Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.

It’s early morning, and I’ve got an AMAZING substitute for your breakfast glass of orange juice…

Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.

Foodbuzz partnered with Nestlé to offer me a chance to create something new & exciting with my kids. When I told Jack that I was going to be working with CHOCOLATE this time, his eyes absolutely lit up! Hey, mine probably did, too! ;-)

Now, up until about 6 hours before I was heading into the kitchen, I had a completely different idea in mind for this post. However, I had one of those *epiphany* moments, and THIS idea popped into my head instead. It was an unstoppable force, so I set out to make it a reality.

One of my mom’s favorite treats is a chocolate orange. Do you know the kind? They come in a box, and you smash the orange onto a counter, and it falls apart in perfect, segmented pieces of chocolate-coated orange. It takes her days to eat one, but she savors them during the holiday season.

She’s also famous for her cheesecakes. So I decided to create a luscious cheesecake with the elements of the festive chocolate orange! :-)

Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.
Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake

First, I gathered my ingredients:

The ingredients.

I then rounded up my happy helpers. I let them thumb-wrestle for the chance to wear the special, new apron.

My happy helpers.
(A.J. is 13, and Jack is 10, by the way.)

I decided it would be best to assign different parts of the process to each of the boys, based on their passions & strengths in the kitchen. Jack is a constant helper, and he’s usually in the experience for the long haul. A.J. prefers the shorter tasks, and then likes to keep checking in on the process later.

So, Jack sprayed the springform pan well with floured nonstick spray.

Spray the springform pan.
(We always use nonstick spray outside.
It keeps the “film” from settling on surfaces in the kitchen, and I like it better that way.)

And then A.J. set to work making the cookie dough crust.

A.J. making the cookie dough crust.

For the cheesecake, I chose to use Nestlé Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. I found this in the dairy aisle in our military commissary, and it comes premade, scored in individual cookies ready-to-bake. These little lines made for easy breaking, and A.J. dropped about 20 little squares into the springform pan.

Cookie dough pieces.

He then used his fingers to “pat” the cookie dough flat on the bottom of the springform, as well as 1/2″ high along the sides.

Patting the crust together.

Next, he put the springform pan on a baking sheet (in this case, a pizza pan), and put it into the oven to bake at 325° for about 10 minutes.

Baked crust.
(The baked crust, cooling on the floor of the mudroom.)

While the cookie dough crust was cooling, Jack began making the filling. He beat the softened cream cheese until it was fluffy. (Although he did comment that it never looked “fluffy;” rather, it looked “really mixed up!”

Jack fluffs the cream cheese.
(I love that he wears umpteen bracelets all at one time!
Seriously, both of his wrists look like this at any point in time. :-) )

Next, he added the sweetened condensed milk & orange juice concentrate.

Sweetened condensed milk & orange juice concentrate.

He really wanted to try the milk, so he, “Oops! I spilled just a bit here on the counter,” and got to swipe a bit. ;-)

Adding the sweetened condensed milk.

He combined the mixture until it was very creamy & sweet. We tasted a bit on a spoon to make sure we were headed the right direction in developing the “orange” taste. Next, he cracked the eggs into a cup before adding them to the cream cheese mixture.

Cracking the eggs.

He beat them for a bit with a fork, then added them to the mixture. Then he began adding the orange extract, too.

Orange extract.

After adding 1/2 teaspoon of extract, we tasted the batter again. We decided to add another 1/2 teaspoon, and then we were happy with the orange flavor. :-)

Pouring the batter onto the crust.
(Jack poured the finished batter over the cooled cookie dough crust.)

And, of course, he took a moment to lick the spatula clean, too. ;-)

Jack licks the spatula.

(I kinda love this picture. ♥)

I put the cheesecake into the oven at 325° (still on a baking sheet, by the way), and he set the timer for 45 minutes. While I then started on the baking dishes, Jack skipped out to play with his friend for a bit.

Jack didn't want to take the apron off!

I laughed as he walked off around the block. He had said he really liked the apron, and it must’ve been true! He played outside wearing it for the next half-hour!

When the timer went off, the cheesecake was puffed, but slightly wiggly in the center. I pulled it out, and let it cool for about 10 minutes. I then ran a knife around the pan to loosen the cake, and then I placed it back into the mudroom to cool completely.

When it was cool, A.J. returned to the kitchen to begin the ganache. Since Jack’s jobs were over, A.J. wanted to wear the apron. (Mind you, I have TWO other aprons, but no one wanted to wear them!)

Ganache ingredients.
(Ganache ingredients.)

I chose Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet Mini Morsels for the ganache. I wanted the tinier size for easier melting, and I prefer a darker chocolate for a truly sinful ganache. ;-)

A.J. measures the chocolate chips.
(A.J. carefully measured out the mini chips.)

He added a bit of whipping cream to the chocolate chips, and then put it in the microwave for about 30 seconds.

Add the whipping cream to the chocolate chips.

