Eggless Paan Cheesecake

5 from 2 votes
Time 9 hours
Servings 8
Calories 471
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Eggless Paan Cheesecake, inspired by the flavors of Meetha Paan. This cheesecake gets it flavors from paan leaves, gulkand (rose petal jam) and fennel.

Garnished with tutti frutti, candied fennel and white chocolate (optional), this is a stunning dessert to celebrate any Indian festival and is cooked in the Instant Pot!

paan cheesecake served on a black stand with few paan leaves on the side

Yet another dessert made with paan leaves (betel leaves), are you guys tired of it? I hope not, because I love making desserts with paan and this is never stopping any time soon!

After paan ladoo, paan peda, paan kheer, here comes Paan Cheesecake!

I have been dreaming about making this cheesecake for a while now. Flavors of paan, gulkand, a creamy cheesecake, I mean, it has to be good!

This paan cheesecake was in my mind for Diwali last year but it didn’t happen then and so I had to make it for Holi now! 

Look how perfect it looks for the festival of colors, isn’t it? If you are a meetha paan lover like me, then you are going to love this cheesecake. And let me tell you guys, I made this in the Instant Pot!

Yes, I didn’t even turn on my oven to bake this cheesecake. Cooking cheesecake in a pressure cooker was something that I wasn’t very familiar with until a few years ago.

But then I worked on a cheesecake recipe for my book (it’s a rose pistachio cheesecake) and while testing that recipe I made so many cheesecakes in the instant pot and got hooked to it.

Surprisingly, I haven’t shared any instant pot cheesecake on the blog but that’s about to change now with this paan cheesecake!

This Paan Cheesecake

✔is inspired by the flavors of Meetha Paan.

✔made in the Instant Pot.

✔makes a festive treat for Holi or Diwali.

✔easy to make and eggless!

The process to make this cheesecake it simple, yet it took me 3 trials to get it right.

First time I made this recipe, the texture and taste was all off. It wasn’t smooth and Sarvesh said it had a weird after taste, also the biscoff cookies totally over-powered the paan flavor.

The second attempt was much better but the cheesecake cracked a lot. Sure, cheesecakes crack and honestly as long as they taste good, it should not be a big deal but I was determined to get it right.

And so I tried again and with few changes, I was able to get this paan cheesecake absolutely perfect on my 3rd trial. I was really so thrilled with the results!

Tips for Instant Pot Cheesecake

Use the right size cheesecake pan– so, here’s the thing about cheesecake in instant pot, the regular 9 or 10-inch springform pans do not fit in the Instant Pot. You need a smaller cheesecake pan.

For this recipe, I have used a 7.5 inch cheesecake pan (springform pan) which is from the official Instant Pot brand itself. You can find it on amazon or also at stores like Bed Bath & Beyond etc.

Room temperature ingredients: whether you are making cheesecake in the instant pot or in the oven, one thing to remember is to always have ingredients at room temperature. 

Your cheesecake won’t be smooth if the ingredients are not at room temperature. Take them out of the fridge for 2 to 3 hours before you use them in the recipe.

Cover the pan with a paper towel and then a foil: when you pressure cook the cheesecake, water will drip into the pan. To prevent this, first cover the pan with a paper towel and then with a aluminum foil. This will catch any condensation. 

And even after this if there’s any water on the cheesecake, pat it lightly with a paper towel.

Loosen it slightly from the sides to prevent cracking: once you take the cheesecake out from the instant pot, place it on a wire rack and after 20 minutes or so, take a knife and carefully run it around the edges (don’t remove the removable sides yet just run a knife around to separate the cheesecake a little from the pan) and then let it cool for 1 more hour at room temperature. 

Then transfer to the fridge overnight or for minimum of 4 hours. After it has chilled, only then unmold it.

Use an aluminum foil sling to remove the cheesecake: take a large sheet of aluminum foil and fold it several times to a form a sling. Place this sling under the cheesecake pan and use it to life the pan and transfer it inside the pan.

