Caramel Apple Cheesecake

This Caramel Apple Cheesecake recipe is the perfect apple dessert for Thanksgiving! It’s full of cinnamon, apples, homemade caramel sauce and is absolutely delicious!

This cheesecake is made with my easy salted caramel sauce recipe. It’s so good!

Caramel Apple Cheesecake - full of cinnamon, apples and caramel sauce that's in both the filling and on top!

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 filled in the bottom with sliced apples tossed in cinnamon and caramel sauce
– A cheesecake filling made with brown sugar, cinnamon and applesauce for some amazing flavor
– A topping that’s not only delicious because it’s made with cinnamon-sugar covered apple slices, but also pretty

It’s packed full and you’ll never need another Caramel Apple Cheesecake recipe!

How to Make Caramel Apple Cheesecake

This cheesecake begins with my classic graham cracker crust recipe. It’s easy to put together and pre-bakes in the oven for about 8 minutes.

From there, you’ll add a layer of thinly sliced apples that have been tossed in some ground cinnamon, and pour an amazing, easy-to-make homemade caramel sauce over the top. A few tablespoons of flour is stirred into the caramel sauce first, which helps keep it from kind of disappearing into the cheesecake while it bakes.

Caramel Apple Cheesecake sliceOverhead view of Cheesecake

The apples are topped with the cheesecake filling. To make the filling, you’ll begin by combining the cream cheese, brown sugar and flour. Be sure to always stir on a low speed so that you don’t incorporate too much air into the filling. Air is the enemy of a crack-free cheesecake. Big bubbles can come to the surface and pop, leaving you with cracks.

Next, you’ll add some sour cream, applesauce, vanilla and cinnamon. All of them contribute to the great flavor of this cheesecake. The applesauce and cinnamon are where it’s really at though. As simple as it may seem, adding applesauce takes the flavor of this cheesecake to a whole new level. So good!

Finally, you’ll add your eggs and then it’s time to add the filling to the pan and add your topping.

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Topping

To top this cheesecake, I made a bit of an apple rose out of sliced apples. You want to use very thinly sliced apples for this part. It makes them much easier to shape and mold, not to mention that it keeps all those apples on the top of the cheesecake from getting too heavy.

While it may seem a little strange when you’re adding the apples on top, the cheesecake will hold them all. Just start from the outside and work your way in to the center.

All that said, you could totally avoid doing that design on top. As an alternative, you could just chop up the apples and sprinkle them over the top and bake it that way. You could even bake it without the apples on top, and instead cook them on the stove and add them before serving it. Totally up to you! Lot’s of great options that all result in the same great-tasting cheesecake!

slice of Caramel Apple Cheesecake on plateCaramel Apple Cheesecake recipe

How to Bake this Cheesecake in a Water Bath

As with most of my cheesecakes, this one does use a water bath. The moisture it adds to the baking process helps to keep the cheesecake from over-browning, falling in the center when it cools, and cracking. It’s definitely worth the extra few steps.

And if you tend to have trouble with your water bath leaking, check out my tutorial for how I avoid a leaking water bath.

An Amazing Thanksgiving Dessert Idea

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 the apples!

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!

Cheesecake with bite taken

More great apple dessert recipes:

Caramel Apple Blondie Cheesecake
Easy Caramel Apple Cheesecake
Caramel Apple Cookie Cups
Apple Crumb Cheesecake Pie
Cinnamon Apple Layer Cake
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Blondie Trifle
Apple Crisp
Apple Streusel Cheesecake Bars
Apple Cheesecake Napoleons

Print
clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon facebook facebook icon print print icon squares squares icon
Caramel Apple Cheesecake slice
Recipe

Caramel Apple Cheesecake Recipe

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 55 minutes
  • Yield: 12-14 servings
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This Caramel Apple Cheesecake recipe is the perfect apple dessert for Thanksgiving! It’s full of cinnamon, apples, homemade caramel sauce and is absolutely delicious!


Ingredients

Caramel sauce*

Crust

  • 2 1/4 cups (302g) graham cracker crumbs (about 17 full sheet graham crackers)
  • 5 tbsp (65g) sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 10 tbsp (140g) unsalted butter, melted

Apple Filling Layer

  • 1 1/2 medium sized apples (about 260g), thinly sliced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup caramel sauce, from above
  • 3 tbsp all purpose flour

Cheesecake Filling

  • 24 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup (144g) loosely packed brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp (24g) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (115g) sour cream
  • 1/2 cup (130g) applesauce
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 large eggs

Apple Topping

  • 12 medium sized apples, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions

1. Prepare the caramel sauce according to the recipe and allow to cool to at least room temperature. You can prepare the caramel sauce several days ahead, if you like.

CRUST

2. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Line a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan with parchment paper in the bottom and grease the sides.
3. Combine the crust ingredients in a small bowl. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan.
4. Bake the crust for 8-10 minutes, then set aside to cool.
5. Cover the outsides of the pan with aluminum foil so that water from the water bath cannot get in (see how I prepare my pan for a water bath). Set prepared pan aside.

