Fleur de Sel Salted Dulce De Leche Caramel Cheesecake Bars

I had two goals in mind when I found this recipe online. #1, my dear friend Twain brought me a jar of Sel Gris caramel sauce from Nashville and I wanted to do something fun with it. #2, it was my future sister in laws birthday and I wanted to make her something extra special. This dessert is by far one of the best things I have tasted. The cheese, caramel, and fleur de sel will make you speechless.
For the Crust
  • 2 1/4 cups ground graham crackers (about 1 and a half sleeves of graham crackers)
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cinnamon
  • 10 Tbsp. melted butter
Cheesecake Filling
  • 3 x 8-ounce packages of cream cheese, room temp
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup Dulce de Leche (Nestle brand, La Lechera, found at Super King’s in 13.4oz. can enough for filling and caramel topping)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
Caramel Topping
  • 2/3 cup Dulce de Leche
  • 2-3 Tbsp. heavy whipping cream
  • 2-3 Tbsp. caramel sauce (the good stuff in a jar, not that runny syrup junk). I used Sel Gris Caramel Sauce, 2 tablespoons
  • Fleur de sel* (salt) – Found this at Williams Sonoma or sea salt crystals from Trader Joe’s in a grinder
Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Coat 13x9x2-inch metal or glass baking pan coated with nonstick spray.
Mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and cinnamon in medium bowl. Add melted butter; stir until coated. Transfer crumb mixture to pan. Press evenly onto bottom of pan. Bake until crust is light golden, about 10 minutes. Cool completely on rack.
Blend the cream cheese and sugar together until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute.  Add the eggs 1 at a time, blending for 3 to 5 seconds each time until incorporated.  Add in the dulce de leche and vanilla and blend until just mixed – about 10 seconds. Spread the batter evenly over the cooled crust and bake until the cheesecake mixture is just set in center and the edges are puffed and slightly cracked, about 35-43 minutes. Transfer to rack and cool completely.
Once the cheesecake bar is cooled, pour 2/3 cup dulce de leche sauce and the 3 tablespoons of whipping cream in a glass measuring cup. Microwave at 10 second intervals stirring between each interval.  Do this until the mixture is smooth and combined. 
Next, use 2-3 tablespoons of caramel sauce such as Sel Gris or take about 10 caramel chews and heat them in the microwave for 15-20 seconds until just melted.  Quickly dump the melted caramel chews or caramel into the dulce de leche mixture and stir continuously until combined. The consistency should be pourable, but not too liquidly.  You want the caramel topping to be soft and gooey, but not too runny that it pours down the side of your bar once you cut it.  Cover and chill until ready to serve. Chill in fridge for 2-3 hours to let the caramel sauce harden. 
Lastly when you’re ready to serve the bars sprinkle the caramel glaze lightly with some fleur de sel.  You can use crystalized sea salt form Trader Joe’s. I did the taste test and they really do taste very similar. *Fleur de sel is a light and flaky sea salt, with a less salty and bitter taste than regular table or sea salt.  
Inspired by:
Sel Gris Caramel Sauce:
Option to drizzle peach and strawberry puree sauce on the side: