Philadelphia Cheesecake Bars

Philadelphia Cheesecake Bars

Philadelphia cream cheese bars are my absolute favorite. They’re similar to classic cheesecake, but there’s something unique about the way they look. Unlike the cheesecake, which is cut differently, these bars have a strawberry portion that is perfectly centered and provides just the right amount of fruity flavor.

These bars are even better than the original because I used the perfect sticky strawberry topping and added a quality white chocolate drizzle. If you enjoy cheesecake, you will fall in love with these. They’re great for snacking and serving with tea, and they’re best served chilled.

What’s So Special About These Bars?

The original Philadelphia cake snack bars that were once sold in stores are no longer available, but I love these because they are a better version of traditional Philadelphia cheesecake bars and also because they are simple to make. They were no longer produced by the Kraft company in 2004–2005 due to some production-related issues.

The middle of these bars is creamy but not rubbery or grippy. They are much simpler to make than a full cheesecake and come with a gorgeous red, sticky, flavorful topping made with fresh strawberries.

Ingredients

The classic crust is typically made with graham cracker crumbs. These or the digestive cookies are your options. I find that digestive cookies provide a slightly better crust, and you can experiment with them as well.
Although these are Philadelphia cheesecake bars, you can use any brand of cream cheese you like. Philadelphia cheese is my favorite because it is so creamy.
Strawberries – The best option is fresh strawberries because they have the most flavor and the right texture. If you use frozen strawberries, the texture will be slightly different.

Making The Cheesecake Bars

As with any cheesecake, the process begins with the base. You can use either graham crackers or digestive cookies as the base. I use these interchangeably with consistently excellent results. Simply combine ground digestive cookies or graham crackers with melted butter to create your crust. The mixture should resemble sand to some degree.

Anything drier than that will cause the crust to crumble. If your crust is too moist, you’ve added far too much butter, resulting in bars that are greasy. Once the base has been thoroughly combined, transfer it to an 8-inch baking pan and firmly press it down. I always use glass to press my crusts, as it is the most convenient.

Next, prepare the cream cheese filling. This cream cheesecake is being baked, which indicates that it contains eggs. The unbaked version of this cheesecake is acceptable, but the baked version is much superior.

To make the cream cheese filling, simply beat together cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla extract. Spread the cream cheese mixture on top of the crust and bake it. Bake the cake at 350°F for 30 minutes.

Higher temperatures may cause the cake to crack. After baking the cake, allow it to cool completely before proceeding. To make the filling for the jam, simply cook the chopped strawberries until soft. Add lemon juice, water, and cornstarch to the mixture. Cook the mixture until it thickens.

Cut the cake into squares. Use a melon baller or a measuring teaspoon (1/4 tsp) to create the indentations in the cake, which will later be filled with strawberry jam. Simply remove a strip from the center and fill it with strawberry jam. To finish the bars, drizzle them with melted white chocolate of high quality. Refrigerate the bars for one hour prior to serving.

Philadelphia Cheesecake Bars

Time to prepare: 10 minutes

Time to cook: 30 minutes

8 bars yielded

Ingredients

For the topping:

1 1/2 cups of crushed digestive cookies
1/4 cup butter melted
For the butter:

16 ounces of cream cheese, either Philadelphia or another brand
½ cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract ¼ cup sour cream
2 eggs
For the rush:

1 1/2 cups strawberry chunks
4 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 grains cornstarch
To decorate:

2 oz of melted white chocolate

Instructions

1. Heat the oven to 350°F.

2. Combine ground cookies and butter in a mixing bowl.
3. Pour the mixture into an 8-inch square baking pan. Using the bottom of a glass, press the crust down.
4. To make the filling, combine cream cheese and sugar in a mixing bowl.
5. Stir in the sour cream, vanilla extract, and eggs.
Spread the mixture on top of the cheese crust. For 30-35 minutes, bake the cake. Allow the cake to cool on the kitchen counter. Lift the cake out of the pan using the baking paper. Make bars out of the cake.

7. Using a melon baller or a teaspoon, make indents in the cheesecake bars.
8. To make the jam, combine all of the ingredients, except the starch and water, in a sauce pot. Separately combine these two.

Cook the strawberries until they are soft. Cook until the starch slurry has thickened. Fill a piping bag halfway with the cooled jam.
10. Spoon strawberry jam into the cavities.

11. Microwave the white chocolate until melted. Drizzle the chocolate over the chocolate bars.

12. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

Ingredients

To make the crust:
1 1/2 cups of ground digestives
16 g of melted butter
Philadelphia cream cheese, 16 ounces, or another brand, for the cheese
1/2 cup sugar
Vanilla extract, 1 teaspoon
1/4 cup of sour cream
2 eggs
For the snarl:
1 1/2 cups of strawberries, chopped
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons of water
1.5 tbsp lemon juice
1 teaspoon cornstarch

Instructions

Heat the oven to 350°F.
Combine ground cookies and butter in a mixing bowl.
Pour the mixture into an 8-inch square baking pan. Using the bottom of a glass, press the crust down.
To make the filling, combine cream cheese and sugar in a mixing bowl. Sour cream, vanilla, and eggs are folded in.
Cover the cheese crust with the mixture. For 30-35 minutes, bake the cake. Allow the cake to cool on the kitchen counter. Lift the cake out of the pan using the baking paper. Make bars out of the cake.
To make the jam, combine all of the ingredients, except the starch and water, in a sauce pot. Separately combine these two.
Cook the strawberries until they are soft. Cook until the starch slurry has thickened. Fill a piping bag halfway with the cooled jam.
Using a melon baller or a teaspoon, make indentations in the cheesecake bars.
Fill each cavity with strawberry jam.
Microwave the white chocolate until it is melted. Drizzle the chocolate over the chocolate bars.
Before serving, chill them for 1 hour.

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