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Elegant Cakes – Healthier Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Bars (100% whole grain)
Life Should Be Cake

Healthier Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Bars (100% whole grain)

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These healthier peanut butter cheesecake brownie bars are 100% whole grain, use natural peanut butter and are totally naturally sweetened!

If you follow several blogs, then I bet you’re wondering what’s with the dozens of cheesecake recipes today. It’s Cheesecake Day! Roxana from Roxana’s Home Baking rightly thought that we should celebrate the wonders of cheesecake, and so over 65 of us are.

When I first made these bars, I was really doubtful. Doubtful because I hadn’t really found any peanut butter cheesecakes out there with natural peanut butter. I thought that there had to be a reason – that they came out runny or not-so-peanut-buttery or something. Even when I took them out of the oven, I wasn’t hopeful. The topping looked rubbery! I didn’t even want to taste them because I was sure I had another disaster on my hands.

Luckily, it was all silliness. They were perfect! The topping just doesn’t look very cheesecake-y. I knew I’d have my typical control issues with these so I tossed them in the freezer. On Friday night, I was fortunate enough to have Ali and Marta, two lovely food bloggers, over to dinner. I pulled these out for dessert along with some peanut butter brownies I’ve been working on for the book (and yes, I fed them almost identical dishes despite having half a dozen other goodies sitting around. I’m a very forgetful / bad hostess). I think it’s safe to say that they enjoyed them even with the crushed egg shell in the cheesecake portion (whoops :D))

So the cheesecake layer was plenty peanut butter-y and the part that I really like is that I sweetened it with honey. Use some coconut sugar for your brownie portion and these are totally naturally sweetened. Yay! Right? :) It was my first time to naturally sweeten cheesecake. I always thought it was impossible! Hence the lack of cheesecake recipes on here.

They’re also 100% whole grain. You can use whole wheat or whole spelt. What you can not use is my arch nemesis, whole einkorn. I’ve tried out oodles of recipes with whole einkorn and I’ve determined that we’re not compatible. I want to be friends with einkorn but it doesn’t want to be friends with me. :( I love the three recipes I’ve come up with it – but I’m not so in love with the 20+ einkorn failures I’ve had.

But back to the cheesecake! These brownie base of these cheesecake bars is super fudgy. And also super thin as you can hopefully see in the above picture. The top bar with the thicker layer is just that way because I didn’t do a very good job patting it into the pan. You can ignore those little specks of bran, though. After 5 years of whole grain baking and trying 15+ different brands of whole wheat flour, I came across the first one that didn’t seem to care to grind the flour very finely, resulting in very noticeable pieces of bran.

The cheesecake layer is a little softer than your typical straight-up classic cheesecake but awesome nonetheless. I’m sure your taste testers will be able to deal with it. ;)

And look! A few other people made cheesecake for Cheesecake Day.

Baked Cheesecakes:

No Bake Cheesecakes:

Cheesecake Beverages:

Cheesecake Cookies and Bars:

Cheesecake Desserts and Treats:

Frozen Cheesecakes and Treats:

Healthier Peanut Butter Cheesecake Brownie Bars

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