Pecan Praline Cheesecake

Here we go y’all.

I’m back and I’m motivated.

The reason I started this blog was out of sure passion.

Passion for food, passion for writing, passion for story-telling, passion for life, passion for family…I guess you could say I’m a passionate person 😉

This past year has been kind of crazy/interesting/a roller coaster ride is how I would describe it.

Earlier in the year, I had my heart ripped out of my chest, stomped on, and broken by a guy whose name doesn’t even matter to me now.

Typical.

I started dating someone a few weeks ago.

This past Sunday wasn’t the best day if ya know what I mean.

I’m not going to go into details.

I really, really, really like this guy.

I mean, EXTREMELY.

See those all caps? Mhhhhm I don’t mess around 😉

And no, I don’t fall fast and hard for every guy I meet.

In fact, it was super hard for me to open up to anyone for the longest time.

This time though…this time was different.

I’ve never felt so comfortable with someone in my life…dating wise.

I know, i know, dating can be scary, nerve-wrecking, especially when you start to really like someone.

But not for me. I get super excited.

I truly have to say, I am sooooooooo proud of the woman that I have become.

I have a huge heart.

Especially when it comes to respecting another person’s life situation/feelings/what they have been or are going through.

I’ve learned that sometimes someone may be going through something in their life that they are struggling with.

So, I don’t judge. I’ve been through my hell.

Not to say it doesn’t hurt when things crumble, I mean…I’m human.

Butttttttttttt I can’t fault that person.

Unfortunately, I spent my time chasing the wrong guy last time and now I don’t have the energy left to chase the absolutely, without a doubt, right one. It’s also my turn for someone to come after me.

I deserve it. I’m worth it. I can also make a killer cheesecake 😉

Anyway, y’all know I’m a dessert person and one date night, we shared this amazing pecan praline cheesecake.

Y’all…pralines are my fave and let me tell you…there were chunks of sweet pecans inside of this cheesecake.

I died.

Project!

Y’all know I’m a crust type of gal.

Y’all…this crust. Well…this crust is 100!

I just can’t even begin to tell you.

And then there is this perfect creamy cheesecake filling.

 Now, I didn’t put pecans inside this cheesecake but….the topping.

Oh my TEXAS!

It’s over the top…basically everything you love about a chewy pecan praline.

I mean, I have absolutely no words.

I believe this is what dreams are made of.

I’m also pretty sure this is what heaven tastes like.

I think I really channeled all of my emotions into this damn cheesecake.

I don’t have any regrets about this cheesecake…none at all.

I think I’m in love.

I’m also 100% positive that if someone were to marry me based on my ability to make cheesecake…I’m a shoe in. 😉

Pecan Praline Cheesecake
Author: 
Recipe type: cheesecake
Cuisine: dessert, sweets
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
A perfectly crispy honey graham cracker crust with a sweet, smooth cream cheese filling, topped with a pecan praline sauce that is out of this world!
Ingredients
  • For the crust:
  • 2 c. honey graham cracker crumbs
  • ½ c. melted coconut oil
  • For the filling:
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 16 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • ¼ c. coconut milk (or regular milk, coconut milk is all I had on hand)
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 T. mexican vanilla extract
  • For the pecan praline topping:
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter
  • 1 c. light brown sugar
  • ½ c. heavy whipping cream
  • ½ t. salt
  • 1¼ c. pecans, toasted and roughly chopped
  • 2 t. mexican vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a large pie pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix the crust ingredients together until full moistened and combined.
  3. Press the crust mixture into the pie plate.
  4. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until set and golden brown around the edges.
  5. Remove the crust from the oven and let cool. Lower the temperature to 300 degrees F.
  6. For the filling, beat together the brown sugar and cream cheese until smooth.
  7. Add in the milk, eggs, and vanilla and mix well. Spread the filling evenly into the baked crust.
  8. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until the middle is no long jiggly. Let the cheesecake cool completely.
  9. For the pecan praline topping, combine the butter, brown sugar, heavy whipping cream, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat.
  10. Bring the mixture to a slow boil and cook for 3 minutes until the sugar is dissolved and a smooth caramel sauce forms.
  11. Remove the sauce from the heat and stir in the toasted pecans and vanilla.
  12. Let cool for about 10 minutes and then pour the warm pecan praline mixture over the cooled cheesecake.
  13. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight if preferred before cutting slices with a sharp knife.
  14. Enjoy!

