Hold everything, guys. I’ve discovered the granddaddy, lord and ruler of all Thanksgiving desserts. I hope you are all sitting down. Are you ready for it?
Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake.
Oh no. But, like the Kool Aid man says, “Oh YEAH!”
This little cheesecake is decadence on a plate. It is all of my favorite tastes and textures put together into one perfect Thanksgiving or fall recipe. It is creamy, sweet, crunchy, and salty all at the same time. Heaven, I say.
I thought I had already found a winner when I made the Italian Style Pumpkin Cheesecake that partially inspired this recipe. I mean, don’t get me wrong, if you don’t like a lot of bells and whistles with your cheesecake, that cheesecake is awesome. Really, truly good.
However, that cheesecake was only one part of this inspiration equation. The other piece of the inspiration equation was frozen yogurt. Now if you’ve been regularly following along, you are familiar with my insane frozen yogurt obsession. If not you can check it out here and here…and oh yeah, here. See, I was eating brunch Saturday morning (ok, by brunch I mean, my hubs and I were out grocery shopping and we may have skipped breakfast and headed instead to my fave frozen yogurt shop) and I was happily
chowing down eating daintily my frozen yogurt creation du jour: pumpkin frozen yogurt with a bit of Nutella, salted caramel sauce, salted caramel candies, and a few other random things like crushed Snickers and Reeses Pieces. I was literally contemplating how good frozen yogurt is on its own but how much infinitely better it is when you load it up with…well stuff. Particularly stuff that is both salty and sweet, like my frozen yogurt shop’s homemade salted caramel that I could pretty much eat by the bottle.
Which led me to this life defining moment: Salted Caramel+Pretzels+Pumpkin Cheesecake > Pumpkin Cheesecake. Ok maybe not greater than but definitely a different twist on my standard pumpkin cheesecake, and if you like salty and sweet together, a twist worth trying.
Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake
- 2 1/2 cups of mini pretzels (I used gluten free pretzels but if you don’t follow a gluten free diet, feel free to sub regular pretzels)
- 3 cups of Cinnamon Chex (which is also gluten free)
- 6 tablespoons of homemade salted caramel sauce
Salted Caramel Sauce:
- 1 cup of butter
- 2 cups of light brown sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon of vanilla
- 1 cup of light cream
1-2 teaspoons of sea salt *I highly recommend letting the caramel cool a bit so that it is still warm but won’t burn you and tasting it and adding salt to your liking*
- 1 1/2 cups of fat free ricotta
- 1 cup (1 full package) of mascarpone cheese
- 1/8 cup of honey or maple syrup (I used honey)
- 1/8 cup of homemade salted caramel sauce
- 1 cup of pumpkin
- 3 eggs
- 1 heaping tablespoon of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
How to Make:
- Start by making the salted caramel sauce. In a medium saucepan, melt 2 sticks of butter over medium low heat. When the butter is melted, add 2 cups of brown sugar and stir constantly until combined. It will take a couple minutes of stirring. When the butter and sugar are combined, stir in the cream and bring to a simmer. Let the cream simmer for 5 minutes, stirring constantly. After 5 minutes, remove from heat and add in vanilla. Let cool in the fridge for about 5-10 minutes or until the caramel has slightly thickened and has cooled to the point of being only slightly warm to the touch, add in the salt and stir.
- Add the pretzels to a food processor and pulse until chopped, then add in the Chex and pulse until the Chex is in crumbs. Make sure to do this in two parts because the pretzels take much longer to crush than the Chex. When the pretzels and Chex are in crumb form, add in approximately 6 tablespoons of salted caramel, pulsing the mixture until coarse crumbs form. Please note, add the caramel in one tablespoon at a time. Depending on where you are, you may find you need a tablespoon less or a tablespoon more. When coarse crumbs form, press the mixture into a cooking-sprayed pie tin. Bake the crust at 350 for 5-7 minutes or until the Chex begins to turn more golden.
- While the crust is baking, beat together with a hand mixer the ricotta, mascarpone, pumpkin, honey, salted caramel, eggs, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice. Continue to beat until creamy.
- Pour half of the remaining salted caramel sauce into the baked crust. Top the caramel sauce with a the pumpkin cheesecake filling. Bake at 350 for 50-60 minutes or until the top of the center of the cheesecake springs back to the touch. Pour the rest of the salted caramel sauce on top of the cheesecake (you may have to reheat the caramel on the stove top over low heat or in the microwave on low for a minute). Let the cheesecake cool and set in the fridge for at least an hour prior to serving.
Other Pumpkin Desserts You May Like:
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Tagged: Fall Recipe, Gluten free, gluten free cheesecake, gluten free dessert, gluten free dessert recipe, gluten free pumpkin cheesecake, gluten free recipe, gluten free salted caramel pumpkin cheesecake, gluten free Thanksgiving dessert recipe, gluten free Thanksgiving recipe, pumpkin, pumpkin cheesecake, salted caramel, salted caramel pumpkin cheesecake, Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving dessert recipe