Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce

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Our Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce is an indulgent twist on our old Thanksgiving favorite. Take a respite from the beloved pumpkin pie and serve up a crowd-pleasing, family wowing dessert!

‘Tis the season when many of us succumb to the enchanting allure of pumpkin. It begins with the gentle tap on our taste buds, often in the guise of a steaming cup of coffee. Tempting advertisements beckon the weary and bleary-eyed, enticing them to part with a few dollars for a sip of blissful brew. Adorned with a dollop of whipped cream and a hint of cinnamon,

Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake on a white plate

We love all things fall and our Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce is really a special dessert. Although it looks like a difficult recipe, really it’s not and if you have any questions along the way, ask on our FB page and we’ll help out.

  1. Room Temperature Ingredients: Ensure all your ingredients, especially cream cheese and eggs, are at room temperature. This promotes even mixing and a smoother texture.

  2. Prevent Cracks: To prevent cracks, bake your cheesecake in a water bath (also known as a bain-marie). This gentle, indirect heat helps prevent the cheesecake from overcooking around the edges.

  3. Avoid Overmixing: Overmixing can introduce too much air into the batter, leading to a puffy or cracked cheesecake. Mix ingredients until just combined for a creamy texture.

  4. Use High-Quality Cream Cheese: Choose a high-quality cream cheese for the best flavor and texture. Avoid using low-fat cream cheese as it can affect the consistency of the cheesecake.

  5. Proper Cooling: After baking, allow the cheesecake to cool gradually in the oven with the door ajar. This helps prevent sudden temperature changes that can cause cracking.

  6. Chill Thoroughly: Chill the cheesecake in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight, before serving. This allows the flavors to develop and the texture to set properly.

  7. Grease the Pan: Grease the bottom and sides of the springform pan to prevent sticking. You can also line the bottom with parchment paper for easy removal.

  8. Patience is Key: Don’t rush the process. Cheesecake is best when allowed to chill thoroughly and set properly. It’s worth the wait!

  9. Flavor Infusion: Experiment with different flavorings and toppings to customize your cheesecake. Whether it’s fruit compote, chocolate ganache, or caramel sauce, the options are endless.

  10. Serve at the Right Temperature: For the best taste and texture, remove the cheesecake from the refrigerator about 30 minutes before serving to allow it to come to room temperature.

  11. Sharp Knife for Cutting: Use a sharp knife dipped in hot water for clean slices. Wipe the knife clean between cuts for professional-looking servings.

  12. Storage: Store leftover cheesecake covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Individual slices can also be wrapped tightly and frozen for longer storage.

Remember, practice makes perfect! Don’t be discouraged by minor imperfections; each cheesecake you bake is an opportunity to refine your skills.

Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake on a white plate
Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake

Proper Cooling Technique for Cheesecake:

  1. End of Baking: Once the cheesecake is done baking, turn off the oven but leave the cheesecake inside with the oven door closed. This gradual cooling helps prevent cracking.

  2. Open the Oven Door: After about 30 minutes, crack the oven door open slightly. Allowing the cheesecake to cool gradually helps it adjust to temperature changes, reducing the risk of cracks.

  3. Room Temperature Cooling: Let the cheesecake cool in the turned-off oven for another hour or until it reaches room temperature. This slow cooling process helps maintain the smooth texture of the cheesecake.

  4. Refrigerate: Once the cheesecake has cooled to room temperature, transfer it to the refrigerator to chill. Cover it loosely with foil or plastic wrap to prevent condensation from forming on the surface.

  5. Chill Overnight: For best results, refrigerate the cheesecake overnight or for at least 4 hours before serving. This allows the flavors to meld and the texture to set properly.

  6. Avoid Sudden Temperature Changes: Rapid temperature changes can cause cracks in the cheesecake. Always allow it to cool gradually at room temperature before transferring it to the refrigerator.

Proper cooling is essential for achieving the perfect texture and appearance of your cheesecake. Following these steps ensures that your cheesecake sets properly without cracking or becoming overly dense.

How to Properly Cut a Cheesecake:

  1. Chill the Cheesecake: Make sure the cheesecake is thoroughly chilled in the refrigerator before cutting. This helps it hold its shape and prevents it from becoming too soft or sticky.

  2. Use a Sharp Knife: Use a sharp knife for clean cuts. A dull knife can tear the cheesecake, resulting in messy slices. If possible, dip the knife in hot water and wipe it clean between cuts to ensure smooth edges.

  3. Create Guide Marks: Before cutting, use a toothpick or the tip of the knife to lightly mark where you want to make your slices. This helps ensure even portions.

  4. Cut Straight Down: When cutting, use a gentle, straight-down motion to avoid pressing too hard on the cheesecake. Pressing too firmly can cause the crust to crumble or the filling to squish out.

