Exceptionally quicker and easier than a full cheesecake, these white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars are luxuriously creamy, perfectly sweet, and swirled with layers of homemade fresh raspberry sauce. Baked in a 9-inch square pan, they sit on a buttery sweet Oreo cookie crust and are filled with real white chocolate.
This recipe started as a full cheesecake that went horribly wrong. I’m chalking it up to poor decisions in the recipe creation process, but it (1) was too thick (2) overflowed and (3) burned around the edges (from the sugar in the white chocolate I believe?). It tasted fine, but I knew I could do better especially since my classic cheesecake recipe is top-notch.
Seriously, it’s REALLY good!
I didn’t really have an occasion for a full cheesecake coming up, nor did I want to waste another 2 lbs of cream cheese and raspberries, so I tossed the whole idea and opted for white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars instead. I always appreciate cheesecake I can eat with my hands, plus these are easier to serve to a crowd. 😉
Why You’ll Love These White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake Bars:
- Easier than a full cheesecake
- No messing with a water bath
- Quicker to bake & chill than a full cheesecake
- Hand-held individual servings
- Exceptionally creamy
- Made with real white chocolate & raspberries
- Buttery Oreo cookie crust
Behind the Recipe
The starting point for my white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars was my lemon blueberry cheesecake bars. To this base, you’ll add real melted white chocolate, an extra egg to help stabilize that white chocolate, and a Tablespoon of flour to help soak up the extra liquid. Pour this on an Oreo cookie crust and swirl with layers of raspberry sauce.
Though these white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars are easier than a full cheesecake, there’s still a few steps required before baking. So you have an understanding of the process, let’s break down each component before beginning the recipe. I also have step-by-step photos to help you visualize each.
3 Parts to This Recipe:
- Raspberry Swirl
- Oreo Cookie Crust
- White Chocolate Cheesecake Filling
I recommend preparing the raspberry swirl first. Made from real raspberries, this homemade sauce must cool down completely before swirling into the white chocolate cheesecake filling. I usually stick it in the refrigerator for 1 hour to speed up the cooling process. Or you can make the raspberry sauce the night before.
- Mix some water and cornstarch together.
- Cook fresh or frozen raspberries, sugar, and more water together on the stovetop.
- Add cornstarch mixture.
- Once slightly thickened, remove from heat.
- Press raspberries through a fine mesh strainer to rid the seeds. Discard the seeds.
- Let the seedless sauce cool completely before using.
Oreo Cookie Crust
This recipe bakes in a 9-inch square baking pan, so use the same Oreo cookie crust as my Snickers cheesecake bars. You need 20 Oreo cookies (Double Stuf or regular) and 5 Tablespoons of melted butter. I’ve gotten away with 18 Oreos and 4 Tablespoons of butter (as seen in my salted caramel chocolate chip cheesecakes), but I like this slightly thicker crust for bars.
- Using a food processor or blender, pulse the Oreos (the whole Oreo– cookie AND filling) into crumbs.
- Mix with melted butter.
- Press into a lined 9-inch square baking pan.
- Pre-bake for 8 minutes as you prepare the filling.
White Chocolate Cheesecake Filling
Ok we’re almost done! Let’s make the cheesecake filling, then bring each component of this recipe together before baking.
- Chop and melt pure white chocolate. Don’t use white chocolate chips/morsels. Instead, pick up two 4-ounce white chocolate baking bars from the baking aisle– I prefer Ghirardelli or Baker’s brands sold right next to the chocolate chips. You need 6 ounces for this recipe. Cool the white chocolate as you make the batter.
- As the white chocolate cools, beat two 8-ounce blocks of cream cheese with some sugar.
- Add flour, lemon juice to brighten up the otherwise flat flavor (don’t worry, you don’t taste the lemon), vanilla extract, and salt.
- Beat in 2 eggs.
- Add melted/cooled white chocolate.
