This decadent fall Apple Cheesecake Bars dessert can be made year round thanks to a few packaged items paired with fresh whipped cream cheese. This dessert recipe comes together in under an hour.
Over the past ten years of blogging, I’ve learned that not all recipes have to be made from scratch! Sometimes you can use the help of a few boxed/canned ingredients to make the perfect dessert. This recipe for Apple Cheesecake Bars are one of them.
These cheesecake bars are a semi-homemade dessert that will have your friends and family coming back for more. Most importantly, begging you to divulge your secrets and share the recipe. They are definitely a cross between an apple pie and a new york style cheesecake but made in half the time of either dishes.
Why This Recipe Works
Perfect Combination of Flavors: Apple Cheesecake Bars combine the rich, creamy goodness of cheesecake with the sweet and slightly tart taste of apples. This fusion of flavors creates a harmonious and indulgent dessert that appeals to a wide range of tastes. The creamy cheesecake layer complements the soft, cinnamon-spiced apples, making it a delightful treat for those who love a mix of textures and flavors.
Versatility: Apple Cheesecake Bars are versatile and can be enjoyed in various settings. They make an excellent addition to your dessert table at a special occasion or holiday gathering, but they are also suitable for a casual family dessert or a sweet treat for a cozy evening at home. They can be customized with different toppings or drizzles to suit your preferences, making them adaptable to different tastes.
Ease of Preparation: These bars are relatively easy to make compared to traditional cheesecakes, making them accessible to both novice and experienced bakers. The bar format simplifies the serving process, eliminating the need for a springform pan and the risk of cracking that can occur with traditional cheesecakes. Additionally, the combination of cheesecake and apple layers ensures that you get the best of both worlds without the complexity of making two separate desserts.
Apple Cheesecake Bars offer a delightful blend of flavors, versatility in their application, and an easier preparation process compared to traditional cheesecakes, making them a fantastic dessert option that most people would enjoy making and sharing with others.
- Oatmeal Cookie Mix – I keep it simple and just use a pouch from the grocery store as the base of the cookie bars! I prefer Betty Crocker brand.
- Butter – Unsalted is best for this recipe, but I’ve also used salted too.
- Cream Cheese – Make sure you let the cream cheese sit out at room temperature for 1-2 hours so it softens in time for baking.
- Egg – Just like the cream cheese you will need the egg to sit out at room temperature. This prevents it from curdling in the room temperature cream cheese.
- All-Purpose Flour – This is to thicken the cream cheese mixture.
- Vanilla Extract – This will flavor the cream cheese base.
- Granulated Sugar – I add a little sugar to the cream cheese base. However, this is a very sweet bar to begin with and if you don’t want it as sweet you can reduce the sugar in half.
- Apple Pie Filling – One can of apple pie filling is all you will need. Take the time to spread it evenly throughout the bars!
- Spices – I like to use mainly cinnamon with a pinch of nutmeg, but you can also use apple pie spice if you have it on hand.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray bottom and sides of 13×9 pan with cooking spray. Place cookie mix in large bowl. With pastry blender or fork, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly and coarse. Reserve 1-½ cups crumb mixture; press remaining crumbs in bottom of pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
Spread cream cheese mixture evenly over partially baked crust. Then pour pie filling over the cream cheese mixture, making sure to smooth out the filling so that it evenly covers the cheesecake mixture. Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg, then sprinkle reserve crumbs over the top of the apple pie filling (covering all the filling).
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes longer or until light golden brown. Cool for another 30 minutes then refrigerate to chill for about 2 hours. Cut the bars to desired size. Store covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days.
It can be tricky to tell if cheesecake is done or not. For these bars after the cooking time is up I’ll simply give the baking tray a little shake to see if they jiggle a lot. The cheesecake bars should only jiggle a little. The center will firm up during the cooling time. Make sure you do not use a knife to check the doneness.
Yes, the middle should be jiggly but not firm. The middle will begin to firm up during the cooling process. This is one of the reasons why it’s very important that the cheesecake has time to rest and chill so that it can set.
You can eat it; however, I would be concerned that if the egg is not fully cooked you could get sick with salmonella poisoning.
Yes, if you wish to make these caramel apple cheesecake bars you can add a drizzle of caramel sauce on top once the bars are cooled and cut!
Tips & Tricks
Here are a few of my favorite tips and tricks I’ve found helpful when making this recipe.
- Room temperature – Make sure the cream cheese and egg is at room temperature before creaming.
- Sugar – These bars are already very sweet. If you want to decrease the sugar in the cream cheese mixture by ¼ cup it works.
- Caramel – If you love caramel you can make these caramel apple cheesecake bars by pouring caramel on top before serving!
- Nuts – If you like nuts you can add chopped pecans on top of the streusel topping before baking.
Here are a few of my favorite apple recipes from breakfast, dessert, and even drinks!
If you make these apple cheesecake bars recipe, I would be honored and love for you to take the time to leave a star rating and comment! I spend hours developing and testing these recipes, and always love to hear feedback and user experience!
Apple Cheesecake Bars
- KitchenAid Stand Mixer
- Stove Top
- Measuring Spoons
- 1 Silicone Spatula
- 1 Rectangular Baking Dish
- 1 pouch Betty Crocker Oatmeal Cookie Mix
- 1 stick Cold Unsalted Butter
- 16 ounces Packages of Cream cheese soften at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons All-purpose flour
- ½ cup Granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 Egg
- 21 ouces Can of Apple Pie Filling
- ½ teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- dash Nutmeg
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray bottom and sides of 13×9 pan with cooking spray.
- Place cookie mix in large bowl. With pastry blender or fork, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly and coarse. Reserve 1-½ cups crumb mixture; press remaining crumbs in bottom of pan. Bake for 10 minutes.
- While the crumbs are baking; in a large bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, flour, vanilla and egg with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth.
- Spread cream cheese mixture evenly over partially baked crust. Then pour pie filling over the cream cheese mixture, making sure to smooth out the filling so that it evenly covers the cheesecake mixture. Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg, then sprinkle reserve crumbs over the top of the apple pie filling (covering all the filling).
- Bake for 35 to 40 minutes longer or until light golden brown. Cool for another 30 minutes then refrigerate to chill for about 2 hours. Cut the bars to desired size. Store covered in the refrigerator up to 3 days.
- Room temperature – Make sure that the cream cheese and egg is at room temperature before mixing.
- Cool – Let the cheesecake cool completely before cutting into the bars.
- Fruit – You can use any variety of canned fruit in jelly for this recipe!
- Nuts – If you like nuts you can add in chopped pecans in the streusel topping before baking.