This Apple Crumble Cheesecake recipe is an impressive and decadent dessert that is perfect for any special occasion. It combines a dense cheesecake base with layers of fresh apple slices and a crisp cinnamon crumble topping for one incredible treat.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Indulgent Flavor: This cheesecake is the perfect fall dessert! The rich cream cheese filling is studded with tart apple slices, while the buttery crisp topping adds a delightful crunch. Every bite delivers a sensational blend of flavors and textures.
- Rich, Dense Texture: This recipe makes a cheesecake filling that is creamy and dense. It is very similar to my Cheesecake with Huckleberry Sauce recipe, but this recipe has a little less filling since it has a thicker topping.
- Classic Combo: Get the best of both worlds with this nostalgic mash-up of creamy cheesecake and warm apple crisp. This reinvented classic comfort dessert combination is even better than you remember.
- Gorgeous Presentation: This is just as show-stopping as mocha cheesecake! Both are great choices for when you want to impress guests!
Tall wedges are blanketed in an apple crumble topping. Slice into it to reveal the dense, creamy cheesecake filling topped with apple slices.
See the recipe card at the bottom of this post for the full list of ingredients, including measurements.
Cream Cheese - Full-fat blocks of cream cheese work best for this recipe. Using tubs of cream cheese will result in a much softer texture and is not recommended. Bring the cream cheese to room temperature before using, so that it blends into the other ingredients better.
Sour Cream - The sour cream should also be at room temperature. You can substitute Greek yogurt in place of sour cream if you wish. It is an equal substitution.
Eggs - Eggs help to thicken the cheesecake. The combination of whole eggs and additional egg yolks gives rich texture without it being so much that it cracks. They are best at room temperature.
Cinnamon - Ground cinnamon adds warmth and fall flavor so it is used in both the crust and the streusel topping.
Graham Cracker Crumbs - You can make your own crumbs using full cracker sheets, or purchase already-made crumbs.
If you live outside of the US and do not have access to graham crackers then you can substitute digestive biscuits. With this substitution, reduce the granulated sugar in the crust to ¼ cup.
Best Apples for Baking
When it comes to baking, you'll want to choose apple varieties that hold their shape and have a balanced sweet-tart flavor.
For this apple cheesecake recipe, I recommend using apples like Honeycrisp, Jazz, Jonagold, or Pink Lady. These apples have a nice firm texture that retains its bite even after baking. Their sweetness plays well with the spices too.
Softer apples like McIntosh will turn mushy when baked into the cheesecake. And while I love to add one or two tart apples, like Granny Smith, when making apple crisp, it won't provide enough sweet apple flavor to balance this dessert.
How to Make Apple Crumble Cheesecake
1) Prepare the Graham Cracker Crust
- Pulse the graham crackers in a food processor until they are fine crumbs. If you do not have a food processor then you can crush the graham crackers in a zip-top bag using a rolling pin or mallet.
- Add the sugar and melted butter and mix well. The mixture should look like wet sand.
- Press the crumbs evenly into a 9-inch springform pan using medium pressure.
- Use a measuring cup or flat-bottomed glass to pack the crust across the bottom and up the side of the pan so that the thickness is uniform.
- Bake the crust at 375°F (190°C) for 8 minutes. Cool completely.
2) Prepare the Filling
- Use the paddle attachment on your stand mixer to blend the cream cheese until it is smooth.
- Add the remaining ingredients one at a time, mixing on low speed between each addition.
- Scrape the sides of the bowl bowl frequently to help make sure everything is mixed in well.
- Pour the cheesecake filling into the prepared graham cracker crust.
3) Make the Crumble Topping
- Pour the melted butter into the bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until it forms crumbs.
- Mix the oats, flour, brown sugar, ground cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl.
4) Slice the Apples
- Peel and core the apples, and cut them into ⅛ to ¼-inch apple slices.
- The photo shows these slices as apple halves but I actually prefer them in quarters or smaller.
- Lay them out in a circular pattern on top of the cheesecake batter, overlapping the apples a little bit.
- You might be afraid that the apples will sink, but don't worry! The cheesecake mixture is thick enough to hold the apples up on top
- Sprinkle the crumble mixture over the top of the apples.
- I recommend using a water bath any time you bake cheesecake.
- Bake at 325°F (165°C) for 80-90 minutes.
- The cheesecake is done when the topping is golden brown, the edges are firm, and the center jiggles slightly.
- You can also test the center of the cheesecake with an instant thermometer. It is fully baked once the center reaches 150°F (66°C).
- Turn off the oven and open the oven door.
- Let it cool for 1 hour in the oven, then transfer to the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
- Turn this into a caramel apple cheesecake by drizzling salted caramel sauce over the top before serving.
How to Make a Water Bath for Cheesecake
A water bath helps cheesecake bake evenly and prevents cracking for smooth results. It keeps the filling moist too.
Here's how to do a simple water bath:
- Wrap your springform pan tightly in foil. Use a large sheet of foil and make sure there are no cracks or seams in the bottom 2 inches.
- If you are nervous about the foil leaking, you can use a silicone pan wrap instead.
- Place the cheesecake pan into a large roasting pan, then place the pan on your oven rack.
- Pour 1 inch of boiling hot water into the pan.
- Check the water level halfway through baking and add more if needed.
Expert Baking Tips
- Mix on Low Speed - After the cream cheese and sugar are creamed together, keep your mixer on low speed. This will help keep your batter the right texture so you don't have cracks in your cheesecake.
- Use a Water Bath - I tried this recipe both with and without a water bath. It isn't as critical as other cheesecake recipes, as the topping helps cover up any cracks. However, I did find that it cooked more evenly when using a water bath.
- Keep Oven Door Closed - Resist the urge to check on your cheesecake as it bakes. Opening and closing the oven door causes the temperature inside to fluctuate and can lead to cracks and inconsistency in baking.