Bring It All Together
- Pour 1/2 of the cheesecake filling onto warm pre-baked Oreo cookie crust.
- Drizzle with 1/2 of the cooled raspberry sauce.
- Pour remaining 1/2 of the cheesecake filling on top.
- Drizzle with remaining raspberry sauce.
- Swirl everything together with a toothpick.
- Bake! No water bath required. The bars take about 32-36 minutes in the oven. They’ll puff up as they bake, then settle back down as they cool.
After cooling the bars at room temperature, place them in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours until sufficiently chilled. Cold cheesecake bars not only taste better, but they cut much easier too. For neat slices, wipe your sharp knife clean between each cut.
This recipe yields 16 perfect squares. For a 9×13 inch pan of white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars, see my recipe note below.
3 Success Tips for White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake Bars
- Read Through the Recipe: Included in my Top 10 Baking Tips is this crucial piece of baking advice: read the recipe before you begin. Have everything in place so you don’t miss an important ingredient or step.
- Take Your Time: Work on each component one at a time. This isn’t a recipe you can rush because the raspberry sauce and white chocolate must cool down before using.
- Chill the Cheesecake Bars: Like a full cheesecake, these bars must cool down and chill in the refrigerator before slicing. Unlike regular cheesecake though, you don’t need to cool them in the cooling oven. And since they’re thinner, they take about half the time to cool down as a full cheesecake. That’s always a nice bonus!
PS: You can turn these into individual mini cheesecakes. See my recipe note!
So, you like cheesecake recipes? I have even more for you!
Exceptionally quicker and easier than a full cheesecake, these white chocolate raspberry cheesecake bars are luxuriously creamy, perfectly sweet, and swirled with layers of homemade fresh raspberry sauce.
- 2 teaspoons room temperature water, divided
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1 and 1/2 cups (205g) fresh or frozen raspberries (do not thaw)
- 2 Tablespoons (25g) granulated sugar
- 20 Oreos (Regular or Double Stuf)*
- 5 Tablespoons (75g) unsalted butter, melted
- 6 ounces (170g) white chocolate, finely chopped
- two 8-ounce blocks (16 oz; 450g) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1/3 cup (65g) granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon (8g) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- Make & Cool the Raspberry Sauce: The raspberry sauce must cool down completely before using, so I recommend making it first. Mix 1 teaspoon water with 1 teaspoon cornstarch in a very small bowl. Set aside. Combine raspberries, granulated sugar, and remaining 1 teaspoon of water together in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir the mixture as it begins to cook, breaking up some of the raspberries as you stir. Once simmering, add the cornstarch mixture. Continue to stir and allow to simmer for 3 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and press through a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds. Allow the thin raspberry sauce to cool completely before using. Cover and store for up to 1 week in the refrigerator.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line the bottom and sides of a 9-inch square baking pan (8-inch is too small) with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides to lift the finished bars out (makes cutting easier!). Set aside.
- For the Crust: In a food processor or blender, pulse the whole Oreos into a fine crumb. Stir the cookie crumbs and melted butter together in a medium size bowl. Press tightly into the bottom of the lined baking pan. Pre-bake for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside. Leave oven on.
- For the Filling: Melt the chopped white chocolate in a double boiler or the microwave. If using the microwave: place the white chocolate in a medium heat-proof bowl. Melt in 20 second increments in the microwave, stirring after each increment until completely melted and smooth. Let the warm chocolate cool as you work on the other cheesecake filling ingredients. You can place it in the refrigerator, but just don’t let it solidify!
- Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and granulated sugar together on medium-high speed in a large bowl until the mixture is smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the flour, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and salt, then beat until fully combined. On medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, beating after each addition until just blended. After the 2nd egg is incorporated into the batter, stop mixing. A few small lumps can remain. Pour in the cooled (but still liquid) white chocolate. Beat on low speed just until combined.
