1 cup reserved cake mix
2-8 ounce packages of cream cheese, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups milk
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
3 teaspoons vanilla
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. For the crust place the cake mix (minus 1 cup dry mix) in a mixing bowl, or bowl of your stand mixer. Add 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, 3 tablespoons water, and 1 egg. Blend on low speed until mixture holds together when squeezed.
2. Divide crust mixture evenly into 20-24 paper lined muffin tins. Press the mixture into the bottom of muffin cups. Set aside.
3. Mix the lemon juice into the milk and set aside.
4.In a mixing bowl, place the reserved cup of cake mix, the cream cheese, 1/2 cup of sugar and 3 eggs. Beat on medium low speed for one minute until creamy.
5. Turn to low, add in the milk/lemon mixture and mix for 30 seconds. Add the vanilla and blend until smooth. Avoid over beating, this can cause your cheesecakes to sink in the center.
6. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared muffin tins. A pitcher with a pouring spout makes this quite easy.
7. Bake at 300 degrees for 25 minutes or until the center are set. Turn off the oven, and prop open the door. Let the cakes cool in the oven for 30 minutes.
8. Carefully remove the cakes from the oven. Refrigerate 3-4 hours or until well chilled. Top with fruit.
Note: I made 12 cupcakes and an 8″ pie. The pie takes 15 minutes longer in the oven. So, I removed the cupcakes and continued to bake the pie. I used raspberries and sprinkles to decorate the cupcakes and pie.