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Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits

We all love cheesecake, right?  But it does take time and effort.  You have to make the crust and bake it, then make the filling and, if you do it right, bake the cheesecake in a water bath.  Well, I'm going to show you how to make cheesecake without any baking at all.  It's a deconstructed cheesecake and you layer it in parfait glasses. The cheesecake filling doesn't have any eggs - that's why you don't have to bake it.  These are so easy and you can even make them up ahead of time and refrigerate them.

Brian and I had our 25th wedding anniversary last week and I cooked a special dinner.  He loves strawberry cheesecake but at the same time, I had these fun new little glasses from World Market I had bought and I was dying to make something in them.  I had pictured using them for parfaits.  One thing led to another and . . . deconstructed cheesecake parfaits! No baking, just layering.

Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits 

for a printable recipe, click here

makes 4 large parfaits or 6 smaller ones

This recipe is flexible - e.g., if you just love the graham cracker "crust" then double the amount and make more.


  • 1 pound of strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 12 ounces of cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2/3 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 2 teaspoons Amaretto
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • mint springs, for garnish


Slice the strawberries into a bowl and sprinkle with one tablespoon of sugar.  Toss and set aside.

Mix the graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter and one tablespoon of sugar.  

Beat cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth.  Add the sour cream, confectioners' sugar and Amaretto and beat until combined. 

In another bowl, whip the cream until stiff peaks form.  Fold into the cream cheese mixture. 

Assemble Parfaits:

Place about a tablespoon of the graham cracker "crust" in the bottom of your glasses.  Layer some of the cheesecake filling in the glasses, then some of the strawberry topping and sprinkle some more of the graham cracker on top. (Amounts will vary according to how many parfaits you are making, so just adjust accordingly). Repeat layers and top with mint.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Like to see another parfait recipe?   How about Chocolate Peanut Butter Parfaits?

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Reader Comments (75)

Looks wonderful! I'm going to make some!

January 1, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterauntiepatch

Rather actually! What a clever idea! They look beautiful! Cheesecake is one of the only desserts my husband will eat, but he rarely gets it because of the time and labor involved. That is about to change.

January 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRussian Matchmaking site

EVERYTHING looks so awesome!!

January 31, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterneworleansladie

Wow! Impressive Elaine! I'm definitely going to make this for my husbands birthday next week! I'm so glad Jan mentined your blog!

February 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

How far in advance can I make these strawberry parfaits?

February 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer Trim

From The Italian Dish:

Jennifer: You can make the fillings the day before and then assemble them the day of.

February 10, 2012 | Registered Commenter[Elaine]

Looks yummy cant wait to try it out one day

February 26, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAysha

Thanks for this wonderful post ma'am. I have been collecting different parfaits, I may need this for my future business. Thanks again for sharing your knowledge about parfait making.

March 9, 2012 | Unregistered Commentertessa

I really enjoyed this post. You describe this topic very well. I really enjoy reading your blog and I will definitely bookmark it! Keep up the interesting posts!

March 18, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterptc

How many calories?

April 8, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterANina

Hope it's not too late to get a reply, but we don't drink alcohol so what can I substitute for the Amaretto?

April 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCharrie

From The Italian Dish:

Charrie: You can substitute vanilla extract instead (of course, there's alcohol in that, also) or you can just leave it out altogether. The Amaretto just adds a little flavor - it's not necessary. Hope this helps.

April 13, 2012 | Registered Commenter[Elaine]

What a wonderful dessert and easy to make. I love your blog and am bookmarking it and putting on my Pinterest page under food blogs. Can't wait to explore more.

June 26, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJudimae

Is it possible to use this no-bake recipe for your cheesecake in a jar recipe? It'd totally make my day if i could substitute this one in and not have to do the warm water bath.

June 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterK

From The Italian Dish:

K: Yes, you can! Just use the jars as you would the glasses in this post. Should work out just fine.

June 28, 2012 | Registered Commenter[Elaine]

Thanks for this recipe. I made these parfaits for a dinner party and they turned out great. I tripled the graham cracker crumbs. Yummy!

July 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPaula

what good looks

January 16, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterdbakeca

these would be a great make & take dessert for my community service club mtgs.! I may cheat and use plastic 'on the rocks' cups so Iwe can just toss after we devour them :-)

January 24, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDeb

My husband and I made and ate these for Valentine's day and they were fantastic! Thank you very much for sharing this recipe!

February 15, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSofia

Delicious. I made this last night and was curious if I should double the amaretto as I couldnt really taste it? If you used the ginger cookies instead of the graham cracker crust, what fruit would work best?

April 18, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteralisa

Just made these this week for "Goodie Night." They were a big hit!!! A beautiful presentation but it is the balance of flavors that made everyone smile with satisfaction. ;) I highly recommend these for a large group because they can grab a dessert and go.
I appreciate the silkiness of the cheesecake batter, ohhh, it is luscious! It has the genuine tartness of a real cheesecake with a bit of sweetness that isn't overly done. Just a little sugar on the fruit to make a pretty glaze and I'm glad I read a previous posting about extra graham cracker crumbs because I felt it was needed.
It is now 2 days later and my husband is still poking around for another parfait and waxing poetic about his new favorite dessert... Can't do better than that!

March 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterCyndy Kim

Very disappointed thus far with this recipe......praline liquid never caramelized (like your photo) and my filberts look like a hardened-sugar mess :( Most posts like the idea of this few have posted their experiences actually making it.....debating as to whether or not I will waste any additional ingredients....

August 24, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMaria

Elaine...just started getting your blog...what a great job!! I took a few liberties with this and it turned out great! For the strawberries...I macerated in a little balsamic vinegar & used crushed Biscoff cookies instead of graham crackers. Keep up the good work next project is the Rosette Apple Pie!

October 21, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterMike

Would you please tell me where you purchased the parfait glasses used in the picture and what size they are. Thank you, Carol

August 8, 2015 | Unregistered Commentercarol

From The Italian Dish:

Carol: I think I got them at World Market several years ago! They are about 5.5" tall.

August 9, 2015 | Registered Commenter[Elaine]

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