- Pour half of the cheesecake filling onto the crust. It’s ok if the crust is still slightly warm. Drizzle half of the raspberry sauce all over the top. Spread remaining cheesecake filling on top. (It’s ok if the raspberry sauce has spread to the sides or slightly incorporates into the top layer of cheesecake.) Drizzle remaining raspberry sauce on top, then use a toothpick or knife to gently swirl everything together.
- Bake for 32-36 minutes or until the cheesecake appears set on top and the edges are lightly browned. The bars will be puffy, but will sink slightly down as they cool. Place pan on a wire rack. Cool for 45 minutes at room temperature, then chill in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours (and up to 1 day) before slicing. If you plan to chill the bars for longer, loosely cover with aluminum foil after 3 hours of chilling.
- To slice, lift the bars out of the pan as a whole using the parchment overhang on the sides. Cut into squares with a sharp knife. For extra neat squares, wipe the knife clean between each cut.
- Cover and store leftover cheesecake bars in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Make-Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Prepare the raspberry sauce up to 1 week in advance. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Prepare recipe through step 6 up to 2 days in advance. Cover unbaked cheesecake bars and store in the refrigerator until ready to bake. Continue with step 7. Since they’re cold, bars will take a few extra minutes to bake. To freeze– cool, chill, and slice bars as instructed. Freeze bars between layers of parchment paper for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
- Oreo Cookies: You need 20 whole Oreos, which pulse down into about 1 and 1/2 cups of crumbs. You can use any chocolate wafer cookie as long as you have 1 and 1/2 cups of crumbs. You can substitute 1 and 1/2 cups of graham cracker crumbs. Use only 4 Tablespoons of butter for graham cracker crumbs.
- White Chocolate: Use 6 ounces of “baking chocolate” bars found in the baking aisle. They’re sold in 4 ounce bars, so you’ll need 2. (You’ll have 2 ounces leftover for another use.) I prefer Bakers or Ghirardelli brands. Do not use candy melts, white chocolate dipping wafers, or white chocolate chips– all contain stabilizers or added ingredients preventing them from combining evenly with the cheesecake filling.
- Lemon Juice: This recipe does not taste like lemon. The 1 teaspoon of lemon juice brightens up the otherwise flat white chocolate flavor.
- Raspberry Jam: You can try using raspberry jam instead of the homemade sauce. I recommend 3 Tablespoons for each layer. (6 Tbsp total)
- 9×13 inch or Full Cheesecake: For a 9×13 inch pan, you can double the filling recipe. Do not double the raspberry sauce or crust ingredients. For the sauce, use 3 teaspoons of water (1.5 teaspoons with the cornstarch, 1.5 teaspoons with the raspberries & sugar), 2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries, and 3 Tablespoons of sugar. For the crust, use 36 Oreos and 1/2 cup (8 Tbsp) of melted butter. Bake time is closer to 45-50 minutes. Cool for 1 hour at room temperature, then chill for at least 4-5 hours before slicing. Use these same amounts for a full cheesecake in a 10-inch springform pan (no smaller). I recommend following the baking and cooling instructions, including using a water bath, as found in my regular cheesecake recipe. I found the edges rose up and burned quickly, so tent with aluminum foil after about 30 minutes. (I found the cheesecake then stuck to the foil, creating a bit of a mess on top.) For these reasons, I strongly recommend using this recipe for bars instead of a full cheesecake.
- Mini Individual Cheesecakes: Use the baking and cooling instructions found in my mini cheesecakes and use this recipe as written. Recipe makes about 2 dozen cheesecakes in a muffin pan. Line 2 12-count muffin pans with liners. Firmly press 1.5 Tablespoons of crust mixture into each. Pre-bake for 5 minutes. Pour filling on top, about 1 Tbsp filling for each. Drizzle each with raspberry sauce. Swirl with a toothpick. Again, use the baking and cooling instructions found in my mini cheesecakes. Feel free to top cooled mini cheesecakes with whipped cream.
Keywords: cheesecake, white chocolate, raspberry, cheesecake bars