Mexican Chocolate Kahlua Cheesecake

Sometimes recipes don’t always work out as planned. For instance this Mexican Chocolate Kahlua Cheesecake. The title sounds tempting, right? But as you can see by my photos the cheesecake is a tad mushy and cracked.

I’m not gonna lie, I was hoping for a much prettier result, and the perfectionist in me almost threw it out just because it was not “perfect”. I almost didn’t share this recipe but after thinking about it I wanted to share that not all of our kitchen adventures are flawless. Do you remember my first Rosca de Reyes and my Mexican Chololate Guinness Cake? Sometimes food is not perfect, just like life.

I thought about retesting this recipe but I know what I did wrong, and so I figured I’d share the story of mishaps and hopefully you can learn from my mistakes. But let me just say this recipe is delicious as-is if you love Kahlua. The reason I say if is because I added a touch too much Kahlua and so I’m guessing that explains the very wet cheesecake. Next time I make this recipe I will take it easy on the liqueur and only add ¼ cup of Kahlua and not ½ cup. The recipe below includes the corrections so your recipe should look much prettier. But just know that this cheesecake, although not spectacular looking, was delicious, rich, and decadent.

Do you see the cracks on my cheesecake? My mom said it cracked because I removed the cheesecake too soon from the oven after baking it. The trick to preventing cracks in a cheesecake is to turn off the oven and let the cheesecake sit inside the oven for an hour.

You can also see my slice is not very neat. A tip to cutting clean cheesecake slices is to use a knife dipped in warm water.

With this not so perfect cheesecake we wanted to wish you a very special Feliz Navidad. Please don’t let stress ruin your holidays! The holidays can be a time of great joy and fun memories. Enjoy the holidays and try to not be so perfect. Christmas isn’t always gingerbread houses and mistletoe.

Here’s to a happy, healthy, and stress-free holiday season!

“The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself.” ~Anna Quindlen

Mexican Chocolate Kahlua Cheesecake

Yield: Serves 12


12 ounce ginger snaps, finely crushed
6 ounces unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 eggs
1 cup cream
1/2 cup milk
¼ cup Kahlua
3 tablets Mexican chocolate, melted

Mexican Chocolate Sauce:
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 ounce tablet Mexican chocolate, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder (optional for thicker chocolate)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons coffee flavored liqueur (optional)


To Make Crust:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Assemble a 9-inch springform pan with the raised side of the bottom facing down.

Place gingersnaps in food processor and process until fine crumbs form. Move ginger crumbs to small bowl and add melted butter. Press mixture into bottom of springform pan. Place pan on a rimmed baking sheet; bake 10 minutes, and set aside.

To Make Filling:
In a large bowl, mix sugar, flour, nutmeg, salt, and cream cheese. Add vanilla and mix 1 minute. Add eggs to cream cheese mixture, one at a time.

Add cream, milk, Kahlua, and melted chocolate; blend until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.

Pour filling onto crust, and bake just until set, 1 hour. Turn oven off, and let cheesecake sit 1 hour in oven, without opening (this helps prevent cracking).

Run a thin knife around the edge of the pan (this helps prevent cracking, too); leave in pan, and cool completely on wire rack. Cover loosely and refrigerate, at least 6 hours, preferably overnight so the flavors have time to blend and the texture becomes nice and firm.

Unmold cheesecake. As an option drizzle some Mexican Chocolate Sauce over each slice.

To make Chocolate Sauce:
Heat 1/2 cup cream in a heavy saucepan over medium heat until cream comes to a low boil.

Remove the pan from the heat and add Mexican chocolate. Let chocolate sit in the hot cream 3 to 5 minutes to soften, and then whisk chocolate together with the cream. Stir in butter, cocoa powder (optional), vanilla, cinnamon, and liqueur (optional).

If chocolate becomes too thick, stir in more cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, to desired consistency.

Written by Yvette / Photos by Yvette

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  1. Hmmm….this is a REALLY good post! You’re right, you need to post ones like this! When I saw the subject line in my email I thought …sounds delicious, i need this recipe!

    I’m a cheesecake nut and am always on the lookout for some new cheesecake variation. BUT … cheesecakes DO crack and I never knew why! Your explanation of that alone was valuable info for me (thanks mom!) …and a warm knife to cut? I will have to try that also!

    I will use your modified recipe when I make mine …it does look delicious!

    Feliz Navidad! and best wishes for the new year!

    • So glad Mom’s tips will help your cheesecake adventures. If you make this recipe keep me posted. Hoping it will turn out better for you 😉

      Salud! Happy 2013!

  2. This looks absolutely divine. I can almost taste it. I’ve made Kahlua flan, but never Kahlua cheesecake. Thanks for sharing and Feliz Navidad a Todos.

  3. OMG I read the title on my email and I had to check this out. I absolutely love cheesecake!! This is a must do. Thank you very much, hope seeing more recipes like this!!!

  4. I think you are too hard on yourself– this sounds and looks delicious! So what if it isn’t as picture perfect as you might like. I am guessing everyone LOVED it. Merry Christmas!!

  5. Love the flavors in your cheesecake!

  6. I have to try this, sounds so good, don’t worry how it looks, the taste is what counts.
    Remember we learn as we go along, Next time it will be beautiful. love you, Mom

  7. I think sharing our not so perfect moments are important…we all have them! I think it sounds perfect and actually looks great too. Maybe it’s time we started having ‘rustic’ cheesecakes huh?

    Another tip to keep them from cracking? Cook them in a hot water bath…that seems to keep the temp more even and avoids the cracks? I top mine with a layer of sour cream and a glaze…we could call that Cover Girl for Cheesecakes!

    Have a wonderful holiday!

  8. The cheesecake portion calls for 3 tablets of Mexican chocolate. Where does one find a “tablet”? How large is it? Is it sweetened or un?

    In the topping, your recipe calls for a 1 oz tablet. Is this the same size as aforementioned?

    The recipe sounds fantastic and I can’t wait to give it a try.

    • David,

      Sorry for the delay.

      You can buy Nestle-Abuelita or Ibarra Mexican chocolate at almost any grocery store in the Latin aisle. In a box there are chocolate tablets that are 3.3 ounces each.

      You can also purchase on Amazon if you can not find Mexican chocolate locally.

      I hope that makes sense.

      Keep me posted if you try it out.

  9. I love cheese cakes and I also have mishaps! Thank you for your recipe! I will surely have to try this one!

  10. Thank you for sharing! I love cheese cakes and I also have had mishaps on baking them!

  11. This is going to be my first cheesecake that I attempt. Sounds so good. I have one question though…when you say “cream” is there a particular kind?

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