Red Velvet Cheesecake

Red Velvet Cheesecakervccake1 217x300 Red Velvet Cheesecake

For the Crust:
1 ½ cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs
¼ cup butter, melted
1 TBSP granulated sugar

For the Filling:
3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
3 TBSP unsweetened cocoa
1 cup sour cream
½ cup whole buttermilk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp distilled white vinegar
2 (1 oz) bottles red food coloring

For the Topping:
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, at room temperature
¼ cup butter, at room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

For the Crust:
Stir together graham cracker crumbs, melted butter and 1 TBSP sugar; press mixture onto bottom of a 9-inch springform pan.

For the Filling:
Beat together cream cheese and sugar at medium low speed with an electric mixer 1 minute.
Add eggs, unsweetened cocoa, sour cream, buttermilk, vanilla extract, vinegar and food coloring.  Mix on low speed just until fully combined.
Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake at 325F for 10  minutes, reduce heat to 300F, and bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until center is firm.
Run knife along outer edge of cheese. Turn oven off and let cheesecake stand in oven 30 minutes.
Remove cheesecake from oven; cool in pan on a wire rack for 30 m minutes.
Cover and chill for 8 hours.

For the topping:
Beat cream cheese and butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth; gradually add powdered sugar and vanilla, beating until smooth.
Remove cheesecake from refrigerator and spread topping evenly over top of cheesecake.
Remove sides of springform. Garnish if desired.

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