For the crust:
- 18 (270 grams) graham crackers
- 12 tablespoons (170 grams) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
For the filling:
- 32 ounces cream cheese, completely softened to room temperature
- 2 cups (400 grams) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (114 grams) sour cream, at room temperature
- 6 large eggs, at room temperature
- 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
Make the crust:
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with parchment, leaving an overhang.
In a food processor, pulse the crackers until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until moistened. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan using the bottom of a measuring cup or glass. Bake until fragrant, about 10 minutes (longer if using a glass dish). Place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
Make the filling:
In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the bowl often, for at least 1 minute. Add the sour cream then the eggs one at a time, blending after each addition until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add in vanilla, lemon juice, and salt, and blend until just combined. Don’t over mix.
Spread batter evenly over cooled crust. Tap against the counter a few times to release air bubbles. Bake at 325°F until just set in center and edges are puffed and slightly cracked, about 40 to 45 minutes (longer if using a glass dish). Transfer to rack to let cool completely.
Cover with foil and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight before slicing into squares.
The cheesecake can be made and refrigerated 2 days ahead of time or frozen in an airtight container for up to 2 months.