For times when a pie or a cake simply is not enough.

PIECAKEN is a whole pie baked inside of a cake. Any cake. Any pie. PIECAKEN has endless flavour combinations, which is why this web page exists. So when a pie or a cake simply is not enough, turn to this page for recipes, ideas, photos and events dedicated to PIECAKEN. It is a celebration all on its own, baked into one delicious dessert.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Apple Crumble Pie Inside a Cheesecake Piecaken!

Since my piecaken photos and recipes went viral this week, showing up in all sorts of media publications, including New York Times online, Playbuzz, Distractify, and many more, I thought it might be time to get baking and feed all my readers with another piecaken idea and recipe.

With the winter comfort-food season upon us, I figured it was time to bring in some apple pie.  And since I am all about crumble-top pies and cheesecake, why not put a crumble-bottom apple pie inside a crumble-top cheesecake?  Cinnamon, shortbread, oats, apples and cream cheese all in one sweet cake? Oh yeah.

There is no real pie crust in this cake, so you can make your life simple and buy a store-bought apple crumble if you like. Or you can use an apple pie instead, crust and all.  Make it your own! But if you need a crumble-bottom pie recipe and a crumble-top cheesecake recipe, you've come to the right place. So let's get started!

Recipe: Apple-Crumble Cheesecake Piecaken

Time: 3 to 4 hours, including cooking time. You can do this in one evening if you start early enough - it is best to chill overnight before slicing. Or spread our baking over two days (i.e. make your crumble pie Friday night, bake it inside the cake on Saturday morning. Chill then slice 6 hours later for Saturday evening dinner!).

For the cake:
8" Springform baking pan (this makes about 10 good sized pieces, but if you want to go bigger, double your cheesecake recipe and use a 9" or 10" pan and increase the baking time by 15 minutes).

Cake Crumble Top Ingredients:
1 cup instant oats
1/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, melted

Cake Batter & Crust:
About 2 cups of shortbread or oatmeal cookies, broken up (place in a plastic freezer bag, seel, then crush them with a rolling pin or cup while in the bag).
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 and 1/4 packages of cream cheese (250 gram packages), room temperature
2/3 cups + 1/3 cup of sugar
3 large eggs
1 and 1/4 cup sour cream
1/8 tsp cinnamon
Optional: vanilla extract

For the Pie:
Small 6" to 7" cake pan, tart pan or pie pan, buttered and lined with parchment paper.

Pie Crust:
1 cup instant oats
1/4 cup brown or golden cane sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup butter (I used unsalted, but use what you have on hand)

3 apples, peeled and sliced
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp. lemon juice


Start by making your crumble-bottom pie (or store-bought apple crumble if you wish).

1. Place sliced apples, lemon juice, cinnamon and brown sugar in a medium bowl and mix together to coat apples. Set aside.

2. Melt your butter in a small dish in the microwave for 40-45 seconds.

3. Place your brown sugar, oats, and cinnamon into a medium bowl and stir together.

4. Pour the melted butter over top of the dry ingredients and stir.

5. Press the mixture into the bottom of your small cake or pie pan and up the .

6. Place your apple slices on top of the crust, in a circular pattern (although not necessary) and once all the apples are in, pour the remaining liquid on top of the whole thing to ensure the apples are coated.

7. Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees F.

8. Let the pie cool for 1 hour while you make your cake (or longer if you wish).

Make the Cake Crust and Batter, and Assemble for Baking:

1. Prepare your  springform pan by greasing the bottom and sides, then lining the bottom with a round of parchment paper and buttering the top of the paper too.

2.Place the crushed cookies, melted butter and 1/3 cup sugar in a medium bowl. Mixed together until cookies are damply coated with butter. Press into the bottom of the pan evenly, and slightly up the sides if you have enough cookie crumbs.

3. Bake the crust for 10 minutes in the oven at 350 degrees F.

4. While the crust is baking and cooling, beat the cream cheese for 1 minute in a stand mixer, stopping the mixer occasionally to stir in the un-softened bits in the bottom.

5. Add the sugar slowly and beat until incorporated (30 seconds).

6. Add the eggs, one at a time, stirring between each addition to ensure no lumps form.

7. Add the sour cream and beat just until mixed. 

8. Add the cinnamon, and the vanilla (if using) and stir in.

9. Pour just under 1/2 the batter onto the cake crust.

10. Flip your crumble pie upside down onto the centre of the cake batter in your springform pan.  If it comes apart a little in the process,  don't worry,  just tuck it back together, leaving a ring of cake batter around the edges at least 1" wide.

11. Pour the rest of the batter on top of the crumble pie, and spread around to cover entirely.

12. Place in the oven, and set your timer to bake for 15 minutes (to start!).

13. During the first 15 minutes of baking time, prepare your crumble-top by melting the butter in a medium bowl, then toss in the sugar, oats, flour and cinnamon and stir until moist.

14. When the timer beeps, pull your cake out of the oven (or just move the rack out with the cake on it and leave the oven door open). Sprinkle the crumble top in the middle of the cake. Put your cake back in the oven and add 45 minutes to the cooking time.

15. When 45 minutes is up, check the cake to ensure it only jiggles a little and looks cooked (usually a cheesecake cake lifts/rises around the edges, indicating it is done).  If it looks undercooked in the middle, add 10 minutes. When ready, simply turn off the oven and let the cake cool with the door open.  Then, after 30 minutes, remove it from the oven and let cool for another hour before refrigerating for at least 4 hours before slicing.

Slicing Tip:
Use a hot knife to slice the cake.  Also, hold the crumble or top of the cake up a little with your fingers each time you slice it, so you don't squish all the pie out of the cake with each slice.  If you cut carefully, you will get great results!  Heat your knife with warm water and dry with a paper towel between each and every slice.


  1. Hey Lisabeth,
    This piecaken looks amazing!
    My fiancé and I are eloping next week...since he loves apple pie, and I have always wanted to try a piecaken, I'd like to try your recipe. However I'll swap out the crumble top to look more like a wedding cake. Do you have any suggestions/ideas if the cheesecake would be able to hold a lightweight bride & groom figurine?
    Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Julie! The cheesecake should able to hold the wedding figures without a problem. You can also ice it with a vanilla or cinnamon buttercream, to make it look a little more wedding-like. I've iced cheesecakes before and it only adds to the decadence. :-) Congratulations!

  2. I don't dare show this to my husband, aka The Apple man. Wow! unbelievable..

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