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Turtle Cheesecake

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Do you love cheesecake?  Do you love caramel and pecans?  Do you love chocolate?  Well if your answer is yes to all three questions, you’re gonna love this delectable cheesecake!  A friend of mine asked me to make a Turtle Cheesecake for him, and I created this one, experimenting with two different caramel toppings.  Both toppings are great…you can take your pick when you make it for yourself.

Here’s how I made it…

First I made the crust…

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I crushed up some graham crackers and placed them in a medium bowl, then added some sugar and mixed the two together…

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Next I added some melted butter…

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And mixed the butter and graham crackers together and pressed the mixture into the bottom and partially up the sides of a springform pan…

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Then I baked the crust for a few minutes until it was set, then I set it aside to cool…

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I placed a cookie sheet on the bottom oven rack in my preheated oven and filled it about half way full of water…

Next I made the filling…

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First I placed a whole lot of softened cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer, and whisked it on medium speed with the whisk attachment, until it was real creamy and free of all lumps…

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Then I added some wonderful sweetened condensed milk…yum… and mixed the two together real good…

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Next I added some eggs, sugar and pure vanilla…

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I mixed it on medium speed until all ingredients were well incorporated and the mixture was smooth and creamy, and poured it over my graham cracker crust…

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Then I gently shook the springform pan, to remove any air bubbles and level the filling…

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Next, I placed the pan on my top oven rack, over the pan of water…

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And I baked it until the cheesecake was just almost set in the center, (barely jiggly) and removed it from the oven.  I set it aside to cool, in a place free of drafts.  After the cheesecake cooled for about 5 minutes, I ran a knife around the edges of the cheesecake and left it to finish cooling…

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Once the cheesecake cooled, I released the springform pan and removed it from the cheesecake…Does this look creamy or what?

Okay, next I did the topping.  Remember how I mentioned earlier, that I made this cheesecake twice, and used a different caramel topping each time?  Well, now I will explain the toppings….

Topping #1

Okay, for topping #1, I used that wonderful sweetened condensed milk.  Yum!  Here’s what I did…

turtlecheesecake2 - 27First I removed the label from a can of sweetened condensed milk…

turtlecheesecake2 - 26And I placed the can of milk in a large pot of boiling water, making sure there was at least two inches of water over the can at all times.  I boiled the can for about 1 1/2 hours, then placed it in the freezer to completely cool.  It is important to never open a can of hot milk.  

turtlecheesecake2 - 31This is what the cooked and cooled milk looks like.  It turns into a wonderful caramel!! 

Okay, so this was my first caramel topping.  Now I’ll show you the second caramel topping I used.

Topping #2

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You got it…Smucker’s Salted Caramel Topping.  Oh my goodness…a friend of mine turned me on to this wonderful stuff.  Amazing!  It’s my only “go to” caramel topping in a jar these days…

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Next I sprinkled the top of the cheesecake with some toasted pecans, and drizzled a small amount of chocolate on the top and a whole lot of caramel.

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My friends, if you love cheesecake and caramel, you’re gonna love this wonderful creamy cheesecake!

Make it and enjoy it!!

Cindy

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Turtle Cheesecake


  • Author: Cindy Gibbs @ My Country Table
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 50
  • Total Time: 70

Ingredients

For the crust

  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

For the filling

  • 4 packages, 8 ounces each, softened cream cheese
  • 4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk

For topping #1 option

  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • Chocolate syrup
  • 1 cup pecan pieces, toasted

For topping #2 option

  • 1 jar Smucker’s Salted Caramel topping
  • Chocolate syrup
  • 1 cup pecan pieces, toasted

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees
  2. Position the top oven rack in the middle of the oven. Place a cookie sheet on the bottom oven rack. Pull the rack out, fill the cookie sheet half full with hot water and gently push the rack back into place.

For the crust

  1. Grease the bottom of a springform pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together the butter, graham cracker crumbs and sugar. Press the mixture into the bottom and half way up the sides of the springform pan. Place the springform pan in the oven and bake for 5 minutes, just long enough to set the crust. Remove the springform pan from the oven and allow the crust to cool completely while making the filling.

For the filling

  1. Place the softened cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer using the whisk attachment. Mix on medium speed for about 3 minutes until the cream cheese is very creamy and free of all lumps.
  2. Add the sweetened condensed milk and mix for about 1 minute on medium speed. Add the vanilla, eggs and sugar and mix until incorporated.
  3. Pour the mixture into the crust filled springform pan. Gently shake the pan to level out the filling and remove any air bubbles.
  4. Place the springform pan on the middle oven rack, over top of the cookie sheet on the bottom rack. Bake for approximately 45 minutes or until the cheesecake is slightly jiggly in the center.
  5. Remove from oven and cool on a counter away from drafts for about 5 minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edges of the pan. Let cheesecake set at room temperature until completely cool.

For topping #1 option

  1. Before turning oven off, spread the pecans on a cookie sheet and place in the oven for about 5 minutes to toast. Watch them closely. As soon as you can smell them, remove them.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove the paper from the can of milk and carefully lower the can of milk into the boiling water. Keep the water boiling, and boil for about 1 1/2 hours. Remove the can of milk from the water and place in a freezer for at least an hour before opening.
  3. Drizzle some chocolate syrup over the top of the cheesecake, using the amount you desire. Drizzle the about two thirds of the can of caramel milk over the top, followed by the pecans.

For topping #2 option

  1. Before turning oven off, spread the pecans on a cookie sheet and place in the oven for five minutes to toast. Watch carefully. When you can smell them, remove them.
  2. Drizzle chocolate syrup over the top of the cheesecake, using the amount you desire.
  3. Drizzle about 1/2 – 2/3 of the jar of Smucker’s Salted Caramel topping over the top, followed by the toasted pecans.
  4. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Notes

  • This cheesecake will hold up well for one week in the refrigerator.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 12

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