  5. Wipe the Knife: After each cut, wipe the knife clean to remove any excess filling or crumbs. This helps keep each slice neat and presentable.

  6. Cut into Wedges: For round cheesecakes, start by cutting the cheesecake into wedges, like you would a pie. Aim to make each wedge the same size for consistency.

  7. For Square or Rectangular Cheesecakes: For square or rectangular cheesecakes, use a ruler to guide your cuts and ensure even portions. Cut straight lines across the cheesecake to create squares or rectangles.

  8. Serve with Care: Use a thin spatula to carefully lift each slice out of the pan and onto a serving plate. Take your time to avoid damaging the slices.

  9. Garnish and Enjoy: Garnish each slice with fresh fruit, whipped cream, or a drizzle of sauce before serving, if desired. Then, sit back and enjoy your perfectly sliced cheesecake!

Safe Storage of Cheesecake:

  1. Refrigeration: Store the cheesecake in the refrigerator to maintain its freshness and prevent spoilage. Place it on a flat, level surface to keep its shape intact.

  2. Cover Properly: Cover the cheesecake tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil to protect it from absorbing any odors or flavors from other foods in the refrigerator. Alternatively, store it in an airtight container.

  3. Avoid Direct Contact: Avoid placing heavy or sharp objects on top of the cheesecake, as they may damage the surface or cause indentation.

  4. Consume Within Timeframe: Cheesecake is best when consumed within 5 days of preparation. While it may still be safe to eat beyond this timeframe, the quality may deteriorate over time.

  5. Freezing (Optional): If you need to store the cheesecake for a longer period, you can freeze it. Wrap the cheesecake tightly in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. Alternatively, store individual slices in airtight containers or freezer bags.

  6. Thawing: When ready to enjoy frozen cheesecake, transfer it to the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. Avoid thawing at room temperature to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.

  7. Serve Chilled: Cheesecake is best served chilled, so return any leftover slices to the refrigerator promptly after serving.

  8. Check for Signs of Spoilage: Before consuming leftover cheesecake, inspect it for any signs of mold, off smells, or unusual texture changes. If any of these are present, discard the cheesecake to prevent foodborne illness.

By following these storage guidelines, you can safely preserve your cheesecake and enjoy it for as long as possible while maintaining its quality and freshness.

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Pumpkin Cheesecake on a white plate and wooden background

How to Make Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce

Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce Recipe

Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce

Our Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce is an indulgent twist on our old Thanksgiving favorite. Take a respite from the beloved pumpkin pie and serve up a crowd-pleasing, family wowing dessert! 
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 45 minutes
Servings: 12 servings (9 inch)
Author: Mean Green Chef

Ingredients

Crust

  • 3 1/2 cups (295 grams) graham cracker crumbs finely ground
  • 5/8 cup (10 T or 142 grams) butter melted
  • 3 Tablespoons (40 grams) sugar

Pumpkin Spice Filling

  • 1 15-ounce can pumpkin Libby's
  • 1 1/3 cups (265 grams) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon cloves ground
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher sea salt finely ground
  • 3 8-ounce packages cream cheese room temperature cubed
  • 2 Tablespoons (18 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup heavy cream cold
  • 5 large eggs room temperature

Caramel Sauce

  • 4 ounces (115 grams) water
  • 1 1/4 cups (240 grams) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2 grams) kosher sea salt
  • 1 cup (225 grams) heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon (5 grams) vanilla extract optional

Instructions

Crust

  • Preheat oven to 325°F/163°C. Line a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan with parchment paper in the bottom and grease the sides.
  • Measure out and combine the crust ingredients in a small bowl. Press the mixture into the bottom and about halfway up the sides of the springform pan.
  • Bake the crust for 15 minutes, then set aside to cool
  • Cover the outsides of the pan with aluminum foil so that water from the water bath cannot get in. Set the prepared pan aside.

Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake Filling

  • Reduce oven temperature to 300°F/149°C
  • In a heavy saucepan, over medium-high heat, stir the pumpkin, sugar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and Kosher sea salt together. Cook stirring frequently allowing the mixture to bubble gently. Until thicked caramelized in color and shiny, about 5 minutes. 
  • Pour the mixture into a mixing bowl, scraping the sides of the pan. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes, ensuring mixture is well combined. Add the cubed room temp cream cheese and all-purpose flour. Beat on medium until combined and smooth, with no cream cheese lumps visible. 
  • Add the cold cream and mix well, then add the eggs one at a time. Combining well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined. Be sure to overbeat!
  • Pour the cheesecake batter evenly into the crust. Place the springform pan inside another larger pan. Fill the outside pan with very hot water about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Making sure the water does not go over the top of the aluminum foil.
  • Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes. The center should be set, but still jiggly about 3-4” from the center. Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but also slowly cools down. 
  • Crack the oven door for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool gradually. This process helps prevent cracking.
  • Remove the cheesecake from the oven, and remove the aluminum foil. Set on a rack to finish cooling completely. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, at least 4 hours or overnight.

