This easy turtle pie recipe has a salted caramel cheesecake filling, and Oreo cookie crust, and is topped with caramel pecans and melted chocolate! Finish it off with some homemade whipped cream and you have a decadent showstopping dessert!
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This recipe was originally published in November 2021. It has since been updated with new images and a new recipe.
This turtle cheesecake pie has everything you love about classic chocolate turtles! From the rich and creamy salted caramel filling to the caramel pecans, this truly is the perfect dessert for the holidays or for a birthday.
Like my Oreo peanut butter pie, this turtle pie has a no bake Oreo cookie base. I've then used my favorite tried and tested cheesecake filling that I use for all of my no bake cheesecakes (like my strawberry and white chocolate cheesecake). It is super rich, creamy and yet still so light!
It's also such an easy recipe and can be made in advance, which is why I love making it for Thanksgiving or Christmas.
Why this recipe works!
- Simple Ingredients - nothing fancy here! You'll be able to find everything you need to make this turtle pie at the grocery store.
- Easy to Make - because this turtle pie has a no bake cheesecake filling, there's no need to use the stove or the oven.
- Perfect for the Holidays - because you can make this pie ahead of time, it's the perfect dessert to make for the holidays. You can make it the night before and just top with whipped cream and pecans just before serving!
- Cream Cheese: your cream cheese will need to be at room temperature before using. If you're based in Europe and your cream cheese comes in tubs, you must pat it dry with a paper towel. Cream cheese in tubs has more moisture in it.
- Oreos: I used chocolate Oreo cookies for my cookie crust, but you could substitute it with wafer cookies, graham crackers, etc. You'll want to blend them or pulse them into a powder with a food processor. You can also buy ready-crushed Oreo cookies at some grocery stores!
- Chocolate: you'll want to use some semi-sweet chocolate or chocolate chips to drizzle on top of the pie just before serving!
- Confectioners' Sugar: also known as powdered sugar or icing sugar, this is going to sweeten the turtle pie filling and also help give it structure.
- Heavy Cream: we'll whip the heavy cream until we have homemade whipped cream. This is going to make your pie filling super light! You can swap it out for Cool Whip.
- Caramel Sauce: I'm using a homemade caramel sauce, but you can also use storebought if you prefer or you're low on time.
Step by Step Instructions
Step 1: Crush your Oreo cookies in a food processor until you have small crumbs. Pour in your melted butter and mix together until the crumbs are moist. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper and pour in the crumbs. Use the bottom of a measuring cup to press the crumbs down and slightly up the sides. Freeze for 20 minutes.
Step 2: In a mixing bowl with a handheld mixer, or in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat your heavy cream until you have stiff peaks. This might take 4-5 minutes so be patient! Keep to the side once it's ready.
Step 3: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add your vanilla, sour cream, salted caramel sauce and confectioners' sugar. Beat on medium speed until smooth. Once it is completely smooth you can stop the mixer. Fold in your whipped cream carefully, you don't want to deflate it! Fold until it is completely incorporated.
Step 4: Fold in your whipped cream carefully, you don't want to deflate it! Fold until it is completely incorporated.
Step 5: Take the crust out of the freezer and pour in the filling. Use a small offset spatula to smooth it out, then place plastic wrap on top of the cheesecake. Place in the fridge for at least 12 hours.
Step 6: When you're ready to serve, use a small silicone spatula or an offset spatula and run it along the edges. Remove the sides of the springform pan. Mix your pecans with the remaining caramel, then spoon on top of the pie. Finally, drizzle over melted chocolate and pipe whipped cream along the edges!
Expert Tips & Tricks
- Kitchen Scale - I highly recommend using a weighing scale and measuring out your ingredients the metric way. It makes a huge difference to your baking and is the most accurate way to bake!
- Cream Cheese - If you’re based in Europe or your cream cheese comes in tubs, pat down your cream cheese with a paper towel. The cream cheese in Europe has a lot more moisture than in North America, and your filling won't be as firm if you don't pat down the cream cheese.
