Amazing Cheesecake Brownies topped with Cherry Filling. These festive-looking bars have Christmas written all over them.
It was just a matter of time. Baking a pan of bars that are perfect to serve during the days leading up to Christmas (and beyond) was on the very top of my list. Every time I looked at it, I kept thinking that today was the day. But inspiration hadn’t struck, so I waited patiently until I had just the right idea.
And then it happened. While strolling the isles of the grocery store and spotting Cherry Pie Filling, I instantly knew that I wanted to use it for my future bars.
Having been a bit obsessed with all things red and white this year, these bars turned out just the way I was hoping for. A generous layer of cheesecake baked on top of brownies and topped with those beautiful cherries.
Did I mention how much I love Christmas?
I was also quite fond of the idea of using fruit in a dessert. Finally. Don’t get me wrong, I am all over fudge, gingerbread anything and thick & chewy cookies this time of year, but getting to indulge with some fruit on top definitely did the trick for me. It adds just the right amount tartness and fruity deliciousness to the ultra creamy cheesecake and indulgent brownie layers.
So yes, if you’ve been wanting to sink your teeth into something beyond scrumptious, you need to give this a go. And even though the cheesecake and brownies were made completely from scratch, you will be surprised how fast these bars come together.
Simple, easy and downright delicious – that pretty much describes all I’ve been craving lately. And these brownies are no exception.
If you can’t have them during the holidays then when?! Don’t mind me for diving right in.
Happy, happy Hump Day to you!
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
- 8 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1 can (21 ounces) cherry pie filling
- Line an 8x8 inch baking pan with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick spray. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- 1. In a large bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients. Add the eggs, oil, and vanilla and stir until well incorporated. In a heatproof bowl, melt 1/4 cup of the chocolate chips and incorporate into the batter. Finally, add the remaining cup of the chocolate chips and stir in. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Set aside.
- 2. In another bowl, whisk cream cheese (with a hand mixer) until smooth, about 30 seconds. Add sugar, salt and vanilla and continue whisking until smooth and no lumps remain, about 1-2 minutes. Pour cream cheese mixture on top of the brownie layer and place in the oven. Bake for 45 minutes or until cheesecake layers appears to be set. Remove pan from the oven and let cool completely on wire racks.
- 3. Spoon cherry pie filling evenly over the cheesecake layer and place in the fridge for at least 1 hour or until ready to serve.
- Cherry Cheesecake Brownies will keep up to 3 days stored in the fridge.
- Cheesecake layer adapted from foodnetwork.com.