Chai Pumpkin Cheesecake With Salted Caramel

1012 -
1 hr 20 min

This easy chai pumpkin cheesecake with gingersnap crust is topped with salted caramel and spiced whipped cream making it the perfect fall or Thanksgiving dessert!

If there's one dessert that I ALWAYS have room for, no matter how full I am, it's cheesecake.


Tell me it's pumpkin cheesecake and I'll love you forever.


This New York style pumpkin cheesecake with gingersnap crust is light and creamy with cozy chai spices, dollops of whipped cream and drizzled with salted caramel sauce.


It's the definition of fall dessert...you might even get dubbed "best dessert of the year" if you show up with this caramel pumpkin cheesecake at Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner ;).


Don't be intimidated if you've never made a cheesecake before. I promise with some of my tips and tricks, you'll be a cheesecake master!

Chai Pumpkin Cheesecake Ingredients:

For the pumpkin cheesecake filling

(recipe adapted from Preppy Kitchen):


  • cream cheese
  • salt
  • granulated sugar
  • brown sugar
  • vanilla
  • eggs
  • all purpose flour
  • pumpkin purée
  • sour cream
  • chai spice mix (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, cardamom)


For the gingersnap crust

(recipe adapted from Plays Well with Butter):


  • gingersnap cookie crumbs
  • brown sugar
  • unsalted butter


For the toppings:

  • salted caramel sauce, homemade (recommended!) or store bought
  • whipped cream, homemade or store bought


How to make caramel pumpkin cheesecake:

  1. Make the gingersnap crust: Preheat oven to 350 F. Add gingersnap cookie crumbs and brown sugar to a large mixing bowl. Stir in the melted butter and mix until evenly combined. Transfer mixture to bottom of a 9 or 10 " springform pan. Using your hands (or bottom of a glass), press crust firmly into bottom and about halfway up the sides of the pan. Bake for 12-15 minutes until lightly golden and fragrant. Remove from oven let cool while you make the filling.
  2. Make the filling: Reduce oven temperature to 300 F. In stand mixer with paddle attachment (or with a hand beater), beat room temp cream cheese, sugars and salt until smooth and creamy (about 2-3 minutes). Scrape down the bowl as needed. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition just until blended. Add flour, pumpkin puree, sour cream, chai spices and vanilla. Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl and mix just until combined.
  3. Prepare water bath: fill tea kettle or medium pot with water and bring to a boil. While water is heating up, wrap bottom and sides of springform pan tightly in aluminum foil, about halfway up the pan. Pour cheesecake filling on top of the prepared gingersnap crust. Place cheesecake in the bottom of a large roasting pan. Carefully pour hot water inside of the roasting pan until it reaches about 1" up the sides of the cheesecake (be careful not to go past the aluminum foil!).
  4. Bake for one hour or until cheesecake is set but center is still wobbly. Shut oven off and let cheesecake sit in the oven for an additional hour. Remove from oven and water bath and let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  5. To serve: run a knife around the edges of the springform pan before releasing. Slice into 10-12 slices. Top with dollops of whipped cream and drizzle with salted caramel. Serve and enjoy!

Tips for making the best pumpkin cheesecake ever:

  1. Make sure your ingredients (cream cheese, sour cream, and eggs) are at room temperature before mixing. This will ensure everything gets blended smoothly for a creamy and silky texture that's free of lumps.
  2. After mixing in the melted butter, squeeze a handful of your gingersnap crust mixture. If it holds its shape, its ready to go. If it's still crumbly you may need to mix a little more or add a little more butter.
  3. Sometimes the stand mixer doesn't reach the bottom of the bowl which is why I like to give the batter a final whisk by hand to incorporate anything missed before pouring the cheesecake over the crust.
  4. Don't skip the water bath! It may sound like a lot of extra steps, but it's really easy and gives you that perfectly creamy texture without cracking on top.
  5. Be sure to let the cheesecake set in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight before serving.


Cheesecake toppings:

Although this pumpkin chai cheesecake is good on it's own, I personally love a little whipped cream and salted caramel to take it to the next level.


Whipped cream: you can make your own (see recipe notes) or use store bought. If making your own, I like adding a little extra chai spice into the cream. If using store bought, simply sprinkle some chai spice on top of it once you pipe it on the cheesecake.