Caramel Sauce

  • In a 3 quart saucepan combine the water, sugar, and salt over medium heat. Stir with a fork until syrup comes to a boil, about 4 minutes, simmer without stirring until syrup is honey-colored, roughly 5-6 minutes, swirling the pan over the burner as needed to ensure even caramelization. (If you want a deeper flavored caramel bring the mixture just past the point of a golden amber color while swirling. the deeper the caramel color the deeper the flavor. If it burns, start over.)
  • Continue cooking until syrup is light to medium amber, a minute more. Immediately add cream and reduce heat to medium-low.  ( it will foam and sputter)
  • Stirring constantly with a heat-resistant spatula to knock back the foam, simmer until caramel registers 225°F (107°C) on a digital thermometer, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a heat-resistant container, stir in vanilla extract (if using), and cool to room temperature. pour into a heat-resistant jar. Caramel will thicken as it cools. 

For Serving

  • Remove the outer ring from the springform pan. If moving to a serving platter, slide a thin metal spatula between the crust and pan bottom to loosen, then slide the cheesecake onto the platter. You can also leave on the cheesecake on the bottom of the springform pan. If the cheesecake is damp, daub it with a paper towel. 
  •  Allow the cheesecake to stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes, then slice. Warm up the caramel sauce on the stovetop or in the microwave, adding a little cream if it's become too thick. Drizzle the caramel sauce over each slice and serve. 

Notes

  • Prep time is approximate
  • Cheesecake will store safely in the fridge 4-5 days.
  • Cheesecake can be frozen for up to 3 months. To freeze: place the cake in the freezer for 30 minutes, unwrapped, to firm up. Then double-wrap it tightly with plastic wrap and then heavy duty aluminum foil, or place it in a heavy-duty freezer bag. Thaw in the refrigerator the night before you plan to eat it.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Creative Recipe Inspiration

Indulge in the irresistible harmony of flavors with our Pear & Almond Cream Cheese Tart. Delicately poached pears nestled atop a velvety almond cream cheese filling, all cradled within a buttery, flaky pastry shell. Each slice offers a symphony of textures and tastes, making it a delightful dessert for any occasion.

Satisfy your sweet cravings with our delectable Pecan Pie Cookies. These bite-sized delights capture all the flavors of traditional pecan pie in a convenient cookie form. Each bite offers a perfect balance of buttery crust, rich caramel filling, and crunchy pecans, creating a delightful treat for any occasion.

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    Join the Conversation

    1. I am adding this to my list for Thanksgiving. It looks delicious and with the tips you provided I bet I can make it.

      1. Hi Pauline! 🙂 So excited that you are going to add this to your Thanksgiving menu! If you have any questions you can always reach us easily on our FB Page https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/ We ?LOVE? seeing your creations! Please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thank you 🙂

    2. My cousin where were spending Thanksgiving is the cheesecake maker so I passed this on to her and asked her to make I’ll let you know how it turns out! Thanks for the recipe

      1. Awesome Nikki! If your cousin makes this please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thank you ? Happy Thanksgiving! ?

    3. This looks just divine! Iam going to try my hand at this! Thank you fir posting such a delicious recipe and tips!

      1. Thank you, Clarissa! If you have any questions please be sure and get ahold of us we’ll be glad to help out https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/! And please be sure and tag us @meangreenchef and #meangreenchef! ?️?

    4. So beautiful and perfect for Thanksgiving! I need to buy a springform pan, I keep using my pryer but feel it ruins the presentation a little.

      1. Hi Monica, thank you so much! Absolutely get yourself a springform pan, you’ll be glad you did. ?️?

    5. There is nothing better than pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving! The caramel sauce just takes it to the next level!

      1. Thanks, Tricia! We are all about upping the flavor ante and this rich caramel sauce does the job! ?️?

    6. This looks so good! Cheesecake is one of my favorite recipes. Great tips to keep it from cracking!

      1. Thank you, Katie!! So glad that our tips are helpful! ?️?

    7. This looks amazing! I love cheesecake and I love pumpkin anything!

      1. Hi, Pam, thanks so very much!! We’re totally in love with pumpkin anything too ?️?

    8. I am all about everything pumpkin right now. Looks amazing.

      1. Hello Courtney, thank you so much, we love pumpkin too! ?️?

    9. The cheesecake receipe sounds good.

      1. Thanks, Janice! It tops out at super good! ?️?

    10. Wow does that look and sound delicious!

      1. Thanks so much, Terri! ?️?

    11. Definitely trying this, this year.

      1. Great Kari, thanks so much! If you have any questions you can always reach us easily on our FB Page https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/ We ?LOVE? seeing your creations! Please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thank you ?

