Then refrigerate for at least an hour to cool completely.
- To make the frosting, place the pecans and coconut flakes in a medium bowl and set aside.
- In a medium saucepan, whisk together egg yolk, brown sugar and salt until combined. Stir in butter. Then whisk in heavy cream and vanilla extract and cook over medium high heat for 5-7 minutes, whisking occasionally. The mixture will be thickened, but still runny. Pour it over the pecans and coconut flakes and mix until well combined. The mixture will be slightly runny. Cool to room temperature, then place it in a fridge to cool completely, until ready to use. At this point, the frosting will be thick and spreadable. Spread the frosting evenly on the cooled cheesecake. If reserved, re-melt the reserved chocolate and drizzle over the cheesecake. Store in the fridge, covered, for up to 3 days.