Cheesecake without a springform?
Hi there. I've made cheesecake without a springform pan (I made mini cakes in a muffin tin and put the overflow in a pie pan, adjusting the baking times as needed), so it is entirely possible. But, for the best-looking cheesecake, I would get the springform. You can get one for $10 or so at the grocery store, you don't need anything fancy. With a springform pan, you can remove the sides when the cheesecake is done and present the cake beautifully.
I've made the recipe below a number of times, and it's always great. I just use the crust recipe on the back of the graham cracker crumb box (make sure you bake it for a few minutes before adding the batter), but otherwise I make no changes. Just keep an eye on the cake, especially during the initial 10-minute browning period. Oven temps can be variable. Make the cheesecake the day before and allow to chill in the fridge overnight, then make sure you take it out ahead of time to come to room temperature for serving. Enjoy!
Quite a few professional bakers recommend doing it without a springform pan. That way you can bake it in a waterbath without the pan leaking. Even the most expensive springform pans leak. Wrapping it with foil is irritating and sometime still leaks.
I would use a cake pan with 3-inch sides though. They are kind of hard to find. Then the brave part is unmolding. Dip the bottom of the pan in hot water for ten seconds, run a knife around the edge. Put a plate on top, flip, put another plate on top and flip back over. Good luck.