Sometimes it’s hard to choose between a variety of desserts when you are trying to allow yourself just one. A cookie (usually the most obvious choice for me)? Or how about a slice of cheesecake? Jamie at My Baking Addiction solved that dilemma by creating cookie dough cheesecake bars. But if you are like me, that blueberry pie looks great too. The dilemma continues! Until I decided to swap chocolate chips for blueberries. Add a little lemon zest and you’ve got a sweet success in the oven. Totally worth making the A/C cry while it tried to battle the 100 degree temperatures outside, and the heat I created in the kitchen. Sorry A/C I’ll make it up to you, promise!
1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
5 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
3 Tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup flour
1 cup blueberries
10-oz reduced fat cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper or foil allowing a little overhang and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
- Mix the melted butter and graham cracker crumbs until thoroughly combined. Press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 6 minutes. Remove pan to a cooling rack. Do not turn your oven off.
- While the crust is cooling, prepare the blondie layer. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt and vanilla until smooth and thoroughly combined, about 1 minute. Mix in the flour on low speed, and mix until just incorporated. Mix in the blueberries by hand. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl with an electric mixer cream together the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Mix in the egg and vanilla on low speed just until incorporated. Pour the cheesecake batter into the prepared crust. Using your hand to form clumps, distribute the Blondie dough onto the top of the cheesecake batter in teaspoon-sized clumps (I flattened out each piece to evenly cover the cheesecake layer). Be sure to use all of the dough. You will cover most of the cheesecake batter.
- Bake for about 45-55 minutes, until the top feels dry and firm (the blondie dough) and the entire pan looks set if given a gentle shake. Move bars to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
- Lift the bars out by the overhang; slice into desired size and store in the refrigerator. Serve cold or at room temperature