Muscadine Swirl Cheesecake

Mary Lea Williams


Last fall a friend gave me 5 lbs. of muscadines and scuppernongs from his vineyard, and as much as I love them, I knew I couldn't eat them all before they went bad. What to do with them? Put them in a cheesecake, of course!

I make this with cream cheese and mascarpone, which gives it a little tang!

pinch tips: How to Fold Ingredients





45 Min


1 Hr 15 Min





1 c
graham cracker crumbs
1 tsp
1 tsp
3 Tbsp
3 Tbsp
butter, melted


16 oz
cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/4 c
1/4 tsp
eggs, room temperature
vanilla bean, seeds scraped and reserved (or 1 tablespoon vanilla flavoring)
24 oz
mascarpone cheese
1/2 tsp
1 c
muscadine puree, mixed with 1 tablespoon flour


1 lb
muscadines (or scuppernongs, or a combination)
1.5 to 2 c
sugar, to taste

Directions Step-By-Step

Make the Puree

Pop grapes out of hulls, place pulp and hulls in separate bowls, reserving as much juice as possible with the pulp.

Bring skins to a boil in a large sauce-pan over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes or until tender.

Bring pulp to a boil in a saucepan; reduce heat to medium, and cook 20 minutes or until seeds separate from pulp. Push mixture through a wire-mesh strainer into saucepan containing skins, discarding seeds.

Add sugar and puree with immersion blender or food processor.

(Puree can be frozen for several months)
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Stir together graham cracker crumbs, nutmeg, cardamom, 3 tablespoons sugar, and the melted butter in a small bowl. Press mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan to make an even layer. Bake until crust is firm to the touch and has just darkened, about 10 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack, and let crust cool completely.
2. Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees. Put cream cheese into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; mix on medium-low speed until creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add remaining 1ΒΌ cups sugar and the salt. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in vanilla bean seeds and mascarpone until very creamy and no lumps remain, about 3 minutes. Add cinnamon and stir until well blended.
3. Pour 1/3 cheesecake mixture into springform pan. Spoon dollops of about 1/3 of the muscadine puree on top. Carefully swirl puree into cheesecake with a fork or knife, being careful not to disturb crust. Repeat process two more times, topping with final 1/3 of muscadine puree. Do not over-swirl puree into cheesecake.
4. Wrap the exterior of the springform pan in 2 layers of HEAVY DUTY EXTRA LARGE foil; set in a large roasting pan. Fill roasting pan with boiling water until water reaches halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Bake cheesecake until set, about 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes. Remove springform pan from water bath, and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Refrigerate until solid, at least 6 hours (up to overnight).

Serve with fresh whipped cream and enjoy!

About this Recipe

Course/Dish: Cakes, Other Desserts
Main Ingredient: Dairy
Regional Style: American