This Basque Burnt Cheesecake has been a bit of an internet sensation in 2019 and it breaks all the rules of baking a traditional cheesecake.

Basque Burnt Cheesecake

Basque Burnt Cheesecake

The recipe comes La Viña, a restaurant in San Sebastián—the Basque region’s capital city – since the 1960’s. Baked at a very high temperature, the cheesecake has a dark “burnt” top and a rough edge that hides a creamy, rich centre. It is the two pieces of baking paper that are needed to line the cake tin, that ensures the beautiful, rustic rough edge around the cheesecake.

Basque Burnt Cheesecake

Basque Burnt Cheesecake

I loved using this method. No faffing with a crust, baking the cheesecake in a water bath, letting it cool in the oven while hoping that the top does not crack. You line the tin, mix and pour the batter and bake. The cake rises up quite a bit (therefore the need for the baking paper to stick out well above the edge of the cake tin) and it will collapse as soon as you take it out.

It is a gloriously rich mixture of cream cheese, double cream and eggs.  To cut all that richness, I added the finely grated zest of 2 limes. Replace the lime with lemon for a sharper citrus flavour. It is not needed but I do think it adds another layer of flavour. The cheesecake is rich with a creamy texture and reminded me of a proper milktart. This Basque Burnt Cheesecake is worth the bake!

Basque Burnt Cheesecake

I hope you enjoy this recipe for Basque Burnt Cheesecake. If you’ve made the recipe share it with me by tagging @heinstirred on Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #heinstirred. And if you need more cheesecake inspiration, follow this link :

Basque Burnt Cheesecake


  • Butter for greasing
  • 275g sugar
  • finely grated zest of 2 limes or 1 lemon
  • 750g cream cheese
  • 5 eggs
  • 375ml double cream
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 50g cake flour


  1. Preheat the oven to 210 degrees C
  2. Grease a 23cm cake tin with butter and line with baking paper, making sure the paper is at least 5cm above the edge of the tin
  3. The paper does not have to be neat and can be creased in places
  4. Beat the sugar and zest for a few minutes
  5. Add the cream cheese and beat until no lumps remain and the sugar has dissolved
  6. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping down the sides as you go
  7. Add the cream, salt and vanilla and beat for another minute or so
  8. Sift the flour over the mixture and beat until incorporated and smooth
  9. Pour the batter into the prepared pan
  10. Bake for about 60 - 70 minutes until the cake is a very dark brown and centre has a slight wobble
  11. Cover loosely with foil if the top gets too black
  12. Remove from the oven (the cake will collapse) and let it cool for 15 minutes
  13. Unmould and let it cool completely
  14. Once cool, peel away the baking paper and serve at room temperature
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I am so happy to share the news received on Sunday that “My Vegetarian Braai” I co-wrote with Adele Maartens and styled and photographed, is the South African Winner in the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards in the Barbecue category. It will now compete for Best in the World 2020 with winners from other countries in the same category. I am always ready to travel somewhere new so a trip to Macau for the awards ceremony in May seems like a really good idea. With a foodie stop in Hong Kong to make it even more special. If you have any Hong Kong secrets, please share!

My Vegetarian Braai

And just in time for the festive season, the Heinstirred Greeting Cards Range has been launched. Inspired by fusing food and nature, distinctive images were photographed and set in original heart-shaped designs. Click here for all the details of the range now available.

Heinstirred Greeting Cards

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Tahini Cake with Chocolate Sesame Frosting and Caramel Shards

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