    12. Angela, this looks absolutely delicious!! I can not wait to try this!! Thank you so much for the tips and the recipe!!!

      1. Hi, Holly! Thank you so much, it’s a shining star of a cheesecake! If you have any questions you can always reach us easily on our FB Page https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/ We ?LOVE? seeing your creations! Please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thank you ?

    13. Oh, I’m in trouble. This one looks like a must-try this year. Oh, wow!!!!

      1. Hi T.M.! It’s a goodie, we figure a little splurge during this time of the year is a good thing! Thank you ??️?

    14. You had me at “pumpkin”. Looks absolutely delicious. Adding it to my recipe list.

      1. Hello, Noelle! Thank you so much!! If you have any questions you can always reach us easily on our FB Page https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/ We ?LOVE? seeing your creations! Please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thank you ??️?

    15. Flor Schnicer says:

      This looks delicious! Not only the recipe is amazing, but I also loved the tips! Cheesecakes have felt always very tricky to me!! I’ll take note of this!! Thank you!

      1. Hi, Flor! Thank you so much for the wonderful feedback, really glad that our tips are helpful! ??️?

    16. This cheesecake looks amazing!!!

      1. Thank you, Jen!! Appreciate you stopping by and the great feedback!??️?

    17. This sounds so very delicious! We have not had a pumpkin cheesecake in years. I love the tips for cooking cheesecake. Thanks,

      1. Hey, Jennifer! Thank you so much, it’s a perfect treat this time of year. So glad that our tips are helpful!??️?

    18. Pumpkin makes everything better. And I love the tip about how to cut it with ease!

      1. Woohoo, hi Janine! Totally agree, pumpkin is so good especially during the Holidays! Thanks so much, glad that our tips are helpful!??️?

    19. I love cheesecake, and I love pumpkin. This sounds awesome!

      1. Thank you so much, Mary!!??️?

    20. Oh my goodness! This looks and sounds amazing. Pinned and going to give it a try for Thanksgiving!

      1. Thanks so very much, Jocelyn! If you have any questions you can always reach us easily on our FB Page https://www.facebook.com/MeanGreenChef/ We ?LOVE? seeing your creations! Please don’t forget to tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef in your recipe photos! Thanks again! ??️?

    21. This looks so good! I have never made cheesecake but I may just have to try this!

      1. Hi Nicki! ? Thanks so much for checking out our recipe, this one is well worth the effort!?

    22. This looks so good! Cheesecake, Pumpkin Spice and Caramel. It doesn’t get much better that that. Now to convert it so we can enjoy it! Thanks for sharing!

      1. Thanks so much, Rosanna! It’s a kickin’ combination for sure, let me know how your converted recipe goes, please! ?

    23. Laura Hardman says:

      Yum! Great picture! looks very appetizing!

      1. Thanks so much, Laura!! ?

    24. That looks like a delicious recipe. Thanks for sharing!

      1. Thank you, Kathryn! We really appreciate you checking out our recipe! ?

    25. Looks amazing. Never though about adding a sauce to cheesecake but it’s probably delicious.

      1. Oh, it’s delicious Arianny! Thanks for checking out our recipe ?

    26. The minute I saw the picture of the cheesecake, my mouth started the water. Sounds like a fun recipe and great tips on how to store your cheesecake.

      1. Thanks so much, Dennis, glad that our tips are helpful too! ?

    27. This looks so delicious, I might have to trade it out for my traditional pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving!

      1. Thank you, Carmen! Please be sure and tag us @meangreenchef or #meangreenchef ?

    28. I haven’t made a cheesecake in a long time. This looks delicious!!

      1. Thanks so much, Kirsten! ?

    29. oh this looks delicious! I never made cheesecake before but I do love pumpkins and cheesecake.

      1. Thank you, Dee! It’s a great combo for sure ?️?

    30. Yum!!! This sounds like a fabulous dessert to add to my Thanksgiving list. I wish I saw this earlier, but it is never too late to have some pumpkin!! Thank you for sharing this!!

      1. Thank you, Annette! You’re right it’s never too late for pumpkin or cheesecake! Really appreciate you checking out our recipe! ?

    31. Oh, I can only imagine how silky and flavorful this must be! I can’t make it for my gang, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t enjoy a slice myself … And as always I appreciate tips for things I never knew I should be careful of, like how to cool the cheese cake.

      1. So glad that you found the tips on cooling a cheesecake helpful, Beth! Maybe you could do a cheesecake for 1! lol Thanks so much for visiting us again 🙂

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