Cherry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Made with cream cheese and vanilla wafers, this cherry cheesecake cupcakes recipe is super easy to make and the perfect size to serve at a party. And it tastes just like a traditional cheesecake would without the hassle of making one!

Cherry cheesecake cupcakes on a serving tray

These cherry cheesecake cupcakes are a smaller version of a traditional cheesecake recipe with cherry sauce. But they’re a lot faster and easier to make (and a lot easier to serve!)

This recipe makes a relatively small batch, so it’s perfect for smaller crowds, or it can be multiplied for a larger function.

I like to make these in mini-muffin tins so that they are bite-sized (but they can also be made in standard-sized muffin tins).

Blueberry, whipped cream and cherry toppings on cheesecake cupcakes in an American flag design

You can also do variations on these cupcakes by choosing different toppings.

To create the American Flag design for my 4th of July party, I used Cherry Pie Filling, Blueberry Pie Filling and Whipped Cream as the toppings. Nut pretty much any pie filling will work so you can come up with your own creations!


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Here is your cherry cheesecake tarts shopping list:

  • Vanilla wafers – you can also use graham crackers
  • Dairy – butter, 1 package cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • Flavoring – vanilla extract
  • 1 lemon
  • Sugar
  • 1 can cherry pie filling – Or whatever other kind of pie filling you would like to use for the topping
Cherry cheesecake cupcakes on a tray

How to make cherry cheesecake cupcakes

The prep work

Take the cream cheese out of the refrigerator a couple of hours before you are going to begin. It is much easier to mix warm cream cheese.

Line a 12-cup regular muffin tin or 24-cup mini-muffin tin with the baking cups.

Pre-heat the oven to 375ºF.

Make the vanilla wafer bottom crust

vanilla wafer crust in the bottom of baking cups

Put 1 cup vanilla wafers in the Ziploc bag, push out as much air as possible, and zip it closed.

Roll over the vanilla wafers with a rolling pin until they are all crushed.

Melt 3 Tablespoons butter in the microwave or on the stove.

Pour the butter into the ziploc bag with the vanilla wafers and mix.

Put a little bit of the crushed wafers mix in the bottom of each of the baking cups.

Tamp it down with your thumb or a spoon so it forms a compact crust.

Make the cheesecake

mini muffin tins filled with cheesecake cupcakes

Beat 1 8-ounce package cream cheese with the mixer until it is smooth.

Add 1/3 cup sugar, 1 egg, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla and 2 teaspoons lemon juice, and mix again.

Spoon the mixture into each of the baking cups until they are almost full.

Cheesecake does not rise like regular cake mix does, so you don’t have to worry about it overflowing when it’s cooking.

Bake at 375ºF for 15 minutes.

Cool completely.

The cupcakes may fall in the middle. Don’t worry if this happens…it’s normal. And gives you a great indent for the topping.

The cupcakes can be frozen at this point, and stored in the freezer for up to a month. Let them warm to room temperature before serving.

cheesecake cupcakes with cherry sauce

Just before serving, top the cupcakes with pie filling…and watch them disappear!

Other cupcakes you might like

Cherry cheesecake cupcakes

Cherry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Wanda Simone
These cherry cheesecake cupcakes are a smaller version of traditional cheesecake with cherry sauce, but are a lot faster and easier to make than traditional cheesecake (and a lot easier to serve!)
No ratings yet
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Cooling time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 cupcakes / 24 mini cupcakes


  • 1 12-cup regular-sized muffin tin or 1 24-cup mini muffin tin
  • cupcake liners
  • ziploc bag
  • rolling pin
  • mixer with mixing bowl
  • wire cooling rack


  • 1 cup vanilla wafers or graham crackers
  • 3 Tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 can cherry pie filling


Prep Work

  • Take the cream cheese out of the refrigerator and out of its packaging to allow it to warm up to room temperature. 
  • Pre-heat the oven to 375 F.
  • Line the muffin tins with the baking cups.

Make The Crust

  • Put the vanilla wafers or graham crackers into a ziploc bag and close the top, removing as much air as possible.
  • Roll over the bag with the rolling pin until the wafers are crushed.
  • Melt the butter with low power in the microwave, usually about a minute. Or cook over low heat on the stove for about 5 minutes.
  • Mix the crushed wafers with the melted butter.
  • Spoon enough crushed wafers into the bottom of each baking cup to cover the bottom, and press it down to form a crust.

Make The Cheesecake

  • Mix the cream cheese with the mixer until it is smooth.
  • Add the sugar, egg, vanilla and lemon juice.
  • Mix again until smooth.
  • Spoon the mixture into each of the muffin tins so that each baking cup is almost full.
  • Bake for 15 minutes.
  • Cool completely on a wire cooling rack. 
  • Top the cupcake with some cherry pie filling, and serve!


Warming the cream cheese to room temperature before beating it will make it much easier to mix without getting lumps.
The cheesecake may fall in the middle after baking. This is not unusual, so don’t be worried if it happens (and it gives an easy place for the topping to settle).
These cupcakes can be put in the freezer after baking (before the topping goes on) and stored for up to a month. Just take them out a couple of hours before serving to let them warm to room temperature.
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