Happy Fourth of July, my sweet readers! Whether you’re skiing on the lake, grilling out in the backyard or camping by the water’s edge, these brownies make a perfect picnic treat. Along with Friday’s Firecracker Cupcakes, these hit the dessert table out at work during our holiday spread… and were devoured in minutes. The base is fudgy, the cheesecake top tangy… and all of it, a beautiful, vibrant red. What better way to say ‘Happy Independence Day’! 🙂
Red Velvet Cheesecake Brownies
Adapted from: Baking Bites
Yields: 16 large brownies or 24 smaller brownies
1/2 c unsalted butter
2 oz dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
1/2 c Splenda for Baking
2 lg eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1-1/2 tsp red food coloring
2/3 c all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
2 tbsp + 2 tsp Splenda for Baking
1 lg egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8″ or 9″ square baking pan with aluminum foil and lightly grease. In a small, heatproof bowl, melt butter and chocolate together. Stir with a fork until very smooth. Set aside to cool for a few minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together Splenda, eggs, vanilla extract and red food coloring. Add in the chocolate mixture and stir until smooth. Batter should be red. If a brighter red is desired, add an additional 1/2 tsp food coloring. Add flour and salt into the bowl and stir until everything is just combined and no streaks of dry ingredients remain. Pour into prepared pan and spread into an even layer.
Prepare cheesecake mixture in a medium bowl by beating cream cheese, Splenda, egg and vanilla extract until smooth. Drop in dollops onto prepared brownie batter. Gently swirl two batters with a butter knife. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until brownies and cheesecake are set. A knife inserted into the cheesecake mixture should come out clean and the edges will be lightly browned. Cool in the pan completely before slicing and serving, either at room temperature or chilled. Brownies can be refrigerated, covered, for several days.
Happy Birthday, America!!