The sling also makes it super easy to life the pan out of the instant pot once the cheesecake is done.

Ingredients

There are two parts to the ingredients- the crust and the filling.

For the crust

Digestive biscuits: these biscuits are used for the base of this cheesecake and you can find them at any Indian grocery store.

I first tested this recipe with biscoff cookies and even though I love biscoff I thought they were over-powering here and so a more subtle flavored biscuits like digestives work better.

You can also use parle-g or graham crackers. I added 1 tablespoon sugar to the crumbs but you may or may not add it. If using a sweeter biscuit, it is definitely not recommended. 

Butter: I accidentally added salted butter to the crust the first time I tested this recipe and it actually worked well. So, you can use either salted or unsalted butter here.

bowl of sugar, cream, sour cream, some paan leaves, biscuits all arranged on a board

For the filling

Cream cheese: what’s a cheesecake without cream cheese right? So that’s the main filling, just make sure it is at room temperature before you start working on the recipe. It is so important that cream cheese it at room temperature- I would keep it out for at least 2 hours before using it in the recipe.

Paan leaves: since this is paan cheesecake, we use fresh paan leaves (betel leaves). You can find them at Indian grocery store.

Gulkand: rose petal jam aka gulkand is always used in meetha paan and so has to be used here as well. Gulkand is basically all rose petal and sugar and is extremely sweet. And since gulkand is used in the filling, the amount of sugar is cut down.

Fennel seeds: paan and fennel go hand in hand. So whole fennel seeds are a must here.

Sugar: white granulated sugar is used to sweeten the cheesecake. As mentioned earlier, since gulkand also has lot of sugar, I have reduced the amount of sugar in the recipe. 

Heavy cream & sour cream: both add to the texture and taste of the cheesecake. Generally only one of these is used however since this is an eggless cheesecake, I have used both. Sour cream also adds tang to the cheesecake which I love.

I have not tested it, but Greek yogurt might also work if you don’t have sour cream on hand.

Cornstarch: is used to prevent cracking of cheesecake which we all know is pretty common when it comes to cheesecakes.

Kewra water: to flavor the cheesecake, I also use some kewra water (is an extract that is distilled from Pandanus flowers and often used to flavor Indian sweets). If you don’t have kewra water, you can use rose water in place.

I decorated the cheesecake with some desiccated coconut, tutti frutti and some candied fennel. You can also use some cherries.

Optional: if you like, you can drizzle the cheesecake with melted white chocolate. The white chocolate goes really well here. 

a green color cheesecake on a black stand topped with tutti frutti, edible silver leaves

Baking in the oven: so, I did not bake this paan cheesecake in the oven but it sure can be baked in the oven.

Please refer to this post of mine on how to make the perfect cheesecake and read about water bath and how to make sure there’s no leakage in your cheesecake. Extremely important to use water bath when baking cheesecake in the oven.

Bake the crust at 350 F degrees for 6-7 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 300 F degrees and bake for around 45 minutes to 1 hour. The center of the cheesecake should still jiggle when you take it out of the oven. Let it cool down at room temperature and then chill overnight. 

Method

Before you start, make sure your ingredients are at room temperature.

1- To a food processor add the digestive biscuits and pulse until you get crumbs. 

2- Transfer the crumbs to a large bowl and add 1 tablespoon sugar and melted butter to it. Mix until everything is well combined and mixture resembles wet sand.

3- Transfer this to a 7.5 inch springform pan. Press with a bowl or back of your spoon to push the crumbs tightly into the pan. Place the pan in the freezer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. 

4- To make the filling, first to a blender add heavy cream, paan leaves (remove the stalk), fennel seeds and sour cream.

step by step picture collage of making paan cheesecake

5- Blend to a smooth paste. Set this aside.

