Sweet caramel, crisp tender apples, creamy vanilla cheesecake, and a cinnamon whipped cream to top it all off. This cheesecake is an absolute dream! The Instant Pot is the ONLY way to make a cheesecake!
Psst . . . Be sure and check out the bottom of this post for a collage of the best fall time recipes out there!
One of the very few desserts my mom made when I was young was apple strudel. The smell alone was enough to make all 6 kids get along for 10 minutes of a Family Home Evening lesson so that we could get to that strudel faster. Warm, sweet apples covered in a crunchy, buttery crumble, topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Mmmmm, good memories right there.
My grandma also influenced my love of apples with her incredible apple pie. Fresh Huckleberry Pie and Apple Pie were the only desserts I ever saw her make and I was convinced she was famous for them. I hated huckleberries as a kid, but that apple pie, piping hot from the oven, with sparkling sugar crystals on top, was heaven.
Oh yes, my apple love is strong. After havin' babies, my body's reaction to sugar, however, made eating desserts not so fun anymore. I created this Naturally Sweetened Apple Pie for that reason and it is one of my favorite desserts ever, ever!
I'm carrying on the family tradition of knock out apple desserts today! I took my kids' love of cheesecake, pie, and apples dipped in caramel to create this Instant Pot Caramel Apple Cheesecake.
Quote directly from my husband, “This is THE BEST cheesecake I have ever had. Don't give it away.” Sure enough, in 3 days he ate two thirds of it. He allowed each of the children a small slice.
WHAT YOU WILL LOVE ABOUT THIS CHEESECAKE
- Cinnamon scented, buttery graham cracker crust soaked in caramel sauce
- Sweet, tart cinnamon sugar coated Granny Smith apples
- Vanilla Cheesecake, all creamy and luscious around the apples
- And for the final TA-DA, cinnamon whipped cream with extra caramel and toasted pecans on top
- Oh and the smell! It's glorious, beyond anything I've ever smelled in my kitchen. GLORIOUS!
I do believe this treat will keep my apple dessert heritage game going strong!
HOW TO MAKE CARAMEL APPLE CHEESECAKE
- Make the graham cracker crust, press into a springform pan, then fill with a light layer of caramel
- Peel and slice your apples. I love this apple peeler
- Toss apples in cinnamon sugar
- Arrange them nicely on top of the caramel
- Make your cheesecake mixture (I like to do this in a food processor) and pour it over the apples
- Make a tinfoil sling for your pan
- Cook in the pressure cooker
- When done, let cool
- Remove the ring and decorate
TIPS FOR MAKING CHEESECAKE IN THE PRESSURE COOKER
I learned many of my tips from Barbara at Pressure Cooking Today about cheesecake. Be sure and check out her post all about Pressure Cooker Cheesecake.
Here are my go-to tips
- Don't press the crust more than halfway up the pan. If it gets moisture on it while cooking, it'll get soggy
- Use room temperature cream cheese and eggs. It will mix up much smoother than if you use cold
- Don't use low fat/nonfat ingredients. Whole fat cream cheese and at least 2% Greek yogurt is a must for texture
- Get the cheesecake mixture smooth and well blended before adding the eggs
- Once you add the eggs, very gently stir them in just until incorporated. If you overbeat the eggs, your cheesecake may overflow while cooking. It will still be tasty, but it'll look a bit of a mess
- Optional: Use a food processor. I've been so much more consistent with my cheesecake success using this method. It makes the cheesecake mixture so smooth. When I add the eggs, I pulse twice to get them going, then use a spatula to finish mixing them in. I haven't had a cheesecake explode on me ever since I started doing it this way
- Unplug the cooker after it beeps so it doesn't continue to cook the cake, then let it rest at least 10 – 15 minutes. I've found a quick release on cheesecakes increases the chance of the cheesecake rising and falling. Be patient!
- Let it chill in the fridge completely, at least 4 hours. The texture is so much creamier and richer tasting, overnight is even better
- Top it with whipped cream or ganache. Not only will this hide any imperfections, but the contrast in texture is what really makes a cheesecake dreamy, in my opinion
NOTES FOR SUCCESS WITH THIS CARAMEL APPLE CHEESECAKE
- The graham cracker crust gets soft under the layer of caramel, which, for my family, was the golden ticket bite. If you want it to retain more of its texture, you can prebake it at 375 degrees for 6-8 minutes, just until golden, or omit the bottom layer caramel and put it on top instead.
- The Granny Smith apples do a great job at keeping this dessert from getting too sweet. They still have a bit of a bite to them, which contrasts with the creamy cheesecake layer beautifully. If you want a sweeter, softer apple, go with something like Fuji or Golden Delicious.
- Use a thick caramel topping. I like Hershey's Caramel Topping (easily found in a grocery store). Homemade would be amazing!
- Because of my husband's diligence in eating nearly an entire cheesecake, I can confirm that it tastes delicious on day 1, 2, and 3. However, I suggest serving it the day of (after a solid 4 hour chill in the fridge) or the next day.
I would just love to throw a giant apple lovin' party for all of us! Imagine how fun that would be to get together and try one another's apple creations. While I dream of holding such an event one day, make this cheesecake and share it with your family, friends, and neighbors. Taking my husband's route of stuffing it in the back of the fridge with a bag of broccoli on top is okay too.
