Turtle Cheesecake Bars are creamy dessert bars with a graham cracker crust and cheesecake filling, topped with caramel, candied pecans, and hot fudge. Try my Turtle Cheesecake and Texas Turtle Sheet Cake for a couple more sweet desserts with the classic turtle-flavored toppings.

Turtle Cheesecake Bars in Pan

Turtle Cheesecake Bars

The combination of chocolate, caramel, and pecans usually means it’s a turtle-flavored dessert. These cheesecake bars are no exception. What sets this turtle dessert apart from the others are the homemade candied pecans. The sweet and crunchy nuts are good enough to eat on their own, but save a few for this dessert!

Pouring Cheesecake into Baking Pan

Turtle Cheesecake Bars Ingredients

Graham Crackers: I used about 2 cups of graham cracker crumbs for this recipe. You can buy graham cracker crumbs or you can crush your own (about 14 sheets of graham crackers for 2 cups crushed).

Room Temperature Ingredients: It’s important to use room temperature ingredients. Make sure the cream cheese, sour cream, and eggs are all at room temperature before combining them for the cheesecake filling.

Superfine Sugar: Also known as caster sugar, the superfine crystals make a difference in this recipe. If you don’t have caster sugar, simply process granulated sugar in a food processor for about 30 seconds. 

Pecans: You can buy pecans already chopped, and you can use regular pecans. However, for the best results, try the candied pecans.

Hot Fudge: Make your own homemade chocolate syrup to drizzle over these bars along with the caramel sauce.

Adding Toppings to Turtle Cheesecake Bars

How to Store Turtle Cheesecake Bars

These bars can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.

Pieces of Turtle Cheesecake Bars on Plates

Can I Freeze Cheesecake Bars?

Yes! With a dessert this rich, it’s hard to get it all eaten at once. But, you don’t want the cheesecake bars to waste either. It’s easy to freeze the bars! I recommend freezing the cheesecake bars without the toppings. To freeze cheesecake bars:

  1. Let the bars cool completely.
  2. Remove the bars from the pan and place them on a plate (cut or uncut). Put the cheesecake (uncovered) in the freezer for about an hour. 
  3. After the hour in the freezer, remove the cheesecake bars and wrap them tightly in plastic wrap.
  4. Place the wrapped cheesecake into a zipped freezer bag or wrap it in aluminum foil. Be sure to label and date the cheesecake. It will last up to 3 months in the freezer. Add the turtle toppings on when ready to serve.
Turtle Cheesecake Bar with Bite Removed

More Delicious Bars

5 from 2 votes

Turtle Cheesecake Bars

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 10 mins
Chill 2 hrs
Total Time 3 hrs 30 mins
Turtle Cheesecake Bars are creamy dessert bars with a graham cracker crust and cheesecake filling, topped with caramel, candied pecans, and hot fudge.

Ingredients

Crust

  • 2 cups (14-16 sheets, 168 g) honey graham crackers, finely crushed
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Filling

  • 4 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • cups (250 g) superfine granulated sugar
  • ½ cup sour cream, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature

Topping

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line a 9×13-inch baking dish with parchment paper.

Crust

  • In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs with the melted butter, mixing well with a fork. (You want every crumb coated in the butter as this will be the glue that holds it together.)
  • Press the graham cracker crust onto the bottom of the lined baking dish. Pat it flat with your hand and then use a kitchen glass to press flatter. Set aside.

Filling

  • Using a handheld mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix cream cheese until creamy and smooth.
  • Beat in the sugar and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add in the sour cream and vanilla. Blend until smooth and creamy. Again, scrape down the sides of the bowl if necessary.
  • With the mixer on low, add in eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated.
  • Pour the cheesecake filling on top of the crust.
  • Bake until the top of the cheesecake turns golden, about 60-70 minutes. Or until the edges of the cheesecake are pulling away from the sides a bit, but the center is still a bit jiggly.
  • Let the cheesecake come to room temperature before chilling it in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours.
  • Top with caramel sauce, candied pecans, and hot fudge. Serve.

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. I made this yesterday for an outside dinner gathering and it was delicious!! Everyone loved it including my “never eats desserts” dad. I highly recommend making the candied pecan recipe to top with. Great recipe, definitely a keeper! (I have to eat gluten free so used gluten free graham cracker crumbs and that worked very well).

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