6- To the steel bowl of your stand mixer or use your hand mixer, add room temperature cream cheese, gulkand and 1/4 cup sugar. Beat on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until it’s all smooth and creamy. 

7- Now, add the prepare paan leaves paste and mix until combined. You can also add few drops of green food color at this point.

8- Finally add the cornstarch and mix. Do not over beat the mixture. The filling is now ready.

step by step picture collage of making paan cheesecake

9- Take the pan out of the freezer and pour the filling over the crust. Tap the pan 2-3 times on the counter – this remove the air bubbles from the batter.

10- Now place a paper towel on top of the pan and then place an aluminum foil on top of that. Take another large sheet of aluminum foil and fold it several times to a form a long sling. Place that sling underneath the pan, so that you can lift the pan using the sling.

11- Add around 2 cups water in the inner steel pot of your Instant Pot. Place a trivet inside the pot (I use a long leg trivet and not the one that comes with IP) and then lift the pan using the sling and place it on top of the trivet. 

Close the lid and press the manual or pressure cook button. Cook on high pressure fir 39 minutes with the pressure valve in the sealing position. 

12- Let the pressure release naturally for 15 minutes and then release the remaining pressure manually. Most likely, all the pressure will release on it’s own in 15 minutes. 

Open the lid and then carefully lift the pan from the pot using the sling. Place it on a wire rack and them remove the foil and paper towel. If there’s any condensation on top of the cheesecake, use a paper towel to carefully pat dry it. The center of the cheesecake might jiggle a little at this point and that’s fine. It will continue to cook as it cools down.

Let it cool on wire rack for 15 minutes, then carefully run a knife around the cheesecake. Do not remove the sides at this point, we just want to separate the cheesecake a little from the pan- this prevents cracking. Let it cool down further for 1 to 2 hours and then transfer to the refrigerator overnight or for a minimum of 4 hours. 

step by step picture collage of making paan cheesecake

Once chilled, remove the sides of the pan carefully. Then using 2 spatula, carefully detach the cheesecake from the base and lift it and transfer to serving plate/board. Garnish with tutti frutti, desiccated coconut, candied fennel. 

You can also drizzle some white chocolate on top before serving! I like to let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for 2o to 30 minutes or so before serving (they taste the best then). Enjoy this refreshing paan cheesecake! 

slice of green color cheesecake on a white plate with a fork placed on the side

If you’ve tried this Paan Cheesecake Recipe then don’t forget to rate the recipe! You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram to see what’s latest in my kitchen!

Eggless Paan Cheesecake

paan cheesecake served on a black stand with one piece cut from the cheesecake and few paan leaves on the side
Manali
Paan Cheesecake- creamy, eggless cheesecake with flavors from paan (betel leaves), gulkand (rose petal jam) and fennel! If you love meetha paan, then you are going to love this Indian fusion cheesecake made in the Instant Pot!
5 from 2 votes
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Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 39 mins
Chill time 8 hrs
Total Time 9 hrs
Course Dessert
Cuisine Indian
Servings 8
Calories 471 kcal

Ingredients

Crust

  • 9-10 digestive biscuits around 1.25 cups cookie crumb, or you can use any graham cracker, parle-g
  • 4 tablespoons butter 57 grams, you can use either salted or unsalted
  • 1 tablespoon granulated white sugar 13 grams

Filling

  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons heavy cream 150 ml
  • 5 large paan leaves 20 grams, betel leaves
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon sour cream 95 ml, at room temperature
  • 12 oz cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup gulkand 100 grams, rose petal jam
  • 1/2 cup granulated white sugar 50 grams
  • 2 teaspoons kewra water 10 ml, or use rose water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch 25 grams

tutti frutti, candied fennel, desiccated coconut, white chocolate- for garnishing

