Boy are you in for a treat with this Salted Caramel Cheesecake! If you're a 'sweet and salty' fiend like I am, this will be your new favourite cheesecake! I use this glaze for a Salted Caramel and Chocolate Tart that was one of our best sellers in the bakery, then one day I tried it on top of a baked cheesecake and the result was just... Mwuah! There are so many flavours going on here, the subtle tang of the cheesecake, the super sweet caramel, the little nuggets of sea salt that burst in your mouth and the dark chocolate on top just rounding everything off - it's heavenly!
What is a Baked Cheesecake?
A lot of people don't realize there are two distinct kinds of cheesecake - baked and unbaked. The most common kind of cheesecake is unbaked, and that's probably the kind you're most used to. But if you've ever had a New York Cheesecake - that is baked! Baked cheesecakes are more firm and have a kind of crumbly 'melt in the mouth' thing going. Unbaked cheesecakes tend to be more silky and creamy. Both are utterly delicious! You could technically put this salted caramel glaze on an unbaked cheesecake, but I wouldn't recommend it as unbaked cheesecakes tend to be sweeter than baked ones, and this glaze really needs a less sweet base to balance it out.
Tips on the Salted Caramel Glaze
When making the glaze you have to work quite quickly, so it helps to measure everything out in advance so you're not fumbling to measure things at speed - especially since the caramel you're dealing with will be very hot.
It's important to sieve the icing sugar before adding it to the caramel, this stops any large lumps from forming. If there are lumps, just keep stirring and squishing the lumps against the side of the pot with your spoon, they will eventually smooth out.
If the glaze seems too runny when you're ready to pour, just keep stirring for a few minutes, it will thicken as it cools down.
I really recommend you don't skip the chocolate decoration on top. This cheesecake is delicious on its own, but the dark chocolate just gives it something extra special! Also make sure you use a dark chocolate as the bitterness against the caramel is what makes it so magical. A milk or semi-sweet chocolate would add to the sweetness instead of balancing it.
I simply melted the chocolate in the microwave at 30 second intervals and then put it in a piping bag and snipped a small hole in the end to make the pattern here. But you could easily just spoon the chocolate over or even to a 'Jackson Pollock' style.
Dessert to Impress
This is certainly not the easiest recipe in my collection, there are a lot of steps to pull together - but it sure is a showstopper and is a great dessert for dinner parties or anywhere you're trying to impress!
Salted Caramel Cheesecake
- 9 inch cake pan
For the Cheesecake Base
- 1 ¼ cups Graham Cracker Crumbs (crushed digestive biscuits in the UK)
- ½ stick Salted Butter
For the Cheesecake
- ½ cup White Sugar (caster sugar in the UK)
- 4 cups Cream Cheese (room temperature)
- 3 tablespoon Cornstarch (cornflour)
- 2 Eggs
- ½ cup Whipping Cream
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
For the Salted Caramel Glaze
- ⅓ cup White Sugar (caster sugar in the UK)
- ⅛ cup Golden/Yellow Sugar (light brown sugar)
- ⅛ cup Dark Corn Syrup (golden syrup)
- ½ cup Whipping Cream
- 2 tablespoon Salted Butter
- ½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 teaspoon Sea Salt (coarse)
- 1 ⅕ cups Icing Sugar
- 100 g Dark Chocolate
Make the Base
- Melt the butter and mix it into the crushed graham crackers
- Pour the mixture into your cake pan and smush it down with your hands until it's packed tightly
Make the Cheesecake
- Preheat oven to 350°F
- Whisk together the cream cheese, sugar and cornflour until creamy
- Add the egg and mix until combined
- Slowly pour in the cream, while continuing to whisk
- Add vanilla and whip everything for another minute
- Pour into your cake pan smooth the mixture out. Hit the pan on your counter a few times to get rid of any air bubbles
- Bake for 45 minutes. When it's ready the edges should be slightly turning golden and the middle of the cheesecake should still have a slight wobble.
- Let it cool completely in the pan for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight
Make the Salted Caramel Glaze
- In a small pan gently heat together the sugars and the syrup, just until the sugar has melted
- Add the butter, cream and vanilla and give it a good stir until everything is combined
- Bring it to a boil and let it bubble for 1 minute
- Remove from the heat and stir in the salt immediately
- Sift the icing sugar and then add to the salted caramel. Stir together, working out any lumps of icing sugar by pressing them against the side of the pan with your spoon
- Once it's smooth, pour over the cheesecake immediately (while still in the cake pan) as it will set quite quickly. You may not want to use all of the glaze, depending on how thick you want the salted caramel to be on top of the cheeseccake. Gently tease the glaze to the very edge of the cheesecake to make sure the top is completely covered.
- Once the caramel glaze has completely cooled, melt the dark chocolate and decorate the top of the cheesecake.