- Don't Overbake - The cheesecake should be jiggly, kind of like jello when it is finished baking.
- Let it Cool Slowly - By turning off the oven and leaving the cheesecake in the oven with the door open the temperature will come down slowly. This gentle cooling helps stabilize the dessert and reduces cracking.
- Refrigerator: Keep the cheesecake tightly wrapped and it will last in the refrigerator for 3-5 days.
- Freezing: It can be frozen whole or cut into slices. Wrap it in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil, or place it in an airtight container. It will keep for up to 2 months. Thaw it in the refrigerator for 24 hours before serving.
- I have a full post on how to store cheesecake if you want to read more.
Frequently Asked Questions
Sure, you can follow the instructions in this mini cheesecake recipe to make muffin-sized cheesecakes. Add the apples and crumble topping before baking.
Yes, pears are a wonderful substitution for apples. Firm peaches or plums can also be used.
For the best-textured crust, measure your graham cracker crumbs and butter carefully. Additionally, make sure there are no cracks in the aluminum foil so the water does not leak in.
More Cheesecake Recipes
Let me know how you like this recipe by leaving a review! And follow along on Instagram @stateofdinner for behind-the-scenes and to be among the first to know when new recipes post!
Apple Crumble Cheesecake RecipeRecipe by:
Cinnamon Graham Cracker Crust
- 1 ½ cups (180 grams) graham cracker crumbs (about 13 full graham cracker sheets)
- ⅓ cup (66 rams) granulated sugar
- 6 tablespoons (85 grams) butter melted
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 24 ounces (672 grams) cream cheese (3 eight-ounce blocks), room temperature
- 1 ⅓ cups (266 grams) granulated sugar
- ¼ cup (60 grams) sour cream room temperature
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) vanilla extract
- 1 ½ teaspoons (7 ml) lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons (17 grams) all-purpose flour
- 3 eggs room temperature
- 2 egg yolks
Apple Crumble Topping
- ½ cup (40 grams) old fashioned rolled oats
- ½ cup (65 grams) all-purpose flour
- ½ cup (105 grams) light brown sugar lightly packed
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 5 tablespoons (70 grams) butter, melted
- 1 apple peeled, cored, and sliced
- caramel sauce for topping optional
Graham Cracker Crust
- Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Wrap the springform pan in an 18-inch piece of heavy-duty foil, working carefully to make sure there are no cracks or openings in the first 2 inches of the foil sides.
- If you are using whole graham crackers, pulse them in a food processor or place them in a resealable bag and crush them with a rolling pin or mallet until they are fine crumbs.1 ½ cups (180 grams) graham cracker crumbs
- Transfer the graham cracker crumbs to a medium bowl and stir in the sugar, melted butter, and cinnamon. Mix until fully combined and the texture of wet sand.⅓ cup (66 rams) granulated sugar, 6 tablespoons (85 grams) butter, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Using a flat-bottomed measuring cup or glass, press the crumb mixture into the bottom and sides of a springform pan.
- Bake for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and reduce the temperature to 325°F. (165°C).
- Before the crust has cooled, check to see if the sides have fallen or cracked. While it is still warm you can use a cup to press the crust back into place.
- Beat the cream cheese on medium speed for 1 minute. Add sugar and resume on medium speed for 3 minutes. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.24 ounces (672 grams) cream cheese, 1 ⅓ cups (266 grams) granulated sugar
- Add the sour cream, vanilla extract, and lemon juice and mix in at low speed until combined. Then stir in the flour.1 tablespoon (15 ml) vanilla extract, 1 ½ teaspoons (7 ml) lemon juice, 2 tablespoons (17 grams) all-purpose flour, ¼ cup (60 grams) sour cream
- Add the eggs and egg yolks, one at a time, beating on low speed in between each addition. Scrape the bowl before adding the next egg.3 eggs, 2 egg yolks
- Pour the cheesecake batter over the graham cracker crust and use a spoon or spatula to smooth the batter.
- In a small bowl, mix together the oats, flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.½ cup (40 grams) old fashioned rolled oats, ½ cup (65 grams) all-purpose flour, ½ cup (105 grams) light brown sugar, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- Add the melted butter and stir until the mixture becomes crumbly.5 tablespoons (70 grams) butter,
- Layer the apples on top of the cheesecake batter, then top with the crumb mixture.1 apple
- Recommended water bath: Place the cheesecake pan into a large roasting pan. Carefully fill the pan 1-inch full with boiling water, being careful to not splash any water onto the cheesecake.
- Bake the cheesecake at 325°F (165°C) and continue cooking for 75-85 minutes, or until the cheesecake has set.
- Turn the oven off and crack open the oven door, allowing the cheesecake to cool for 1 hour without moving it from the oven.
- Remove from the oven. Run a knife around the edge of the pan so that the cheesecake does not stick. Place plastic wrap over the top of the cheesecake and transfer to the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
- If desired, drizzle the top of the cheesecake with caramel sauce before serving.
This recipe was originally published on April 22, 2021. It was updated on September 22, 2023, with minor recipe modifications and enhanced tips and information. The original recipe included a homemade caramel sauce.
Here is the original caramel sauce recipe:
- 1 cup granulated sugar (200 grams)
- ¼ cup water (60 ml)
- ½ cup heavy cream (125 ml)
- 4 tablespoons butter (58 grams)
1) Pour granulated sugar and water into a medium saucepan. Heat on medium-high heat until the sugar melts and turns a dark amber color. This took me about 5 minutes.
2) Add heavy cream and cook while whisking continually for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat.
3) Stir in the butter and salt. Set aside to cool. When ready to serve drizzle the caramel sauce over the cheesecake.
Here's an image from the original post: