There are several techniques that will ensure cheesecake success, but bozoyoyo has discovered a simple trick that results in a superior cheesecake: Use cold water for the water bath the cake bakes in. “My cheesecake was more evenly baked with the cold water,” he says.

todao explains, “Baked goods prepared in cake pans cook from the outside rim to the center, meaning that the outside of the preparation cooks faster than the center. Using a water bath helps to equalize the distribution of heat.” Using hot water accelerates the heat gain at the rim, so it will still bake more quickly than the center; cold water “retards the heat rise in the cheesecake, allowing it to more evenly absorb the heat,” todao says.

There is a way to get a creamy, nonbrowned cheesecake with no cracks without a water bath, says chowser: Bake it overnight at a low temperature, as in this recipe.

Discuss: cheesecake, cold water bath

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