Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

By Tessa Arias
  |  
March 21st, 2018
4.71 from 24 votes
4.71 from 24 votes

Outrageous Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars have a layer of fudgy brownie, cheesecake filling, and a chocolate chip cookie dough topping.

Yield: 12 bars

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook: 1 hour 5 minutes

Tessa's Recipe Rundown...

Taste: The brownie layer has an intense chocolate/cocoa flavor, the cheesecake is tangy yet sweet, and the cookie dough layer tastes like brown sugar chocolate chip cookies! Texture: Incredible. Rich, fudgy, thick, chewy, luscious, gooey, crunchy, everything you could ever want. Ease: I will admit, this recipe requires a lot of steps and dirties a lot of dishes, though there are no difficult techniques. SO worth it, promise! Appearance: Who could pass up one of these babies? Pros: Outrageously decadent dessert. Cons: Not an everyday indulgence. Would I make this again? Absolutely.

These Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars take indulgence to a whole other level!

The last few days here in Arizona have been wonderfully chilly. Of course, nothing compared to the spring snow storm that’s been happening on the east coast! But here in the desert rain is such a welcomed sight that we relish in the overcast dreariness whenever it does happen.

Each layer of these crazy brownie bottom cookie dough cheesecake bars!

If the weather drops below 70°F here, you have to stop yourself and think, “Wait a second, you mean I can’t wear a t-shirt like every other day?” It’s a wonderful realization. I’ll jump at any opportunity to wear scarves and boots!

Outrageous Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars have a layer of fudgy brownie, cheesecake filling, and a chocolate chip cookie dough topping.

The gloomy and cold weather this past weekend was PERFECT baking weather and I have had the idea for these Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars on my mind for a few weeks now.

Let me just say, I was SO excited to update this recipe for you.

Fair warning, these bars have three layers and each layer dirties at least one bowl, if not more. So yes, there are some dishes involved. One bite and I would gladly do three times as many dishes, that’s how incredible these are. You have to make them for your next party, birthday, or potluck… everyone will love them!

Recipe Tips

Important!

I would HIGHLY recommend reading the entire recipe through before making it. Since there are three distinct layers involved here, reading through completely will give you a better sense of the order and flow of the steps involved.

Once you’ve read it through, here’s an answer to a question I received: The recipe assumes that once you remove the brownies from the oven you won’t immediately have the cookie dough layer and the cheesecake layer ready to put on top of the brownies. So, while you prepare those two layers, you can keep the oven on (so you won’t have to preheat it again) WHILE the brownies sit and cool. When I made this recipe I found that timeframe worked perfectly. OR, if you don’t have time to finish the recipe, you can turn off the oven, pop the brownies in the fridge, and come back to the kitchen at some later point to finish the cookie dough cheesecake layers.

Baking Pan

For best results, use a metal 8-inch square baking pan. Glass or ceramic pans will take much longer to bake.

Yield

I wrote that this recipe yields 12 brownies instead of my usual 9 for an 8-by-8-inch square recipe. That’s because these are so rich! You could cut them into even smaller bite sized pieces, more like fudge, if you wanted to as well.

Serving

These brownies are easiest to slice when they’re chilled. The cheesecake layer requires that these be stored in the fridge anyways! I like to remove the bars from the pan and slice them on a work surface to make it easier. Use a big sharp knife and run the blade under hot water and wipe off in between cuts.

Outrageous Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars have a layer of fudgy brownie, cheesecake filling, and a chocolate chip cookie dough topping.

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4.71 from 24 votes

How to make
Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

Yield: 12 bars
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Outrageous Brownie Bottom Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars have a layer of fudgy brownie, cheesecake filling, and a chocolate chip cookie dough topping.

Ingredients

For the brownies::

  • 1 stick (113 grams) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (85 grams) unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup (62 grams) all-purpose flour

For the cookie dough::

  • 4 tablespoons (57 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (67 grams) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 3/4 cup (95 grams) all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (80 grams) miniature semisweet chocolate chips

For the cheesecake filling::

  • 2 (8 ounce, 227 gram) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt

Directions

For the brownies:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line an 8×8-inch metal baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang.
  2. In a large bowl combine the butter, sugar, cocoa powder, and salt. Stir until well combined, mixture will be thick. Let cool if the butter is still hot. Stir in the vanilla and then the eggs, one at a time, stirring very well after each addition. Stir until the batter is very well blended. Add the flour and stir again until very well blended. Spread into prepared pan.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes, or until just starting to set but not fully cooked. Let cool to room temperature then place in the fridge to chill until ready to use while you make the other layers. Maintain 325°F oven temperature if baking cheesecake layer immediately.

