Healthier Cheesecake Brownies

Warning: The following post is full of calories, sugar, and rich gooey chocolate.  Reading this post will not result in any weight gain, neither will you have a sugar crash when you are finished looking at the pictures.  However, baking and actually eating these Cheesecake Brownies in real life is a different story - especially if you struggle (like I do) with over-indulging in such things as cheesecake or brownies or a fantastically incredible combination of the two.  These are made with healthier ingredients such as whole grain flour and unrefined sugar, but it’s not like these are made of green leafy vegetables.  Oh how I wish. Therefore, I recommend that if you make these Cheesecake Brownies, you should plan to take them immediately to a potluck or otherwise heavily populated event where there are many servant-hearted people to help you consume them.  Participating in a short time of “quality control” before taking them to an event is acceptable, as long as you don’t feel that you need to test the quality of the entire pan of goodies.

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Trust me, I am offering this warning from the botom of my sugar-loving heart.  I am the girl who, when asked, “Which do you like best?  Brownies…or Cheesecake?” I always answer with an definite and enthusiastic, “Yes!!!”  I love them both, but put them together and that pan of Cheesecake Brownies and I could have a fine party, just the two of us.  But I’m also working hard to get in shape and to eat a healthy diet.  Cheescake Brownie binges and my running shoes just don’t go together.

In other words:  Share the love, people.

Cheesecake Brownies

Brownie Layer

1 cup melted butter
2 cups sucanat
2/3 cup cocoa powder
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

Cheesecake Layer

2 – 8 ounce packages of cream cheese, softened
2 eggs
1/2 cup sucanat
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix together melted butter, sucanat, and cocoa powder.  Add eggs and vanilla, stirring well.  Mix in flour and stir until thoroughly mixed.  Spread the brownie batter into a 9×13 inch baking dish and set aside.

In a separate mixing bowl, cream together all cheesecake layer ingredients:  softened cream cheese, eggs, sucanat and vanilla.  Once it is well mixed and creamy, spoon the mixure into about twelve “plops” over the top of the brownie batter.

Use a butter knife to “cut” and swirl the cheesecake mixture through the brownie batter.

Try not to hyperventilate while you anticipate how good these will taste once they are baked.  Good luck.

Bake in a 350° oven for 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Allow the Cheesecake Brownies to cool completely before slicing.  Makes 24 servings.

I will say it again:  This recipe makes twenty-four servings.  These cheesecake brownies are not to be consumed by you alone – not even in 24 different settings.  Not even if you first ate a good dinner.  These are to be shared.  Do not forget this important information.


Oh, but when you do indulge in your Cheesecake Brownie, I give you full permission to thoroughly enjoy yourself.  Savor each rich, chocolaty, cream cheesy bite of gooey goodness.  Put your feet up, turn on some music, and make it an event.  And if you think of it, call me.  I like events that include brownies and cheesecake.

What would you answer to the question of:  “Which do you like best?  Brownies…or cheesecake?” (“Yes” is an acceptable answer.)

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Comments

  1. Mary says

    Super Yummy! I have a non-whole foods recipe for something similar to this that I was hoping to adapt to whole foods. Now I won’t have to! The original recipe had a sweet milk chocolate frosting. Soooo not good for you, but oh, so yum!

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  2. Mary says

    Super Yummy! I have a non-whole foods recipe for something similar to this that I was hoping to adapt to whole foods. Now I won’t have to! The original recipe had a sweet milk chocolate frosting. Soooo not good for you, but oh, so yum!

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  3. says

    Just what I was looking for. Yummy! Will be making these with my grand daughter very soon. Thanks so much. Have a wonderful day!

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  4. TaraK says

    Given the choice between brownies and cheesecake I would choose a good brownie everytime. However, I happen to have all the ingredients for these in the house (except sucant, sugar will have to do) so I will be making these today. My family thanks you.

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  5. Allison says

    I often freeze brownies for later, do you think that would be possible? What about using apple sauce for 1/2 the butter?

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    Laura Reply:

    You can definitely freeze these for later. I’ve never tried it in this recipe, but I do think subbing half applesauce would work okay!

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    Allison Reply:

    We are going to try using this recipe (minus nut and chocolate chip)
    with the cream cheese topping and we will see how it turns out.
    Then with GF oats it could be GF.
    http://missionarymomalbania.blogspot.com/2011/11/gratituesday-day-of-rest-and-great-food.html

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  6. says

    Yes!!
    Laura, I just wanted to tell you thanks for sharing so many great recipes! Last night I made your chicken tortilla soup, and it was delicious! Yesterday I also made your recipe for banana bread. My husband (who I’m having a hard time getting to switch to healthier foods) loved the banana bread. He was really surprised when I told him that they were only sweeetened with honey! So thanks for giving me wonderful recipes that I can make for my family that are tasty AND healthy!!

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  7. Karen Dee says

    Oh dear, Laura! You are going to do me in. Now do I suppose, IF I make these, I will have the willpower not to eat them all? I live alone and can’t give the dogs chocolate.
    I think I will wait till the get together for prime timers at church the 30th. Can’t wait! Karen Dee

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  8. Ashley says

    Ooooh these look yummy! So NOT healthy LOL I will make them for a Church function tee hee…because even if I do the “insane cardio” routine I did this morning five times today my butt would still get fatter haha!

