Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars

Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

When I was a kid and spent a lot of time at my grandma’s, there were two things (among countless others) that were a constant: a box of Entenmann’s in the kitchen, and a coffee warmer filled to the brim sat on the dining room table all day. The coffee was primarily for my grandma and great aunt – they would frequently refill their coffee cups throughout the day. The Entenmann’s, however, was there just in case a neighbor happened to stop by sometime throughout the day. More often than not, I (along with my sister and cousins) were happy to indulge in a pastry or two. My grandma always bought the danish-style pastries with the cream cheese filling and fruit on top.

Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

Since the warm weather hit, I’ve been thinking about doing some type of bar with cherries but couldn’t settle on exactly what I wanted to make. Then, one day I had a flashback of sitting at my grandma’s dining room table, coffee warmer on the table, and taking slice after slice of one of those danishes. I decided to make a crumb-style bar that emulated those nostalgic danishes.

Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

I started with the crumb recipe used in the blueberry crumb bars from last summer, and par baked the bottom crust. Then, I added a simple sweetened cream cheese layer, topped it with cherry pie filling, and crumbled the remaining crumb mixture on top. Baked until golden brown, and then a simple drizzle of a powdered sugar glaze.

These. Are. Fabulous. The crumb crust and topping is crunchier and more sturdy than its danish counterpart, but the combination of flavors makes me feel like I’m sitting at my grandma’s dining room table. And honestly? There was never a better place to be.

Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars | browneyedbaker.com #recipe

One year ago: Key Lime Pie Bars
Two years ago: Golden Grahams S’mores Bars
Four years ago: Rocky Road Ice Cream
Five years ago: Italian Supreme Calzones

Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars

Yield: 20 to 24 bars

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 45 to 50 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Layers of cream cheese and cherry pie filling sandwiched between crumb layers and drizzled with icing.

Ingredients:

For the Crumb:
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1 egg

For the Filling:
24 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 (21-ounce) cans cherry pie filling

For the Powdered Sugar Glaze (optional):
½ cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9x13-inch baking pan.

2. Make the Crumb: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Use a fork or pastry cutter to blend in the butter, and then the egg (the dough will be crumbly). Press half of dough into the prepared pan and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until light golden brown. Set on a wire rack to cool.

3. Make the Filling: In a separate large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar on medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the vanilla extract and mix to combine. Using an offset spatula, spread the cream cheese mixture into an even layer over the crust. Spoon the cherry pie filling in an even layer over the cream cheese mixture. Crumble the remaining dough evenly over the cherry layer.

4. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the top is light golden brown. Cool completely before adding the glaze.

5. Make the Powdered Sugar Glaze (if using): In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, cream and vanilla extract. Add more cream if you want a thinner glaze, or more powdered sugar if you want a thicker glaze. Drizzle over the bars and allow to set.

6. The bars can be served at room temperature or chilled. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

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50 Responses to “Cream Cheese Cherry Pie Crumb Bars”

  1. Lindsay Ann @ Lindsay Ann Bakes on June 18, 2014 at 12:38 am

    OMG these look soooo good! Like a danish and a pie and a bar all jumped in a baking dish together! I have got to try these! They look as good as pie, but easier!!

    Reply

  2. Marcie on June 18, 2014 at 12:43 am

    Growing up, cherry cheesecake was always my favorite. These crumb bars look so delicious with that cheesecake layer — combining cherry cheesecake and crumb bars is such a great idea!

    Reply

  3. Matt Robinson on June 18, 2014 at 12:54 am

    Love that crunchy crumb crust to go along with the cream cheese and cherries in this. Such a great summer dessert!

    Reply

  4. Solya on June 18, 2014 at 2:37 am

    I’m craving that yummy dessert, looks so delicious! Thank you for inspiration, I’m thinking to make something similar these days:)

    Reply

  5. Averie @ Averie Cooks on June 18, 2014 at 4:37 am

    I love pie bars – just posted blueberry ones with a creamy filling and crumble topping yesterday. Need to make these next because I love those big crumbly bits on top! pinned

    Reply

  6. Jane M. on June 18, 2014 at 6:28 am

    In step 3, you need to change the word “blueberry” to “cherry” (last sentence). Also, can I cut the ingredients in half and make this for an 11×7 sized pan?

