Autumn is my favorite season. Growing up in New England, USA I have lived my whole life believing that in the fall months, there is no place quite like it. The crispness of the air; the colors of the leaves; the harvest- I love every single part of it! One of my favorite family traditions that came with the harvest time was apple picking. I have so many happy memories from my childhood running through orchards and tasting all of the different kinds of apples until I found my favorite one. Picking apples is something I still enjoy to this day. Now that I am older though, I believe I can have a bit more fun with it. I go to a little backwoods town that is known mainly for its orchard, and my fun begins. I could spend the whole day walking through, picking two or three of many different kinds of apples, tasting as I go. The main difference between apple picking now and apple picking then is that now I write recipes to go with the apples. If there is one thing my grandmother taught me about baking, it is that the more variety in apple flavors, the more exciting each bite of your dessert will be. With this caramel apple cheesecake, I made sure to do just that. Using at least three different kinds of apples (I chose Granny Smith, Gala, and Macintosh), not only gives the apple topping different textures, it also gives it a taste that will leave you talking about it for days to come.

Caramel Apple Cheesecake

Yields 1 9" cheesecake

Cheesecake and Crust:

About 2 packages graham crackers (enough for about 2 cups crumbs)
1/3 cup butter
1 tsp cinnamon
dash of nutmeg
32 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup plain greek yogurt
1 1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
5 eggs


1/2 cup apple sauce
2 tbsp apple juice
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter
2 tsp vanilla extract
5-6 medium apples

Caramel Sauce:

1 1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp apple juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup heavy cream

Important!!! Use a 9" springform pan to make this recipe. To make taking the cake out of the pan easier, I suggest stretching parchment paper over the bottom of the pan and then closing the edges of the pan around it, leaving some of the paper visible from the outside of the pan...that way you can just take it off of the bottom and move it to a plate without breaking it.


Using a food processor or a rolling pin and Ziploc bag (the old fashion way!), crush the graham crackers until you have crumbs. Pour the crumbs through a sieve so the crumbs are small and smooth. It's good to sift the crumbs because if you have big chunks of graham cracker in your crust that one point can get soggy or too hard, and the crust won't be uniform. Add the cinnamon and nutmeg to the bowl that the crumbs are in, and mix with a fork until evenly combined. Melt the butter in the microwave. Pour the melted butter into the graham cracker crumb mixture, and mix with the fork or your fingers until all of the crumbs are moist. Pour them into the prepared springform pan and press evenly around the bottom and up half of the side of the cake pan. Wrap around the outside with tin foil and freeze while you make the cake part. Preheat the oven to 475. Prepare a water bath for the cake pan by filling a large pan (I used a roasting pan) with about an inch of water. While the oven takes an eternity to heat up, start making the cake. In a large bowl, beat together the cream cheese, yogurt, sugar, and vanilla until completely combined. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Pour the batter evenly over the crust. Put the cake in the water bath, and the water bath in the oven. Bake at 475 for 15 minutes, then turn the oven down to 350 and bake for 50-60 minutes or until it only jiggles slightly when the pan is gently shaken. Take out of the water bath and cool for a few minutes, then cover and refrigerate for 4 hours before serving.

For the apple topping, peel and thinly slice 5 to 6 medium apples. Like I said before, I used several different kinds of apples to improve the flavor. Put the apple sauce, apple juice, butter, brown sugar, and vanilla into a large sauce pan over medium heat. Melt the brown sugar and butter, and bring the mixture to a boil. Once the apple juice has been boiling for 2-3 minutes, add all of the apples into the saucepan. Stir with a wooden spoon and cover all of the apples with the apple juice. Stir occasionally and let lightly boil for 10-15 minutes until the apples have softened. Use a slotted spoon to take the apples out of the liquid and put on a plate to dry and cool down.

For the caramel sauce, put both of the sugars, water, and apple juice in a medium sauce pan. Dissolve the sugars over medium heat. Add the vanilla, and bring to a rolling boil. Let the sauce boil for 3-5 minutes until it has a dark caramel color. While whisking, slowly pour the cream into the boiling caramel and keep whisking until it is combined. Remove from the heat and cool to warm before putting it on the cheesecake.


Run a smooth butter knife around the inside of the pan to prevent the cheesecake from sticking to it. Remove the sides of the pan, and transfer the cheesecake to the plate you will be serving it on. I like to also remove the bottom of the pan, but you can choose to leave it underneath the cake. Pile the apples on top of the cheesecake. I recommend waiting until you plan on serving to pour the caramel on top, as you don't want the cake to get soggy. If the caramel sauce is cooled down to warm, pour it on top. If you have extra caramel sauce, save it in a small pitcher so you can offer it per slice.