Easy Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars have a cream cheese filling, surrounded with apple blondie bars, and drizzled with caramel topping. No one will be able to resist the creamy cheesecake paired with fresh apples, nuts, and gooey butterscotch chips!
In a large bowl whisk together sugar, eggs, and vegetable oil. Stir in flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. It will be really thick, similar to cookie dough.
Add apples, butterscotch chips, and nuts. Since it is so thick, I ended up using my hands and kind of kneading it in. Don't worry if everything isn't incorporated all the way. It will all bake together when you press it in the pan. Reserve 2 cups and set aside.
Press remaining dough evenly in 9X13 pan. Set aside.
In a small bowl place all cheesecake filling ingredients. Beat until smooth and no lumps remain. Pour over apple dough in pan. Smooth with offset spatula.
Dollop the reserved apple dough over the cheesecake filling using a small spoon. It's okay if there the cheesecake filling is still visible.
Bake 50-55 minutes if using regular flour, 5 minutes longer if using gluten free. If bars are becoming too brown before they are cooked through, loosely tent foil over the top. Insert knife to make sure apple dough is cooked in middle. Cool 15 minutes, then drizzle with caramel topping, if using.
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Can these be frozen?
Yes. Cool the bars completely, and do one of the following:
Cover 9X13" pan of cooled apple bars with plastic wrap. Wrap around the entire pan with plastic wrap, even underneath, to make sure they are well protected in freezer and don't take on any off-putting smells or taste. Cover the top with foil and freeze up to 3 months. OR
Cool apple bars completely and slice into bars. Layer cut bars, laying flat, in a gallon-sized freezer bag with a piece of wax paper or parchment in between the two layers. Close securely and freeze up to 3 months.
Do cheesecake bars need to be refrigerated?
Yes, to store them for longer than 8 hours. Otherwise, wrap the cooled pan securely in foil and leave out at room temperature. If storing longer than 8 hours, make sure the bars have completely cooled before covering and storing in the refrigerator. Adapted from Taste of Home