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Let me introduce you to Cheesecake brownies, an indulgent dessert that combines two classics into one. Cheesecake brownies have the perfect balance between fudgy, chocolatey goodness and creamy, tangy cheesecake, creating a delicious fusion of flavors and textures. If you have a sweet tooth, these treats will soon become your favorite.
Cheesecake brownies were one of the very first brownie variations I ever made and I still love them the same. It makes them fun and sophisticated at the same time. They are the perfect dessert to bake for your next get-together or just for fun to enjoy at home.
If you prefer traditional brownies, this recipe will become your favorite!
Why you will love these Cheesecake Brownie Bars?
These bars have two amazing and delicious layers. If you like these two on their own, I promise you will love them together.
The base layer is a delicious fudge and chocolatey brownie that contrasts perfectly against the tangy and velvety cheesecake layer. Its smooth texture and flavor complement the richness of the chocolate brownies, creating a flavor party in your mouth.
To begin with, there is no stacking or layering after baking, making this an easy and elegant dessert that will surprise everyone with its stunning presentation. They are so easy to make and they bake together in the same pan. Layering the brownies batter first, then the cheesecake batter, followed by the reserved brownie batter which is added on top of the cheesecake to create a beautiful design with delicious brownie swirls. Of course, it is so beautiful that you don’t really need to decorate this dessert after baking it.
At last, these cheesecake brownies have endless flavor combinations and opportunities to customize to your taste. You can add nuts, chocolate chips, cherries, or swirls of caramel on top of the cheesecake layer for an additional spin to this delicious dessert.
Ingredients for Cheesecake Brownies:
To make these you’ll need the following ingredients:
For the Brownie Layer:
- Butter: Unsalted butter is the butter of choice here and provides richness and moisture to the brownies.
- Sugar: granulated white sugar is ideal. It adds sweetness and creates a soft, chewy texture.
- Eggs: bind the ingredients together and contribute to the brownie consistency.
- Vanilla extract: Enhances the overall flavor profile.
- Flour: All-purpose flour gives the perfect structure to the brownies.
- Cocoa powder: choose a high-quality cocoa powder. This is your only source of chocolate flavor for the brownies and can affect how rich the brownies will turn out. My favorite cocoa lately is this one.
- Salt: Balances the sweetness and enhances the chocolate flavor.
- Chocolate Chips: they are optional and you can substitute for walnuts or other add-ins to your brownie. However, feel free to leave them out. I love this brand.
For the Cheesecake Layer:
If you prefer a thicker cheesecake layer, double the ingredients for the cheesecake layer. In this case, baking time will vary and I have not tested it yet so you may want to keep your eyes on the brownies.
- Cream cheese softened. Forms the luscious cheesecake layer. This is my favorite brand.
- Sugar: granulated white sugar adds sweetness to the cheesecake.
- Egg: Contributes to the creamy texture and stability of the cheesecake.
- Vanilla extract: Infuses the cheesecake with a delightful aroma.
Tips for making the best Cheesecake Brownies
To ensure your cheesecake brownies turn out to be a mouthwatering success, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Line your baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides to unmold your cheesecake brownies once they are cold and before cutting.
- Mix gently when combining the ingredients for each layer, avoid overmixing. Overmixing can result in a dense and tough texture or a cracked cheesecake. Mix each layer until just combined for the best results.
- Layering Technique: To achieve a beautiful marbled effect, don’t run the knife through the batters too deep. Instead, marble only the shallow top layer with the cheesecake and the spoonfuls of brownie batter. Be careful to not swirl that much or the marble effect will be lost.
- Cooling and Chilling: After baking, allow the cheesecake brownies to cool completely in the pan and refrigerate the brownies for a few hours or overnight before unmolding and cutting.
- Storage and Serving: Store the cheesecake brownies in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They can be enjoyed chilled or at room temperature.
Note: these bars are extra gooey. The cheesecake on top creates additional moisture for the brownie layer, resulting in an extra fudgy brownie. If you prefer a more cakey consistency, lower the heat to 325F and bake for 5-8 minutes more at the end of the initial bake.
- ¾ cup of butter 6 oz
- 1 ⅔ cup sugar divided into 1 cup (200grams) and ⅔ cup (133 grams)
- 3 large eggs
- ⅔ cup of cocoa powder 65 grams
- 1 cup all-purpose flour 120 grams
- ½ tsp salt
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips plus more for the top 85 grams
- 1-8 oz block of cream cheese room temperature
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and line a straight sided 8×8 square pan with parchment paper leaving an overhang to pull the cheesecake brownies out of the pan and set aside.
- In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine butter and ⅔ cup of the sugar until butter is melted. Whisk frequently to prevent burning until all butter is melted and sugar is almost dissolved. It should look glossy and smooth, set aside to cool.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs with the remaining 1 cup of sugar and whisk vigorously until the mix begins to slightly foam and the sugar has incorporated well into the eggs.
- Make the batter: Gradually whisk the butter mixture into the egg mixture. Make sure the butter isn’t piping hot and incorporate gradually while mixing to prevent the eggs from cooking.
- Sift together the all purpose flour, cocoa powder and salt over the bowl with batter. (Alternatively to avoid sifting: add flour, cocoa powder and salt in a separate bowl and whisk to break up any lumps before adding to the egg mixture). Mix in or fold gently into the batter until it is fully incorporated and no streaks of flour remain.
- Fold in chocolate chips and reserve ½ cup of the brownie batter. Pour the rest of the batter into the prepared pan and set aside to prepare the cheesecake layer.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugar and mix to combine. Add eggs one by one beating between each addition until creamy and smooth. Do not overmix as this will cause your cheesecake to crack.
- Carefully spread the cream cheese filling evenly over the brownie layer and spoon the reserved brownie batter all over the cheesecake. You can choose a random pattern or a grid of 4 rows with 4 spoonfuls of brownie batter in each row.
- With the help of a knife or a wooden skewer swirl the brownie dollops into the cheesecake creating a marble effect until you are happy with how it looks!
- Bake at 350℉ for 30-35 minutes until the edges have risen and have just started to brown (*See note below). Allow to cool completely before cutting.
- Let cool completely on a wire rack before unmolding.
- To unmold the cheesecake brownies: refrigerate the cheesecake brownies while in the pan until completely set for 3-4 hours. Gently pull the parchment paper by the overhang and lift it, transferring to a serving plate. Cut them into squares and serve cold.