Chocolate and cheesecake lovers beware…… I warn you, one bite of this lightened up, layered cheesecake bar and you’ll be hooked. White chocolate studded graham cracker crust, the creamiest cheesecake filling, topped with a smooth semi-sweet chocolate layer and then sprinkled with chopped white chocolate and graham cracker crumbles. Let’s just take a moment to reflect on that. Are you drooling yet? You should be!
Now wait a minute, are you confused? This is a blog with healthy recipes right? RIGHT! It took a few tries but I was finally able to significantly reduce the calories and fat in these beauties (compared to the average cheesecake bar) without sacrificing any texture or flavor. Applesauce, Greek yogurt, and fat free cream cheese are all key players in lightening up such a rich dessert. These bars are so creamy and decadent that a small square is all the average person needs to satisfy that reoccurring sweet tooth. However, if you are like me, one small square will NOT do…. You’re gonna need a bar of substantial size because really, more is ALWAYS better in the cheesecake and chocolate department. For that reason I’ve included the nutritional information for a smaller square and then a Samantha sized square. Enjoy!
Lightened Up Cheesecake Bars
- GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST
- 12 graham cracker sheets
- 1 tablespoon melted butter
- 4 tablespoon unsweetened applesauce
- 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
- 1/4 cup white chocolate chips (coarsely chopped)
- CHEESECAKE LAYER
- 8 ounces fat free cream cheese (room temperature)
- 2 ounces reduced fat cream cheese (room temperature)
- 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
- 2 egg whites
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- CHOCOLATE LAYER
- 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoon white chocolate chips (chopped)
- 1 graham cracker sheet (crushed)
GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST
In a medium/large food processor, blend the graham crackers into fine crumbs.
Add the melted butter, applesauce, and brown sugar and blend well.
Blend in the chopped white chocolate chips.
Spoon graham mixture into a foil lined 9x9 pan (for easy removal.) and firmly press it down. I like to use the bottom of a glass or my fingers with a bit of water on them if the dough is sticky.
Preheat oven 350
In a medium food processor, blend the cream cheeses, yogurt and egg whites.
Add the flour, sugar, and lemon juice and blend until smooth.
Pour over graham cracker layer and bake for 23 minutes. It’s normal if the top is cracked.
Allow to cool before adding chocolate layer.
In a microwave safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips in 60 second increments. Stir frequently
Stir in oil.
Spread evenly over the top of the cheesecake bars.
Sprinkle with remaining white chocolate chips and graham cracker.
Allow chocolate to harden before slicing into bars. (Place in refrigerator to hurry up the process. If chocolate begins cracking when you slice into bars, allow to sit at room temperature for a few minutes to allow chocolate to soften a bit. )
Nutrition Facts Servings 16 Amount Per Serving (1 square) Calories 202 Total Fat 7g Saturated Fat 4g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 4mg Sodium 189mg Potassium 40mg Total Carbohydrate 31g Dietary Fiber 1g Sugars 22g Protein 5g
Nutrition Facts Servings 12 Amount Per Serving (1 square) Calories 269 Total Fat 10g Saturated Fat 5g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Trans Fat 0g Cholesterol 6mg Sodium 252mg Potassium 53mg Total Carbohydrate 41g Dietary Fiber 2g Sugars 29g Protein 7g