Saturday, November 24, 2012

Cherry-Almond Cheesecake Bars

On a plate for devouring!

So here is the recipe I promised the other day! These are super yummy and unfortunately I printed the recipe a while back (without headers or footers) and I cannot remember where I printed it from so I cannot credit the source! Sorry! We did not end up using whipped topping for this recipe which is fine because they taste excellent without it! I must say mine did not look like the one in the picture but it tasted fantastic!

Before going into the oven!
Cherry-Almond Cheesecake Bars
2/3 Cup all-purpose flour
2/3 Cup quick-cooking rolled oats
3 Tablespoons packed brown sugar or 1- 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar substitute
2 Tablespoons finely chopped almonds
1/4 Cup butter
2, 8 ounce packages of reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufchatel)
1/3 Cup granulated sugar or sugar substitute equivalent to 1/3 Cup
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 Cup refrigerated or frozen egg product, thawed, or 4 eggs lightly beaten
1/3 Cup finely chopped dried cherries

10 Tablespoons fat free frozen whipped dessert topping, thawed (optional)
2 Tablespoons sliced almonds (optional)
After baking!

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 8x8x2-inch baking pan; set aside. In a medium bowl, stir together flour, oats, brown sugar, and almonds. Using a mixer, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 12 minutes.
2. Meanwhile in a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, granulated sugar, vanilla, and almond extract with an electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy. Gradually add egg, beating on low speed until just combined. Stir in cherries. Spread cream cheese mixture over partially baked crust.
3. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes or until cream cheese layer is set. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Cover and chill for 2 to 24 hours before serving.
4. Cut into bars to serve, garnish individual servings with the dessert topping and/or almonds, if desired. Store in refrigerator.


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