Recipe courtesy of Judy's Kitchen (

Rating:  10 out of 10

2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa, natural or Dutch

2 Tbsp. sugar

2 cups graham cracker crumbs (1 pack)

4 Tbsp. butter, melted + 1-1/2 tsp. butter to grease pan

Heat oven to 325F.  Combine ingredients in medium bowl and mix with fork.  Grease an 8” springform pan on bottom and 3/4 up sides with 1-1/2 tsp. butter.  Pat graham cracker mixture onto bottom and sides.  Bake 10 minutes to set crust.  Transfer to wire rack to cool.  Increase oven heat to 350F.

Bottom Layer: 
1-1/2 Tbsp. heavy cream

1 Tbsp. butter

1/2 cup Nutella

Heat heavy cream in microwave or small pot till steaming.  Add butter, stir till it melts.  Whisk in Nutella till smooth.  Spoon over cooled crust, spreading evenly. 

Mascarpone Cheesecake Filling

8 oz. mascarpone

1 cup sugar (I used 1/2 cup sugar + 2 Tbsp. Nu Natural Stevia) 
16 oz. Neufchatel cheese

3 large eggs

1/2 cup heavy cream

1-1/2 Tbsp. cornstarch

1-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (I used my homemade vanilla)

2 Tbsp. hazelnut liqueur, such as Frangelica

Increase oven heat to 350F.  Have all ingredients at room temperature.  Cheeses should be very soft.  In work bowl of food processor, combine mascarpone cheese and sugar.  Pulse till well mixed and smooth.  Add Neufchatel, 8 oz. at a time, and pulse just till smooth.  Add eggs, one at a time, pulsing each just till yolks disappear, then briefly pulse to stir in cream.  Sift cornstarch over filling; pulse briefly to combine.  Add flavorings, scrape  bottom and sides with spatula and pulse one last time, briefly.  Pour filling over Nutella-filled crust.  (You can wrap the pan in tinfoil and place inside a roasting pan filled with boiling water halfway up the sides of the cheesecake pan, or just bake as is, as I did.)  Reduce oven temperature to 300F after cheesecake goes in oven.  Bake about 75 minutes, till still jiggly in center.  Off heat, open oven door and leave cheesecake in oven 1 hour.  Transfer to wire rack.  Loosen edges of cheesecake with thin, sharp knife.  Allow cake to cool thoroughly, away from drafts, 2-3 more hours.  Place in refrigerator 1 hour uncovered, then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.  Serve plain or topped as desired.  Yield:  8 –10 servings  (Cut the slices thin, as this is a very rich cheesecake.)