For the crust:
- 9 (135 grams) graham crackers
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons (85 grams) unsalted butter, melted
For the filling:
- 16 ounces (454 grams) cream cheese, completely softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated sugar
homemade or store bought
- 1/4 cup (57 grams) sour cream or plain yogurt, at room temperature
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
For the topping:
homemade or store bought
- Flaky sea salt, for sprinkling
Make the crust:
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8 by 8-inch baking pan with parchment, leaving an overhang.
In a food processor, pulse the crackers until finely ground. Add the butter and pulse until moistened. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan using the bottom of a measuring cup or glass. Bake until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Place on a cooling rack to cool completely. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F.
Make the filling:
In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese, sugar, and caramel until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of bowl as needed. Add the sour cream then the eggs one at a time, blending after each addition. Add in vanilla and salt and blend until just combined. Don’t over mix.
Spread batter evenly over cooled crust. Bake at 325°F until just set in center and edges are puffed and slightly cracked, about 40 to 45 minutes. Turn off the heat and crack the oven door and allow the cheesecake to cool in the oven for 30 minutes. Transfer to rack to let cool completely.
Make the topping:
In microwave-safe bowl, heat caramel in 10-second intervals until melted. Spread evenly over cooled cheesecake. Refrigerate until chilled, about 4 hours or overnight.
The cheesecake can be made and refrigerated 2 days ahead of time. Sprinkle bars with flaky sea salt before serving, if desired.
Do you have any tips for cutting into the squares? Do you add the topping before or after you cut into squares?
Hi Julie! Make sure your cheesecake bars are very, very cold (even pop them into the freezer for 10-15 minutes or so), and then slice with a large, sharp knife. We recommend running the knife under hot water for a few moments, to heat it up, then carefully wiping the knife dry, before cutting. Repeating this step in between each slice will give you crisp, clean slices. Avoid dragging the knife through the bars when slicing, as this is when things get messy! Add your toppings to each slice after cutting, as you serve, for best results 🙂
This was very straightforward to make and was so delicious. I thought the caramel taste was strong enough that I didn’t use any as a topping, just whipped cream. It held up great and surprisingly looked a lot like the picture. I was pretty nervous since the center didn’t seem like it was going to ever set but it all worked out in the end. Great recipe!
Yay! So happy to hear that these cheesecake bars were delicious, Tori!
made this a few times now (plus the salted caramel sauce). delish!
Delicious! I love all things cheesecake and this salted caramel variety did not disappoint! I will admit, mine did not come out nearly as pretty as the pictures here, but it tasted AMAZING.
These are so good and so easy! They even turned out when my father-in-law turned off the oven halfway through!
I love the idea of no water bath for this cheesecake bars!!! 🙂 May I ask you, what would you recommend to use instead of caramel please?
I honestly don’t recommend anything but caramel to be used for these Salted Caramel Cheesecake Bars. Anything else, and you’re making an entirely different cheesecake! 🙂
Can I make these in a cupcake or muffin tin? I want to give them as a gift for a wedding and want it to be easy for everyone to just grab one and eat.
I haven’t tried that personally, but other reviewers have had success. You would just need to alter the baking time. Good luck!
Is the gram measurement on the sugar accurate (3/4 cup at 250g)?
Nope! It should be 150g! Thank you for bringing that to my attention, it has been corrected!
thanks for the free ultimate guide on cheesecake
I have a query though,
how come the side part of my cheesecake look rough instead of having a smooth surface?
These bars are just divine. I was using up some leftover salted caramel so I only had enough for the filling and just a light drizzle on top after baking, but there’s enough caramel flavour in the bars themselves that they could totally hold their own with no topping. So, so good.
This was one of my first times making cheesecake so I was a bit nervous about when to turn off the oven and crack the door. Mine needed the full 45 minutes of baking to match the description given in the recipe. Once they’d finished cooling, the middle was a pale, even yellow whereas the edges were a speckly white, so I was a bit worried I had done something wrong… but then after chilling them in fridge overnight, the appearance and texture was absolutely perfect!
For the crust, I only had pre-ground crumbs on hand. So I (perhaps naively?) assumed the weight measurement would be the same for both. It turned out that with only 135g of crumbs it was super wet and nowhere near enough to fit into an 8 inch pan, so I kept adding more and more until it reached a consistency I was familiar with for a graham crust. Sadly I forgot to measure how much extra I added, but if you’re working with crumbs from a bag, just be aware that you might need more than 135g!
Anyway, in short: these bars are AMAZING and I will definitely be making them again and again. Thank you Tessa!!
Do you have nutritional information for these?
the first cheesecake I have ever made and the best cheesecake I have ever eaten. I love this recipe so much.