This caramel apple cheesecake was a dessert recipe entry in our 3-Course Recipe Contest with So Delicious. It was submitted by reader Nancy Diana, who says, “it’s a lovely, showstopper comfort dessert.” Today I’m giving the post a big update to make it more accessible to all of you.
A tarte tatin is a French upside-down pastry in which the fruit (usually apples) are caramelized before the tart is baked. It’s baked in the skillet and then (carefully!) inverted for a wonderfully, rustic upside-down dessert.
From what I’ve read, tarte tatin desserts are usually baked with a puff pastry or shortbread crust, but Nancy uses a pie crust to make this caramel apple cheesecake version. If you opt to use dairy-free puff pastry, cut one sheet into a 10-inch round.
Special Diet Notes: Caramel Apple Cheesecake
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally gluten-free, optionally nut-free, peanut-free, optionally soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian.
- 2 Granny smith apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
- 3 Macintosh apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
- 1 pint (473mL) dairy-free vanilla coconut creamer (like So Delicious), shaken
- 1 8-ounce tub dairy-free cream cheese alternative
- 3 tablespoons firmly-packed brown sugar
- Zest of 1 orange
- 1 uncooked dairy-free pie crust (gluten-free, if needed)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- ¼ cup dairy-free vanilla or hazelnut coconut creamer (like So Delicious)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla or hazelnut extract
- Pour the creamer into a 9-inch cast iron skillet, and bring to a simmer. Layer in the apples in concentric circles. Cook for 5 minutes turning once; leaving the nice sides of apples facing down. When they are slightly soft, place a lid over the mixture, slightly ajar and drain the liquid into a mixing bowl, you may have up to 1 cup liquid.
- Add the cream cheese alternative, brown sugar, and zest to the mixing bowl. Beat with a hand mixer until smooth. Spoon this mixture over the apples, and spread to cover. It doesn't have to be neat; this is a rustic dish. Cool to room temperature.
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
- Roll out the pie crust to 1-inch wider than the skillet. Place crust over the filling and tuck in the pastry.
- Place the skillet on the center rack with a baking sheet underneath to catch any spills. Bake until the crust is golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes.
- Let cool in the skillet for 30 minutes.
- Run a knife around the edge to loosen. Place a flat serving dish wider than the pan inverted over the pan. Invert carefully and quickly to catch any hot liquids. (wear oven mitts).
- Put the sugar in a small saucepan and drizzle the water over top. Place the pan over medium to medium-high heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir to melt the sugar then do not touch the mixture as it boils rapidly. Boil for 8 to 10 minutes or until it is a deep golden color or registers 250ºF on a candy thermometer.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the creamer and extract.
- Drizzle over the caramel apple cheesecake tarte tatin. Optionally serve with a scoop of dairy-free vanilla ice cream!
Everything about this dessert makes me want to dig right in, especially that gooey caramel!