Peanut Butter Cup Cheesecake

Ingredients

Crust

  • 2 cups chocolate cookie crumbs, more if needed
  • 1 cup roasted unsalted peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 4 tablespoons golden brown sugar, firmly packed
  • a pinch of salt

Filling

  • 4 (8 oz) packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup golden brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 2 1/2 cups peanut butter cups in 3/4″ pieces (I prefer dark chocolate)

Topping

  • 1 (12 oz) bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup water

Directions

For crust

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Grease 9″ spring-form pan with butter.
  3. Mix chocolate cookie crumbs, chopped peanuts, melted butter, brown sugar, and pinch of salt in a bowl until well combined.
  4. Press mixture evenly onto bottom and sides of pan.
  5. Bake until set, about 8 minutes, and set aside to cool.
  6. Reduce oven temp to 325.

For filling

  1. Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and brown sugar in large bowl until smooth.
  2. Add peanut butter and vanilla extract and beat just until blended. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.
  3. Add whipping cream and beat until smooth.
  4. Stir in peanut butter cup pieces.
  5. Pour filling into crust. Bake until sides of cake are set, but center still moves slightly (almost an hour). Cool cake in pan.

For topping

  1. Heat all ingredients in a double boiler.
  2. Stir until smooth, then pour/spread over entire top of cheesecake.
  3. When cool, cover and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight before serving.

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