    Instructions
     

    • Before you start, make sure your ingredients are at room temperature.
      To a food processor add the digestive biscuits and pulse until you get crumbs. 
      Transfer the crumbs to a large bowl and add 1 tablespoon sugar and melted butter to it. Mix until everything is well combined and mixture resembles wet sand.
      bowl with cookie crumbs, sugar and butter
    • Transfer this to a 7.5 inch springform pan. Press with a bowl or back of your spoon to push the crumbs tightly into the pan. Place the pan in the freezer for 45 minutes to 1 hour. 
      cookie crumbs pressed in a pan
    • To make the filling, first to a blender add heavy cream, paan leaves (remove the stalk), fennel seeds and sour cream. Blend to a smooth paste. Set this aside.
      green color paste in a blender
    • To the steel bowl of your stand mixer or use your hand mixer, add room temperature cream cheese, gulkand and 1/4 cup sugar. Beat on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until it's all smooth and creamy. 
      cream cheese, gulkand and sugar in a bowl
    • Now, add the prepare paan leaves paste and mix until combined. You can also add few drops of green food color at this point.
      green color paste being added to a mixer
    • Finally add the cornstarch and mix. Do not over beat the mixture. The filling is now ready.
      cornstarch added to a batter
    • Take the pan out of the freezer and pour the filling over the crust. Tap the pan 2-3 times on the counter - this remove the air bubbles from the batter.
      green color batter in a cake pan
    • Now place a paper towel on top of the pan and then place an aluminum foil on top of that. Take another large sheet of aluminum foil and fold it several times to a form a long sling. Place that sling underneath the pan, so that you can lift the pan using the sling.
      pan covered with aluminum foil
    • Add around 2 cups water in the inner steel pot of your Instant Pot. Place a trivet inside the pot (I use a long leg trivet and not the one that comes with IP) and then lift the pan using the sling and place it on top of the trivet. 
      Close the lid and press the manual or pressure cook button. Cook on high pressure fir 39 minutes with the pressure valve in the sealing position. 
      Let the pressure release naturally for 15 minutes and then release the remaining pressure manually. Most likely, all the pressure will release on it's own in 15 minutes. 
      pan covered with aluminum foil placed in instant pot
    • Open the lid and then carefully lift the pan from the pot using the sling. Place it on a wire rack and them remove the foil and paper towel. If there's any condensation on top of the cheesecake, use a paper towel to carefully pat dry it. The center of the cheesecake might jiggle a little at this point and that's fine. It will continue to cook as it cools down.
      Let it cool on wire rack for 15 minutes, then carefully run a knife around the cheesecake. Do not remove the sides at this point, we just want to separate the cheesecake a little from the pan- this prevents cracking. Let it cool down further for 1 to 2 hours and then transfer to the refrigerator overnight or for a minimum of 4 hours. 
      cake placed on a wire rack
    • Once chilled, remove the sides of the pan carefully. Then using 2 spatula, carefully detach the cheesecake from the base and lift it and transfer to serving plate/board. Garnish with tutti frutti, desiccated coconut, candied fennel. 
      You can also drizzle some white chocolate on top before serving! I like to let the cheesecake sit at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes or so before serving (tastes best this way). Enjoy this refreshing paan cheesecake! 

    Oven Baking Instructions

    • Please read about water bath before and wrap your pan well in 2-3 sheets of foil so that there's no leakage. Bake the crust at 350 F for 6 to 7 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 300 F degrees and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour (do use water bath, refer to the blog post "new york style cheesecake" to read about it, link in the main blog post). The center of the pan should jiggle when you take it out of the oven. Let cool at room temperature for 1-2 hours and then chill overnight in the fridge.

    Notes

    1. Please refer to this post if you are baking this in the oven. Read about water bath and follow the same steps if baking this cheesecake in the oven.

    Nutrition

    Calories: 471kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 4gFat: 31gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 93mgSodium: 285mgPotassium: 133mgFiber: 1gSugar: 31gVitamin A: 1091IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 81mgIron: 1mg
    Tried this recipe?Mention @cookwithmanali or tag #cookwithmanali!

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