This is a lighter, fluffier cheesecake than a traditional one made with 2 or more rectangles of cream cheese.
You will need a 9" springform pan, and also the insert from the Wilton Checkerboard Cake pan set (but you'll get lots of use from that cake pan set ~ you can make layer cakes that have 2 different colors in a checkerboard design when you slice them ~ and the set isn't expensive). I also used a 9" cake board in the bottom of my springform pan (so I didn't have to take my metal bottom with me to my friend's house), but you could cut a 9" parchment paper circle instead and put that on the bottom of your springform pan and then slide your cheesecake off onto a serving platter.
HALLOWEEN No-Bake CANDY CORN CHEESECAKE
2 mixes of no-bake cheesecake mix (filling plus graham cracker crumbs ~ but you only use 1 pkg. graham crumbs)
about 1 tsp. lemon or orange extract...……......…………...5 TB melted butter
1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice...……......……………………………2 tsp. sugar
yellow and orange food coloring (I like NEON colors ~ if you don't have orange, mix red + yellow)
DECIDE if you want to flavor the yellow LEMON or the orange ORANGE & use that extract
1-1/2 cups milk for each cheesecake mix = 3 cups milk total (the original recipe calls for 2% milk, but it doesn't make a difference. I actually used unsweetened vanilla almond milk for the 1 package cheesecake mix which I dyed yellow for the outside ring ~ and unsweetened plain almond milk for the other package which were the center white ring and the orange ring, which I dyed orange and also used orange extract.)
Prepare 2 mixes of cheesecake batter following package directions. Prepare 1 crust and place in bottom of pan following package directions.
Position Batter Dividing Ring in pan. Fill center ring with batter to 1/4 in. from top of ring, level with top edge of pan. Tint remainder of batter yellow. Fill outer ring with batter. Tint remaining yellow batter orange and fill middle ring. Smooth each section with spatula dipped in warm water. Carefully remove ring and smooth again with spatula if needed. Refrigerate following package or recipe directions. (I recommend overnight)
Can you believe that those are the ONLY instructions give for this cheesecake? Now, let's clarify them a little...…
(1) Add the pumpkin pie spice, sugar & melted butter to the graham cracker crumbs in a little bowl; and mix until evenly blended with a fork. Put a 9" cake board or 9" parchment paper circle in the bottom of your springform pan. Then pile in the crumbs and evenly pat them down on the bottom and an inch or so up the sides. ***
(2) The dividing ring will have to go totally INSIDE the springform pan (if you hang it over the sides, the bottom won't reach the crust and the cheesecake filling will all spread together). So carefully fit it inside the springform pan and push it down (but just barely touching the crust ~ not so you split the crust with the bottom of the dividing ring).
Forget the rest of the instructions about coloring the filling! Decide if you want to put LEMON extract in the yellow layer OR ORANGE in the orange layer ~ add that when you add the food coloring.
I made 1 filling (with the WHISK attachment on my electric mixer ~ start at low and go to high ~ it takes about 2-3 minutes) and tinted it yellow. Then spoon it into the outer ring (be sure to get it under the 3 strips of metal going over the layers). Level it off at about the top of the dividing ring. Put excess yellow filling in a small bowl & set aside.
Wash out the whisk, spoons, and whatever else you used. Now, do the other filling. I put what I thought to be about 1/3 (or so) into the center circle of the dividing (it was a little over the top) and about 3 TB more into a small bowl and set aside. *** Next, add the orange food coloring (I added orange extract too) and whisk it in until the color & flavor is evenly blended. Then as carefully as possible (haha), spoon that into the middle layer (between the yellow & white) ~ use a butter knife to be sure to get under the 3 metal strips across the layer & smooth out the top too. Put any extra in a little dish and set aside.
Now, carefully wiggle the dividing ring up a little. Fill the 3 layers with the remaining filling that you have in each color. You won't have enough yellow to go around, so it's most important to just get it around the inside edge (next to the orange). Then carefully pull the dividing ring all the way out of the springform pan. (DO NOT TAKE OFF THE SPRINGFORM PAN!)
I put some water into a small dish, and set out a butter knife and 2 small spoons to work with. Keep sticking them into the water to dampen them and smooth out the cracks where the dividing ring was ~ then smooth out the top of the cheesecake. My cheesecake was much higher in the center (where the white was), so I went with it like that ~ smoothing out the top and layers. I actually lightly pressed down the top with the back of a dampened spoon (evenly around the edges of the white circle), so it looked like the "mound" was intentional. Then I used the back of a dampened spoon to make the little "swirls" to disguise where the messy edges of the 2 colors met together.
Don't stress if it's not perfect! You can always add dabs of Cool Whip with some actual candy corn on top too!
I refrigerated the cheesecake overnight (uncovered). Run a dampened butter knife around the edge if the springform pan seems to stick a little when you unhinge it. Then carefully pull off the sides of the springform pan. And slide the cakeboard off the metal bottom (or slide the cheesecake on the parchment circle) onto a serving platter. You can slice it with a long thin knife (I've heard that dental floss works well, but I've never tried it.)
I hope that my tips & suggestions helped clarify those meager instructions!