Ube San Sebastian Cheesecake

I’ve been loving ube flavoured desserts recently. Every time I see something ube flavoured, I need to buy it immediately.

I wanted to make something ube flavoured so here we are, ube San Sebastian cheesecake.

The flavour of this cheesecake was so nice AND the colour was very pretty in my opinion. If you like San Sebastian cheesecake, you need to try this!

A slice of the ube San Sebastian cheesecake on a white plate, with the full cheesecake in the background.

Video Tutorial

What is ube?

If you’ve never had or heard of ube before, let me give a quick explanation.

Ube is essentially a purple yam that originates from the Philippines.

When used in desserts it adds like a vanilla nutty flavour which is soooo good. I actually like this more than regular vanilla, if it didn’t turn things purple, I would use it all the time.

From what I’ve seen, a lot of ube flavoured desserts are made with something called ‘ube halaya’. Which is a jam made from ube. 

I don’t live in a place where I can easily get actual ube, it’s very hard to find.

So instead for this recipe, I used ube extract, which I got from Amazon.

Of course using actual ube will always give you the best flavour, but for people who can’t get ube around them, the extract works great too!

The full ube San Sebastian cheesecake after it was taken out of the tin.

San Sebastian cheesecake 

We’ve talked about ube, so now let’s talk about San Sebastian cheesecake.

San Sebastian cheesecake, also known as burnt basque cheesecake, is a desserts that originates from…San Sebastian, Spain.

This cheesecake is different to the typical cheesecakes that most of us are used to.

Here are some of the main characteristics of San Sebastian cheesecake:

  • No crust – this cheesecake doesn’t have a biscuit base. I used to think that cheesecakes NEED to have a biscuit base to make them good, but honestly, you don’t miss is it. It tastes just as good without it.
  • The creaminess – baked cheesecakes are typically slightly creamy but also dense. I feel like the word dense has bad connotations, but cheesecake is dense in a good way…if that makes sense. San Sebastian cheesecake is different though, it’s way more light and creamy.
  • The burnt top – this is probably the first thing you notice. This cheesecake is burnt on top, but this is intentional. The burnt top adds a nice caramely flavour. 
  • The rusitc-ness – this cheesecake is supposed to have a rustic look. So to achieve this look, you want to get a large sheet of baking paper and press this down into your tin. This baking paper will form folds and wrinkles, which will then add wrinkles to your cheesecake. This is the look we are going for.
The top of the cheesecake after it was taken out of the tin.

Ingredients for the cheesecake

Here are the ingredients you are going to need to make this ube San Sebastian cheesecake:

  • Cream cheese – make sure to use full fat cream cheese.
  • Granulaed sugar – caster sugar works too.
  • Corn flour – also known as corn starch. This is going to thicken the cheesecake as it bakes.
  • Salt – to enhance the flavours.
  • Double cream – also known as heavy cream.
  • Plain yoghurt – this is going to add a slight tanginess to the cheesecake, and also help with the creaminess.
  • Ube extract – I added 2 teaspoons of this, but you could add more or less. It’s up to you how strong you want the flavour to be.
  • Eggs
The ingredients needed to make the cheesecake.

Baking the cheesecake

When it comes to baking this cheesecake, you want to bake it in an oven that is at 200c/400f.

We’re going to bake this for around 45 minutes.

How to know when the cheesecake is baked

We want this cheesecake to be creamy, so we’re not baking it until it is fully set.

Once it’s baked, the edges will look set, but the centre should still be quite jiggly. Don’t be alarmed by this, it is ready to be taken out of the oven.

It will continue to set whiles it’s cooling down.

A silver cake tin lined with a large sheet of baking paper.
The cheesecake batter inside of the tin, before being baked.

Why did my cheesecake not burn on top?

Depending on your oven, your cheesecake might not gain a lot of colour on top.

If this happens, don’t continue baking the cheesecake, waiting for it to turn brown.

Instead, just put the cheesecake under your grill/broiler and leave it under there for a minute or two, just until the top of it turns dark brown. This does happen pretty quickly so don’t walk away.

Leaving the cheesecake to set

Once the cheesecake has baked and chilled for about an hour, you want to let it set up in your fridge.

It will be too soft to take it out of the tin and cut into at this point, so you need to let it chill.

You can either leave this to chill for 2 hours, or overnight.

It just depends on how creamy you want it to be. After 2 hours, you could cut into it and it will be super creamy.

But I actually prefer the taste and texture of the cheesecake the next day, it will still be creamy but it has more of a bite to it. So I leave it overnight.

It’s totally up to you though!

The cheesecake in the tin, after being baked.

I make a lot of cheesecake. Here are some other cheesecake recipes I think you will like:

Ube San Sebastian Cheesecake

0.0 from 0 votes


  • 600g full fat cream cheese

  • 240g granulated sugar

  • 40g corn flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 200ml double cream

  • 100g plain yoghurt

  • 2 teaspoons ube extract (you can add more or less depending on how strong you want the flavour to be)

  • 4 eggs


  • Start by pre-heating your oven to 200c/400f. Also line an 8 inch cake tin with a large piece of baking paper.
  • In a large bowl, add the cream cheese, sugar, corn flour and salt. Beat all this together until smooth.
  • Add the double cream, yoghurt and ube extract into this, whisk until combined.
  • Now add the eggs and whisk until smooth.
  • Pour this batter into your tin, smooth it out, and then slam the tin down on your counter a few times to get rid of any bubbles.
  • Bake this for around 45-50 minutes. It is done when the edges are set, but the centre is still quite jiggly. If at this point the cheesecake still isn't burnt on top, don't bake it for longer. Put it under your grill for a minute or two, just until it has turned a dark brown colour.
  • After it has been baked, leave to cool at room temperature for an hour, and then leave it in the fridge for at least two hours, or overnight, to set.
  • Once set, take it out of the tin, cut into it and enjoy!


  1. Alayne
    September 8, 2023 / 8:11 pm

    Hi how long does it keep in the fridge? Thank you

    • Ash Baber
      September 9, 2023 / 5:48 pm

      about 4-5 days!

  2. Neha
    September 11, 2023 / 4:06 pm

    Can I set the cake for 2 days before cutting?
    Will it change the texture of the cheesecake?

    • Ash Baber
      September 15, 2023 / 9:40 am

      No it will still taste good, I actually prefer the way it tastes after 2 days!