I am wanting to bake my go to cheesecake. It is baked in a 9" springform pan but I want to half the recipe. (Well, I don't really WANT to, but my waistline says I should!!!) Anyways, what type of vessel would work best for this? I am wondering if a large pie plate would work.
A 9" pan has a surface area* of 81π/4 square inches. A 6" pan is 36π/4, or just under half, so the depth will be similar (~10% deeper). 6" springform pans are easy to get. If your existing pan is dead-on 9", you might like a 6 that comes up a little big, as many pans do. Or you could make a 2/3 quantity in a 7" pan, something I often do with 3-egg recipes.
*The factor of π/4 cancels, so you only need to consider the ratio of the square of the diameters. In fact, because π/4=0.79≈1, you can often ignore it when converting between rectangular and round pans, given that the limited range of sizes available.
After halving your recipe pour the custard into 4oz ramekin (about 2/3rd full each) until you are out of custard. This will allow you to scale your servings down (or up) to whatever recipe you are using. You might try baking them in a bain marie (water bath) as that would be more forgiving to over cooking as you experiment with times to match the new portion size.
(if you are doing the traditional graham cracker crust you can press that to the bottom of the ramekin then pour)
I suggest that you bake an entire cheesecake, then freeze 1/2 or even 3/4. I have frozen cheesecakes for years without any change in flavor or texture. Also, bakery supply houses supply smaller size springform pans. If your primary reason for making a smaller cheesecake is to reduce your caloric intake, try a reduced-fat or reduced-calorie cheesecake recipe. I have found this type of recipe in "The Joy of Cooking," the old "Woman's Day Encyclopedia of Cooking," and America's Test Kitchen cookbooks. You can also reduce calories in any cheesecake by substituting Neufchatel cheese for the cream cheese. Because my husband has type 2 diabetes, I also substitute Splenda for 1/2 or all the sugar. Good luck!