 MANGIA!!!

Secret Recipe Club

Lately, I’ve been pretty focused.

Work and school are consuming the majority of my time.

However, I have not let food take a back seat to my crazy life.

Nope.

We all know what happens when food isn’t a priority.

In my case, I get stressed, lose weight, become irritable, start snapping at people, and get the overall “hangries.”

And nobody wants that.

So, Secret Recipe Club is just what I need to take my life off of responsibilities today.

This month’s recipe comes from Mallory, the voice behind the blog, Because I like Chocolate.

Mallory is pretty awesome.

Why, may you ask?

Because she likes chocolate…no explanation needed. 🙂

Sooooo, of course, with a blog title like that, I couldn’t resist making something with chocolate.

Duh.

Oh, and because I looooooove chocolate, I chose to make Mallory’s Skinny Cheesecake Brownie Bites.

Now, you know…I detest that word “skinny.”

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A few years back, my great aunts would always walk up, grab my arm, and say “Ooooooh, so skinny, go eat some pasta.”

Seriously?

Back off!

To me, it just wasn’t an attractive word.

I felt criticized for being thin.

I can’t tell you how good the word “healthy” feels when I get that now.

I will make an exception for the word “skinny” when it comes to food, though.

It’s totally cute in that instant and makes me a feel a bit better about what I’m indulging in.

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Y’all…you can’t taste the skinny anywhere in these brownies!

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They are super rich, yet not chocolate overkill because of the awesome cheese cake swirl throughout the center.

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It’s the best of both desserts: silky, creamy, cheese cake, with moist, decadent brownies.

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Plus, while we are on the skinny train…I used gluten-free oat flour, and ya know…added some homemade cream cheese frosting on top.

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Now they are extra skinny cheesecake brownies.

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I’m pretty sure you don’t need much more confirmation than that.

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Just throw all of that responsibility out the window today.

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Or, you know…just place it on the ledge.

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Eat a cheesecake brownie.

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Or two…because/ya know…they are skinny and bite-sized.

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🙂

Skinny Cheesecake Brownie Bites
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert, Brownies, Cheesecake
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16-18
 
The best of both worlds, lush, silky, smooth cheesecake, swirled throughout a dark, decadent brownie and enjoyed in bite-sized pieces without the guilt. Top with extra cream cheese frosting for an enjoyable treat. Gluten-free, nut-free.
Ingredients
  • For the brownies:
  • ⅓ c. brown sugar ( I used coconut sugar)
  • ¼ c. white sugar (I used coconut sugar)
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ c. unsweetened apple sauce
  • ½ t. vanilla bean paste
  • ⅓ c. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ c. all-purpose flour (I used gluten-free oat flour)
  • ¼ t. salt
  • ¼ t. baking powder
  • ¼ t. baking soda.
  • For the cheesecake batter:
  • 4 oz light cream cheese
  • 2 T. brown sugar ( I used Truvia baking blend)
  • ½ t. vanilla bean paste (or pure vanilla extract)
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • For the cream cheese frosting:
  • 4 oz. light cream cheese, softened at room temperature
  • 2 T. pure honey
  • ½ t. pure vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. For the brownies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a mini muffin pan with cooking spray, or an 8x8 in. brownie pan with cooking spray.
  2. Place the sugar, egg, apple sauce, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl and mix until smooth.
  3. Stir in the cocoa powder, flour, salt, and baking soda.
  4. Pour the brownie batter into the prepared pan.
  5. For the cheesecake batter, using a stand mixer, whisk all of the ingredients together until smooth.
  6. If you are using the brownie pan, dollop the cheesecake mixture all over the top of the brownie mixture and use a knife to run the cheesecake mixture in a figure 8 like pattern over the brownies.
  7. If you are using a muffin pan, dollop about a pinky size worth over each mini-muffin cup filled w/ brownie batter and use a toothpick to swirl.
  8. Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes if you are using the brownie pan, or 13-15 minutes for the mini muffins.
  9. Let cool completely.
  10. Slice the brownies into bite sized squares.
  11. For the cream cheese frosting, combine all of the ingredients in a stand mixture and whip until smooth.
  12. Spread the frosting over each "bite" of cheesecake brownie.
  13. Devour.

MANGIA!!!