With 2 wheelbarrows of apples sitting in my garage, send me all your favorite apple recipe go-tos asap! I'll be pumping out applesauce like a crazy person, but I'd love something different to try as well. Leave a comment below if you have any suggestions.
TOOLS USED TO MAKE INSTANT POT CARAMEL APPLE CHEESECAKE
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Instant Pot Caramel Apple Cheesecake
Sweet caramel, crisp apples, creamy vanilla cheesecake, and a cinnamon whipped cream to top it all off. This cheesecake is an absolute dream!
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Total Time: 90 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Pressure Cooker
- Cuisine: American
For the Crust
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 8 crackers)
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- caramel sauce
For the Apple Filling
- 2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and sliced (see note)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the Cheesecake Filling
- 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons 2% or whole Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg, room temperature
For the Cinnamon Whipped Cream Topping
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- caramel sauce
- chopped pecans
- Spray a 7 inch springform pan with nonstick cooking spray
- Stir graham cracker crumbs, cinnamon, and melted butter together and press evenly across the bottom and 1 inch up the side of the pan. Add enough caramel to cover the bottom surface, about ⅓ cup. Place in the freezer for 10 minutes. (See note regarding crust options)
- In a bowl or ziplock bag, toss apple slices with sugar and cinnamon.
- Arrange apple slices on top of the crust, so they are all laying flat.
- Using a hand mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth. Blend in yogurt, flour, and vanilla. Add egg and mix just until incorporated. Do not over mix! (see note about food processor method)
- Pour the cheesecake mixture over the apples and smooth it out with the back of a spoon.
- Add 1 cup of water to the pressure cooker pot and place trivet inside. Using a tinfoil sling, carefully lower the prepared pan onto the trivet.
- Secure the lid and turn pressure release knob to a sealed position. Cook at high pressure for 30 minutes.
- When cooking is complete, unplug the pressure cooker and use a 15-minute natural release and then release any remaining pressure.
- Remove cheesecake, set on a cooling rack. Use the corner of a paper towel to soak up any moisture on top of the cheesecake.
- When cheesecake has cooled to room temperature, refrigerate covered with plastic wrap for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Note: I like to take the ring off the pan before I place it in the refrigerator because I feel like it prevents the crust from being too soft, but some people think this might allow the cheesecake to crack as it chills. You decide!
- When the cheesecake is chilled and ready to serve, prepare the Cinnamon Whipped Cream by whipping the cream, powdered sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla until thick with either a high-speed blender or hand mixer.
- Top with an extra drizzle of caramel and chopped pecans and serve!
- Use room temperature cream cheese and eggs for a smoother cheesecake
- A food processor makes mixing up the cheesecake layer quick and easy. I also have fewer issues with it rising and falling while cooking this way
- If you like lots of pecans, add a layer of chopped nuts on top of the caramel before topping with the apples
- The caramel softens the graham cracker layer and creates a sweet sauce on the bottom of the cake. If you want a more sturdy crust, omit the caramel and put extra caramel on top of the cake when serving. You can also prebake the crust at 375 degrees for 6 – 8 minutes. Cool before proceeding
- The Granny Smith apples maintain a crunch, which is glorious with the creamy cheesecake and buttery crust. If you want softer apples, you can try using a different variety of apples or precook them on the stovetop or microwave, until softened
Keywords: instant pot recipe, caramel cheesecake, apple pie
Today I'm excited to be joining a group of 25 other bloggers who are also sharing a fabulous fall recipe with you today! Hop around to see what other delicious ideas they've come up with…
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Zuppa Toscana Soup at Somewhat Simple
Butternut Squash and Quinoa Chili at Town and Country Living
Hearty Sausage Kale Soup at In My Own Style
Gluten Free Gnocchi with Butternut Squash, Sausage and Arugula at Willow Street Interiors
Easy Vegan Cranberry Cream Cheese Loaf and Almond Crackers at Zevy Joy
Pumpkin Sugar Cookies at Jenna Kate at Home
Mini Lemon Cranberry Cakes with Ginger Drizzle at Sincerely Marie, Designs
Absolutely the Best Homemade Peach Coffee Cake at Home Made Lovely
Gluten Free Pumpkin Bread at Taryn Whiteaker Designs
Whole Wheat Pumpkin Crepes at TIDBITS Cami
Chocolate Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Bars at Clean and Scentsible
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds at Finding Silver Pennies
Pumpkin Pie French Toast Bake at A Pretty Life
Salted Caramel Pumpkin Spice Latte at Hallstrom Home
Apple Cider Margarita at Rooms FOR Rent
Instant Pot Caramel Apple Cheesecake at TIDBITS Marci
Mini Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting at Satori Design for Living
Easiest Cinnamon Sugar Apple Cake at Inspiration for Moms
Whitney's Pumpkin Muffins at Amber Tysl
Cream Cheese Caramel Apple Dip at The Turquoise Home
Old Fashioned Apple Crisp at Modern Glam
Pumpkin Pie and Cheesecake Popsicles at Paint Me Pink
Mini Apple Tart with Custard at Happy Happy Nester
Pumpkin Cream Puffs at Life is a Party
Pumpkin Spice Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting at Nina Hendrick Design Co.