Prep Time: 20 mins | Cook Time: 45 mins | Cooling/Fridge Time: 4 hrs | Total Time: 5 hrs 5 mins | Servings: 24 bars
Layers of all the good in life – shortbread crust, creamy cheesecake, cinnamon-sugar apples, and a brown sugar oat crumble drizzled with caramel sauce. The perfect treat for all occasions and the best dessert to wrap up any meal!
2 c. all-purpose flour
1/2 c. light brown sugar
12 tbsp cold butter cubed small
2 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese softened
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
3 granny smith apples peeled and chopped very small
2 tbsp granulated sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp nutmeg
3/4 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. light brown sugar
1/2 c. quick oats
5 tbsp cold butter cubed small
caramel syrup/sauce drizzle
How to make Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars
Step 1: Prepare the oven. Preheat it to 350 degrees. And using cooking spray, grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan. Alternately, you can use parchment paper to make it easier to lift the bars out through the overhang. Grease and set aside.
Step 2: To make the crust, combine the flour, brown sugar, and cold cubed butter in a small bowl. Mix the ingredients using a pastry cutter or your hands until crumbly. Then, press the crust into the baking pan. Place in the preheated oven and bake for about 15 to 18 minutes or until lightly brown.
Step 3: In the meantime, place the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, and eggs into a bowl, or bowl of a stand mixer to make the cheesecake. Beat until smooth and well mixed.
Step 4: To make the Cinnamon Sugar Apples: Into a small bowl, mix the peeled and chopped apples, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg until the apples are evenly coated.
Step 5: Over the cooked crust, pour the cheesecake mixture and evenly spread. Sprinkle with the apples. Note that cooling the crust is not required.
Step 6: To make the Streusel Topping, place the flour, brown sugar, oats, and cold butter into a small bowl. Mix using a pastry cutter or your hands until coarse crumbs form. Then, evenly sprinkle this on top of the apples.
Step 7: Place in the oven and bake for about 25 to 30 minutes until the edges are done and slightly pulling away from the edges of the pan. It’s done once the centre is soft but not wiggly.
Step 8: Take it out of the oven and onto a cooling rack. Over the bars, drizzle the caramel sauce and allow it to cool for about an hour at room temperature.
Step 9: Tent the cooled bars and place them in the fridge for at least 3 hours. When ready, slice into bars and serve. For any leftovers, simply store them in the fridge.
To avoid lumps, make sure the cream cheese is very softened. On a microwave-safe plate, place the cream cheese and microwave for approximately 30 seconds until very soft but not melted.
To make sure that apples soften up when baked, cut them into small pieces like the size of frozen peas or corn, even black beans.