CHEESECAKE

6. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F (148°C).
7. Toss the apples for the apple filling layer with the ground cinnamon and add to the bottom of the crust.
8. Add the flour to the caramel sauce (which was prepared in step 1), then pour the caramel sauce evenly over the apples. Set pan aside.
9. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, brown sugar and flour on low speed until well completely combined and smooth. Be sure to use low speed to reduce the amount of air added to the batter, which can cause cracks. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
10. Add the sour cream, applesauce, vanilla extract and ground cinnamon and mix on low speed until well combined.
11. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
12. Pour the cheesecake batter into the crust, over the top of the apples.
13. Use the thinly sliced apples for the topping to create the “rose” pattern on top of the cheesecake filling. Start from the outside edge, slightly overlapping each apple as you add it, and work your way around to make a full circle. Continue creating circles until you reach the center of the cheesecake.
14. Combine the sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle it evenly over the apples.
15. Place the springform pan inside another larger pan, trying not to jostle it around too much. Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
16. Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes. The edges should be well set, but the center couple of inches will still be jiggly because of the caramel sauce in the filling.
17. Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
18. Crack the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
19. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate until firm, 5-6 hours or overnight.
20. Remove the cheesecake from the springform pan and place on a serving dish. I used some remaining caramel sauce to brush over the top of the apples and give it a shine. Cover cheesecake and refrigerate until ready to serve.


Notes

This is the caramel sauce I would recommend. I haven’t tried using store-bought caramel sauce, but it’s much thinner than the homemade version. I’m not sure how well it’d hold up.

Keywords: caramel apple cheesecake, apple cheesecake, easy apple cheesecake recipe, thanksgiving dessert idea, thanksgiving desserts

This post may contain affiliate sales links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Share a Comment

Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you and seeing what you made!

Recipe rating

31 Comments
  1. Austin DiPretore

    To save time I used a premise graham cracker crust should I still give it a water bath?

  2. Carmen

    I made this recipe and it was a beautiful cake, I followed the directions exactly as written, however, the inside of the cake was very gooey. Too soft. Almost like it was undercooked, but I baked it as directed. What can I do next time? The flavor was awesome and the outer part of the cheesecake was perfect-the inner part, not so much….

    1. Lindsay

      Yeah it really just sounds like what you said, that it was a little under baked. All ovens can vary a little bit so you may just want to add another 10 minutes or so.

  3. Natalie Nieto

    I love this recipe and so does everyone in my family but it’s  my 3rd time making it and it always comes out really mushy and doesn’t really look like a slice of cheese cake if that makes sense, any tips ? 

  4. Patty

    This cheesecake was a big hit! My family all loved this recipe. It sounded different so I wanted to try it. Great flavors and perfect for the fall. Thanks for your cheesecake tips too! I’m looking at trying your peach cheesecake with bourbon (or might try it with Captain Morgan’s Pumpkin Spiced rum?). So many recipes to try as they all look amazing. Thanks!

    1. Lindsay

      So glad you enjoyed it! I’m a big fan of that peach cheesecake. I do recommend the bourbon or a more simple rum, as opposed to the spiced. I too love me some Captain, but I tried it once and found the spice of it to take away from the other flavors just a bit.

      1. Patty

        Thanks so much for your advice on the spiced rum. I really appreciate it. I will go with bourbon. My husband is looking forward to trying it. Thanks again!

  5. Ebony Chauntel Stenson

    THIS WAS AMAZING PERFECT IT CAME OUT! THE TIPS FOR THE NO CRACKS WAS GREAT AND TASTED SUPURB! I WILL BE FOLLOWING MORE OF YOUR RECIPES. THANK YOU!

  6. Brian

    Another awesome recipe but 2 questions. The center of mine wasn’t completely done after the time so how much longer should I bake it to make sure it’s done? Would another 15 minutes be too much.

    Also, how do you cut it without totally destroying the top of the cake? The apples got pushed into the cake or to the side which didn’t allow for the most beautiful presentation.

    Other than that, the cake was awesome just like every cheesecake you’ve introduced to your fans. Thank you!

    1. Lindsay

      It’s hard to say for sure how much more time without seeing it. When you check the cheesecake before turning off the oven, the inner couple of inches should look almost done, but be a little jiggly.

      As for cutting, I’m not sure there’s a great option other than to gently move a few apples over as you cut.

      I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the cheesecakes!

    1. Lindsay

      I’m not really familiar with caramel compound. If it’s like a sauce and you add the flour to it, I imagine it would be ok.

    1. Jess

      I stayed up baking this last night and went to cut it today and it’s not even close to being done 🙁 usually I am very good at making cheesecakes, but this one is still gooey for sure and I even baked it for a half hour longer and let it sit in the oven for 45 min before cracking the door. Was suppose to be dessert for turkey day, but I guess not! I have no idea what went wrong (yes it was water bathed). ….it’s beautiful but not cooked

    1. Lindsay

      I didn’t try it without one, but typically when baking without a water bath, the cheesecake browns around the edges, cracks and falls in the center when it’s cooling. If that stuff isn’t important to you, then it may totally be fine.

  7. Angie

    Hi! Can’t wait to try this, sounds amazing! Can you please tell me how many grams in the 1/2 cup caramel? Thank you!!!

  8. Karen

    Could this be made without the apples on top since there are apples on top of the crust? I would like more of the cheesecake flavor to come through instead of the apple.

    1. Lindsay

      Yes, you can. You can either leave them off entirely or cook them separately on the stove and add them to the top of the baked cheesecake. It won’t really change anything about how you long you bake it.

    1. Lindsay

      I’d recommend Granny Smith apples. Honeycrisp would also be a good one. It can also be nice to use a couple different kinds of apples sometimes and get a little variety of flavor.

    1. Lindsay

      I’d recommend Granny Smith apples. Honeycrisp would also be a good one. It can also be nice to use a couple different kinds of apples sometimes and get a little variety of flavor.

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12