I had an old recipe for cheesecake brownies but I have since learned a few tricks to make them even better. Using the correct pan, for instance, is a huge factor.
Instead of lining baking pans with parchment paper to make it easier to lift the uncut brownies and move the slab on a cutting board, I now use these.
Rectangular non-stick baking pans with removable bottom. Nothing sticks to the sides and bottom of the pan. And it’s so easy to pop out the cooled slab of uncut brownies. On the cutting board, I simply run an offset spatula to separate the uncut brownies from the metal. Easy peasy.
The second trick is about the swirling. In the past, I had this issue of having most of the top of the chocolate mixture getting covered with the cheesecake mixture. Well, I managed to solve that problem. Here’s how I make cheesecake brownies these days.
Fudge-y brownie batter
We don’t use brownie mix from a box here at home. We prefer to make the batter from scratch for better control of the texture and, especially, the level of sweetness.
Chocolate morsels and butter are dumped in a bowl and melted together in the microwave oven. You can do this on a double boiler but, seriously, microwaving them together saves time and work.
To the melted chocolate and butter, sugar is mixed in until combined. Then, the eggs are added. Some cooks will tell you to add the eggs one at a time, and mixing after each addition. That’s a technique for finer cake batter, in my opinion.
This is a brownie batter and mixing in all the eggs at the same time is okay. Just make sure that by the time you stop mixing, no egg streaks are visible.
The flour is whisked in and, when the mixture acquires a homogenous appearance, the brownie batter is ready.
The cheesecake component is real cheesecake batter. Softened cream cheese is whisked until fluffy before the egg is mixed in.
Sugar is added and, once fully blended with the cheese mixture, the cheesecake batter is done.
Combining brownie batter with cheesecake
I reserve some of the brownie mixture. I spread the rest on the pans and cover it entirely with the cheesecake mixture.
Then, I drop the reserved brownie mixture on top of these cheesecake mixture by teaspoonfuls. I take a skewer and swirl the three layers to form a beautiful top.
And there’s the cheesecake brownies straight out of the oven.
- 2 7" x 11" non-stick baking pans with removable bottom
- ¾ cup salted butter - cut into pieces
- 2 cups dark chocolate morsels
- 1 ⅓ cups sugar
- 4 large eggs - at room temperature
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 500 grams cream cheese - at room temperature
- 1 large egg
- ¾ cup sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
Make the brownie batter
- In a large bowl that can go into the microwave, dump the butter and dark chocolate morsels.
- Pop into the microwave on HIGH for 20 seconds, stir, heat again on HIGH for another 10 to 20 seconds (depending on the wattage of your microwave) and stir until smooth.
- Stir in the sugar until blended.
- Add the eggs.
- Whisk until fully incorporated.
- Add the flour and whisk until smooth.
Make the cheesecake topping
- Whisk the cream cheese until light and fluffy.
- Add the egg and whisk until completely incorporated.
- Stir in the sugar until smooth.
Assemble the cheesecake brownies
- Reserve a cup of the brownie mixture.
- Divide the remaining mixture into two equal portions.
- Spread one portion on each pan.
- Divide the cheesecake mixture into two equal portions and spread one portion on top of the brownie mixture in each pan.
- Take the reserved brownie mixture and drop by teaspoonful on top of the cheesecake mixture in both pans.
- Take a wooden skewer and drag across the surface of the mixtures in each pan, going from left to right then from top to bottom in a zigzag motion.
- Bake the cheesecake brownies at 350F for 40 to 50 minutes or until the top is dry, and the center is no longer jiggly.
- Cool in the pans for about 15 minutes.
- Transfer to a cutting board and slice into squares.