Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars

Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

There are few desserts I cherish more than a fabulous cheesecake. I fell in love with those dense, creamy desserts as a teenager and have been enamored with them ever since. I don’t really discriminate as far as flavors go – plain with fresh strawberries, pumpkin, or loaded up with things like Oreo cookies, Snickers bars, or peanut butter. I love them all and will devour each with abandon.

Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

Last year, I found my favorite basic cheesecake recipe, and I have been wanting to replicate an easy version of a cheesecake bar for those times when it’s easier to cut them up and serve them for a more casual get-together. When I think of bar desserts, I always think of summer. Picnics and cookouts are the perfect reason to forgo the fancy plate and fork desserts for the simpler, handheld bar desserts.

Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

As we usher in summer (I can’t believe it’s June!), I thought a basic cheesecake bar with a swirl of seasonal flavor like strawberries would be fabulous. For these, I used a very basic cheesecake bar recipe and swirled in seedless strawberry jam. The perfect combination of flavors and a super simple bar for picking up and nibbling!

Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

Two years ago: Black Bean Salsa and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Billionaire Bars
Three years ago: Fruit Dip
Four years ago: Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
Five years ago: Cinnamon Raisin Bagels

Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars

Yield: 16 bars

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 47 to 55 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Rich and delicious cheesecake bars with a swirl of strawberry jam.

Ingredients:

For the Crust:
7 whole graham crackers, crushed (about 1 cup of fine crumbs)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt

For the Filling:
16 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
⅔ cup granulated sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
¼ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 tablespoons seedless strawberry jam

Directions:

1. Make the Crust: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line an 8-inch square baking dish with aluminum foil, allowing excess to hang over the edges of the pan; lightly grease the foil.

2. In a medium bowl, stir together the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, flour and salt to combine. Drizzle the melted butter over the mixture and use a fork to mix it until the entire mixture is moistened. Turn the mixture out into the prepared pan and press into an even layer. Bake until the crust to starts to brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside.

3. Meanwhile, with an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat the cream cheese until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the granulated sugar and beat until it is completely incorporated. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition until well combined. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix until incorporated. Pour the batter over the baked crust.

4. Using a spoon, drop dollops of the strawberry jam all over the surface of the cheesecake batter, then use a toothpick or skewer to gently swirl the jam into the batter. Bake until the edges are set but the center still jiggles slightly, 35 to 40 minutes. Allow the cheesecake to cool completely on a wire rack, about 2 hours. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 3 hours. Lift the cheesecake out of the pan and slice into bars. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator, in an airtight container, for up to 3 days.

(Base cheesecake recipe modified from America's Test Kitchen Holiday Cookies 2010)

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30 Responses to “Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake Bars”

  1. Matt Robinson on June 2, 2014 at 12:33 am

    I love the simplicity of this cheesecake, exactly how I like it! A perfect summer dessert.

    Reply

  2. Belinda@themoonblushbaker on June 2, 2014 at 1:41 am

    I love the versatility of these cheesecake bars!
    I might not be in a country where strawberries are in season but I have some apple jam which is begging to be used here.

    Reply

  3. Egle on June 2, 2014 at 5:39 am

    Looks amazing and so tasty!

    Reply

  4. Lori on June 2, 2014 at 7:32 am

    This looks amazing. I am definitely putting this on the menu for a casual dinner with friends. Thanks for posting.

    Reply

  5. Martha in KS on June 2, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Yum – cheesecake! Thanks for another fabulous-looking recipe. I have all of the ingredients.

    Reply

  6. Lisa @ Simple Pairings on June 2, 2014 at 9:15 am

    LOVE cheesecake – especially one with a strawberry/raspberry filling or topping! These look divine :)

    Reply

  7. marcie on June 2, 2014 at 9:56 am

    These cheesecake bars look so thick and luscious! Love the strawberry swirl. :)

    Reply

  8. Diane W. on June 2, 2014 at 10:58 am

    Definitely making these…I may swirl some blueberry preserves in there as well to make it look festive for July 4th!

    Reply

  9. Tricia @ Saving room for dessert on June 2, 2014 at 12:55 pm

    Lovely – I could hurt that pan of cheesecake bars. Love the swirl!

