Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies

It’s a cheesecake!  No, it’s a brownie!  No, it’s Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!

It's a cheesecake! No, it's a brownie! No, it's Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!When is a cheesecake not a cheesecake?  When it’s a brownie of course!  And when is a brownie not a brownie?  When it’s a cheesecake.  Obviously.  I’ve combined two of my favorite desserts into these magical Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies.  You know those times when you can’t settle on what you want for dessert?  Well these cheesecake brownies solve that problem!

It's a cheesecake! No, it's a brownie! No, it's Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!So we’re almost 1/4 of the way through 2016.  Wait.  Doesn’t it seem like New Years Day was just a couple weeks ago?  Sure enough, time flies.  Or as the Pope likes to say, tempus fugit.  Back at the end of last year, I stumbled across a New York Times article titled ’15 Ways to be a Better Person in 2016′.  Ok, bait accepted.  We all want to be better people, right?  

Among my favorite tips on the list: #2. Drink coffee (duh!), #5. Be nice to babies (why are you crying?!) and most importantly #13. Be the boss of your electronic devices (oh.).  For a while there, my wife and I fell into that habit of laying in bed playing on our phones before we went to sleep each night.  She’d peruse Facebook.  I’d play games.  10 minutes turned into 30 minutes turned into an hour.  And I know we aren’t the only ones that do this!  I saw a Valentine’s Day card this year that said “There’s no-one else I’d rather lay next to in bed while we play on our phones.”

It's a cheesecake! No, it's a brownie! No, it's Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!We used to read every night before bed, and I’ve recently tried making an effort to go back to reading each night.  Of course, with Robbie around, we usually pass the heck out as soon as we have the opportunity…but the point still remains.  It’s ok to detach from the social world for a bit.

And for the record, I appreciate the irony of a blogger saying it’s important to detach from the social world.  As bloggers, we’re expected to live our lives 100% connected to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and every other network you’ve heard about…and some you haven’t.  But it’s ok to put the phone down and pick up a book.  Anyways, enough of my rambling on smart phones, smart watches, smart refrigerators, smart cars, etc. etc.  I just want my dumb book.

It's a cheesecake! No, it's a brownie! No, it's Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!Back to these Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies…that’s why you stopped by in the first place, right?  My go-to brownie recipe got down on one knee and proposed to my go-to cheesecake recipe.  Somewhere along the way, a couple of strawberries joined the party, and the result was these Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies.  Warning: this isn’t the quickest recipe to make.  You pretty much have to mix both a cheesecake batter and a brownie batter.  But the result is so worth it!  I cut the edges off of these cheesecake brownies before taking the pictures, and then I couldn’t drag myself away from the cutting board full of scraps.  These bad boys are that good.

It's a cheesecake! No, it's a brownie! No, it's Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!Cheesecake or brownies?  Or both?

Smart phone or dumb book?

It's a cheesecake! No, it's a brownie! No, it's Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!

Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies

It’s a cheesecake!  No, it’s a brownie!  No, it’s Strawberry Cheesecake Brownies!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Servings: 18 servings
Calories: 418kcal

Ingredients

For the Strawberry Cheesecake Layer

  • cups strawberries, chopped
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 16 oz. cream cheese room temperature
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 3 Tbsp sour cream
  • ½ Tbsp vanilla extract

For the Brownies

  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 oz. unsweetened chocolate chopped
  • cups semisweet chocolate chips divided
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ Tbsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt

Instructions

For the Strawberry Cheesecake Layer

  • Using a small food processor or mini-chopper, add the strawberries and cornstarch. Puree until smooth.
  • Transfer strawberries into a small sauce pan. Place over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture begins to boil. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Set strawberry sauce aside.
  • Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese on medium speed until completely smooth (~3 minutes).
  • Add the sugar and mix well. (Tip: Don’t forget to scrape the bottom and sides of the mixing bowl to fully incorporate the sugar.)
  • Add flour and mix well.
  • Whisk the eggs and egg yolk together and add to the bowl in 2 additions, mixing fully after each addition.
  • Add the sour cream and vanilla. Mix until fully combined. (Tip: Use a spatula to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl to ensure the filling is fully mixed.)

