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I undercooked my cheesecake, can I re-cook it?

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  • Rick Apr 30, 2007 12:48 PM
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I cut into my cheesecake last night and found out it was runny and undercooked. I still have it in the fridge but I don't know if I can cook it again or not?

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  1. Rick, I have no scientific basis to make this comment, but I think the answer is no. Once the cooking process is stopped initially, I think you are done. It is like trying to finish cooking a pancake in the microwave that is not fully cooked....can't do it. It is a whole different texture second time around

    1. I kind of agree with nyfoodjoe. But I have done what you did once. Instead of throwing out the whole cake. I put it in the freezer and once it froze up enough, I cut it into wedges and stored them separated. Then later you can serve it as 'ice cream' cake.

      1 Reply
      1. re: OnceUponABite

        Great idea--you could even dip the wedge in chocolate first.

      2. Rick, I don't believe you can cook it again.

        How long did you refrigerate it before cutting into it? Many recipes state to refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, to help the cheesecake actually set. If you did this, and it still was runny, I'd do the freezer recommendation below. However, you may find that after spending a decent time in the fridge, it will set up.

        2 Replies
        1. re: QueenB

          I think you need to consider the egg element. I would not be thrilled to eat partially-cooked egg products that were subsequently frozen and then served semi-fredo...

          1. re: LJS

            yes, of course it depends on how under cooked it is. If it's just a not set enough I think it'd be fine, if it's been in the oven for hours, then I wouldn't think there will be issues. Sure, warn the pregnant women and small children first then :) like you would with Hollindaise sauce and other raw egg preparation.

        2. You have nothing to lose. I think you have a pretty good chance of success.

          Cheesecake is really a custard and setting happens when the egg proteins entwine, trapping moisture. The trick will be to heat it very evenly. The center is now cold and getting it to temperature without overcooking the edges will be tricky. You want to reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees F.

          I would heat it in a water bath. If it's in a springform pan, you will need to wrap the bottom and sides in foil to make it water tight. Maybe a 250 degree oven and start with water that is below boiling. Use an instant read thermometer and pull it when the internal temp reaches 155 (assuming it will go up another 5-10 degrees from accumulated heat.

          Alternative would be to cook it for a long time in a very low oven.

          12 Replies
          1. re: MRubenzahl

            Just as a follow up I ended up freezing the cake in pieces. The cheesecake wasn't completely uncooked, it was just not completely set in the center. If you had a sliver, the half towards the point of the slice was somewhat runny, the back half was set up. I figure I'd rather have the cake frozen than accidentally burning it in the oven. Next time I'll just cook it until it cracks, that way I know it's done!

            1. re: Rick

              >>Next time I'll just cook it until it cracks, that way I know it's done!

              Get a digital food thermometer. I think the done temperature for cheesecakes is anything above 165F.

              1. re: icecone

                The temp should not exceed 160°. Eggs curdle at 175° and there will be residual (carry over cooking) heat from the cheesecake. Cracking, while it happens, is not really a desirable cheesecake trait and should and can be avoided. As icecone suggests, get a thermometer.

                This is an older thread, hopefully the OP and others will see these new posts. There's always room for cheesecake discussion...

                1. re: bushwickgirl

                  How do curdled eggs affect the texture of the cheesecake?

                  1. re: icecone

                    Overcooking the eggs in cheesecake, which is what happens when the cheesecake puffs up somewhat like a souffle, makes the cheesecake grainy-textured, rather than silky smooth, and may cause the top to split after the cheesecake cools. That type of splitting is not the same as cracking while baking. Cracking during baking occurs for a different reason, that being is rapid temperature change. Gradual cooling is the way to prevent that type of cracking.

                    For Rick to bake his cheesecake until it cracks is not necessarily related to overcooked eggs and is not an indication that his cheesecake is overbaked either, just not cooled properly (in the oven) after shutting off the heat. As you wrote, a thermometer will prevent overbaking.

            2. re: MRubenzahl

              Agree with MRubenzahl, but make sure you take that sucker out of the fridge and bring it completely to room temp before putting it in a low oven.

              Waterbath waterbath waterbath.

              1. re: slowfoodgrrl

                thanks slowfoodgrrl and MRubenzahl, I'm going to try to save my runny cheesecake. bringing 'er down to room temp now. hope!

                1. re: bakersdelight

                  so far, so good. http://www.cookingforengineers.com/re... was useful. watched it every second til it browned around the edges, turned off the heat & propped open oven door with wooden spoon, and it puffed up like a beaut. phew.

                  1. re: bakersdelight

                    It will collapse somewhat as it cools but that's the nature of the beast, er, cheesecake. Cookingforengineers is a great resource,btw.

                    1. re: bushwickgirl

                      it stayed fairly puffy! I cooled it reeeeaaaal slow. topped it with whipped cream and rum-soaked raisins.
                      the problem? someone I don't like ended up eating it.

                      1. re: bakersdelight

                        Puffy, as in light and fluffy? That's a desirable trait in cheesecake, although there are more solid, drier recipe versions as well. Cheesecakes tend to solidify a bit as they chill.

                        If someone ate it all, then you just have to make another!

                        1. re: bushwickgirl

                          they're calling it "silky." after a miserable dried-out failure a few weeks back, I decided to leave out flour entirely. I cobbled together a recipe after reading a bunch of them. I lined an 8-inch square metal pan with foil, and pressed in a graham cracker crust using melted butter with some brown sugar dissolved in it. baked that at 325 maybe 5 min. Filling:
                          2 tubs Philly full-fat cream cheese, whipped til good and creamy soft
                          1 1/2 c. sugar, whipped in slowly to keep things creamy
                          3 good organic eggs added one at a time, kept on whipping
                          rind of one lemon and a generous tbsp lemon juice stirred in
                          Baked at 325 with pan set in in Pyrex filled with tap-hot water for a half hour, chilled overnight. In the morning, I let it reach room temp, then put back in the oven at 350 with no water bath, for maybe 15 minutes, til edges turned brown. turned off heat, propped door open slightly maybe 20 minutes, opened door a little more maybe 30 minutes, opened door all the way maybe 15 minutes, removed to rack but kept covered with foil for a while longer, then uncovered it and let it sit til the bottom of the pan was no longer warm. in the fridge for 6 hours, topped with like 7/8 of a cup whipped 35% cream, and stirred into that some raisins soaked 6 hrs. in bacardi gold rum with some sugar. it had de-puffed slightly, but was still pretty light. i may be wicked but need a rest from cheesecake for now.