Swirled raspberry lemon cheesecake bars are my new favorite dessert! The creamiest lemon cheesecake swirled with fresh raspberries and a sweet graham cracker crust! Yes, please!
Why Don’t Little Kids Love Cheesecake?
I don’t know about you but the older I get the more I love a good and creamy cheesecake. I mean, if we are being totally honest it’s actually the graham cracker crust I’m obsessed with.
Have I told you how my Mom used to make a no-bake cheesecake occasionally when I was a little girl and although I wouldn’t eat it (I didn’t know what I was missing out on) I would later sneak into the fridge and eat pieces of the crust.
It was the luckiest day if someone had taken a piece out and some of the crust had been left behind.
Do you even see that? My goodness, someone please make these for me every year.
I mean, I love making them and you’ll be shocked how easy this cheesecake recipe is, but food made by other people ALWAYS tastes even better.
Yes, even a PB&J tastes better when you didn’t make it. Unless my mom did when I was a kid. She used BUTTER first. Gag!! I love ya, Mom!
How to Make Cheesecake Bars from Scratch
Alright, I know, this isn’t the Cheesecake Factory, so I didn’t make the cheesecake recipe into a large cheesecake. But cheesecake bars are just as fun and make it a lemon cheesecake bars recipe and mmmmm, it’s perfect for a spring or summer dessert!
Graham Cracker Crust Recipe
Start by making your graham cracker crust. It’s simply crushed graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter. BUT! I do recommend freshly crushed NOT the pre-crushed graham cracker crumbs.
- 1 Cup Graham cracker crumbs
- 1/4 Cup Butter
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- I like a pinch of salt too
Mix it all together, press into a pan and then bake only for about 8 minutes and allow to cool.
Lemon Cheesecake Recipe
Now, to make the lemon cheesecake recipe portion it’s going to take a few more ingredients, but it’s still a short list.
Here’s the few ingredients you need to buy to make cheesecake bars.
I’ve answered frequently asked questions below about the process and ingredients.
- Cream Cheese
- Lemon Zest
- Lemon Juice
- Start by always beating your softened cream cheese until smooth. If your cream cheese is cold or you forget to mix until smooth there will be lumps.
- Add the sugar, lemon ingredients and vanilla and mix until smooth.
- Finally, mix ONE EGG in at a time. You never want to add all the eggs or the cheesecake will not properly combine.
- Spread into your prepared pan.
Want to make a fresh, homemade raspberry sauce for your cheesecake? The store bought just doesn’t taste as good and this is just two ingredients!
- Place the raspberries and sugar in a blender until smooth.
- Press through a mesh strainer to remove the seeds.
That’s it! Oh, it’s so sweet and wonderful! If your berries were not very sweet you may add a little more sugar to taste.
Oh Sweet Basil Pro Tip!
- Why Does My Cheesecake Have Cracks?
Over-mixing is generally the culprit with a not great cheesecake.
Over mixing and mixing on a high speed add more air to a cheesecake batter. Too much air in a cheesecake can cause cracks. Be sure to always use a lower speed to mix.
Frequently Asked Questions
Cheesecake bars are far easier to start out learning how to make a cheesecake with but here are a few things you might encounter.
How to Know When Cheesecake is Done?
Never check if a cheesecake is done with a toothpick or knife.
- To check if your cheesecake is done, gently shake the cheesecake while still in the oven. If the cheesecake looks almost set and only a small circle in the center jiggles a little, it is ready as the center will set up as it cools.
Can You Use Neufchâtel Cheese In Cheesecake?
Yes, you can use Neufchatel cheese instead of cream cheese. It will have less fat and calories, and won’t be quite as rich, but that’s literally the only difference.
What Is The Difference Between Cream Cheese and Neufchatel Cheese?
The biggest difference between the two is, Neufchâtel is made using milk exclusively (23% milkfat), and cream cheese is made with milk and cream so it’s a more rich and fatty product (33% milk fat).
Can Raspberry Lemon Cheesecake Bars be Made Ahead?
You can make a cheesecake up to 3 days ahead of time, but make sure that it goes in the fridge and not get left out on the counter.
How to Store Cheesecake Bars?
Cheesecake bars should be left in the pan until serving and wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or buy a cake pan with a lid.
How Long Will Cheesecake Keep?
Homemade cheesecake will keep in the refrigerator for about 5 days, but is best eaten within 3 days if you’re serving to guests.
Can You Freeze Cheesecake Bars?
You can FREEZE Cheesecake Bars!! YAY!!!!
- To Freeze Cheesecake:
- Freeze the entire cheesecake or the bars on a sheet pan until solid.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and then foil.
- Store in the freezer for up to 2 months.
How to Defrost Cheesecake
- Remove the foil from the cheesecake and defrost in the fridge overnight
- Place the unwrapped cheesecake on the counter for 2-4 hours.
