I was supposed to be making a tart with my brand new tart pan. At least that was the original intention. In the end it turned out more like a bar made in a tart pan. This is the second time that my attempts at “tart creation” have been thwarted. The first time involved rhubarb and wouldn’t you guess, cream cheese. It was a sloppy finish and in the end I had to mix the whole concoction together, throw it in a pie crust and freeze it. The pie was delicious, but it definitely didn’t qualify for tart status. I swear, one of these days I’m going to set out to make a tart and succeed. Until that day comes though, this bar definitely suffices and serves to calm my ever nagging sweet tooth.
Think cookie crust with just a hint of lemon zest meets smooth as silk almondy cream cheese middle and hug it all together with a slightly tart red raspberry sauce that serves to balance the overall sweetness of the confection. Combine this melody of flavors and what do you have? One harmoniously empty plate, that’s what.
I’m assuming you can’t get to the kitchen fast enough to whip a plate up for yourself, so let me end the suspense and show you how it’s done.
To get started you’ll want to grab up a pile of butter and cream it together with a little bit of sugar. Yum. Yum.
Add in all the liquid goodness and a little lemon zest for good measure.
Now add in your flour and make it into a dough. Chill it for about 30 or so minutes to firm it up and then push it into the bottom of your tart pan (or 9×13 works well too).
Cook it up until it’s golden brown and beautiful. Hello cookie crust. Don’t you look fine.
Let it cool completely and get to work on the cream cheese filling.
In your mixer, whip together a little cream cheese, sweetened condensed milk and almond extract.
But why stop there when you can whip up some heavy cream and fold it into that cream cheese goodness?
Place your finished creation on top of the cookie and smooth it out all pretty like.
Pop the pan back in the fridge to continue chilling and move on to the final (and best in my most humble opinion) piece of the recipe.
Grab a pot and cook up a quick raspberry sauce. Love me some raspberries.
Chill the sauce completely before serving it up.
And are you ready? Grab a little bit of this…
…and pour a little bit of this over the top. Tart Shmart. I’ll take the bar baby.
Raspberry Cheesecake Bars
Total Time: 55 min
For the Cookie Crust:
2 Sticks Butter
1 Cup white Sugar
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Small Lemon, Zested
1 tsp Vanilla
1/4 tsp Salt
11/2 Cups Flour
For the Cream Cheese Layer
1 8 Oz. Pkg. Cream Cheese
1 tsp Almond Extract
1 14 Oz. Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream
For the Raspberry Sauce:
1 Cup + 2 Tbsp Water
1/4 Cup White Sugar
2 Cups Frozen Raspberries
2 Tbsp Corn Starch
For the Cookie Crust:
Cream together the butter with the two sugars.
Add in the lemon zest, egg, and vanilla. Mix well.
Add in the salt and flour.Combine to form a dough.
Place dough in the fridge for about 30 minutes to firm up.
After chilled, form into tart pan (9x13 works as well) and bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown around edges.
Let cool completely.
For the Cream Cheese Layer:
In a mixer, whip together the cream cheese, almond extract and sweetened condensed milk until smooth. Set aside.
Whip the heavy cream until it becomes whipped cream.
Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Chill.
For the Raspberry Sauce:
Combine 1 cup of the water, the raspberries and the sugar into a small pot and set to medium high heat.
Mix together the remaining 2 Tbsp of cold water with the corn starch. When the raspberry mixture begins to boil, add in the cornstarch slurry and let boil for a minute or so until thickened.
Remove from heat and place in the fridge until cooled completely.
Pour cream cheese mixture over cookie crust and let set in fridge for at least an hour. Serve with raspberry sauce spooned over the top.
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Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen says
I love that crust! And your pan – I am jealous over it!! 🙂 ?- K
Michele @ The Scrap Shoppe says
This looks SO good, Julie! Love that rectangular tart pan. I haven’t seen anything like it before!
Kay, The Church Cook says
Beautiful Julie! Now I will need to get a rectangular pan ’cause I don’t have one to make it look like yours. 🙂
doesn’t matter how you slice it this looks good!!
Your recipe today is my husbands favorite dessert, most anything raspberry he will love. Happy Friday!
Well call it tart or call it bar, that dessert looks seriously inspired!
