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Caramel Apple Cheesecake is the perfect fall dessert! Who doesn’t love the flavor of apples, creamy cheesecake, and loads and loads of caramel? Whip up this simple apple cheesecake – the flavor is like an apple cheesecake caramel explosion in your mouth.
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Crazy Good Apple Cheesecake Recipe
Let’s all just understand that if eating cheesecake for breakfast, lunch, and dinner is wrong, then I don’t want to be right. But that’s honestly how I feel about this cheesecake caramel apple recipe.
I make this once fall comes around every year – and it’s literally what I obsess over, too. The creaminess of the cheesecake paired with the caramel flavoring is absolutely one of the best recipes I’ve ever made.
Ingredients in Caramel Cheesecake with Apples
- Vanilla Wafer Crumbs – This is used for the cheesecake crust. I also think that you could use graham cracker crumbs to make a graham cracker crust.
- Salted butter – Make sure that it’s melted.
- Light brown sugar – Make sure to pack it.
- Cream cheese – It must be softened to room temperature!
- All-purpose flour – Helps set the cheesecake.
- Ground cinnamon – Perfect pairing with the caramel!
- Sour cream – Needs to be at room temperature.
- Applesauce – You can use homemade or store bought.
- Caramel – Homemade caramel sauce homemade or ice cream topping – Your choice.
- Eggs – I use large eggs at room temperature.
- Chopped apples – Choose your favorite variety.
- Lemon juice – Helps with the sweetness of the apple topping and adds a brightness of flavor.
How to make this Caramel Apple Cheesecake Recipe
- Prepare a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray and prep it for a water bath.
- Combine the cookie crumbs, butter, and brown sugar in a medium sized bowl and stir with a fork to combine. Press into the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes, then cool while you make the filling.
- Beat cream cheese, brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon on low speed using a hand or a stand mixer until smooth. It’s important that all your ingredients are room temperature to avoid lumps.
- Mix in the sour cream, applesauce, and caramel sauce until combined. Add the eggs one at a time, make sure everything is mixed. Pour the cheesecake filling into the crust.
- Bake the cheesecake in a water bath. Read all about how to make a water bath.
- After it’s done baking you’re going to let it sit in the oven with the door closed, then again with the door open. Then let it cool to room temperature and then chill it overnight. Worth the wait!
- Before serving you’ll make your apples: Place apples, brown sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon, and butter in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat until the apples are tender, about 10-15 minutes.
- Frost the top of the cheesecake with additional caramel sauce, then spoon the apples over the top. Drizzle additional caramel down the sides of the cheesecake if desired.
- To avoid cracks, make sure that you’re mixing the cheesecake at a low speed with a mixer. If you mix the cheesecake batter too quickly, this will add air bubbles and cause cracks.
- You don’t have to peel the apples for this recipe, it’s up to you. When you cook them in brown sugar and cinnamon, that should be enough to get rid of the texture of the apple peel.
Storage and Freezing Instructions
How to store cheesecake: If you have leftovers, you can cover them with a lid or plastic wrap and store them in the fridge. It should stay good for up to 3 days.
How to freeze cheesecake: I like to freeze it whole or without slicing it so that way it holds its shape and is easier to cut into when it’s thawed. I wouldn’t freeze the cheesecake for any longer than 1 month.
Make sure that you don’t have any excess liquid in the middle of your cheesecake, as this could cause it to sink. Also, be sure that the cheesecake is cooked all the way!
The easiest way to tell that a cheesecake is done cooking is to give the cheesecake pan a nudge. The center of the cheesecake should jiggle slightly but not too much. This is your cue that it’s time to take the cheesecake out of the oven and start the cooling process.
Slicing cheesecake is a breeze! To make clean cuts in the cheesecake, you’ll want to cut, clean the knife with water and a dry cloth, and then cut again. Repeat the process, and you’ll have a clean cut cheesecake in no time at all!
As the cheesecake cools, it will firm up.
