This pumpkin cheesecake with a luscious caramel sauce is the ultimate fall indulgence. It’s rich, creamy, and spiced to perfection!
Amazing Caramel Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe
Hey everyone, this is Lauren, visiting again from Tastes Better from Scratch! Today, it’s all about this incredible, restaurant-quality pumpkin cheesecake with caramel sauce. Whether you’re a cheesecake-making novice or making homemade cheesecake intimidates you, this recipe is the perfect, easy stepping stone! In just a few simple steps, you are left with a rich, decadent dessert loaded with all of the fall spices you love! It starts with a simple gingersnap crust, then a layer of silky pumpkin cheesecake, topped with whipped cream and a drizzle of homemade caramel sauce. The end result is mind-blowing. Take a bite of its creamy, cinnamony goodness, and you will be wanting to have dessert before dinner.
This is a super fun take on traditional pumpkin pie. The addition of cheesecake and salted caramel sauce creates a fun modern twist. Because of that, pumpkin cheesecake has been my new go-to for Thanksgiving dessert! Not only does it taste amazing, but it looks like it came straight from a bakery! My friends and family are always impressed with this cheesecake’s big flavor and luxurious visuals. Need other ideas for switching up Thanksgiving desserts? Pumpkin pecan pie bars and pumpkin bread pudding are more fun and tasty alternatives. For now, let’s get started on making this tasty pumpkin cheesecake! I will give you all the tips you need to make the perfect fall dessert each and every time!
Pumpkin Cheesecake Ingredients
They key here is to use the freshest ingredients. High-quality pumpkin and fresh spices will enhance the overall flavor of your cheesecake! You are going to LOVE how amazing the end result turns out! Measurements for each of these ingredients can be found in the printable recipe card below.
- Gingersnap Crumbs: Make sure your gingersnap crumbs are finely ground. You can throw them in a food processor for best results. Gingerbread cookies can also be used in place of gingersnaps.
- Granulated Sugar: Adds sweetness to your crust and help all of your ingredients meld together when baked.
- Butter: I use unsalted butter, melted.
- Granulated Sugar: For sweetness. You can also use brown sugar for a richer flavor.
- Cream Cheese: This is the foundation of the cheesecake. Make sure it is at room temperature before adding to your mixture! It will help everything to mix together more smoothly.
- Vanilla Extract: This will add a richer flavor to your cheesecake. Use pure vanilla extract for best results!
- Canned Pumpkin: This is the star of the show! Opt for a high-quality pumpkin. Libby’s brand is my go-to.
- Eggs: This is the binding agent for your cheesecake. Because of this, it will help everything set in place. Make sure your eggs are room temperature before adding them in.
- Cinnamon: A necessity for any fall flavor. Provides a delicious earthy spice.
- Ground Cloves: This adds an aromaic and slightly sweet flavor.
- Ground Ginger: Adds that bright, delicious gingerbread cookie flavor.
- Nutmeg: Added for a warm, nutty spice.
- Whipped Cream: Used for topping. You can make your own with heavy cream, but I prefer the ease of canned.
- Caramel Sauce: Decadent caramel brings everything together! I use this for topping. You can use premade caramel but I think making your own at home really levels up this whole recipe.
How to Make Pumpkin Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce
Making a cheesecake at home doesn’t have to be complicated! Use these straightforward steps to create a dessert that is truly craveworthy. Your family will love it!
For the Gingersnap Crust:
- Prep Oven: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- For Cookie Crumbs: Use a food processor to crush the cookies into fine crumbs. Measure out 2 cups of crumbs and pour them into a mixing bowl. Add ¼ cup sugar and melted butter and stir to combine.
- Prepare Pan: Next, cover the outside bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with foil, securing the foil partway up the outer sides of the pan.
- Press Into Pan: Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and about half way up the sides of the springform pan.
- Bake and Set Aside: Bake the crust for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside while you make the cheesecake filling.
For the Pumpkin Cheesecake:
- Mix Cream Cheese, Sugar, and Vanilla: First, in a large mixing bowl combine the room temperature cream cheese, 1 cup of sugar, and vanilla. Mix with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Add in Remaining Ingredients: Next up, add the pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and nutmeg and mix until smooth, but don’t over mix. Pour the filling into the prepared pan.
- Prepare Water Bath: Grab a pan that’s larger than the cheesecake pan and fill it with about ½ inch of water, to make a water bath.