Using a mini spatula, he stirred the mixture until smooth & velvety.

Stirring until smooth.

He popped the mixture back into the microwave for a few extra seconds, too. When it was perfectly smooth, he carefully poured it over the top of the cooled cheesecake. I spread it to the edges of the springform pan, and then we placed the cheesecake in the fridge overnight to chill thoroughly.

It was a long wait for something so delicious, but the results were SO WORTH IT!

Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.
Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.

Cookie Dough Crust detail.
(Check out the beautiful cookie dough crust.)

Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake
(recipe by Nicole Cleghorn)

  • 16.5 oz. Nestlé Toll House Chocolate Chip cookie dough
  • nonstick baking spray with flour
  • 16 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 14 oz. sweetened condensed milk
  • cup orange juice concentrate
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp. orange extract
  • 1 cup Nestlé Toll House Semi-Sweet Mini Morsels
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream


Preheat the oven to 325°. Spray a springform pan generously with floured nonstick baking spray. Break apart cookie dough & drop small pieces into springform pan. Using fingers, pat cookie dough flat until it covers the entire bottom & spreads 3/4″ up the sides of the pan. Place springform pan on a baking sheet; bake for 10-12 minutes or until cookie crust just begins to lightly brown. Remove from oven & cool completely.

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese until fluffy. Add sweetened condensed milk & orange juice concentrate; beat well. Add eggs, and beat until just combined (overbeating can cause cheesecakes to crack). Stir in orange extract.

Pour batter over cooled cookie dough crust. Place cheesecake in the oven; bake at 325° for 45 minutes, or until top is puffed & center is just a bit wiggly. Remove from oven, and cool for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the cake, and then allow to cool completely.

Combine mini morsels and heavy whipping cream in a microwave-safe container. Heat on HIGH for 30 seconds; stir with spatula until melted. If ganache isn’t smooth & shiny, return to microwave for 5-10 seconds more. Pour warm ganache on top of cooled cheesecake; spread to edges. Chill cheesecake four hours or overnight.

Yield: 12 servings
© Nicole Cleghorn 2011 (All rights reserved.)

Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.

I think we did a fabulous job recreating one of my mom’s favorite holiday treats, and we did it in an entirely new, fun dessert! There are so many fantastic levels, too: the crispy cookie crust, the whipped filling with a fresh orange flavor, and the rich, dark ganache that melts on your tongue. This cheesecake is SO decadent, but I take heart in knowing it’s also healthy. After all, there’s orange juice in it! ;-)

As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received a holiday baking kit & stipend from Nestlé Toll House Morsels. The opinions are my own, as well as the recipe created & shown above, and I thank Foodbuzz for this sweet opportunity!

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11 comments on “Chocolate-Covered Orange Cheesecake.

  1. PAM STEWART on said:

    What a wonderful post! Not only did it make me want to try the recipe, but I thoroughly enjoyed reading and meeting your boys. Thank you for sharing both.

    • Thank you, Pam! I’m glad you enjoyed it. I wanted to really find something extraordinary to do with my Toll House Morsels, and I think we accomplished that! :-)

  2. This is an excellent recipe! So enjoyed everything about this post and seeing both the boys in the kitchen helping was wonderful. It’s obvious that Jack is quite proud of his new apron and that he took the opportunity to wear it outside for so long just goes to show just how proud of it he is. Enjoy that beautiful cheesecake!

    • Thank you, Paula! The boys have always enjoyed helping me in the kitchen, but now that they see they are “online,” they really want to be a part of the process! ;-)

      And OMG, the cheesecake is even better on the second day – more intense, delicious orange flavor! ♥

  3. Giselle@baking-in-heels on said:

    YUMMY!!!! I must say I LOVE LOVE LOVE that cake stand!

    • Thanks, Giselle! The cheesecake is even more spectacular on the second round – a fabulous surprise!

      And I adore this cake stand, too! My mom bought it for my birthday last year, and it is such a heavy, heavy wrought iron. It has a white porcelain insert (covered by the springform pan’s bottom here), and an etched crystal cover (which is never seen in photographs). For Halloween, I had a trio of drippy skull candles under the cover & it was on display! ;-)

  4. Christy L. on said:

    Wow! I don’t think I’ve seen a picture of A.J. in awhile! He is looking so very grown up!

  5. Pingback: Kid Crafts: Hosting a Cookie Decorating Party | Life's a Batch

  6. Kim Marie Stoner on said:

    This cheesecake looks amazing & can’t wait to try it!!! My family & I love those orange candies you are talking about at Christmastime! I seriously think I will have to try this before Christmas though. I love anything orange & chocolate together!! :) Thank you for sharing & looks like your boys had lots of fun helping you make this delicious looking cheesecakes!

    Kim Marie

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I’m Nicole, and I’m glad you’ve stopped by my little corner of the web! I’m a former Air Force wife whose passions are baking, cookie-making, and photo-taking… all to the benefit of my loves – my family! C’mon in to…read more.


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