For the Brownies

  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Grease and flour a 9”x13” baking pan. Line bottom of pan with parchment paper; set pan aside.
  • Using a medium saucepan, add the butter, unsweetened chocolate and 1 cup of chocolate chips. Place over medium-low heat, stirring often, until butter and chocolate have fully melted; set pan aside to cool.
  • In a large bowl, mix together the eggs, sugar and vanilla. Stir the egg mixture into the warm (not hot!) chocolate mixture.
  • In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir the flour mixture into the chocolate mixture.
  • Stir the remaining ¾ cup of chocolate chips into the batter.
  • Remove ½ cup of brownie batter; set aside. Pour remaining batter into prepared baking pan. Pour cheesecake mixture over brownie batter. Make 5-6 alternating lines of strawberry sauce and brownie batter on top of cheesecake layer. Use a toothpick or skewer to gently swirl the lines together.
  • Bake at 325°F for 50-60 minutes, or until top of brownies is just set and a toothpick comes out mostly clean.
  • Let cool before slicing. (Tip: If you refrigerate these brownies, they’ll be easier to slice.)

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38 Comments

  1. My husband and I are sooo guilty of playing on our phones at night! It’s such a waste of time and a bad habit. Love this and adding to my Easter dessert list! You combined
    Two of my faves 🙂

    1. Tell me about it, Ashley! It’s such a terrible habit to play on our phones…but they are so addicting! Maybe if we had more cheesecake brownies, we might not be distracted by our phones. Sound logic, right? 🙂

  2. Now that you’ve combined these two desserts, I’m never picking between them again – that was a stroke of pure genius! These look incredibly (and dangerously) delicious. I used to read in bed until recently, when I switched over to scrolling through Instagram…I think it’s time to switch back, though!

    1. Haha! I second that one. Why choose between cheesecake and brownies when you can have both?? They are indeed incredibly addicting…I speak from personal experience. Now go pick up a book tonight! That’s my plan at least. 🙂

  3. I completely agree with you. We’re back to reading book (which translates to ‘sorry dear readers, I’m not ignoring you. I’m just re-energizing here). And this cheesecake brownies will make a perfect companion while reading or doing social media. Yum!

    1. I hear ya, Linda! It’s so easy to just pick up our phones, but I find it much more relaxing (and rewarding) to read a book before bed. 🙂

  4. Hi David! These are on my list to make as soon as we finish the chocolate chip cookies and the coconut cake I made. How could anyone resist! These would also be good with raspberries! Much to my son’s objections, I don’t have a cell phone – give me a book and I’m a happy camper!

    1. So I’m not sure how you do it without a cell phone, Dorothy. That would be difficult! But the problem arises when you get a cell phone and then start playing with all of the apps out there. Talk about a huge time sink! You know me and my love of reading. Give me a good book, and I’m a happy camper, too!

  5. Wow this appeals to both parties over here: Cheesecake for him, Brownies for me! Huzzah! And yeah… we are phone addicts too but I’m trying really hard to break the habit. It is why I started coloring last year and now with baby G I’m trying to read but really passing out 😉

    1. Oh man, tell me about it, Lauren! We try our best to read a little each night, but we are so darned exhausted that it’s a challenge. And forget watching a tv show together. That was our old routine. Watch a show and then read in bed (or play on our phones). Now it’s more like: try to make it to the bed before falling asleep standing up. Haha! 🙂

    1. We clearly share the same dessert brain, Bianca! I wish I had a bar (or 3) of these right now, too…but sadly, they’re all gone. Maybe another batch needs to show up soon!

  6. Brownies & cheesecake TOGETHER for me – I do love me a good dessert combo – besides, this just means I can have my Brownie AND my cheesecake and not have to pick between the 2 – right? 🙂
    And, oooh – I need all the excuses I can get to drink MORE coffee and the fact that drinking more coffee can make me a better person – why, I guess I better up my intake! Besides, when you mix coffee with these Cheescake brownies, you cannot feel like you are experiencing a tad bit of heaven!