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 18th, 2014 at 8:12 am

      Hi Jane, If you wanted to halve this recipe, I would use an 8-inch or 9-inch square baking pan; an 11×7 pan would be too large for only half of the recipe.

      Reply

      • Jennifer on July 8th, 2014 at 10:10 pm

        An 11×7 pan is roughly the same dimensions and volume as a 9″ pan… 11-2=9… 7+2=9…

        Reply

  7. Wanda on June 18, 2014 at 6:53 am

    What brand of cherry pie filling do you use? The brand commonly found around here is heavy on the filler and light on cherries. I’d like more cherries, less of the other.

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 18th, 2014 at 8:11 am

      Hi Wanda, The only brand stocked at my grocery store is the house brand (Giant Eagle), so that’s what I used.

      Reply

  8. My Linh on June 18, 2014 at 7:06 am

    Oh yum,yum,yum! These look delicious! The glossy cherries are what makes me drool.. And did I mention I’m a sucker for crumbs? This is definitely my kind of recipe ♥ ♥

    Reply

  9. Laura @ Raise Your Garden on June 18, 2014 at 7:17 am

    This dessert looks like something my Russian grandma would have made. So tempting to pick that crunchy top off and stick it in a bowl of ice cream.

    Reply

  10. Karla on June 18, 2014 at 7:41 am

    Did you put a powdered sugar glaze on these bars? They look wonderful.

    Reply

  11. Lauren at Keep It Sweet on June 18, 2014 at 7:43 am

    I used to love those Entenmann’s cherry strudel things…. this looks SO much better than that, though!

    Reply

  12. Katie on June 18, 2014 at 7:46 am

    Can you substitute real cherries for the canned ones? If so, how would it change the recipe? Thanks!

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 18th, 2014 at 8:15 am

      Hi Katie, Sure! I would probably do a homemade cherry pie filling with fresh cherries to completely replicate this recipe. Otherwise, if you just want cherries, you could just sprinkle on as many as you’d like over the cream cheese layer (remember to pit them first!).

      Reply

  13. Linda Jean on June 18, 2014 at 7:50 am

    Making.This.Tonight.

    Reply

  14. Sharon on June 18, 2014 at 8:19 am

    Can you use sour cherries? We have a tree in the back yard loaded with them!!

    Reply

  15. Brigitta Fellner on June 18, 2014 at 8:28 am

    Thank you for your lovely recepies. I already tried out quite a lot of them and they turned out fabulous. And this one I would really like to try too.
    But I am from Austria. Cherry Pie Filling in cans are not available here.
    How do you make a homemade cherry pie filling? Could you give me some hints, please?
    Thank you!
    Greetings from Vienna, Brigitta

    Reply

  16. Vickie S. on June 18, 2014 at 8:37 am

    Oh. My. Goodness. I absolutely cannot wait to make this recipe! Once again I must state that this pesky job really does interfere with my baking activities. This recipe reminds me of one I clipped from a magazine about 25 years ago, that also uses cherry pie filling. I’ve been making that one for years but this one will be even better, I can tell! Thank you and happy baking!

    Reply

  17. bridget {bake at 350} on June 18, 2014 at 8:46 am

    These look AH-mazing!!!

    Reply

  18. Rena on June 18, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    Looks great-but I also want to thank you
    for your strawberry swirl cake. So good!
    My family loves it. We keep kosher and I wanted
    to use it with a meat meal, so I made it with margarine
    and toffutti cream cheese. It came out fabulous!
    My parents were here visiting and my mother asked for the
    recipe! I use so many of your recipes! Thank you.

    Reply

  19. Sandra on June 18, 2014 at 2:34 pm

    This looks delicious! Do you have a suggestion/recommendation for subbing fresh or frozen cherries for the pie filling? They all have HFCS, corn syrup and other questionable ingredients in them that we avoid. Thanks so much!

    Reply

    • Sandra on June 18th, 2014 at 2:36 pm

      Sorry – I must have not refreshed before I commented since there are now comments above with the same question. Thanks for answering above!

      Reply

  20. Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie on June 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    Oh wow cream cheese in fruit desserts always sets me over the edge – in a good way! Would love a big slice of this.

    Reply

  21. Angelyn @ Everyday Desserts on June 18, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    mmmmmm, this looks fantastic! I think I’ll make a blueberry version!