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  9. Sharon says

    Thank you for sharing. I love your recipes but I think I really love your personal stories and insight that goes with them. When I print off a recipe I always keep your story or advice that goes with them. A big thank you for today’s recipe. It’s my birthday so I think this little treat is in order. Perfect!

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  10. Debbie says

    I wonder if it could be changed to black bean brownies and them add peanut butter to the cream cheese resulting in a higher protein brownie. It would then need to be called chocolate peanut butter cheese cake brownies, because you know chocolate and peanut butter go great together!

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  11. Jennifer M. says

    I’ve made something similiar to these….with a gluten free flour brownie and dairy free cream cheese! Just delish!

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  12. Barbra says

    Great post, Laura! I laughed out loud so hard and drooled so much that my three-year-old had to come and see what I was looking at! He couldn’t quite associate with what Mommy was doing. I want to make these! Don’t have enough cream cheese, no cocoa either… I was thinking of using carob, but the taste would be very different, may not sooth my fix.
    Love your site, blogs, recipes and you !
    Blessings!

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  13. Frieda says

    I wish I had one of these right now! I, too, have a sweet tooth. It wouldn’t be a good idea to leave me home alone with a batch of these. I will try this recipe soon.

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  14. Lisa says

    I made these last night and then are wonderful! Super easy and fast. The hardest part was waiting for them to cool to cut them. Wonderful recipe! Keep them coming. You are a true blessing to all of us mothers are here.

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    Jessica Reply:

    I agree, waiting for them to cool was torture. Make them at lunch time & serve for dessert at dinner. We put the pan in the fridge while we went to the store.

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  15. Jessica says

    Ooh yum! I only have 1 pkg of cream cheese, so I will have to half this recipe so I can make. it. NOW. :P

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    Jessica Reply:

    I added a layer of chocolate chips & some nuts (on one side) between the cheesecake & brownie layers. If you are going to go, go all out. :)

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  16. says

    OK i made these just now according to the recipe except I used turbinado instead of sucanat and my brownie batter was super thick and the cheese cake mixture super runny….From the looks of your pictures your brownie batter looks somewhat thinner than mine and your cheese cake mixture looks thicker than mine because mine did not go down in a “plop” more like a run all over the place and I had to pour it on. Just wondering why?

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    Laura Reply:

    Not sure…I may have whipped my cream cheese a little bit longer to thicken it, but I’m not sure that it matters if it is a little runnier. Hopefully it worked well!

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    Khim Reply:

    Hi Laura, I just made this and my cream cheese batter with your measurements was runny too. I beat it with higher speed but still liquid. Did you use Philidelphia cream cheese? Or was your cheese batter thick because you use only egg whites?

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    Laura Reply:

    I used the whole egg, not just the white, and I think I used an off brand of cream cheese. Maybe use only one egg instead of two next time?

    Karen Dee Reply:

    I made these and no, the low fat cheese made no difference as for the taste. Was delicious! I also used TURBINADO and my batter was stiff as a board plus the brownies were very very chewy. I will use the sucanat next as I think it melts faster while still batter and makes it creamier. But, I had many left after church. My friend and I split them and took them home. Next day, they were even better! My friend and I both put them in the freezer to stay out of them and got into them the next AM eating them frozen! What a great recipe. I LOVE them!

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  17. Annie says

    They are in the oven! Only thing was I used light cream cheese and my cheesecake portion was not so ploppable!! More like pourable! Hope they aren’t ruined. I am looking forward to sharing them at a big family dinner tonight!

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    Annie Reply:

    Well, I don’t think the low fat ruined it at all. Turned out great. However, I let it cook about 15 min longer an the brownies were still underdone! They were alright, but I didn’t want the cheesecake to cook any longer. Tasted good tho, thankfully I’m a more “gooey-liking” gal!

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  18. Karen Dee says

    Well, today is the day to make the cheesecake brownies for church tonight. I bought the lower fat cream cheese, well, the neuftachel (sp?). Did anyone say that ruins the recipe?? I hope not. Here goes!

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    Marie Reply:

    I used the neufchatel and the brownies turned out delicious. I even had to substitute some plain yogurt because I was a bit short on the cream cheese and everyone gobbled them up!

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  19. Karen Dee says

    Hey, I might substitude some plain yogurt on purpose next time since it worked for you. Thanks for sharing that. :)

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  20. Patricia says

    We tried yesterday, oh so yummy. We had company so now its completely gone!! I love this recipe, thanks Laura!!

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  21. Sarah says

    This takes me back to my childhood with box brownies and cream cheese topping swirl my mom would make. This obviously is a much better alternative; however, have you ever used coconut oil for the brownie batter instead of butter? Apparently, I have found you don’t need as much coconut oil as you do butter. What are your thoughts on that substitution?
    Thanks for all your wonderful bread-making ideas too. Your website is a breath of fresh air to me, a young surviving mommy.

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    Laura Reply:

    Yes, you can definitely use coconut oil instead of butter – I’d sub one for one.

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  22. Jacquelyn says

    I made these for a church function. They were gobbled up at church. I wasn’t too worried about it because I left a few at home. My kids hadn’t gotten one at church either so I cut one for each of them, leaving one in the pan, and went to help them get ready for bed. I came down to find only crumbs in the pan. When I asked him about it, my husband’s guilty face told me everything. I fixed the entire pan and all I got to eat was crumbs. I guess I have a reason to make another pan of these apparently delicious brownies.

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