I guess the baking bug hit me or it could just be the pregnancy cravings. I’m usually a terrible baker and just avoid it all costs. The creative in me isn’t good at following directions. But these days, I’ve been coming out with some banging goodies that were too yummy not to share. Well… I tried not to share, but the girls made me. So without further ado lets get into these delicious Strawberry Cheesecake Crumb Bars I made for McKenzie’s 5th birthday.
2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 ½ sticks of butter – cold +unsalted – dice into cubes
2 teaspoons baking powder
3 large egg yolks
5 lbs. fresh strawberries (use more if you like a thicker strawberry layer)
1/3 cup sugar
5 tablespoons of cornstarch
Pinch of salt
8 oz. cream cheese – room temperature
½ cup sugar
1 large egg
Preheat oven to 350 + line baking dish with parchment paper
Add flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into mixer. Mix until equally blended.
Add in butter and egg yolk and pulse into sand like texture. ** be careful not to over mix or it will melt the butter and turn into a cream mix you DON’T want this.
Scoop and spread even coat of the sand dough into the bottom of baking dish. This will be your bottom crust layer, use about half of the mix but if you prefer thicker crust, you can use more.
Bake for 20-25 minutes while you prepare other ingredients and set aside to cool.
With remaining dough mix, you can add a tablespoon or so of sugar to give the crumb topping a sweeter top than the crust/base. Mix in sugar well and place dough in the fridge while working on other ingredients to keep it in crumb form.
Mix cream cheese and sugar until smooth in a separate bowl, then add in the egg. Once mixed, place in fridge while making compote.
Cut strawberries and place them into a pan over medium heat with sugar. (No butter, oil, or spray is needed; the juices from the strawberries will prevent it from sticking).
Once strawberries have cooked down (strawberries look kind of like mush and there’s a syrup like sauce in pan) add in corn starch to thicken up the mix. Stir continuously to prevent lumps.
Compote should have a strawberry jam/jelly like consistency. Remove from heat.
Once crust layer is baked and cooled, add strawberry compote on top.
Spread cheesecake filling over strawberry compote.
Take remaining dough and sprinkle on top.
Bake for 30-40 minutes and voila.
You can serve the cheesecake bars warm, but they’re best once refrigerated to let the cheesecake layer set. Enjoy them on their own or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Don’t like strawberries? You can swap them in the recipe for any of your favorite berries or even make a mixed berry compote.
Let me know in the comments below how you like the recipe.