Basque Pumpkin Cheesecake & Caramel Pecan Topping

This decadent burnt Basque pumpkin cheesecake takes the classic Spanish recipe and gives it an autumnal twist. You’ll want to make this easy and impressive fall dessert all year round.

A slice of basque pumpkin cheesecake topped with a dark caramel sauce with pecan nuts. It is on a light grey plate.

This version of Basque cheesecake has a subtle sweetness and spice from the pumpkin flavors and is served with a decadent gooey (optional but VERY recommended) caramel pecan sauce.

If you love the classic burnt Spanish cheesecake, make this pumpkin spice variation.

If you love cheesecake, check out my easy, no-bake pumpkin cheesecake too.

And if you love pumpkin desserts, check out my pumpkin spice bundt cake and pumpkin pie twists. Serve it with a mug of hot spiced vanilla custard milk.

Equipment Needed

  • Hand mixer or stand mixer
  • 9-inch springform cake pan
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Heavy saucepan

Ingredients

An overhead shot showing all of the ingredients needed to make burnt Basque pumpkin spice cheesecake.

For The Cheesecake

  • Cream Cheese | at room temperature — this takes 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Granulated Sugar | you can substitute granulated cane sugar with maple sugar (that’s a recipe link).
  • Eggs + Egg Yolk | eggs should be at room temperature, and this takes about 30 minutes.
  • Heavy Cream | minimum 30% fat.
  • All-Purpose Flour | sifted and then scooped to break up any lumps and make flour airier and lighter.
  • Pumpkin Puree | plain pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie puree; you may substitute with other squash varieties or sweet potatoes.
  • Cinnamon | even if you do not add the other spices below, do not skip the cinnamon.
  • Ground Cloves | grinding your own cloves is really best; the flavor difference and aroma are very different to pre-ground.
  • Nutmeg | as with cloves, micro planing your own nutmeg is very different from the pre-ground stuff and is highly recommended.
  • Vanilla Extract | you may substitute with other extracts if you like.
  • Salt | just a pinch.

You can skip the individual spices and use a store-bought pumpkin spice blend (I’ll give you a quick recipe for homemade pumpkin spice in the recipe card notes too).

For The Caramel Pecan Sauce:

There is only one addition (butter), but the sauce uses the same ingredients you will need to make the cake.

  • Granulated Sugar
  • Heavy Cream
  • Unsalted Butter
  • Chopped Pecans

You may choose to omit the nuts or substitute the pecans with walnuts or peanuts.

See the recipe card for quantities.

An overhead view of Basque pumpkin cheesecake with caramel pecan topping. It is on a marble cake platter missing a few slices.

Instructions (Step-by-Step With Photos)

Basque pumpkin cheesecake comes together very easily with few, common ingredients. Make it the day before serving to allow it to set fully and properly in the refrigerator first. It needs at least 12 hours.

For The Basque Pumpkin Cheesecake:

Showing how to line a pan for basque cheesecake. The parchment paper is overlapping and sticking out a few inches above the cake pan.

Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).

Lightly grease a 9-inch springform cake pan with oil or butter, and line it with overlapping parchment paper.

Ensuring that the paper sticks up over the top of the pan by 2-3 inches for easy removal of the cake after baking.

Set aside.

Stainless steel mixing bowl (from a stand mixer) with beaten cream cheese and white granulated sugar.

Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until very smooth and creamy.

Add the sugar and continue beating on high speed until the sugar is dissolved, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Stainless steel mixing bowl (from a stand mixer) with beaten cream cheese, white granulated sugar, and all of the eggs.

On low speed, add the eggs one at a time, including the yolk, ensuring each egg is well mixed before adding the next.

Then pour in the heavy cream and mix until well combined.

A stainless steel bowl showing the Basque cheesecake mixture with flour being added into it.

Sift the flour into the cheesecake batter and mix on low speed until no lumps are visible.

A stainless steel bowl showing the Basque cheesecake mixture with the pumpkin, and pumpkin spices being added.

A stainless steel bowl showing the Basque cheesecake mixture after all of the ingredients have been added. It is a pale orange color from the pumpkin, spices, and egg yolks.