For the cookie dough:

  1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, vanilla, and milk until smooth, about 2 minutes. On low speed gradually add the flour and beat until combined. Mix in the chocolate chips. Place the dough between two sheets of parchment and roll into an 8-inch square. Refrigerate while you prepare the cheesecake batter.

For the cheesecake:

  1. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese and sugar until well combined and smooth. Beat in the eggs, flour, and salt just until incorporated. Pour the cheesecake batter over the brownie layer. Place the cookie dough sheet over the cheesecake batter.
  2. Bake at 325°F for about 50 minutes, or until the cheesecake is set and the cookie dough is barely golden but dry. Cool to room temperature before refrigerating for at least 2 hours to chill. Cut into 12 bars before serving. For clean cuts, use a big sharp knife and run it under hot water and wipe it off between slices. Bars can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Recipe Notes

 
Course : Dessert
Cuisine : American

This recipe was originally posted in 2013 and updated with weight measurements, more baking tips, and photos by Jess Larson.

Tessa Arias
Author: Tessa Arias

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

Tessa Arias

About Tessa...

I share trusted baking recipes your friends will LOVE alongside insights into the science of sweets. I'm a professionally trained chef, cookbook author, and cookie queen. I love to write about all things sweet, carb-y, and homemade. I live in Phoenix, Arizona (hence the blog name!)

Find Tessa on  

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Recipe Rating




  1. #
    Valerie — July 2, 2022 at 8:20 am

    Made this in an 8.5 inch nonstick springform pan with no foil and it came out perfectly! Thanks for such a fun recipe!

    • #
      Kiersten @ Handle the Heat — July 6, 2022 at 1:32 pm

      So happy you enjoyed these fun bars, Valerie!!

  2. #
    Alexis — May 25, 2022 at 10:29 pm

    Hello, I see that in this recipe in regards to the cheesecake layer, the ratio of cream cheese to eggs is 1:1 (1 cream cheese to 1 egg) In your original cheesecake bars recipe the ratio of cream cheese to eggs is 2:3 (2 cream cheese to 3 eggs). Is there any particular reason the ratio is different between the bar recipes? I would assume the texture would be different as well. Thank you for your help with this.

    • #
      Kiersten @ Handle the Heat — May 26, 2022 at 12:04 pm

      Hi Alexis! Very observant of you! 😀 Yes, Tessa adjusted the cream cheese-to-egg ratio in these bars for textural purposes, so the cheesecake doesn’t sink into the brownie, and the cookie dough doesn’t sink into the cheesecake! This way, you get the nice distinct layers, and each layer is perfectly set 🙂 If you’re not already, join the Waitlist to join the Handle the Heat Baking School! I think you’d love the community of passionate bakers in our Baking School! 🙂

  3. #
    Michelle — May 12, 2022 at 4:27 pm

    Made this for employee birthday “cake”….I added Oreo cookies between the brownies and cheesecake! Yum yum yum! Huge hit at the office, all the boys loved it and have since requested it as their own birthday cake!

  4. #
    Suzanne — February 7, 2022 at 7:03 pm

    I’m planning on making this for a special Valentine’s Day dessert and I’m wondering if a Springform pan would work for this. ?

    • #
      Emily — February 9, 2022 at 11:56 am

      We haven’t tried that so I can’t say for sure! Let us know how it goes if you give it a try! 🙂

      • #
        Suzanne — April 13, 2022 at 3:14 pm

        I forgot to to write how INCREDIBLE this was! WOWZA!! I’m making this again for Easter dessert….my daughter’s request….not that she had to twist my arm or anything.

        I DID use my 9-inch springform pan, and it works PERFECTLY! I made the recipe as written and the baking times remained the same. LOVE LOVE LOVE! Not much guilt, because you’re pretty much guaranteed to only eat one piece of this deliciousness because everyone else will love it, too! THANK YOU!

        • #
          Emily — April 14, 2022 at 7:45 am

          That’s so great to hear! Thanks for letting us know 🙂

  5. #
    Sarah — January 31, 2022 at 9:44 pm

    How do you know when the cheesecake is set? Or do you mostly go by the look of the cookie to know when to take it out of the oven?

