Cakes | Breads | Muffins Sweets

Spiced apple cheesecake + cinnamon whip

Move over pumpkin pie, there’s a new holiday dessert in town. Whip up this creamy cheesecake laced with warm fall spices and tart green apples for an easy, elegant way to impress your guests this holiday season.

Spiced apple cheesecake with caramel colored edges on a marble and wood cake stand.
What’s the number one food you associate with fall? If you answered pumpkin, you did not grow up in Northern Wisconsin.

For those who don’t know, I grew up in an itty bitty town on Lake Superior near the Apostle Islands. Boring, but beautiful as hell and laden with apple orchards. Every fall, Bayfield (the town next to us) puts on a weekend long festival solely dedicated to the forbidden fruit. There’s face painting, a carnival with questionably unsafe rides, teenagers discreetly walking around with rum-spiked cider in hot cocoa cups, and streets full of food stands showcasing everything from caramel apples to apple sausage.

Now, I’m not hating on pumpkin pie, you know I love my pumpkin desserts, but I haven’t been able to make it to Apple Fest in—I don’t know, a decade—so this cheesecake is my homage to Midwest falls and apple treats.

Spiced apple cheesecake with a slice missing on a marble and wood cake stand.
I am all about desserts that look/sound fancy and complicated, but are actually super quick and easy to make. This one falls into that category. Cheesecake is always an impressive dessert to serve, but the homemade cinnamon whip really takes the cake.

Side note: Where my food pun lovers at? Urmila, you out there??

Piece of spice apple cheesecake with stuffed with chunks of apple and topped with cinnamon whip cream.
The raw apples really balance out this dessert. I was contemplating cooking them before adding to the filling, but the fresh, tart chunks really break up the creamy texture of the cheesecake, so it doesn’t feel so rich and indulgent.

Oh, but it is. Trust me.

I added warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove to the crust, filling, and whip topping to complement the apple and mimic those nice fall flavors. I also added some extra butter to the crust to complement the stretchy pants you’ll be retreating to after a slice or two. Or three.

Piece of spiced apple cheesecake with cinnamon whip next to the whole cheesecake with a slice missing.
Or four.

Hey, it’s the holidays. Some of you will be enduring negative temps soon—a couple extra pounds couldn’t hurt!

Enjoy.

 

SPICED APPLE CHEESECAKE + CINNAMON WHIP

 

INGREDIENTS Overhead view of spiced apple cheesecake on a marble and wood cake stand.
For the crust

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 package graham crackers, crushed into crumbs
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp clove

For the filling

  • 2 tart green apples (Granny Smith), peeled and chopped
  • 2 packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup dulce de leche
  • 2 eggs, room temp
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp clove

For the whip topping

  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream

INSTRUCTIONS
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and make a circle out of parchment paper to line the bottom of your springform pan. I trace along the bottom of the pan, then cut the circle out slightly smaller than I’ve traced.

If making whip by hand, place a metal mixing bowl and whisk in the freezer. 

For the crust

Crush the graham crackers in a tightly sealed Ziplock bag with a rolling pin until they resemble crumbs. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove to the bag and shake well. Mix crumbs and melted butter in a bowl until well combined and press mixture firmly into the bottom of the pan. Bake for 10-12 mins until just dry. Set aside.

For the filling

In a large mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add brown sugar and beat on high for 3-4 mins until smooth and fluffy. Add dulce de leche, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Fold in apples until fully combined and spread mixture evenly over your crust. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula (or something like it).

Bake for 30 mins or until center is set. I rotated 180 degrees at 15 mins just incase the heat is uneven in the oven. The center may still jiggle slightly when it’s done, but it will look dry. Remove and let come to room temperature before refrigerating for at least 4 hours.

For the whip topping

If mixing by hand, remove whisk and metal bowl from freezer. Add cinnamon, sugar, and heavy whipping cream to the bowl and whisk vigorously until cream reaches stiff peaks.You could also use a hand-held or electric mixer if you have one. Your arm will probably thank you.

Store in an airtight container and briefly re-whisk before serving.

 

 

 

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