Add the pumpkin puree, cinnamon, ground cloves, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla extract.

Mix thoroughly until all ingredients are incorporated.

The final cheesecake batter poured into the cake pan.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan lined with parchment paper and place it on a large baking sheet.

What a finished burnt Basque pumpkin cheesecake looks like fresh out of the oven.

Bake in the preheated oven for 60 minutes until the cheesecake is dark and golden but still slightly jiggly in the center when nudged.

For The Caramel Pecan Topping:

A saucepan filled with white granulated sugar.

In a large saucepan, place the granulated sugar over medium-low heat.

Melted sugar, turning a dark golden brown color from the heat.

Allow the sugar to slowly melt without whisking until it transforms into a light golden color.

Thick heavy cream melting into the hot sugar.

Carefully remove the saucepan from heat and pour in the heavy cream and a pinch of salt. Be cautious as the mixture may foam up. Stir well to combine.

Butter melting into the caramel sauce.

Add the butter to the saucepan and continue stirring until fully melted and incorporated.

Chopped pecans added into the dark golden brown caramel sauce.

A spoon full of finished caramel pecan sauce for the burnt Basque cheesecake.

Finally, stir in the chopped pecans, and your homemade pecan caramel sauce is ready to be served.

An overhead view of Basque pumpkin cheesecake with caramel pecan topping. It is on a marble cake platter missing a few slices.

Hint: Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature before starting!

Substitutions & Variations

  • Gluten-Free | Your gluten-free all-purpose flour works just as easily in this recipe.
  • Plain Basque Cheesecake | Leave the pumpkin puree and spices out and enjoy a plain cheesecake.
  • Basque Sweet Potato Cheesecake | Swap out the pumpkin for sweet potato instead.
  • Use any culinary pumpkin or squash variety here, it will be delicious.

Storage & Freezing

Refrigeration: This cake will last up to 4 days when stored in an airtight container in your fridge. It’s important to keep this cake chilled at all times since it is temperature-sensitive.

Freezing: slice the cake and wrap each piece in parchment paper and then plastic wrap before freezing. To thaw, remove a slice from the freezer and let it thaw either in the refrigerator overnight or on your countertop for an hour.

Top Tips

Cheesecake Tips:

  • Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature before starting.
  • Use a stand-up mixer for best results.
  • Beat the cream cheese until it’s completely smooth before adding the sugar.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, making sure each egg is well mixed before adding the next.
  • Sift the flour into the batter to avoid lumps.
  • Use a large baking sheet to catch any spills or drips from the cheesecake while it bakes in the oven.
  • Let the cheesecake cool completely before refrigerating it overnight. This allows it to be set properly.
  • Use a wet knife to slice the cheesecake for clean cuts.

Caramel Pecan Sauce Tips:

  • Be careful when melting the sugar, as it can burn easily. Keep an eye on it, and don’t stir it until it starts to melt.
  • Slowly melt the sugar over medium-low heat to prevent it from burning.
  • Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan to prevent hot spots and uneven heating.
  • Stir the mixture well after adding the cream to prevent it from foaming up.
  • Use unsalted butter in the sauce to control the saltiness level.
  • Toasting the pecans before adding them to the sauce adds extra flavor and texture.

Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:

An overhead view of burnt Basque pumpkin cheesecake with caramel pecan topping. It is on a marble cake platter missing a few slices.

Basque Pumpkin Cheesecake & Caramel Pecan Topping

Burnt Basque cheesecake with a pumpkin spice twist, served with a decadent caramel pecan sauce. A perfect fall and Thanksgiving dessert.
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Spanish
Keyword: autumn cake, fall dessert, pumpkin spice, thanksgiving dessert
Servings: 12
Calories: 490kcal
Author: Jana Dziak

Equipment

  • Hand Mixer or Stand Mixer
  • 9-inch springform cake pan
  • Baking sheet
  • Parchment paper
  • Heavy saucepan

Ingredients

For The Cheesecake:

  • 2 lbs cream cheese
  • 1 ½ cups granulated white sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 ½ cups heavy cream
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoons cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground clove
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • pinch of sea salt