- Piping the Whipped Cream - I used a Wilton 1M piping tip to decorate the pie with whipped cream.
- Pie Pan - Feel free to use a pie pan instead of a springform pan, you'll want to use a 9-inch pie dish. I prefer using the springform pan because I find it easier to slice!
- Chilling - For best results, chill your turtle cheesecake for 12 hours. I tried slicing it at 6 hours and while it was fine, it was definitely much cleaner after 12.
- Caramel Pecans - make sure the caramel isn't hot when you mix it with the pecans. You don't want warm caramel to melt the pie filling!
Frequently Asked Questions
Turtle pie is a combination of chocolate, caramel and pecans. If you've never had turtles before, it's a candy made from pecans and caramel dipped in chocolate, and the shape resembles a turtle!
You'll need to make sure you chill your pie for at least 12 hours. If you don't let it chill long enough then your cheesecake filling won't firm up and you won't get clean slices. If you're based in Europe and your cream cheese comes in tubs you'll need to make sure you pat down the extra moisture.
You can make the caramel ahead of time, just keep it in the fridge for a few days and warm it up in the microwave to make it pourable. You can make the base and the filling two days in advance.
You definitely can! I've provided a recipe to make homemade salted caramel sauce but you can just use a store-bought version.
Keep this turtle pie in the fridge for up to 4 days, it is best served cold. I recommend only adding the whipped cream just before serving.
Try these pies next!
- 9" springform pan
- 24 oreos
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 2 cups heavy cream
- ¼ cups sour cream room temperature
- 16 oz cream cheese room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar sifted
- ½ cups salted caramel store-bought, or make my homemade caramel recipe below
- 1 cups granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter cubed, room temperature
- ½ cups heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup pecans
- ½ cups salted caramel
- ½ cup semi-sweet chocolate melted
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Using a food processor or blender, pulse the cookies until you have a fine crumb. Pour in the melted butter and mix with a spoon or rubber spatula.
- Press into the bottom of a 9" springform pan lined with parchment paper. Use the bottom of a measuring cup to make the bottom even and packed. Place in the freezer for 20 minutes while you make the filling.
- Using a handheld mixer or in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream until you have stiff peaks. This may take 4-5 minutes. Set aside
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese until it is completely smooth. It needs to be at room temperature or it will be too lumpy.
- Add the confectioners' sugar, sour cream, salted caramel and vanilla to the cream cheese. Beat on medium speed until well combined. You may need to stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Once completely smooth and creamy, stop the mixer.
- Fold in the whipped cream, do it gently as you don't want to deflate the whipped cream. Continue folding until it is completely incorporated.
- Take the crust out of the freezer. Pour the filling into the crust and use a small offset spatula to smooth the top. Place plastic wrap on top of the springform pan and chill for 12 hours
- Take a small saucepan and place it on your stove over medium heat. Add the sugar ¼ cup at a time, letting the sugar dissolve completely until you add the next ¼ cup.
- Stir occasionally until the sugar has completely dissolved and turns a dark amber colour. Turn the heat off.
- Add the butter in a piece at a time, be careful as it may sputter! Stir with a heatproof spatula as you add the butter. Stir in the cream, salt, and vanilla. Let cool until it is very thick. If you're not using it straight away, pour into a container and let cool completely before placing in the fridge. When you're ready to use, heat up for 15-20 seconds in the microwave until it is pourable.
- Take the cheesecake out of the fridge after at least 12 hours. Remove it from the springform pan. I find the best way to do this is using a butter knife or an offset spatula to gently run along the edges. Then unclip the sides.
- Mix the pecans with the remaining salted caramel sauce. Once covered, spoon over the caramel pecans. You might have leftover caramel!
- Melt your chocolate in the microwave. In a microwave safe bowl, melt in 15 second increments, stopping to stir until melted. Drizzle over the pecans with a spoon.
- In a large bowl with a handheld mixer or in a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the heavy cream until you have stiff peaks. Use a piping bag to pipe a border along the edge. Enjoy!