Caramel Apple Cheesecake
For the Crust:
- 2 cups Vanilla Wafer Crumbs about 1/2-3/4 of an 11 ounce box
- ½ cup (113g) salted butter melted
- ¼ cup (50g) packed light brown sugar
For the Cheesecake:
- 24 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) packed light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons (23g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ cup (124g) sour cream room temperature
- ½ cup applesauce
- ¼ cup caramel sauce homemade or ice cream topping
- 4 large eggs room temperature
For the topping:
- 2 ½ cups chopped apples any variety (about 2-3 apples)
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons (38g) light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon (14g) salted butter
- Additional caramel sauce for topping
Make the crust
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease the sides and bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray. (You can also line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper, if you wish.) Wrap the bottom of the pan in two sheets of heavy duty aluminum foil so that when you bake your cheesecake in a water bath it won’t leak.
- Combine the cookie crumbs, butter, and brown sugar in a medium sized bowl and stir with a fork to combine. Press into the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool while you prepare the cheesecake.
Make the cheesecake:
- Lower oven temperature to 300°F.
- Beat cream cheese, brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon on low speed using a hand or a stand mixer until smooth. It’s important that all your ingredients are room temperature to avoid lumps. Make sure to use low speed while beating to avoid adding excess air, which will cause the cheesecake to crack.
- Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix in the sour cream, applesauce, and caramel sauce until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is mixed. Pour the cheesecake filling into the crust.
- Place the cheesecake pan in a larger roasting pan. Place the pan in the oven and then fill the pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the side of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top of the foil. Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour and 25 minutes.
- Turn off the oven and leave the cheesecake in the oven with the door closed for 30 minutes. Do not open the door! After 30 minutes, crack the oven door and leave the cheesecake in the oven for another 20 minutes. Take the cheesecake out of the oven and let it sit at room temperature for 15 minutes, then remove the pan from the water bath and remove the foil. Wrap it with plastic wrap and refrigerate until it’s completely cool and firm, 6-7 hours or overnight. Don’t remove the springform pan from the cheesecake until it’s done chilling and you’re ready to assemble.
Make the topping and assemble:
- Place apples, brown sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon, and butter in a large saucepan. Cook over medium heat until the apples are tender, about 10-15 minutes.
- Frost the top of the cheesecake with additional caramel sauce, then spoon the apples over the top. Drizzle additional caramel down the sides of the cheesecake if desired. Refrigerate cheesecake until ready to serve. It’s best eaten within 2-3 days but should last 4-5 days.
Other Favorite Recipes
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecakes
- Key Lime Cheesecake
- Crumb Apple Cheesecake Bars
- The BEST Classic Cheesecake
Simply Beautiful Homemade Cakes is full of some of the most beautiful cakes I’ve ever seen. Every kind of cake you can think of is included in this book, from cupcakes to layer cakes, poke cakes to ice cream cakes and cheesecakes. The flavors run the gamut from Tiramisu Cake to Butter Pecan Ice Cream Cake and that beauty on the cover, Neapolitan Mousse Cake. Plus, she has full photo tutorials on the basics of cake making, everything from greasing your pans to creating a water bath for cheesecakes and how to fill cakes perfectly.
Pretty much, if you’re a cake lover, this book is one you MUST have. This Caramel Apple Cheesecake is no exception – and it tastes even better than it looks.
Caramel Apple Cheesecake is a creamy cheesecake recipe perfect for fall – it’s a stunning caramel cheesecake topped with apples and even more homemade caramel sauce!
Last Updated on October 6, 2022
I was fortunate enough to have been gifted a couple slices of this FABULOUS cheesecake! (Thank you Dorothy!) Truly a labor of love… It’s to die for! :o)
Do you think I can use gluten free wafers for the crust and gluten free flour in the cheesecake layer?
if you let your cream cheese get to room temp your cheese cake will be more creamy
love love love. This sounds completely amazing!
Gorgeous cake and photos! Caramel oozing just never gets old. And all the apple feels right now, love!
So beautiful looking…wish I had a slice right now. 🙂
Oh my my my! This is simply stunning and irresistible!
This is beautiful and yes to what you’re saying about being blown away by Lindsay’s cakes. Whenever I see those pins on Pinterest that pop up I know instantly its one of hers because it’s like cake artistry!
The not overbeating so as to not create cracks – never knew that! And all the details. Yes. When baking you can never have too many!
This cheesecake looks ridiculously delicious! That apple topping takes it to the next level 🙂
It’s so perfect Dorothy!! I’m so glad you enjoyed it and that you found the tutorials and such to be helpful! YAY! You’re the best! 🙂
And omg, do you remember the first time we met at the mall at BYBC? I might have squealed a bit, haha! 🙂