Cheesecake is definitely a favorite dessert for my family and me, and this caramel pecan version is no exception!
Here at my house, we go crazy for anything caramel, and the warm, toasty flavor of sweet caramel really comes through in this dessert. All those crunchy pecans are a perfect complement to the rich, creamy cheesecake filling.
It all starts with the crust. I love to use the KitchenAid® 9-Cup Food Processor with ExactSlice™ System to crush up the graham crackers. It works so fast! Just add the pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon, and a pinch of salt. Then pulse the mixture to fine crumbs.
Drizzle in the melted butter, just until everything is combined.
In an even layer, press the mixture into the bottom of your cake pan. If it’s well greased and lined with a circle cut from parchment paper, you should have no problem flipping the cheesecake out of the pan once it’s been chilled.
Now you can get going on that luscious caramel filling!
Beat the cream cheese and brown sugar together using the KitchenAid® Artisan® Mini Stand Mixer until smooth. Then drizzle in the caramel sauce.
You can use any prepared caramel sauce you like, but I am especially partial to my homemade salted caramel sauce. I always have a few jars in my cupboard just for this sort of occasion!
Once the caramel has been incorporated, start adding the eggs. If you really want a smooth, lump-free cheesecake filling, it’s best to add the eggs one at a time, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl with a silicone spatula after each addition.
Finally, stir in the cream and vanilla.
Pour the creamy filling into the prepared pan, right over that buttery pecan-graham crust.
The KitchenAid® Gas Convection Slide-In Range includes a Steam Rack that really helps your cheesecake come out the best it possibly can! The moist cooking environment bakes cheesecakes and custards gently and evenly.
Just pour water into the Steam Rack and the Slide-In Range will take care of the rest. It’s like a built-in water bath!
Bake the cheesecake for 15 minutes at 400 degrees F. Then turn the oven temperature down to 300 degrees F, and bake for another hour or so. You’ll know it’s done when the edges are set, but the center is still just a little bit jiggly.
When the cheesecake is done baking, turn off the Slide-In Range and open the door slightly. It’s best to let it cool down this way, nice and slow.
Once it’s reached room temperature, place the cheesecake in the refrigerator for several hours to chill. Give it at least two hours, but I find overnight is best.
Once it’s good and cold, you can just flip it right out of the pan and onto a serving plate. Drizzle with a generous spoonful of salted caramel sauce, and top with crunchy pecans.
I think your family and friends will really love this dessert—it’s cool, creamy, a little crunchy, and perfect for this time of year!
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Caramel Pecan Cheesecake
Makes 8-10 servings
For the crust
5 graham crackers (77 grams)
1/2 cup (55 grams) roughly chopped pecans
1/4 cup (50 grams) brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
5 tablespoons (71 grams) unsalted butter, melted
For the filling
24 ounces (675 grams) cream cheese
3/4 cup (150 grams) brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (135 grams) prepared caramel sauce
4 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1/4 cup (62 milliliters) heavy cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
For the garnish
1/2 cup salted caramel sauce
1/2 cup roughly chopped pecans
Preheat the oven to 400° F.
Mist an 8″ diameter by 3″ tall round cake pan with nonstick spray, and line it with parchment.
Place the graham crackers, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in the bowl of the KitchenAid® 9-Cup Food Processor with ExactSlice™ System and pulse to crush.
Add the melted butter and process until combined.
Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan, pressing the crumbs down in an even layer. Set aside.
Place the cream cheese, brown sugar, and salt in the bowl of the KitchenAid® Artisan® Mini Stand Mixer, and mix on medium speed until smooth.
Add the caramel sauce and stir on medium speed until combined.
Stir in the eggs, one at a time, stopping to scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl with a silicone spatula after each addition.
Add the cream and vanilla and stir just until incorporated.Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan.
Pour very hot water into the Steam Rack of the KitchenAid® Gas Convection Slide-In Range.
Bake the cheesecake for 15 minutes at 400° F then lower the oven temperature to 300° F. Bake for another 60-65 minutes or until set around the edges but still slightly jiggly toward the center.
Turn off the Slide-In Range and prop the door ajar with a wooden spoon. Allow the cheesecake to cool slowly in the Slide-In Range for at least 1 hour.
Refrigerate 2 hours or overnight before removing from the pan and cutting into slices. Garnish with salted caramel sauce and chopped pecans.
*The Contributor of this post has been compensated by KitchenAid for this post, but this post represents the Contributor’s own opinion.*