    Reply

  22. Lynn on June 18, 2014 at 7:48 pm

    Oh this looks wonderful. I adapted your blueberry pie bars into my own recipe that I plan to share later this summer, and this sounds even better!! Nice work, Michelle!

    Reply

  23. Jamie on June 18, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    Oh wow, that looks incredibly delicious! I’d love a serving right now!!!

    Reply

  24. amanda @ fake ginger on June 18, 2014 at 10:27 pm

    These look unbelievable! I wanna make them right now!

    Reply

  25. Tracy | Pale Yellow on June 19, 2014 at 7:54 am

    I associate Entenmann’s with family camping trips when all my aunts and uncles would buy different kinds and set them out. As a kid I never liked the fruity ones, but now I think they’re delicious! I can’t wait to whip up an homemade version!

    Reply

  26. Heather on June 19, 2014 at 8:07 am

    Hi Michelle

    Can you freeze these bars?

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 19th, 2014 at 12:09 pm

      Hi Heather, I think these would freeze just fine. Enjoy!

      Reply

  27. Kim on June 19, 2014 at 11:07 am

    My mouth is watering! I picked 8 cups of sour cherries and they are in the freezer looking for a recipe. I believe they have found their purpose in your cherry bars! Thanks.

    Reply

  28. McKenzie on June 19, 2014 at 2:42 pm

    I used to eat cherry cream cheese pie with my grandmother! That’s what we called it; a very soft cream cheese filling with the cheery pie filling on top. She’s still around, but I haven’t had this in a while! Thanks for bringing back the memories!

    Reply

  29. Kendra on June 19, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    These looks amazing! Are they better cold or at room temperature?

    Reply

    • Michelle on June 20th, 2014 at 9:29 am

      Hi Kendra, I liked it chilled from the fridge, but that’s totally personal preference.

      Reply

  30. Amy on June 20, 2014 at 12:40 am

    Mmmmm! This looks so good. My husband adores cherry pastries, so I will make this for him.
    I just love your site. I especially love the posts about your grandmother. Like you, I had an Italian grandmother, so I can totally relate! I miss her so much.

    Reply

  31. Cory on June 20, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    I added cinnamon to the crumble and it adds such a nice little hint of spice; made these bars for the first time last night to taste test at work today and they are a HUGE hit!! Thank you for sharing!

    Reply

  32. Laura Dembowski on June 22, 2014 at 8:22 am

    I used to love Entenmann’s products. We always got them when my Granny came to visit. She and I could devour them so quickly. These yummy bars are bringing back so many memories for me.

    Reply

  33. Jaclyn on June 22, 2014 at 5:47 pm

    These bars look dreamy! Love that crumb topping!

    Reply

  34. Courtney Leigh on June 22, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    I made these with raspberries for a pool party this weekend. HUGE hit!

    Reply

  35. Alinia on June 23, 2014 at 12:29 am

    Really yummy! It is plum season here, so I used stewed, milled plum juice thickened with cornstarch instead of the cherry pie filling as well as halved the sugar in the cream cheese filling. Next time, I think I would probably cut the whole cream cheese mixture by a third to balance the tart and sweet and creamy a little more.

    Reply

  36. Nancy on June 24, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    I have to comment. You got me with this one – my two favorite things are cream cheese and cherries, preferrably together! I can’t wait to try this on Sunday morning. YUM!

    Reply

  37. Tina on June 25, 2014 at 9:36 am

    Made this on Sunday, because my boyfriend mostly doesn’t like sweets but he’s a sucker for cheesecake and also for cherries – his mom used to make a cherry pie just for him on his birthday and a cake for everyone else to eat that day. It was pretty good, but I found that the bottom crust got extremely hard, I could barely cut it, and it wasn’t overdone or burnt or anything… any idea why? Also on the chilled vs. room temperature thing, folks, please don’t forget to keep cream cheese products relatively cool for food safety reasons!

    Reply

  38. Leigh Samuels on July 8, 2014 at 8:32 pm

    Could this work with frozen cherries? I have big bag from last year I want to use up.

    Reply

    • Michelle on July 8th, 2014 at 10:47 pm

      Hi Leigh, It could, but you would need to use the frozen cherries to make a homemade pie filling to replicate this filling.

      Reply

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