This decadent caramel pecan cheesecake features a quick and easy creamy caramelized brown sugar cheesecake filling baked in a crisp ginger cookie pecan crust with gooey caramel pecans baked on top! Absolutely no one will know these holiday cheesecake is vegan, dairy free, and contains no eggs!

slice of pecan pie cheesecake on a cooling rack

The Ultimate Caramel Pecan Pie Cheesecake for all eaters

Pecan pie and chocolate pecan pie (let’s face it, pumpkin pie too, of course) get all of the love on Thanksgiving- and for a good reason! They’re downright delicious.

But if we’re being completely honest, I’m more of a cheesecake lover (my vegan chocolate cheesecake and vegan Biscoff cheesecake are two of my favorites! But the classic baked vegan cheesecake will never let you down either!).

So what do we for for the ultimate vegan Thanksgiving dessert? Combine the two for a caramel pecan cheesecake (basically pecan pie in cheesecake form!).

sliced vegan pecan pie cheesecake on a plate

You will be speechless after one bite- this pecan pie cheesecake is creamy, rich, and decadent with the nutty aroma and flavor of roasted sweet pecans throughout. And of course the gooey caramel on top! 

This cheesecake is the epitome of decadence, and is the most welcomed treat after a delicious vegan Thanksgiving dinner so definitely save room!

Pecan Pie Cheesecake Ingredients:

Here are the ingredients you’ll need for this caramel pecan cheesecake recipe! Because vegan brands of cream cheese, yogurt, and dairy free milks can vary so much, I wanted to share a few of my favorite brands that I have used with this recipe. 

  • Pecans: Use the halved pecans.
  • Graham crackers: Because this is a vegan pecan pie cheesecake, I used vegan graham crackers by Annie’s. 
  • Brown sugar: This is the main flavor profile other than pecans in this cheesecake! I highly recommend it for the caramel as well, but there is a refined sugar free substitution below if needed.
  • Vegan butter: I love Miyoko’s for this!
  • Vegan Cream cheese: I recommend using Tofutti or Violife. Miyoko’s is also another good option.
  • Arrowroot starch
  • Dairy free milk: You can use vegan heavy cream, like I did, or substitute in a simple dairy free milk, like coconut milk, almond milk, soy milk, oat milk, or even coconut cream.
  • Dairy free yogurt: I also love using vegan sour cream here for extra richness!
  • Vanilla extract
slice of vegan pecan pie cheesecake

Ingredient substitutions & recommendations:

I’ve also included some swaps to other main ingredients if needed!

  • Vegan graham crackers: You can substitute in Lotus cookies, or for gluten-free, swap in oat flour or use these vegan gluten free graham crackers!
  • Arrowroot starch: Swap in cornstarch.
  • Brown sugar: You can also use coconut sugar for refined sugar free.

Overview: How to make a vegan caramel pecan cheesecake:

This caramel pecan cheesecake is made in three stages: the pecan graham cracker crust, the caramelized brown sugar cheesecake filling, and of course, the lovely gooey and sticky pecan caramel topping!

Top your vegan caramel pecan cheesecake, and enjoy! I like to add a few dollops of homemade vegan whipped cream on top for good measure. 🙂 And the cute little pie cut outs? I used scraps of pie dough that I’ve frozen and my pie cut outs from Williams Sonoma!

5 Tips for making vegan cheesecake:

  • Bring your ingredients to room temperature: You’ll need to allow a few hours for the ingredients to really come to room temperature. This ensures that when you mix everything together, it all combines properly without any clumps!
  • Use a food processor for the filling: You can use a hand mixer, but I find a large food processor so much easier to just quickly blend everything together and pour!
  • Don’t skip the water bath! Cheesecakes like super moist environments, and ovens tend to dry them out. Using a simple water bath (I quite literally just use a jelly roll pan and boiling water placed on the rack below the cheesecake!) ensures that our cheesecakes won’t crack! Then you also don’t need to worry about placing foil around your springform pan to prevent water from coming in. 
  • Toast the pecans: I do this before I stir them into the caramel coating. It adds a really strong and lovely nutty flavor throughout! 
  • Run a butter knife along the edges of the cheesecake: Prior to removing the springform pan, simply run a butter knife along the edges of the cheesecake. Then undo the springform and remove the wall of the pan. 
bitten pecan pie cheesecake

Want to save this recipe for later? Add it to your favorite recipe board on Pinterest!

pinterest pin for pecan pie cheesecake

If you make this recipe, please be sure to leave a comment and a rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ below. This helps others to find the recipes! As always, I absolutely love to see your beautiful creations on Instagram and Pinterest, so be sure to tag me there as well!

