Fall is almost here! I’m so used to living in the midwest where it’s in the 80’s until the end of September but here on Long Island we’re already having 70 degree weather. While I’m sad to say goodbye to our pool and beach days, I am super excited for the beautiful fall and all the delicious food like Moist Pumpkin Bread with Cream Cheese Frosting and these Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars.
And of course, I love all the food that comes along with the season, particularly all things pumpkin and apple. Who’s with me? One of the best ways to enjoy apples is with caramel, right?! Hello yummy caramel apples! And why not also add in some cheesecake to make it extra delicious… and UNhealthy. It’s good to indulge every once in awhile.
I LOVE these Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars. No only do they taste delicious but they feed a large crowd and are easier to make than a round cheesecake.
This recipe does have quite a few layers but each one is quite simple and you can reuse some of the bowls without washing. Don’t do extra dishes if you don’t have to!
You’ll start out by making the shortbread crust which is just 3 ingredients. Simple. Press it into a 9×13 inch pan that is lined with foil (this helps you lift the cheesecake out for easier cutting) and bake it.
While the crust is baking you make the other layers- cheesecake, apples, and streusel. The cheesecake layer is just cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla. Just mix it in the Kitchen Aid and pour over the cooked crust.
Next, slice up your apples pretty small. If too big they’ll be crunchy still. Mix them with some cinnamon and sugar and layer on top of the cream cheese.
Top off the apples with some delicious streusel and bake the cheesecake for 50 minutes. Then you just let it cool for about an hour before putting it in the fridge to chill. When ready to serve drizzle with caramel sauce. If you want to be extra fancy, cut some thin slices of apple for the tops. Enjoy!
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Recipe Video Tutorial
Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars
For the Crust:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 cup butter, softened
For the Middle Layer:
- 3 8 ounce packages cream cheese, softened
- ¾ cup sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
For the Apple layer:
- 3 Granny Smith Apples, peeled, cored, and chopped fine
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
For the Topping:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup quick-cooking oats
- ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ cup butter, softened
- ½ cup caramel topping
- 1 Granny Smith Apple, thinly sliced, for garnish (optional)
For the Crust:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (set to 325 if using a dark pan). Line a 9x13 inch pan with heavy duty aluminum foil (for easy removal).
- Mix flour and brown sugar together in a medium bowl. Cut butter in with a fork or pastry blender until crumbly. Spread mixture evenly in the bottom of the pan and pat it down (don't wash the bowl yet! Use it for the streusel!). Bake for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the middle layer.
For the Middle Layer:
- With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar together in a large bowl until smooth. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until combined. Pour over crust.
For the Apples:
- Mix apples, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a small bowl. Spread apples evenly over cream cheese layer.
For the Streusel:
- Combine flour, brown sugar, oats, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cut butter in with a fork or pastry blender until crumbly. Spread evenly over the apples.
- Bake for 45-55 minutes until center is set. Allow bars to cool and then refrigerate 3 hours or overnight.
- Remove the cheesecake by lifting the foil out. Cut cheesecake into 24 bars (or more is you want them smaller) and then drizzle with caramel. Garnish with sliced apples (optional).
Recipe Source: Slightly adapted from Borton & Sons recipe in Enjoy Cooking The Costco Way magazine cookbook