Dulce de Leche Cheesecake . . . sweet and creamy, this decadent cheesecake is perfect for caramel lovers!
I am a big fan of both caramel and cheesecake, so it’s no surprise that I loved how this recipe turned out. I hope you’ll give it a try!
Is dulce de leche the same as caramel?
Have you ever tried dulce de leche? It’s similar to caramel sauce, but is usually thicker, and it is made with cooked milk and sugar instead of melted sugar and cream. They do taste pretty similar, so I use the terms interchangeably for this cheesecake recipe.
I made this dulce de leche cheesecake for Christmas Eve, and it was a hit with everyone!
Every bite is sweet, rich, creamy, and absolutely mouthwatering. The cinnamon in the crust is a perfect compliment to the caramel flavor, so don’t leave it out. It’s a perfect crunchy and buttery base to hold the sweet creamy filling.
I usually make my own dulce de leche by cooking a can of sweetened condensed milk in a saucepan over medium low heat till it caramelizes and turns light brown. But this time around I used a can of premade dulce de leche. The can is a real time saver, but truth be told, I like the homemade version better.
If you are a caramel lover, this cheesecake is perfect for you. Not only does it have layers of caramel in the filling, you garnish it with more dulce de leche when you serve it. So yummy!
This is a perfect dessert to “wow” your dinner guests, it makes a beautiful presentation with the caramel drizzled over the top. And of course it is sinfully delicious!
HOW TO MAKE DULCE DE LECHE CHEESECAKE
To skip my tips and just see the full detailed recipe card, scroll to the bottom of the post.
Ingredients needed for the crust:
- butter (I use regular salted butter in all my baking.)
- sugar (Adds a bit of sweetness and helps the crust brown, but you can omit it if you want a crust that is less sweet.)
- ground cinnamon (I don’t always add cinnamon to my cheesecake crusts, but for this recipe I think it’s a must!)
- graham crackers (I buy the crackers and make my own crumbs in a food processor, but you can buy premade graham cracker crumbs if you prefer.)
Ingredients needed for the filling:
- dulce de leche (You can make your own or buy a can. It is sometimes on the Mexican aisle of the grocery store, but sometimes it is by the sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk in the baking aisle.)
- white chocolate chips (They add a rich, sweet flavor, and also help the cheesecake set up.I recommend using a good quality name brand white chocolate.)
- heavy whipping cream (or regular cream, but I haven’t tried it with half & half cream)
- full fat cream cheese (Light cream cheese doesn’t work as well for this recipe, you end up with a softer set that is harder to slice. Your cream cheese must be softened to room temperature, or you will end up with lumpy cheesecake. It’s best to let it sit several hours on the counter to soften evenly. I don’t recommend trying to soften it up in the microwave at the last minute.)
- vanilla extract
- large eggs (Your eggs need to be at room temperature. Let them sit on the counter for a few hours, or place them in a bowl of warm water to speed up the process.)
- PREPARE THE CRUST: Grind up your crackers till you have about 1 1/2 cups of crumbs. Stir in the remaining ingredients, and press the mixture into the bottom and slightly up the sides of a 9″ springform pan.
- PREPARE THE FILLING: Melt together the white chocolate and cream in the microwave in a glass bowl. Stir every thirty seconds to prevent overheating. Set aside and let cool.
While the chocolate mixture is cooling, preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
Beat the cream cheese in a mixing bowl till smooth and creamy. Gradually beat in the cooled chocolate mixture and vanilla extract, scraping the sides of the bowl often. On low speed, beat in the eggs just till mixture is well combined.
- ASSEMBLE CHEESECAKE: Pour about a cup of the filling into a small bowl. Stir in 3/4 cup of the dulce de leche till mixture is blended well.
Alternately pour the plain filling and caramel filling into the prepared crust, ending with the caramel filling. Set aside about 2 tablespoons of the dulce de leche, then drizzle the rest over the top of the filling. Swirl with a knife.
- BAKE: I like to place my springform pan on a cookie sheet that has been lined with foil. It makes for easier cleanup because butter from the crust tends to leak out of my springform pan.
Bake the cheesecake at 300 degrees for about an hour. The edges will be set, but the middle will be jiggly. Turn off the oven, and let the cheesecake sit in the oven for another hour. This allows the cheesecake to continue baking without cracking on the top.
- COOL: Let the cheesecake cool completely, then chill for a few hours. You can serve it cold or at room temperature. Drizzle individual slices with the reserved dulce de leche.
HOW TO STORE DULCE DE LECHE CHEESECAKE:
Because of the dairy and eggs, it is best to store any leftover cheesecake in the refrigerator. Cover it tightly to prevent it from drying out. It will last for at least 3-5 days in the refrigerator.
From the buttery crust to dulce de leche drizzle, every bite of this cheesecake is scrumptious. Enjoy!
Love cheesecake? Here are a few more incredible cheesecake recipes to try:
- Almond Joy Cheesecake
- Easy No-Bake Cherry Cheesecake
- Vanilla Bean Cheesecake
- Mini Oreo Cheesecakes with Chocolate Mousse
DULCE DE LECHE CHEESECAKE RECIPE
- 6 Tbsp butter, melted
- 3 Tbsp sugar
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 10 whole crackers)
- 1 (13oz) can dulce de leche
- 2 cups white chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 2 (8oz) pkgs cream cheese, softened
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 4 large eggs, room temp and lightly beaten
- For the crust: Combine the sugar, cinnamon and butter. Add crumbs and mix well. Press into bottom of a springform pan. Set aside.
- For the filling: Preheat oven to 300. Combine cream and white chocolate in a glass bowl. Microwave till melted and smooth, stirring every 30 seconds. Cool for 15 minutes.
- Beat cream cheese in large mixing bowl until fluffy. Beat in cooled chocolate mixture and vanilla. Lightly whisk in eggs till well combined. Take 3/4 cup of Dulce le leche and stir it into 1 cup of the cheesecake mixture.
- Alternately spoon the plain cheesecake and dulce le leche mixtures onto the crust, ending with the dulce de leche mixture. Drizzle all but 2 Tbsp of the caramel over the top of the cheesecake. Swirl with a knife.
- Bake at 300° for one hour or until edges are set but center wiggles slightly. Turn off the oven and let it sit in there for at least an hour. Remove and cool completely.
- To serve, garnish with reserved 2 Tbsp of caramel.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 346Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 97mgSodium: 171mgCarbohydrates: 32gFiber: 1gSugar: 24gProtein: 5g