Vote on a New Recipe Now!!!
Is it just me or is all this talk about cheesecake bars making you want to try new versions? Let’s do a pumpkin cheesecake bars recipe for the fall! Tell me your vote in the comments:
- Plain cheesecake swirled with Pumpkin
- Pumpkin Cheesecake
You’ll love these cheesecake recipes:
- Mini Strawberry Cheesecakes
- No Bake Mini Cheesecakes with Raspberry Sauce
- Easy Baked Cheesecake with Fresh Cherry Sauce
- Mini Twix Caramel Cheesecakes
- Mini Dutch Apple Cheesecakes
- No Bake Caramel Cheesecake Bars
- My Favorite Lime Cheesecake with Triple Berry Sauce
Raspberry Lemon Cheesecake Bars
Graham Cracker Crust
- 1 Cup Graham Crackers, Crushed, about 9 sheets
- 4 Tablespoons Butter, salted, melted
- 1/8 teaspoon Salt
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
Cream Cheese Filling
- 16 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
- 2/3 Cup Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla
- 1 Tablespoon Lemon Zest
- 1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
- 2 Large Eggs
- 6 oz. Raspberries
- 1 Tablespoon Sugar
For The Crust
- Preheat oven to 325 & line an 8 X 8 square baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Place the graham cracker crumbs into a small bowl & mix in the melted butter, sugar and salt.
- Spread the graham cracker butter crumb into the base of your baking dish & firmly press down to create an even layer.
- Bake for 8 minutes then remove from the oven & let cool. Keep your oven heated at 325 degrees.
For The Cream Cheese Filling
- Next, use a handheld mixer at medium to high speed to blend the cream cheese until light & creamy. Add the 2/3 cup of sugar, vanilla extract, lemon zest, and lemon juice and beat until combined.
- Add one egg at a time until combined mixing at low speed.
- Pour the lemon cheesecake mixture on top of the graham cracker crust.
For The Raspberry Swirl
- In a food processor blend the 6 ounces of raspberries & strain the pureed raspberries through a mesh strainer to remove any seeds.
- Mix in 1 tablespoon of sugar to the raspberry puree.
- Add dollops of the raspberry mixture all over the cheesecake and swirl with a knife on top of the cheesecake.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the cheesecake is set.
- Let cool completely on an iron rack in the pan & then refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight.
Hello! Looking forward to making this for my husbands bday. I’m wondering if I can substitute farmers cheese for the cream cheese?
Hi Lindsay! I’ve never tried it before but I can’t imagine it would work quite right. The creamy texture of cream cheese would be hard to replicate with farmers cheese.
Any idea how this would bake as a double batch? I’m making for a party and wanted larger than 8×8, was thinking 9×13 double batch and cook longer..?
Hi Jenn! Yes, this would double perfectly into a 9×13 pan. It shouldn’t need much more time baking if any.
Could you use the same measurements and cooking time for a traditional round cheesecake?
Hi Marissa! I don’t see why that wouldn’t work! I think the baking time would be about the same…maybe start checking it at 30 minutes.
This was delicious, a perfect pairing of flavors! We made two batches for two sets of company and got tons of compliments on this! I couldn’t stay away. Absolutely crave worthy!
Yay!! Thank you so much for the feedback!
This was amazing! We got so many great reviews on this, from family and friends! Terrific flavor and greta consistency. And such a beautiful garnish and appeal! Another amazing recipe from your feed. Thanks!
Thank you so much for the feedback Krystal! So glad you enjoyed it!
Can. I make this as mini cheesecakes in a muffin tin or silicone mold?
Yes, absolutely!! The baking time will be quite a bit less. For the crust, only bake them for 4-5 minutes, then for the cheesecakes, I would start with 15-20 minutes. Check them to see if they have setup with just the tiniest jiggle in the middle. Enjoy!
Delicious. Too delicious. I have nearly eaten the whole pan by myself and will probably finish them up soon. It has been one day.
I think next time I make them, I will make less raspberry sauce so I can get more of a contrast in the swirl on top. Mine ended up being mostly red. I will also be sure to have people to share them with because it is too dangerous to be left alone with these!
Hahahaha! This made my day! They are absolutely irresistible so I totally understand! So glad you enjoyed them!
My daughter does not like raspberries. Do you think I could us frozen strawberries instead? Would the lemon flavor go with them?
Yes, that would be delicious! Blueberries would also be delicious!
I love lemon and raspberry combos and so I knew I had to try this recipe! It did not disappoint. It is a perfect combination of refreshing and decadent. It was a simple recipe to follow. I did end up baking for closer to 50 mins but I’m sure that is just due to variations in ovens and altitude. I definitely will make this again and again.
Thank you for the review Stacey! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!