Monday, May 16, 2011

Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake Bars

The story of why I made these is not that exciting.  I wanted to make a dessert (preferably involving chocolate) to bring to a party I had been invited to.  I had a bag of really awesome Michigan cherries in my freezer, and I'm moving in 2 weeks and am trying to use stuff up.  So I thought for a few minutes and this idea was born.  And it was delicious.  Here's the deal:  Chocolate cookie crust.  Cherry pie filling.  Cheesecake.  Are you with me?  :-)

These cherries are the best!  You can order them online here

My friend Marie, the lovely hostess of the party (and writer of this blog) and her
chocolate cupcakes with chocolate-red wine frosting!  Delicious!

Chocolate Cherry Cheesecake Bars
(Makes about 30 2-bite bars)

1 1/2 cups chocolate cookie crumbs (just guess - it doesn't need to be exact)
1/3 cup melted butter

Cherry Filling:
24 oz. frozen tart cherries
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 Tbsp. corn starch
1/4 tsp. almond extract

16 oz. softened cream cheese (I used the reduced fat and you can't tell)
2 eggs
1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325.  Grease a 9x13 baking pan with cooking spray, and then add parchment paper and press in the corners.  Combine cookie crumbs and butter until completely moistened.  Pour into the prepared pan and press into the edges.  Bake for 12 minutes, remove and cool.  While it is cooling, prepare the cherry filling.  Combine frozen cherries, sugar, corn starch and almond extract in a heavy saucepan over medium heat and cook until thickened, about 10 minutes.  Pour filling over the chocolate crust.  Allow that to cool while you make the cheesecake layer.  Beat cream cheese until light and fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time and beat until incorporated.  Add yogurt, sugar, and vanilla, and beat again until combined.  Pour cream cheese mixture over cherry mixture and spread gently to cover.  Bake for 35 minutes, until set but still a little jiggly.  Cool completely and then refrigerate for at least 3 hours (or overnight, like I did).  Slice into bars, and garnish with shaved chocolate, if desired.


  1. This. Is. Heaven. I wish I had some right now :)

  2. I love the post!! Pretty picture :)