Although cheesecake toppings typically consist of fresh fruit, other popular choices include various types of candy bits or pieces. Those who prefer chopped nuts may use pecans, walnuts, cashews or peanuts for cheesecake toppings. Specialty cheesecake will sometimes be made with a decorative cheesecake topping, such as caramel that is swirled into fancy designs. Some bakers prefer to use fresh whipped cream and sugar for icing a cheesecake. A chocolate cheesecake may be topped with shaved chocolate, chocolate sauce or a sweet tasting liqueur.
When preparing a cheesecake dessert, some prefer to top it with chocolate dipped strawberries, whole or sliced. Those who prefer other fruit may use blueberries, cherries, raspberries and pineapple. The fruit may be fresh or frozen, and in addition, fruit flavored sauce or pie filling may be used for cheesecake toppings. Some gourmet cheesecakes include toppings made with exotic fruits such as kiwi, mango or papaya. Cheesecake toppings may also be made with caramelized peaches, bananas or apples.
Simple recipes for cheesecake toppings may also be made using jarred caramel ice cream topping. The caramel sauce may be mixed with cinnamon, applesauce and chopped nuts for an apple cinnamon topping. This sauce is typically drizzled on top of a chilled cheesecake.
Chocolate lovers may prefer chocolate chips or semi-sweet morsels as a cheesecake topping. Many upscale restaurants and gourmet bake shops often feature cheesecake with chocolate shavings on top. In addition, a cheesecake may be decorated with hard chocolate candies, such as the popular M&Ms® variety. For a sweet variation, melted chocolate or chocolate sauce may be drizzled over the cheesecake. Those who prefer an alternative to milk or dark chocolate, may use white chocolate for cheesecake toppings.
It is not uncommon to find cheesecake topped with chocolate liqueur in some gourmet bakeries. These specialty cheesecakes are made with a topping that consists of vanilla extract, baking chocolate and vodka, as well as other flavorings. Powdered cocoa may be substituted for baking chocolate.
During the holiday season, pumpkin cheesecake is often topped with a dollop of whipped cream. Whipped cream is probably one of the most basic and simple types of cheesecake toppings that may be used for any type of cheesecake. For variety, cinnamon may be mixed with the whipped cream. To add extra sweetness, some prefer to make a frosting from whipped cream and sugar. Chocolate flavored whipped cream is another option for cheesecake toppings.