    1. You definitely don’t have to pick between two favorites anymore, Shashi. Just combine them into one epic dessert! Yes, drinking coffee makes you a better person. I read that on the internet somewhere, so therefore it has to be true. 🙂

  7. You combined 2 of my favorite desserts into one! this look crazy good David! and totally agree with you on detaching from the social media for a bit. It really gets overwhelming at times, especially as a food blogger! I like the idea of reading before sleeping, that’s the way it should be!

    1. It’s so difficult to detach from social media/phones (darn you, iPhone games)! We’ve been good about trying to read a little bit before bed each night, so my plan is to keep that habit going. It’s way better than staring at a tiny little screen anyways!

  8. This is so convenient! Usually, I have to eat my brownie, and then my strawberry cheesecake, but this way I can have them both at once. Highly efficient. Your logic is impressive.

    1. That’s what I’m here for, Jeff. To save you time on those nights when you want a brownie and a slice of strawberry cheesecake. You can thank me later.

  9. What a delicious marriage. Mate, these look amazing!

    So you pretty much made my day saying I’d be a better person by drinking more coffee. Now to find the article that says OD’ing on melatonin makes you better too, you know, balance 😀

    1. Haha! It’s definitely all about balance, mate. You know, the whole yin and yang thing. Very similar to the whole brownie and cheesecake thing. Just different sides of the same coin, right?

  10. Cheesecake and Brownies? Together? David, you are dangerous 🙂
    I love both these desserts, but then I love desserts period. I like the lighting in your pictures, makes everything looks so fresh.
    I am tired of Social Media, not from cooking and posting recipes, but from promoting my blog. The thing is I did take a break sometimes ago, and the outcome was, my blog dropped bad, and I am working on it now as if it’s a brand new blog 🙁

    1. Thank you so much, Muna! Desserts are definitely my weakness, too. I agree with you that social media can get you worn down. Hang in there, though! Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just cook and post recipes without all of the other stuff that goes along with it? But I’ve met some fun people in social media (including you!), so that makes all of the mundane parts so much better.

  11. Are you sure there wasn’t any point regarding lavender in that list, David? If it’s so…well, it’s obviously a wrong list. Disregard it. I’ll send you an amended one:) And sure I love this cheesecake aka brownies aka cheesecake-brownies!

  12. Dear David, I cannot believe how quickly these last few months have gone by…and yet they have felt longer due to the winter. It must be my generation but I have no problem turning down the phone past a certain hour.
    Your brownies cheesecake bars look marvelous…I wouldn’t mind unplugging from social media, making myself a cup of tea and enjoying one of these! Take care my friend, Catherine

    1. I get ya, Catherine. A love a good book, and I was always a huge reader when I was a kid. But I also love games. And having the ability to play games on your phone is bad…especially since that phone goes everywhere with me! Thank you so much for the kind words. I hope you are doing well! 🙂

  13. Easy solution: just put the phone away a half hour before bed and then you can be all self-righteous about how you read yourself to sleep. Or not. We’re all on our devices too much, civilization falling apart, and so forth.
    These look INCREDIBLE. No need to put a limit on the eating of the cheesecake brownies!

    1. Yup, I agree with all those things, Mir. But I’m definitely guilty of playing on my phone long after I was “supposed” to go to sleep. Maybe next time I’ll just sneak downstairs and have a midnight snack of cheesecake brownies instead of playing on my phone!

  14. Boy, the year is really flying by! I am not sure if I like time going so fast, but it will be nice to have spring and some warm weather. And as for these strawberry cheesecake brownies, I have one word to sum up this recipe…YUM!!!!

    1. Tell me about it, Dawn! We’ve gotten a little taste of warmer spring weather this week…and I’m now officially got spring fever! I know we’ll have some more cold days here, but I do believe I saw the crocuses peeking up out of the ground the other day. We’re close!!

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