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slice of vegan pecan pie cheesecake

Creamy & Rich Vegan Caramel Pecan Cheesecake Recipe

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 5 reviews
  • Author: Britt Berlin
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cooling Time: 240
  • Cook Time: 75
  • Total Time: 6 hours
  • Yield: 16 1x
  • Category: Cheesecake
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

This decadent caramel pecan cheesecake features a quick and easy creamy caramelized brown sugar cheesecake filling baked in a crisp ginger cookie pecan crust with gooey caramel pecans baked on top! Absolutely no one will know these holiday cheesecake is vegan, dairy free, and contains no eggs!


Ingredients

Scale

Ginger Pecan Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups (200 g) ginger spice cookies as crumbs
  • 1/2 cup (65 g) toasted pecans
  • 1/3 cup (87 g) vegan butter, melted

Brown Sugar Cheesecake Batter:

  • 4 8-ounce containers (32 ounces) vegan cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup (240 g) dairy free yogurt or dairy free sour cream, room temperature
  • 1 cup (240 mL) vegan heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) light brown sugar
  • 8 tbsp (80 g) cornstarch or arrowroot starch
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 34 cups boiling water, for water bath

Pecan Filling:

  • 2 cups (260 g) toasted pecan halves
  • 5 tbsp vegan butter
  • 2/3 cup (160 g) light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) vegan heavy cream or coconut cream

Instructions

  1. Prep: Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper. Grease the edges of the pan with a bit of cooking or coconut oil as well, and press parchment paper on the sides of the wall as well. Cheesecake pulls away from the walls when cooling, so this prevents cracking!
  2. Toast the pecans: Preheat the oven to 400F, and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread all of the pecans onto the baking sheet (from the crust and the pecan pie filling). Toast for 7-8 minutes, or until aromatic. Remove from the oven, and set aside to cool for 5 minutes. Keep the oven preheated.
  3. Make the crust: In a food processor, pulse together the ginger cookies and pecans until mixed. Then add in the vegan butter, and pulse again until it becomes a sticky crumb. Press the crumbs onto the bottom of the springform pan and up the walls. Place the pan into the freezer to chill for 5 minutes before baking. Then poke a few holes into the bottom of the crust, and place the springform pan into the oven with a baking sheet underneath it to prevent any drips. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside while you prepare the filling. Keep the oven preheated, but now reduce it to 350F. 
  4. Make the cheesecake filling: In a large food processor, stand mixer with whisk attachment, or large bowl with hand mixer, cream together the cream cheese and dairy free yogurt until smooth. Add in the brown sugar, sugar,  heavy vegan cream, vanilla, and cornstarch. Cream together again until smooth. Pour the cheesecake filling into the springform pan, and smooth the top.
  5. Create the water bath: Be ready to move to the next step immediately after finishing this step. Make sure that you boil the 3-4 cups water prior to pouring the water into the pan. Pour the boiling water into the pan.
  6. Bake the cheesecake: Carefully place the baking sheet into the oven on the low rack. Then place the cheesecake onto a separate baking sheet, and onto the middle rack and quickly close the oven to bake for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will need to continue baking after, but we bake the cheesecake for 30 minutes first BEFORE adding the pecan pie cheesecake so that it bakes evenly and thoroughly. While the cheesecake is baking for its first part, make the pecan pie filling.
  7. Make the pecan caramel topping: In a small saucepan on medium low heat, melt the vegan butter and brown sugar together until the brown sugar is nearly melted (being careful not to burn the sugar. This should take about 3-5 minutes. Then reduce the heat to low, and add in the cinnamon and heavy cream. Continue stirring vigorously until the cream combines with the sugar butter mixture. Add in the toasted pecan halves, and stir to combine.
  8. When the first 30 minutes of baking are done: Carefully remove the cheesecake from the oven, and spoon the pecan pie topping on top of the cheesecake. DON’T turn off the oven. Spread the topping to the edges of the cheesecake.
  9. Bake the pecan pie cheesecake: Place the cheesecake back into the oven to bake for another 45-50 minutes.
  10. Cool: Once baked, turn OFF the oven, and slightly crack the door. Allow the cheesecake to cool in the cracked oven for 1 hour.
  11. Chill the cheesecake: Remove the cheesecake from the oven and allow the cheesecake to cool at room temperature for 15 minutes. Then place the cheesecake into the fridge to chill for 3-4 hours, or overnight.
  12. Top the pecan pie cheesecake: Plate the pecan cheesecake and remove the springform pan sides. Top with vegan caramel, pie cut-outs or vegan whipped cream.
  13. Serve and enjoy! Store any leftover cheesecake in an airtight container and in the fridge for up to 4 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.


Notes

Make ahead: Prepare the pecan pie cheesecake up to 2 days ahead of time, and it will be perfectly moist and rich still.

Pie cut outsI used Williams Sonoma pie cut outs for cute little toppings with leftover vegan pie crust