by - July 18, 2017

Japanese Cotton Cheesecake

Japanese Cotton Cheesecake

Much thanks to my friend Mandy for introducing me to this recipe. She is great at baking and her results inspire me a lot. You may see her recipe shared on Rasa Malaysia.

This Japanese Cotton Cheesecake is very soft, fluffy and light compared to the regular cheesecake which is a lot more dense.

If you like cheesecake, I have New York Cheesecake recipe and Basque Burnt Cheesecake recipe that you may like to try.

I would suggest you read the following notes especially if you are don't bake often.


Meringue plays a very important role in Chiffon or this Japanese Cotton Cheesecake.  Over beating meringue may cause the cake to crack, while under beating will cause the cake to collapse or it may not rise much.

Use room temperature egg whites, this will yield more volume.  Cold egg whites will not whip well.  It is easier to separate your eggs when they are still cold, then leave the egg whites aside to come to room temperature. 

Make sure your bowl is clean and there is no any trace of egg yolk or fat.  Fat will interfere with the formation of meringue.

Use cream of tartar to stabilise the whipped meringue.  Cream of tartar is acidic and can be replaced with lemon juice or white vinegar. The replacement ratio is 1:2.  If your recipe asks for 1/4 tsp of cream of tartar, then replace with 1/2 tsp lemon juice.

Sources from here, here and here

Stages of Meringue:

Soft Peak – The meringue is soft and unable to hold its form, it will drip after you turn your whisk upside down.  You will see the ribbon lines, but it disappears the moment you stop whisking. 
Firm Peak – The peak will hold and fold back slightly when you turn your whisk upside down.  The meringue is glossy and the ribbon lines stay. This is the stage we look for if you do not want your cake to crack. 

Stiff Peak – The peak will hold straight and doesn’t fold back when you turn the whisk upside down.  The meringue is very glossy and thick too.  Most chiffon cake recipes will prescribe this stage but the cake will easily crack when baking.

Over-beating – The meringue looks grainy, broken and dull. We do not want this stage in baking as you will not be able to fold it into the flour batter nicely.


Do note that the baking temperature and timing provided are what works for my oven and should also be regarded as a guide only. Every oven behaves a little differently, so please adjust accordingly for your oven. 

It would be good to use an oven thermometer when baking. This will help you understand and know the actual temperature you are baking at. The actual temperature in the oven may not be the same as the oven’s setting.  Leave the thermometer on the same rack where you place your baking. 

I usually bake cakes with top and bottom heats setting.  I don’t encourage baking cakes with fan-forced mode as this setting uses a fan to circulate the hot air for quick baking or cooking at high temperature and may result in cracks on the cake.  However, if fan mode is used, it is recommended to reduce the temperature setting by about 20C if using a fan-forced mode.


For a water bath, the cake pan sits within another pan filled with a little water. Place the cake pan within a larger pan and pour hot water into the outer pan until it comes up to a level of 1.5cm – 2 cm.  Place the whole thing in oven and bake. 

The benefit of water bath is that it will moderate the baking temperature and prevent the cakes from cracking.  The cake texture will be very moist too.    

If you have any questions regarding this recipe or any other post, please leave me a comment in the “LEAVE A COMMENT” link and I will reply you as soon as possible.

Recipe - Japanese Cotton Cheesecake


60g/2 oz. all purposed flour
20g/1 oz. cornflour (cornstarch)
1/4 teaspoon salt

50g/2 oz. unsalted butter
250g/9 oz. cream cheese
100 ml/3 fluid oz. fresh milk

6 egg yolks
1 tablespoon lemon juice

6 egg whites
140g/5 oz. fine granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

  1. Line the bottom of  8-inch round cake pan with parchment paper. 9-inch round cake will work too.  Please wrap the base of the cake pan with 2 or 3 layers of aluminium foil if spring form round cake pan is used.
  2. Melt cream cheese, butter and milk over a double boiler. Cool the mixture. Transfer the cream cheese mixture to a bowl of stand mixer, add in lemon juice and egg yolk.  Using the paddle attachment, beat the mixture until smooth. 
  3. Sift all purposed, corn flour and salt.  Fold in the flour mixture and mix well.
  4. In another bowl of stand mixture, whisk egg whites with cream of tartar until foamy. Add in the sugar and whisk until soft peaks form.
  5. Take 1/3 meringue and fold gently into the cream cheese mixture, then fold in another 1/3 of meringue. After incorporated, pour the batter back to the remaining 1/3 meringue and fold. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake pan.
  6. Bake cheesecake in a water bath for 1 hours 30 minutes or until set and golden brown at 150 degrees C (without fan mode).
  7. Leave the cake to cool down in the oven with the oven door open, about an hour. This is to prevent sudden change of temperature that may cause the cake to shrink drastically.
  8. Refrigerate the cake (with or without the cake tin) for at least 4 hours or overnight.

  1. I used 9-inch non-stick spring form round cake pan and lined the bottom with grease-proof baking paper or parchment paper. I also wrapped the base of the cake pan with 2 or 3 layers aluminium foil to prevent seepage.
  2. As you can see my cake is not tall because I used 9-inch round pan.  Please use 8-inch round pan if you like your cake to be taller.
  3. I used hot water for the water bath.

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  1. hi good day ... may i .know why is my japanese cheesecake is crumbly and not firm?

    1. Hi there,

      Thank you for your question.. Did you refrigerate your cake at least 4 hours before cutting?

      Cheers :)

  2. Hi,
    Can I cover it with aluminium foil if the top browns too much?
    May I know which rack did you put it on? Many thanks.

    1. Hi, thank you for asking. Yes, you can. But, the top maybe get too soft and not cook. I placed at the bottom last rack.

      Cheers :)

  3. Hi
    Why do the sides of the cake wrinkle and cave in?