That favorite old-school boozy dessert - Bananas Foster - but in a cheesecake - Caramel Banana Cheesecake with an oatmeal cookie crust.
If you like Bananas Foster, you will love this Caramel Banana Cheesecake. It's all those things, boozy bananas in a brown sugar and caramel sauce, but also, it is a cheesecake....
.. because everything is better when it is knee-deep in a cheesecake 🙂
Do not try not to get too fancy with this cake. Let it be messy and sticky. Not fussy. Banana desserts are not fussy.
Banana desserts are not fussy
I've switched up a typical graham cracker crust for a oatmeal cookie crust. You can use your favourite graham crumb crust if you prefer.. But, but... oatmeal cookies and bananas are just perfect. One small package of Dad's Original Oatmeal cookies will work for the crust. Just pulse the whole bag of the cookies in a food processor until you have fine crumbs.
Ironically, I tend to make this cake in early to mid summer when all the fresh fruit is out there and I could make any kind of fruit based dessert my little hearts desires. But this is a large and crowd pleasing cake. So I usually bust it out for neighbourhood BBQs and casual potlucks.
It's a something for everyone cake. Kids love it. Adults appreciate the fried, boozy bananas... and there is something very nostalgic about this dessert. Maybe it is the bananas and caramel sauce. I'm not sure, but it makes my inner child happy.
- BTW - the inspiration: this Banana Caramel Vodka. A fun and sweet small batch vodka made by Wolfhead Distillery in Amherstburg Ontario. It's a bit more like a liqueur. A good spiced rum will work nicely instead. Of course, you can totally leave out the booze. If you choose to leave it out, add an extra teaspoon of vanilla or rum extract to both the cake and the banana layer.
- Also BTW - the beautiful golden colour of the cake comes from fresh backyard (not my backyard) eggs. Like little sunsets... they had the most deep, orangey yolks. Supermarket eggs will give you a paler cake. Don't worry about it, it will still be delisious.
- And one more thing - I used a water-bath this time, like this cake, which helps reduce and eliminate cracks on top of the cake.. obviously from the pictures it is not completely foolproof, or at least it will not save you from your own impatience - the cracks you see in my pictures are because I did not let the cake completely cool before I took it out of the pan to take its picture. Trust me on the water-bath - if you follow the instructions it will work. Just be sure to let the cake ool before you pop it out of the cake pan. See water-bath instructions here.
- For the water-bath you will need a roasting pan or deep sided baking pan that is big enough to hold the spring-form cake pan. There is a picture of what this looks like here, because I’m useless and completely forgot to take a picture while this cake was in process
This cake takes a some time to firm up. I like to make it the day before so I can leave it in the cake pan in the refrigerator overnight. Remove it from the spring form pan when you are ready to serve it.
Caramel Banana Cheesecake
- For the crust:
- 1 package crunchy oatmeal cookies
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter
- For the cake:
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ¼ cup brown sugar packed
- 3 perfectly ripe bananas sliced
- 2 tablspoons banana caramel vodka or rum
- 4 8oz packages of cream cheese
- 1 cup brown sugar packed
- 2 tablspoons unsalted butter melted
- 5 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-½ tablespoons banana caramel vodka or rum
- caramel topping
- Preheat oven 350 degrees. Grease a 10-in springform pan and cover the outside bottom and halfway up the sides with alluminum foil.
- Crush cookies in a foodprocessor until you have an even crumb. Add the melted butter and pulse to just combine, then dump and press into the bottom of the prepared springform pan. Bake for 12 minutes. Allow to cool before the next step.
- Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Add butter and brown sugar, stirring until melted and bubbling. Add bananas, vodka (or rum) and vanilla. Stir and saute for just a minute or two, until the bananas are heated through and covered in the brown sugar and butter mixture. Pour over the crust. Set aside.
- For the cheesecake, in a standmixer with a paddle attachment, beat cream cheese, scraping down the sides several times, until it is light and fluffy. Add brown sugar and beat until creamy and smooth. Beat in butter. Then beat in the eggs, one at a time. Beat well after each addition. Stir in vanilla and vodka (or rum) and pour over the banana layer in the springform pan.
- Bake cheesecake in a water bath. Place spring-form pan into a large roasting pan and place whole thing in the oven. Carefully fill the roasting pan with boiling water so that it surrounds the cheesecake. Bake for 30 monutes at 350. Then reduce oven to 325 and bake for another 30-40 minutes, until filling puffs up slightly and center is just slightly firm. Remove from oven and water bath and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours before serving, overnight is best.
- For serving, remove cake from springform pan and place on serving platter. Cover top of cake with your favourite caramel topping.