This Caramel Apple Cheesecake recipe is the perfect apple dessert for any Autumn weekend! It’s full of spice, apples, caramel sauce and is absolutely delicious! It’s packed full and you’ll never need another Caramel Apple Cheesecake recipe!
This Caramel Apple Cheesecake will make you fall in love! The combination of flavors and textures is heavenly and exactly what you want in a Fall treat! Thick, creamy, with a little crunch from a buttery graham cracker crust!
This cheesecake is perfect for sharing at work, with friends, or for Thanksgiving. However you share it (or keep it all for yourself), I hope you enjoy it!
EASY CARAMEL APPLE CHEESECAKE
This cheesecake is thick, creamy and full of everything you could want in an apple cheesecake. It’s made with:
– A graham cracker crust that’s kissed with the perfect blend of Autumn spices.
– Glazed apples sandwiched between two smooth cheesecake filling layers.
– A homemade whipped cream topping that’s not only delicious with its light and billowy texture but also because it sits on top of yummy caramel sauce.
Now I know homemade baking can be a scary thing for many people. This recipe ideally skips all of the typical fuss and stress around home baking. A simplified base with a perfectly smooth frosting and some simple decorations is all you need.
Be sure to grab the full recipe & check out the full video tutorial in the recipe card below. And if you try this recipe (I mean you totally should be), tag me on Instagram @imancake and use the hashtag #BakingWithMANCAKE.
Want even more delicious cheesecakes? Then check out these recipes!
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PRO TIPS TO MAKE THE BEST CHEESECAKE RECIPE
- The quickest way to a smooth cheesecake is cream cheese that is whipped smoothly. Save some time and grab whipped cream cheese from your grocery store rather than cream cheese blocks.
- If you can’t find whipped cream cheese, start off with really room temperature cream cheese. Leave it out the night before or zap it in the microwave for 20 seconds at 50% power. If the cream cheese is too firm the batter will not be smooth.
- Beat the cream cheese and sugars until completely smooth.
- No Graham crackers? No problem! Sub in your favorite cookie like Biscoff or Oreos.
- If you’re cursed with cracking then bake in a water bath and leave that oven closed for an hour after turning off and before removing. Slow and steady wins the race for a nice smooth uncracked cheesecake.
- Try not to open the oven, the rush of cold air into the oven will not be good for your delicate cake.
- Don’t be frightened if your cheesecake seems underdone after an hour of baking, it will firm up.
- When you wrap the cheesecake up Have a piece of paper towel under the plastic or foil. This will absorb condensation and your surface will be unmarred by water droplets.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
HOW DO YOU AVOID CRACKS?
Anyone who has made cheesecakes probably has had issues with cracks forming on the surface as the cake bakes. This happens because the cake is cooking quicker towards the edges, while the center is still liquidy. AKA the center is not rising with the edge of the cake, and so the cracks develop.
Bake at a lower temperature for a longer time. Doing this will gradually warm the filling and cause less uneven expansion and cracking.
Keep the oven CLOSED! Don’t open it to check on things and when the time is up turn the oven off and leave it closed of an hour or so. You want the cake too cool gradually and the extra oven time allows the center to bake just a little longer at an even lower temperature. This Either way, I have to admit that a cracked cheesecake doesn’t taste all that bad!
Baking your cake in a water bath, or Bain-Marie helps reduce this problem and works like a giant cake strip (if you don’t use cake strips you need to start, you can buy them or make your own). The steam from the water also helps keep the top from drying out too quickly.
WHAT DO YOU DO IF IT CRACKS?
Eat it! it still Tastes great and is so easy to cover with extra dollops of whipped cream or candied nuts! You can also make a traditional sour cream topping by whisking together 1 pint sour cream, ¼ cup sugar and 2 tsp. pure vanilla extract. Spread over the cake once slightly cooled and bake another 10 minutes at 325F. If you’re making this topping and the cake has cracked then you can let the cake cool in the oven for 20 minutes after baking then raise oven temp to 325F, spread topping on and bake 10 minutes. Allow to cool completely and chill overnight before removing from pan.
HOW SHOULD YOU GARNISH CHEESECAKE?
This cheesecake is AMAZING plain but a big dollop of whipped cream is always welcome. Mix 2 cups or whipped cream with a 1/4 cup powdered sugar and a splash of vanilla extract until stiff peaks form then add dollops onto each piece or pipe dollops along the edge with a star tip. Doesn’t get any simpler than that but let your creativity shine when it comes to garnishing. No two cheesecakes are ever the same.
HOW TO BAKE CHEESECAKE IN A WATER BATH
Have you ever made one of my cheesecakes and felt stumped when you got to the part about using a water bath? Let’s explore both the how and the why of baking cheesecake in a water bath!
I know that water baths can be intimidating for novice and advanced bakers alike. So let’s dive into why I think it’s best to use a water bath, though I don’t always at times (I like to bake on the edge), and my favorite leak-proof method for making one!
WHY USE A WATER BATH FOR CHEESECAKE?
Before we get to the “how,” let’s talk about the “why.”
WHY do cheesecake recipes call for a water bath?
Believe it or not, cheesecake is actually pretty delicate. It would be very easy for the heat from the oven to cause the edges to overcook, the top to crack, or the whole thing to become rubbery.
By using a water bath, we keep the oven moist and help moderate the heat so that the edges do not cook faster than the middle of the cheesecake.