Salted caramel: I'm always a sucker for homemade salted caramel, or you can use your favorite store bought brand.

Storing and freezing:

  • Cheesecake leftovers can be covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • To freeze: after the cheesecake has chilled for at least 6 hours, transfer to a cardboard cake circle or piece of parchment paper. Wrap with plastic wrap, then aluminum foil and freeze for up to 3 months.


For more fall desserts try:

Cardamom Apple Pear Crisp

Apple Crumb Crostata

Pumpkin Pie with Toasted Maple Meringue

Chai Spice Brown Butter Snickerdoodles


If you give this recipe a try, don't forget to leave me a comment or star review below.

I LOVE hearing your feedback!

Chai Pumpkin Cheesecake With Salted Caramel

Recipe details

  • 1012  -
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 1 Hours Total time: 1 hr 20 min
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Ingredients

For the Gingersnap crust:

  • 14 ounces gingersnap cookie crumbs (about 2. 5 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

For the Cheesecake Filling:

  • 2 pounds (4 packages) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • ¾ cup sour cream, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons chai spice (*see recipe notes)

For whipped cream topping (optional):

  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chai spice

Salted Caramel Drizzle

  • homemade salted caramel sauce,(*see recipe notes)

Instructions

Make the gingersnap crust:

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Add gingersnap cookie crumbs and brown sugar to a large mixing bowl.  Stir in the melted butter and mix until evenly combined.
Transfer mixture to bottom of a 9 or 10 " springform pan.  Using your hands (or bottom of a glass), press crust firmly into bottom and about halfway up the sides of the pan.
Bake for 12-15 minutes until lightly golden and fragrant.  Remove from oven let cool while you make the filling.

Make the filling:

Reduce oven temperature to 300 F.  In stand mixer with paddle attachment (or with a hand beater), beat room temp cream cheese, sugars and salt until smooth and creamy (about 2-3 minutes).
Scrape down the bowl as needed.  Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition just until blended.
Add flour, pumpkin puree, sour cream, chai spices and vanilla.  Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl and mix just until combined.

Prepare water bath & bake:

Fill tea kettle or medium pot with water and bring to a boil.  While water is heating up, wrap bottom and sides of springform pan tightly in aluminum foil, about halfway up the pan (this is to prevent the water from leaking into the pan).
Pour cheesecake filling on top of the prepared gingersnap crust.
Place cheesecake in the bottom of a large roasting pan.  Carefully pour hot water inside of the roasting pan until it reaches about 1" up the sides of the cheesecake (be careful not to go past the aluminum foil!).
Carefully transfer pan to oven. Bake for one hour or until cheesecake is set but center is still wobbly.  Shut oven off and let cheesecake sit in the oven for an additional hour (don't open the oven door!).
Remove from oven and water bath and let cool to room temperature.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or overnight.

For the whipped cream topping (optional):

In stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment (or with hand blender) whip heavy cream until soft peaks form.
Add sugar, vanilla and 1 teaspoon chai spice and continue whipping until medium-stiff peaks form (the cream should hold it's shape).

To serve:

Once cheesecake has set, run a knife around the edges of the springform pan before releasing.  Slice into 10-12 slices (For clean slices, I like to dip my knife in warm water).
Top with dollops of whipped cream and drizzle with salted caramel.  Serve and enjoy!

Tips

  • *This chai spice recipe makes 6 tablespoons. You only need 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon for this recipe. I like to save the extra in a mason jar or air tight container and keep it in my pantry!
  • *Here's my homemade salted caramel sauce recipe. You can also use your favorite store bought brand to save time.
  • *You can also use store bought whipped cream. If you wish to make it chai spiced, just sprinkle a little on after topping the cheesecake with it.
  • *Leftover cheesecake can be covered and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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Comments

  • Connie Connie on Dec 28, 2021

    This is the BEST cheesecake ever! But in our house the servings are more like 6-8 instead of 10-12! We all like a BIG slice when it comes to cheesecake! And I really cracked up when you said "Leftover cheesecake can be stored in fridge for 5 days" Leftover cheesecake? Really? Not in our house! LOL!

    • Wine a Little Cook a Lot Wine a Little Cook a Lot on Dec 28, 2021

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it!!! You make me laugh, we’re the same in my family, glad it’s not just me that likes a BIG slice ;).

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