Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups

These Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups have a moist, chewy chocolate cookie base, a caramel cheesecake filling and are topped with a caramel drizzle and chopped pecans! The perfect cookie for sharing over the holidays!

Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!

So this past weekend we went to visit my parents. We went to a Panthers game, had a baby shower to attend and also had a little cookbook party for friends and family in Charlotte – which is basically where I grew up. With so many things happening in one weekend, the car was quite loaded down.

Since we were celebrating the cookbook, I made several things from the book for people to try – Margarita Cupcakes, Red Wine Chocolate Cake, Bananas Foster Cheesecake, Bourbon Peach Streusel Cheesecake, Caramel Popcorn Layer Cake and Bourbon Spice Toffee Layer Cake. Of course they were all in some kind of mini form so people could try them all. It was so fun to watch everyone sample them. The Bananas Foster Cheesecake was the biggest hit both this weekend and last. I doubled them this time around and they were still the first to go!

But since we had the car loaded down with cake as we drove to Charlotte, Jessie got pushed out of her normal spot in the car when traveling. She normally has her big, soft bed in the back and sleeps like a princess. This time she was on the floor between the captains chairs in the back, just behind us. I’m pretty sure she was thinking, “Um, this is not how a princess travels.” Several times when we looked back she had her cute little face propped against the center console just looking at us like “this is total crap”. πŸ™‚

But we all made it – and so did the desserts! It was a great weekend.

Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!

Speaking of great desserts – these are a must! I am always a fan of anything turtle flavored. Chocolate, caramel and pecans are a match made in heaven! Plus, they really are easy to put together and add a little more fancy to your cookie tray than your average chocolate chip cookie. Yay for the holidays! They are coming fast!

The base of these is a moist chocolate cookie. Like most of my cookies, you’ll start with creaming the butter and sugar until it lightens up and gets nice and fluffy. You’ll add an egg and some vanilla extract, then the dry ingredients and you’re ready to go – easy! Feel free to make the cookie dough ahead and refrigerate it for a day or two, or bake them right away.

Once they are cooled, they are filled with a cheesecake filling that uses only a few ingredients – cream cheese, powdered sugar and caramel sauce. I’m a big fan of this homemade caramel sauce, but you could use a store-bought one if you wanted to save on time. I just think the homemade one has such great flavor and gives the cheesecake an even more wonderful caramel-y flavor.

Top the cookie cups with a caramel drizzle and some chopped pecans and you’re done!

These babies are sure to be a hit! Everyone who tried them loved them – and my mom quite enjoyed them with her morning coffee. πŸ™‚

Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!

Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups

Yield: 15-17 cookie cups

Ingredients:

Chocolate COOKIE CUP

3/4 cup (168g) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup (207g) sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups (163g) all purpose flour
1/2 cup (57g) cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cornstarch

CHEESECAKE Filling

12 oz cream cheese, room temperature
2 1/4 cups (259g) powdered sugar
5 tbsp caramel sauce
Additional caramel sauce, for drizzling
Chopped pecans

Directions:

1. Spray cupcake pan with non stick cooking spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Cream butter and sugar together for 3-4 minutes, until light and fluffy.
3. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until well combined.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until smooth. Dough will be thick.
5. Makes balls of about 2 tbsp of dough. Press cookie dough in bottom and about 1/3-1/2 way up the sides of each cupcake cup, forming a cup shape.
6. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
7. Remove from oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes, then remove to cooling rack to finish cooling. The centers should fall a bit while cooling, but if the centers aren’t cupped enough to add filling, use the underside of a measuring tablespoon to press the center down a bit.
8. Once cookie have cooled, make the cheesecake filling. Beat the cream cheese until smooth.
9. Add the powdered sugar and caramel sauce and mix until smooth.
10. Pipe the cheesecake filling into the cookie cups and top with more caramel and chopped pecans. Cookie cups should be refrigerated until served.

signature Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!
Turtle Chocolate Cookie Cups filled with caramel cheesecake and a sprinkle of pecans!

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Recipes from friends:
No Bake Turtle Cookies from The Recipe Rebel
Turtle Apple Slices from Mom Loves Baking
Slow Cooker Turtle Bread Pudding from The Gunny Sack