- Add in Cheesecake Pan: Place the cheesecake pan inside the dish with the water.
- Bake: Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until the sides of the cheesecake have just set and the center is just barely jiggly.
- Cool: Remove it from the oven (it will continue to bake as it cools). Remove the tinfoil and allow the cheesecake to cool completely on a wire cooling rack.
- Cover and Refrigerate: Once cooled, cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight.
- Remove Pan Sides: When the cheesecake has chilled in the fridge, remove the pan sides (I like to gently run a dull butter knife along the inner edge of the pan before I release the springform pan sides).
- Add Caramel Sauce and Serve: Finally, serve with caramel sauce and whipped cream. You can use store-bought, but I recommend making caramel sauce at home for better flavor. Find my recipe HERE!
Storing Leftover Pumpkin Cheesecake
Not only is this recipe delicious, but it stores really well! You can have a slice of rich and creamy goodness whenever. It will keep for days (even months, if stored properly in the freezer!) and tastes just as delicious as the day you made it.
- In the Refrigerator: Store for up to 4 days in an airtight container.
- In the Freezer: When kept in an airtight container or wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, pumpkin cheesecake will keep for up to 2 months. Thaw for one full day in the fridge before serving.
The Best Pumpkin Cheesecake Tips & Tricks
These are some of my personal tips on ways to customize and perfect your cheesecake! You will be baking like a pro with a delicious fall treat in front of you in no time!
- Crust Substitutes: I like to bake pumpkin cheesecake with a gingersnap crust because I love that flavor combination, but you could also use a graham cracker crust! It has a perfect sweet flavor that pairs well with pumpkin.
- Room Temperature Ingredients: It is important to make sure your eggs and cream cheese are at room temperature before adding them into your mixture. At room temp, egg yolks will break down more easily for a smoother, more evenly-mixed batter. And if cream cheese is too cold, it will make your cheesecake lumpy.
- Use Full-Fat Ingredients: Unfortunately, this isn’t the most diet-friendly recipe. Creams and cheeses with high fat content will yield you the creamiest, most delicious cheesecake.
- Don’t Overbake: Overbaking your cheesecake can lead to cracks and a dense texture. Keep an eye on it while it is in the oven to achieve the best creamy, jiggly texture.
- Keep Oven Closed: It is best to keep the oven door closed during the baking process. Drafts of air can alter your cheesecake’s texture.
- Let Cool Completely: I know it is beyond hard to wait for such a delicious dessert, but you have to let your cheesecake cool completely before consuming. This may take a few hours. I like to let mine chill overnight for best results. If you eat it too early, it will be a mushy mess.
- Toppings: Besides a drizzle of tasty homemade caramel, there are many other toppings that taste great with this cheesecake. Chopped nuts, fudge, marshmallow cream, and pumpkin spice are just a few to note!
A Reader’s Review
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce
- 2 cups finely ground gingersnap crumbs about 10 ounces
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 packages cream cheese (room temperature!) 8 ounce
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 3 eggs room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- whipped cream for topping
- caramel sauce for topping
For the Gingersnap Crust:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Use a food processor to crush the cookies into fine crumbs. Measure out 2 cups of crumbs and pour them into a mixing bowl. Add ¼ cup sugar and melted butter and stir to combine.
- Cover the outside bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with foil, securing the foil partway up the outer sides of the pan.
- Press the crumb mixture into the bottom and about half way up the sides of the springform pan.
- Bake the crust for 5 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside while you make the cheesecake filling.
For the Pumpkin Cheesecake:
- In a large mixing bowl combine the room temperature cream cheese, 1 cup of sugar, and vanilla. Mix with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Add the pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, cloves, ginger and nutmeg and mix until smooth, but don’t over mix. Pour the filling into the prepared pan.
- Grab a pan that’s larger than the cheesecake pan and fill it with about ½ inch of water, to make a water bath.
- Place the cheesecake pan inside the dish with the water.
- Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until the sides of the cheesecake have just set and the center is just barely jiggly.
- Remove it from the oven (it will continue to bake as it cools). Remove the tinfoil and allow the cheesecake to cool completely on a wire cooling rack.
- Once cooled, cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours, or overnight.
- When the cheesecake has chilled in the fridge, remove the pan sides (I like to gently run a dull butter knife along the inner edge of the pan before I release the springform pan sides).
- Serve with caramel sauce (homemade or store-boughand whipped cream on top, if desired.
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.