Cheesecake, apples, salted caramel, streusel topping - num num! All the classic flavors of fall wrapped into one lovely dessert. These bars are the perfect marriage of cheesecake and apple pie. Two American classics elevated with a modern twist. I love discovering new and innovative desserts.
Since Thanksgiving is next week these would make a great addition to your meal. I am always the person who wants to have new and innovative desserts for Thansgiving - like pumpkin whoopie pies instead of pumpkin pie, apple tarte tatin instead of apple pie. Who wouldn't want that?! Do I ever get to make these fun and exciting creations? Nope! Nada...zilch...nothing! I always get shafted and forced to make the traditional classics - BORING!
Well not this year! Hopefully I'll be able to convince Lobster to add these to our holiday table. They're rich, buttery, sweet and salty. Who could ask for more? Apple pie OUT - cheesecake bar IN! I served these to friends for dessert and after one bite one of them said, "oooh this is GOOD!" 'Nuff said!
Salted Butter Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars with Streusel Topping
Adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe
Makes 9 large bars
1 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup (1 sticks) butter, softened
Cream Cheese Layer:
1 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and finely chopped
1 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup quick cooking oats
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, softened
*I used the caramel sauce from this recipe
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a small bowl, stir together chopped apples, two tablespoons sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine all the streusel topping ingredients and mix until crumbly. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, cinnamon, salt and brown sugar. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or two forks until mixture is crumbly but combined. Press evenly into a 8x8-inch baking pan lined with aluminum foil. Bake for 10 minutes or until lightly browned.
While the crust is baking, in a large bowl, beat cream cheese with 1/4 cup sugar until smooth. Then add eggs, one at a time and then the vanilla. Mix well. Pour over the warm crust.
Spoon the apple mixture evenly over the cheesecake layer. Sprinkle the streusel topping over the apples. Bake for 30 minutes until the filling is set.
Cool the bars to room temperature then refrigerate until ready to eat. Drizzle with the caramel topping just before serving (or plate individual slices and drizzle with topping one by one). These taste best straight from the fridge