Gingerbread Icebox CheesecakePhoto Credit : Heath Robbins
Attention, non-bakers: This Gingerbread Icebox Cheesecake is the no-bake cake of your dreams! Inspired by a July 1947 recipe, which called for stacking gingersnaps with whipped cream, cream cheese, maraschino cherries, and walnuts, we opted for a loaf cake in the style of the classic chocolate icebox cake. It can be easily doubled for a large crowd and looks gorgeous when sliced.
1/4 cup plus 1 cup heavy cream
1 8-ounce package reduced-fat (Neufchâtel) cream cheese
1/3 cup sour cream
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
36–40 gingersnap cookies (see “Note,” below)
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
Garnish: gingersnap cookie crumbs
In a medium-size bowl, use a hand-held or standing mixer to combine ¼ cup of heavy cream with the cream cheese, sour cream, granulated sugar, and vanilla. Beat until smooth.
Spread a bit of the filling between two gingersnap cookies and set them, standing on their sides, into a standard bread-loaf pan. Spread filling on another cookie and press it onto the stack. Add another layer of filling and a cookie. Repeat until you have 9 or 10 cookies across, depending on the width of your pan. Repeat this method to create 2 more rows. Cover the bread pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 6 hours and up to 1 day.
Whip the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream with the powdered sugar to form firm peaks. Transfer the cookie stacks to a serving platter and frost generously with the whipped cream. Sprinkle with gingersnap crumbs. Slice the cake crosswise and serve immediately.