Gracie @ The Red Kitchen Project says
These look delicious and now I’m dreaming of them for lunch. Even though I’m probably still having a fish taco. Stupid Lent. 🙂
If raspberries are out of season or you just don’t want to spend the extra money, you can always make a killer berry-swirl cheesecake on the cheaps by cutting swirls of melted berry jelly into the top layer? Here’s my ultra-cheap take on black raspberry cheesecake done with a bit of Smuckers I already had sitting in the fridge. No one even knew the difference:
Anyway, thanks for the great reminder that it’s just about time for some more berry cheesecake in my kitchen. Yum.
Looks so pretty!
It’s been so long since I’ve had a cheesecake. This looks amazing!
Mari's Cakes says
I love that you came out with this bars instead because they seem like a nice sweet treat. The raspberry topping looks soooooo delicious! You have a very nice tart pan, hopefully you’ll get a perfect tart soon.
Have a great weekend 🙂
mmm..these cheesecake bars look very tasty. Now its your turn to post on my Sunday Spotlight Recipes I’ll send a reminder tomorrow. Have a great weekend and thanks for hosting 🙂
Beth (OMG! Yummy) says
You crack me up — love how you turned it into a bar recipe. We’ve had a few tartastrophes around here as well 🙂 The solution is all in the attitude though and you have such an optimistic view – it just has to be good!
Wish I could take a bite right now!
Lindsay @ Pinch of Yum says
That crust looks incredible!! Lemon zest in there? Yum. This is so springy and bright. Maybe I’ll make it for my sister’s bridal shower! 🙂
Ma What's For Dinner says
You had me at raspberry, then again at Cheesecake!
Have a great weekend.
Cheesecake is one of my ultimate favs and this looks like one I could do!
Laura in Cancun says
Denise @ Creative Kitchen says
Your pictures are stunning. I love that green plate!
Biren @ Roti n Rice says
I hope there is some left for me as I would like two slices please. That cream cheese layer is calling out to me 🙂
Martha (MM) says
Yummy recipe!! Thanks for hosting and have a great weekend 🙂
Can I just say….. you’re evil. I subscribe by email and images are generally blocked… and without the images I was still drooling over the description. Now if you could make this fat and sugar free, I’d raise your status to Goddess of the Kitchen. ;)~
OH, this looks fabulous!! I can’t wait to try it out this weekend. I think it will be a total hit!!
Anna Johnston says
Now that’s one awesome looking tart pan almost as impressive as the tart itself Julie 🙂
I can tell you that your pictures had me hanging in front of my computer screen drooling. Especially the one with the sauce running from the cake. It looks delicious Julie!
Wow this is definitely being filed away for when my Mom comes to visit next. She love cheesecake- but will buy those silly little boxed Jello kits. It may take a little longer but I can tell it will be worth it!!
Mandy - The Complete Cook Book says
Albeit that the tart did not turn out as you had hoped, it looks superb and I love an unbaked cheesecake! Yum.
That IS a beautiful tart pan! But these bars came out so lovely that who cares it’s not a tart??? Great job!
Feast on the Cheap says
Oh yum, my grandmother makes an amazing cheesecake with raspberry puree, but I love the idea of molding them into smaller, single-serving bars. Maybe that way I could exercise some portion control…
Oh my!! These look simply marvelous! Pinned and stumbled!
Kate Murphy says
Currently eating very well thanks to my food blogging friend! Love the cheesecake!!
Joey @ Big Teeth & Clouds says
Your pictures are so gorgeous! I really can’t believe that anything comes out of your kitchen looking less than awesome, tart or not!
Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen says
You know, next time you could just bake these bars in a tart pan and call it a tart! Problem solved. 😉 Raspberry Cheesecake Tart, now who wouldn’t want a slice of that!
megan @ whatmegansmaking says
beautiful Julie! Even if it’s not a tart 🙂 I’ll take the bars any day!
i like your crust-to-cheesecake-goo ratio, and the topping is perfect. lurvely work. 🙂
It’s a bar but can qualify as a tart too. 🙂 It looks really good, anything with cream cheese is good!
A little bit of everything says
the raspberry sauce bought me on my knees. Love it.
can’t wait to see more delicious treats caked in your new pan.
have a wonderful Sunday, Julie
OH my goodness, this looks way too good to be true!!!