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Caramel Swirled Cheesecake Bars

  • Total Time: 1 hour 55 minutes
  • Yield: 16 bars 1x




  • 2 ½ cups butter cookie crumbs
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted


  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ stick unsalted butter, cold, cubed
  • ¼ cup bourbon
  • ½ teaspoon flaky sea salt


  • 24 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup sour cream, room temperature
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8 or 9 inch square pan.
  2. Stir together the cookie crumbs and melted butter until well combined. Pour into the buttered pan and press firmly into the bottom and up the sides using a measuring cup for pressure and guidance. Bake about 15 minutes until light golden brown.
  3. While the crust bakes, make the caramel. In a medium saucepan, stir together the sugar and water over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. Continue cooking until the sugar turns a deep amber color, about five minutes. Do not walk away during this time. Remove from the heat and stir in the cream, followed by the butter. Stir until combined, placing back over the heat if necessary. Remove from the heat again and stir in the bourbon and salt. Pour into a bowl to cool.
  4. Make the cheesecake. In a large bowl, whisk together the cream cheese, sour cream, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and bourbon until well combined. This may also be done with a hand or stand mixer. Pour the cheesecake into the baked and slightly cooled crust. Drizzle half of the caramel over the cheesecake. Some of it will sink, some will swirl, all will be delicious!
  5. Bake 50-70 minutes, until the cheesecake is golden brown, set around the edges, and still rather giggly in the center. Tent the cheesecake if it is becoming too brown at any point. Cool two hours at room temperature before placing in the refrigerator to cool completely. Cut into bars with a very sharp knife and serve with extra caramel.
  6. Leftover bars may be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen, individually wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in z zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight.


Recipe adapted from Tasting Table

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes