Annnnnd….. now that it’s almost Easter, I’ve noticed that I’ve completely forgotten to post our St. Paddy’s Day dessert. So here it is! ;)
We made these Mint Chocolate Cheesecake Cookie Bars based off of the Lemon Cheesecake Bars that I love so much. But we made these green (and mint) to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.
They were a hit with both my kids and my coworkers, so I may try other variations in the future, since the recipe is flexible.
The ingredients are pretty easy to pull together, especially if you already happen to have cream cheese on hand.
The base for it is a box of cake mix, which makes it a speedy dish to throw together.
The crust will seem a little dry at first, but massaging the ingredients together will help.
If your kids like to get messy, this is a great job for them to help with.
You’ll reserve some of the mix for the crumbles that go over the top, but the rest gets pressed into the bottom of the pan. This is also a good task for little hands.
The crust will seem very thin but don’t worry, it will rise a little as it bakes. Just be sure you spread it out to cover the entire bottom surface of the pan.
I add the food coloring to the cheesecake ingredients before blending, so the mixer brings it all together evenly.
The more you use the deeper the color will be. I was going for bright and bold because it was a themed dessert for St. Patrick’s Day, but if you’re going for a subtler minty look, start with only a little color.
You can see tiny chunks of cream cheese in my cheesecake mixture because it wasn’t fully at room temperature when I mixed it.
This is okay, though. It will still bake up just fine.
Sprinkle the crumbles over the top for a fun look. They also add a nice texture to the finished dessert.
You can technically cut them into any shape you’d like, but I favor the rectangles. I cut it twice lengthwise, and then cut those three rows into pieces about an inch thick.
This gives me 30 pieces, which makes it a great recipe for sharing!
Don’t eat these when they first come out of the oven and are still warm – chill them for the best results. They can be enjoyed at room temperature too, but because of the cream cheese, you’ll want to be sure to store leftovers in the refrigerator.
Mint Chocolate Cheesecake Bars
1 box chocolate cake mix (15 to 18 oz.)
2 large eggs, separated
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
Green food coloring, gel or liquid
Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C).
In one bowl, combine the cake mix, one egg, and the vegetable oil. You may need to use your fingers to help it all come together.
Spray a 13” x 9” baking pan with nonstick spray. Reserve about 3/4 cup of the chocolate crumb mixture for later use, and press the remaining batter into the pan. It will be thin but should cover the entire bottom of the pan.
In another bowl, beat the cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth. Then mix in the other egg, the sugar, extract, and a little food coloring. Beat until smooth, adding more food coloring if needed until you reach your desired color.
Spread the cream cheese mixture over the chocolate crust in the pan. Sprinkle the reserved crumb mixture evenly over the cream cheese.
Bake for 25 to 28 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean or with dry crumbs. Cool on a baking rack until it reaches room temperature, then slice. Make two cuts lengthwise and then cut into ten pieces across to make 30 pieces that measure approximately one by three inches. Cover and refrigerate overnight before serving for best results.
For the free printable PDF version of this recipe, click the link below: