I was inspired to make a fun cheesecake recipe after being wowed by an episode of “Master Chef” years ago. I was torn between so many options with this one: no bake or baked cheesecake, single serving size or full size cheesecake, berry sauce or blood orange, and don’t get me started on the crust options. I thought I had it all figured out and then I decided to add in some white chocolate chips and Pure Vanilla Bean Paste and threw myself a monkey wrench.After extensive taste testing (I took one for the team-my diet starts Monday) I’d like to introduce: Vanilla Bean, White Chocolate Cheesecake with Fudge Brownie Crust. Yes, it’s as good as it sounds. I know-because I ate a lot of it to perfect this for you.
Vanilla Bean White Chocolate Cheesecake with Fudge Brownie Crust Tips & Tricks:
I know it probably sounds complicated but it’s NOT for a few reasons:
- I used a box brownie mix, I modified it, yes, but overall it’s a brownie mix for the crust. Browned butter and espresso/coffee were used to bring so much extra flavor to a basic fudge brownie mix.
- The cheesecake I decided on is “no bake” so you don’t have to worry about water baths or giant splits from baking.
- The “vanilla bean” element comes from this fabulous Pure Vanilla Bean Paste by Nielsen -Massey. You aren’t working with actual vanilla beans, but you’d never know by the flavor. I love it so much I got a discount code for everyone to enjoy it with me 😂. For a limited time Nielson Massey is providing 10% OFF their delicious Vanilla Bean Paste use the code 10BINGEWORTH to get it now through 2/28/21 on Amazon! This paste has the boldest, purest vanilla flavor I’ve ever tried let alone used in one of my recipes. It’s not overpowering, but it definitely shows up in that cheesecake and complements the simple cheesecake flavor and white chocolate so well.
- The topping is a frozen berry blend that I cooked in a small saucepan with a diced blood orange, lemon, and sugar.
So this recipe has a gorgeous presentation (the berry/blood orange sauce really pops against the lightness of the cheesecake and dark brownie crust) and looks super complicated, but it’s all about a simple strategy. Here’s my big strategy: get your brownie mix in the oven then do everything else while it cooks and cools. Easy enough, right? Just one of those things you need to know going in to make life easier.
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White Chocolate and Vanilla Cheesecake with Fudge Brownie Crust
- 1 box Pillsbury Chocolate Fudge Brownie Mix (family size)
- ⅔ cup butter (⅔ cup = 10½ tbsp)
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tbsp coffee or espresso
White Chocolate and Vanilla Cheesecake
Blood Orange Mixed Berry Sauce
- 2 cups mixed berries, fresh or frozen
- 1 blood orange, peeled and diced
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tbsp water
- Pull the cream cheese (for the cheesecake) out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature while you prep the brownies.
- Melt & brown butter then stir into brownie mix (you will not be using the same ingredients listed on then brownie mix box). Add in eggs and brewed coffee or espresso.
- Lightly grease (or line pan with parchment paper) in an 8×8 pan. Pour in brownie batter and bake at 350°F for 30-40 min (until center of brownies appear “set.”
- While the brownies are baking, prep the cheesecake filling.
- Start by melting the white chocolate in a bowl. I usually heat the chips in 30 second increments in the microwave and stir until smooth.
- In a (separate) large mixing bowl, whip the cream cheese, Pure Vanilla Bean Paste, powdered sugar, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and melted white chocolate together until smooth, creamy, and well incorporated and set aside.
- In another separate bowl, whip heavy cream for about 2 minutes until soft peaks begin to form. Gently fold the whipped cream into the cheese mixture with a spatula.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and place biscuit cutter on the cookie sheet. Line the inside of the biscuit cutter with a strip of parchment paper – tape the seams to form little ring-shaped molds.
- After the baked brownies have time to cook, remove them from the 8×8 pan and place them in a food processor. You’re going to “purée” the brownies into what looks like a soft brownie butter. Spoon it into the biscuit cutter molds and pack it down. This will be the crust for your cheesecake.
- Layer the cheesecake filling on top of the brownie crust in the ring shaped molds with the biscuit cutter.
- Place the cookie sheet with the filled molds in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes to chill and set.
- While the cheesecakes chill, you’re going to make the berry topping. Peel and dice the blood orange.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine diced orange pieces, frozen berries, sugar, and water for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once they’re cooked down, remove from heat and set aside.
- After the cheesecakes are set, peel the parchment paper lining off and drizzle with blood orange-mixed berry sauce to serve.- ENJOY!