I’m going to admit it; I’m not a huge dessert fan. (Collective gasp.) My husband, on the other hand, was raised in a family in which holiday get-togethers often feature more desserts than actual food. Needless to say, our marriage has necessitated that I at least learn to make dessert, whether or not I always eat it. Although I am not a huge sweets person (I prefer a rare steak!), this dessert actually calls out to me. Cheesecake is one of the few cakes I enjoy, and adding the brownie gives it both chewiness and a little crunch. I am all about mixing textures in my food. Add the turtle toppings of caramel, chocolate and pecans, and I think we have a winner!
For the brownie layer I used my trusted Better Crocker cookbook. It is the only place I have been able to find a fairly bare bones brownie recipe, though I couldn’t find this version online. I didn’t add the frosting or nuts. My cookbook is a new edition Betty Crocker Cookbook with a 2005 copyright. The cheesecake layer is a very basic cheesecake recipe. Surprisingly, this recipe can also be very difficult to find! So I just looked at numerous cheesecake recipes online and found the common denominators: cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 45-55 minutes
For Brownie Layer:
- 2/3 cup butter
- 5 oz. unsweetened chocolate chips
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 2 t vanilla
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup flour
- 2 8-oz. packages cream cheese
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 t vanilla
- chocolate syrup
- caramel syrup
- pecan chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 13 x 9-inch glass casserole dish or baking pan. First, prepare the brownie layer. Melt the butter and chocolate chips in a saucepan over low heat.
After the chocolate mixture is melted, set it aside to cool as you make the rest of the batter. Add the sugar, vanilla and eggs to a mixing bowl and mix with an electric mixer on high for 5 minutes.
Then add the cooled chocolate mixture to the bowl and beat on low until it is mixed. Last, add the flour and continue to beat on low just until the flour is incorporated. Make sure you scrape the bowl so everything gets mixed. Pour the mixture into the greased pan and set aside while you prepare the cheesecake layer.
Add the cream cheese, eggs, sugar and vanilla to a mixing bowl and beat on low (so it doesn’t splatter all over) and then high until mixed and lump-free, 3-4 minutes.
When it is done, it should look like this:
Now carefully use a spoon or spatula to dollop the cream cheese mixture onto the brownie batter, like this:
This part can be tricky. Carefully use a spatula to spread the cream cheese mixture over the brownie batter. Lightly spread from the center out so that you don’t get brownie in the cheesecake mixture.
Put the cheesecake brownies into the oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, until the cheesecake starts to brown lightly and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Let the brownies cool completely, about an hour. Cut them (makes about 24) and serve with chocolate syrup, caramel and pecans. I think they also taste just as delicious by themselves without the “turtle.”