Cheesecake brownies typically consist of ordinary brownie batter marbleized with a dense cheesecake mixture. The result is generally a very rich, decadent baked dessert. The tangy cheesecake often offsets the sweetness of the brownie mix, complementing and underscoring its chocolate flavors. There are also dozens of versions of cheesecake brownies, and many recipes differ in how the cheesecake and brownie batter are mixed or in the actual flavor combinations. Some versions of this dessert don’t even contain chocolate.
Possibly the easiest way to make cheesecake brownies involves using two mixes, one for brownies and one for cheesecake. Typically, the cook must simply follow the package directions for each store-bought mix and then pour them into a brownie pan. The cook may pour them both in at the same time to create a marbleized dish, or pour the cheesecake on top of the brownies so it acts as frosting or topping. After that, the dish is simply baked until the cheesecake and brownies are both properly cooked.
Cooks that like to experiment are not out of luck with cheesecake brownies. Whether making them from scratch or from packaged mixes, bakers may play with flavor combinations as much as they like. For instance, both the brownies and cheesecake may be flavored with strawberry, orange, or mint extracts. The cook may use different extracts for each, adding raspberry to the brownies and orange to the cheesecake. Some cooks may also love adding real pieces of fresh or dried fruit to cheesecake brownies.
Bakers can also experiment with different sauces and baking chips. For example, peanut butter chips might go into the brownies, while the cheesecake may be topped with caramel sauce and toasted walnuts. The brownies might contain macadamia nuts, while the cheesecake is marbleized with raspberry jam or studded with white chocolate chips and topped with cinnamon. Those that truly love playing with the flavors in this dessert never have to make it the same way twice.
Some cheesecake brownies don’t even call for chocolate. Blonde brownies are vanilla-flavored pastries that typically taste just as good with cheesecake as chocolate brownies do. In this instance, bakers may top blonde brownies with chocolate cheesecake, or leave out the chocolate entirely. Apple pie spice could be added to blonde brownies for an autumn touch, and then be topped with pumpkin cheesecake. Cinnamon brownies might go well with orange or lemon cheesecake for a spring or summer dessert. Pecans and hazelnuts could give the blonde brownies a nutty crunch, with cranberry-orange cheesecake making the dessert appropriate for the winter holidays.