For The Caramel Pecan Sauce:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 4 tablespoons butter unsalted
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • pinch of sea salt

Instructions

For The Cheesecake:

  • Get all of your ingredients to room temperature. This is especially important for the cream cheese and eggs.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  • Lightly grease a 9-inch springform cake pan with oil or butter, and line it with overlapping parchment paper.
    Ensure that the paper sticks up over the top of the pan by 2-3 inches for easy removal of the cake after baking. Set aside.
  • Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat the cream cheese until very smooth and creamy.
  • Add the sugar and continue beating on high speed until the sugar is dissolved, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • On low speed, add the eggs one at a time, including the yolk, ensuring each egg is well mixed before adding the next.
  • Then pour in the heavy cream and mix until well combined.
  • Sift the flour into the cheesecake batter and mix on low speed until no lumps are visible.
  • Add the pumpkin puree, cinnamon, ground cloves, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla extract. Mix thoroughly until all ingredients are incorporated.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan lined with parchment paper and place it on a large baking sheet.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 60 minutes until the cheesecake is dark and golden but still slightly jiggly in the center when nudged.
  • Let the cheesecake cool completely before then refrigerating it overnight. This allows it to be set properly.

For The Caramel Pecan Sauce:

  • The sauce will be made the next day when the Basque cheesecake has set properly and is ready to serve.
  • In a large saucepan, place the granulated sugar over medium-low heat.
  • Allow the sugar to slowly melt without whisking until it transforms into a light golden color.
  • Carefully remove the saucepan from heat and pour in the heavy cream. Add a pinch of salt. Be cautious as the mixture may foam up. Stir well to combine.
  • Add the unsalted butter to the saucepan and continue stirring until fully melted and incorporated.

Notes

Storage & Freezing:
Refrigeration: This cake will last up to 4 days when stored in an airtight container in your fridge. It’s important to keep this cake chilled at all times since it is temperature-sensitive.
Freezing: slice the cake and wrap each piece in parchment paper and then plastic wrap before freezing. To thaw, remove a slice from the freezer and let it thaw either in the refrigerator overnight or on your countertop for an hour.
TOP TIPS
Cheesecake Tips:
  • Make sure all the ingredients are at room temperature before starting.
  • Use a stand-up mixer for best results.
  • Beat the cream cheese until it’s completely smooth before adding the sugar.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, making sure each egg is well mixed before adding the next.
  • Sift the flour into the batter to avoid lumps.
  • Use a large baking sheet to catch any spills or drips from the cheesecake while it bakes in the oven.
  • Let the cheesecake cool completely before refrigerating it overnight. This allows it to be set properly.
  • Use a wet knife to slice the cheesecake for clean cuts.
Caramel Pecan Sauce Tips:
  • Be careful when melting the sugar, as it can burn easily. Keep an eye on it, and don’t stir it until it starts to melt.
  • Slowly melt the sugar over medium-low heat to prevent it from burning.
  • Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan to prevent hot spots and uneven heating.
  • Stir the mixture well after adding the cream to prevent it from foaming up.
  • Use unsalted butter in the sauce to control the saltiness level.
  • Toasting the pecans before adding them to the sauce adds extra flavor and texture.

Nutrition

Calories: 490kcal | Carbohydrates: 53g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 148mg | Sodium: 600mg | Potassium: 343mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 48g | Vitamin A: 4041IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 316mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Recipe Rating




5 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This cheesecake has all of my favorite flavors of autumn. The caramel sauce is definitely a must. Thanks for the amazing recipe.

  2. 5 stars
    This was so good! I can’t wait to make it in the fall. It’s perfect for Thanksgiving or a fall dinner party.

  3. 5 stars
    The combination of the pumpkin and caramel looks so fantastic. The texture is spot on, too. I’m definitely making this one.

  4. 5 stars
    Soooo good! I’ll definitely be making this again. It combines all my favorite fall desserts into one…cheesecake, pumpkin pie, and pecan pie.

  5. 5 stars
    I tried this recipe, and it’s absolutely divine! The creamy texture and rich pumpkin taste make it the perfect fall dessert, but honestly, it’s so good I’ll be making it all year round! Highly recommend giving this recipe a try!