HOW TO MAKE A WATER BATH FOR CHEESECAKE
- prepare the springform pan with foil
- prepare the baking pan for the water bath
- preheat oven
- add graham cracker crust to pan and then cheesecake batter
- place in the oven
- pour water into the baking pan, being careful not to splash into the batter
- bake for directed time
The biggest issue people tend to have with water baths is leaking. Again, I’ve done this a lot, so I’ve come up with a method that works best for me.
First, I prepare the springform pan itself. I like to line the bottom of the pan with foil, fasten on the side piece, and tightly wrap the outside and sides of the pan with TWO layers of heavy duty foil.
Yes, two layers. Yes, heavy duty foil.
Why? Less chance of getting a hole through both layers!
Now, at this point I like to take the extra step of placing the foil-wrapped pan inside an oven bag while baking. It provides a little extra leakage insurance. Totally optional, but worth the effort!
This whole setup gets placed inside a larger pan. I like to use a roasting pan or a large sheet cake pan with high sides.
Now here is where I give you my two tips to keep things from spilling:
First: I get the springform pan set up in the oven bag and roasting pan before I add the cheesecake filling to the pan.
Second: Move the roasting pan onto your oven rack BEFORE adding the boiling water for the water bath.
Trust me, you don’t want to try to carry a pan half full of boiling water across the kitchen and get it into the oven without spilling it everywhere.
Once the roasting pan is on the oven rack, you can add the boiling water until it comes about halfway up the sides of the springform pan.
I know this sounds like a lot of steps, but they are really quite simple! I promise, the more you use a water bath when baking, the more it will become second nature.
And when the result is perfect cheesecake? It’s always worth the extra effort.
WHAT YOU CAN FIND IN MY KITCHEN
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If you’ve tried this tasty treat then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you!
- 3 cups crushed graham crackers
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 12 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 stick butter, melted
- 3 packages of whipped cream cheese at room temperature
- 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 3 eggs at room temperature
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 can of apple pie filling
- 1 & 1/2 cups caramel sauce
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 cup sifted powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- If using the water bath technique, wrap the outside of your springform pan tightly in foil.
For the Graham Cracker Crust
- Crush the graham crackers in a food processor until crumbs are fine.
- Combine crumbs with melted butter, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, & ground cinnamon. Mix until well incorporated.
- Add crumbs to cheesecake pan, distributing evenly, and pressing down flat firmly as you work the crumbs up the sides of the pan.
For the Cheesecake
- In a large bowl, beat cream cheese for about 2 minutes until whipped smooth. I like to start on a low speed and work my way up to a high speed. You can also shortcut this by using whipped cream cheese rather than cream cheese blocks.
- Add sifted powdered sugar, salt, vanilla, and eggs into cream cheese. Continue to beat on a medium-low speed.
- Lastly, blend in a 1/4 cup of AP flour. Usually I only like to add in a 2-3 tablespoons for some stability but because we are going to be using apples and caramel, I want to provide as much stability as possible here.
- Fill your graham cracker crust with half of your cheesecake batter.
- Add in a layer of apple pie filling and top with the last half of your cheesecake batter.
- Smooth out with a spatula. If you'd like to use the water bath technique, follow the steps below. If you'd like to skip it, jump to step 9.
- Place cheesecake pan(s) into a much larger pan.
- Fill the larger pan with water, filling up to at most 1 inch below the top of the aluminum foil. Place the cheesecake in its water bath.
- Bake your cheesecake, uninterrupted (no opening the door to peek) for a full hour. Check at the 1 hour mark. If your cheesecake wobbles in the center slightly when you jiggle it is done. If not, give it another 2 minutes in the oven.
Once your cheesecake is done baking, turn the oven off, leave the oven door slightly ajar, and allow the cheesecake to cool to room temperature in the oven. This will help prevent any splitting.
- Once cooled, remove the cheesecake from the oven and place in the refrigerator to cool for another 2 hours.
For the Whipped Cream
- Add all of your ingredients into a cold metal bowl and whip on a high speed until stiff peaks form. You'll know your whipped cream is ready to go when scooped with a spoon and it holds its shape.
Putting It All Together
- Once your cheesecake has cooled and set, pour your caramel sauce on top.
- Lastly, top with your homemade whipped cream, smoothing over with a spatula, slice, & enjoy!
- Room Temperature Ingredients: Be sure to allow your dairy ingredients to reach room temperature. Room temperature ingredients not only combine more effortlessly (no over-mixing needed) but they also trap air so much better. This trap air will expand and produce a fluffy texture during your baking process.
- Prepared Pan: There will always be the "next best way to prepare your pan" article. Simply put however, the most effective way i find in my kitchen is a light rub of shortening around the sides, parchment paper on the bottom of the pan (for majority of baking pans), & a very light dusting of flour (cocoa powder for chocolate baked goods) all throughout.
- Water Bath: At times, even I think about skipping this step when baking cheesecake. But it's helpful to remember that with cheesecake, your primary goal is to bake it slowly and evenly without browning the top. When you bake in a water bath, the water will never get hotter than 212 degrees, no matter how hot the oven is. The hot water insulates the outer ring of the springform pan and keeps the oven moist.
- Why Add Flour To Cheesecake?: Flour in the cheesecake batter is an easy route to avoid cracking and makes the cheesecake easier to cut. Granted, it does change the texture of the cheesecake a bit. The flour will make the cheesecake more firm and sturdy, while a cheesecake with eggs alone has a softer, ultimate creamy texture.
KitchenAid KHM7210ER 7-Speed Digital Hand Mixer with Turbo Beater II Accessories and Pro Whisk - Empire Red
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Wilton Disposable Piping Bags (100 Count)
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