    • #
      Emily — February 1, 2022 at 3:07 pm

      Hi Sarah! You can test your cheesecake for doneness by gently shaking the pan. If when you gently shake the pan only a small circle in the center jiggles slightly, it’s done. The outer edges of the cheesecake will have fully set. Keep in mind that the cheesecake will continue to bake in the pan outside of the oven as well. I hope that helps! Let me know how it goes 🙂

  6. #
    Ashlee — January 29, 2022 at 11:03 am

    These brownies are phenomenal. I had made a different recipe not too long ago and it was a soupy mess so I had to redeem myself and luckily came across this recipe because of its great reviews. I followed this recipe exactly and they came out perfect. They were a big hit for the whole family and I would be lying if I said I wasn’t tempted to eat one for breakfast this morning. Will save this recipe!:) recommend.

    • #
      Emily — February 1, 2022 at 8:37 am

      haha YAY! So happy to hear this recipe worked great for you and that it was such a hit! We won’t tell if you enjoy one for breakfast 🙂

  7. #
    Dawn — January 23, 2022 at 6:15 am

    Tessa, I just made this last night, and it was phenomenal! My family went crazy for them. The crispy cookie dough top, creamy cheesecake center and rich brownie bottom are a match made in heaven. Thank you for always delivering amazing, no-fail, top notch recipes.

    • #
      Emily — January 24, 2022 at 3:04 pm

      So happy to hear this recipe was such a hit! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment, we appreciate it!

  8. #
    Nagy — June 30, 2021 at 12:15 pm

    These were good, however I think my cookie was a bit under baked :/ I might have took it out too soon, but I felt the brownie/cheesecake was getting overcooked. Also, the brownie part was really thick s I might half the batter next time. Overall still delicious and will probably make again!

  9. #
    Mille S Hindborg — June 1, 2021 at 5:16 am

    Hi! I will definitely try this soon ☺️Just one question: is it 2x 227g of cream cheese or 227g total? Thanks! Best wishes, Mille

    • #
      Tessa — June 1, 2021 at 1:32 pm

      Two 8 ounce packages of cream cheese, for a total of 454g. Enjoy your cheesecake bars! 🙂

  10. #
    Liz — May 29, 2021 at 10:35 am

    I only have a 9inch square pan, will I need to change baking times?

    • #
      Tessa — June 1, 2021 at 3:35 pm

      Keeping in mind that these will be a lot thinner, yes, you’ll want to bake for less time; however, I haven’t tested this recipe in a 9-inch pan, so I’m not sure the exact amount. I’d start checking it about 5-10 minutes less for each component, you’re really going to want to keep an eye on it! Let me know how it goes!

  11. #
    Lauren — May 27, 2021 at 4:25 pm

    Will the brownie layer get burnt after being baked for 15 min and then another 50 min?

    • #
      Tessa — June 1, 2021 at 3:52 pm

      It shouldn’t! Brownies aren’t fully baked after 15 minutes, and then each component is on top of the brownies, so they won’t burn on top 🙂

  12. #
    Creavesweets — April 27, 2021 at 10:28 am

    A complete HIT! Loved it and everyone who tasted it loved it too!

  13. #
    Kim — February 25, 2021 at 8:19 am

    Can you use a 9×13 pan instead of an 8×8?

    • #
      Kim — February 25, 2021 at 9:29 am

      Figured it out, you can double the recipe if you go from 8×8 to a 9×13

      • #
        Tessa — February 25, 2021 at 4:11 pm

        Exactly! As long as you double the recipe you should be fine. Enjoy!!

        • #
          Dawn — September 10, 2022 at 4:41 am

          Is the baking time the same for a doubled recipe?

          • #
            Kiersten @ Handle the Heat — September 15, 2022 at 12:02 pm

            Hi Dawn! You might need to add a few minutes if doubling the recipe. Just follow the sensory indicators mentioned in the recipe (“or until the cheesecake is set and the cookie dough is barely golden but dry”) for best results! Happy baking 🙂

  14. #
    Elsa — February 24, 2021 at 8:20 am

    Sooo deliciuos, my family love it

    • #
      Tessa — February 24, 2021 at 2:14 pm

      Glad to hear that!

  15. #
    Marly — January 30, 2021 at 12:42 pm

    I made It and can swear its absolutely delicious.
    Only had an inconvenient while putting the cookie batter on the Cheescake because the Cheescake batter was too liquid, don’t know why. So I baked half an hour without the cookie batter and added It after.
    Congratulatios, its a great recipe, the best for me is the mix of all brownie + Cheescake and the top, delicious cookie.

  16. #
    Lauren — December 6, 2020 at 7:25 am

    Hi! If I plan to omit the cookie layer, do I still bake it for 50 mins at 325F?

    • #
      Tessa — December 7, 2020 at 10:37 am

      Hi Lauren, I haven’t tested this recipe without the cookie layer so I can’t say for sure!

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