    Reply

  10. Tamara H. on June 2, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Any thoughts on how the low fat cream would do in this recipe? I found a deal on Philadelphia – 8 ounce bar not whipped cream cheese…I believe the package says 1/3 less fat. Sometimes recipes warn to not use the reduced fat cream cheese.

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 3rd, 2014 at 2:18 pm

      HI Tamara, I highly recommend using full fat cream cheese for any baking or frosting recipe. The lower fat varieties have a higher water content and can affect consistency.

      Reply

  11. miss messy on June 2, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    I’ve never been much of a fan of strawberry cheesecake as I don’t like fake strawberry taste, but these look delicious, a great way to use up some homemade strawberry jam.

    Reply

  12. Charity on June 2, 2014 at 4:30 pm

    Will have to try this soon to cheer me up now that the Hawks are out of the race for the Stanley Cup. Know how you feel when the Pens lost. :-) These really do look good!

    Reply

  13. Maleeha on June 2, 2014 at 6:05 pm

    Heavenly! I want to try this! :D I have a question though. Do you have any suggestions on how to keep the crust together? Mine always breaks and I waste so much :( The graham cracker crumbs are never moist enough to stay together, no matter how much butter I add :(

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 3rd, 2014 at 2:27 pm

      Hi Maleeha, The right amount of melted butter WILL cause the crumbs to adhere. Just be sure to press it into a compact, even layer on the bottom of the pan.

      Reply

  14. Catherine R. on June 2, 2014 at 6:17 pm

    These look so good:) my problem is cream cheese is so expensive, so cheese cake is always a treat. I am one of your newest fans… I came across your site a year ago when I was picking a cake for my birthday and make the New York Style Crumb Cake. I forgot about this it until a couple of days ago I found it again, I’m excited to keep exploring through the recipes. I like to bake a lot too, and it’s super important to me that if I do bake, I want it to taste great but also to look good, so I appreciate your beautiful photos! I bet rhubarb would taste great on top of this cake.
    ps do you ever use kefir in your recipes??

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 3rd, 2014 at 2:27 pm

      Hi Catherine, Thanks so much for the comment, I’m so thrilled that you’re enjoying the site! I have not experimented with kefir.

      Reply

  15. Nicole on June 2, 2014 at 9:33 pm

    Oh Wow! These look pretty amazing! I love the swirl!

    Reply

  16. Heather @ My Overflowing Cup on June 3, 2014 at 12:25 am

    I like the idea of cheesecake bars. The swirl is very pretty, as are your pics (as usual!) Thanks for sharing another great recipe.

    Reply

  17. Samina | The Cupcake Confession on June 3, 2014 at 2:21 am

    Strawberry and cheesecake in bite sized bar form? YES, PLEASE!!!!!

    Reply

  18. melissa miller on June 3, 2014 at 2:40 pm

    These look solo good!!

    Reply

  19. Kelly on June 4, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    These literally made my mouth water, and I don’t even usually like cheesecake! I love the design you made with the strawberry swirl!

    Reply

  20. Brittany on June 6, 2014 at 10:22 am

    Made these yesterday and they are wonderful! Thank you Michelle for another outstanding recipe!

    Reply

  21. Macarena on June 9, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    Hello from Chile! One question…Can i change the soul cream for yogur or something else?

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 10th, 2014 at 10:20 am

      Hi Macarena, Yes, you could use plain yogurt in place of the sour cream.

      Reply

  22. Rashannah on June 11, 2014 at 3:12 am

    I made these last night they were so good & rich. I love the cheesecake recipe. I had a hard time swirling the strawberry jam…..it was too thick and wouldn’t swirl so it kind of clumped in globs into the cheesecake. Do you heat it before adding to the top? Anyway it still tasted delicious. Thank you!

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 11th, 2014 at 10:03 am

      Hi Rashannah, I didn’t heat it, but I did give it a good stir with a spoon just to smooth it out a bit.

      Reply

  23. Michele on July 9, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    What did you use to cut the bars!? I have made these before and made a mess cutting it. How did you cut it so perfectly clean? Thanks!

    Reply

    • Michelle on July 9th, 2014 at 8:55 pm

      Hi Michele, I actually used dental floss!

      Reply

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