Fudgy brownies packed with pecans are topped with baked raspberry cheesecake with Madagascan vanilla in these raspberry and pecan cheesecake brownies. JUMP TO RECIPE
Dave’s birthday is at the beginning of May. I had been thinking to make him a birthday cheesecake of some kind – probably vanilla as this is his favourite. However, in a cafe he’ll often order a brownie. So cheesecakes and brownies were my starting point for his birthday cake. I was googling recipes, when I came across a concept I hadn’t heard of before. Some inspired people in the States had made brownies and topped them with a baked cheesecake. So no biscuit base, more a two layer cake of brownie and cheesecake. Oh my, this sounded good and right up Dave’s street – brownie and cheesecake together at last in a Cheesecake Brownie. I’ll excuse you at this point if you just want to skip straight to the recipe. Who needs to read more, just cut to the chase and get baking this amazing sounding treat.
I’ve now made different versions of this Cheesecake Brownie, but you’ll find this the winner. Some people put half of the brownie mixture below the cheesecake and half on top. I enjoy the prettiness of the raspberry cheesecake top so I haven’t done this. I’m saving that treat for a future day. But if that sounds too good to be true, go for it, and I’d love to hear how you get on.
Others like to swirl the brownie and cheesecake mixture together to create a marbled effect, before baking the cheesecake brownie. Again I haven’t done this. I prefer the brownie as a surprise underneath the cheesecake and I like the clearly different textures. But I’m sure this would work well too.
So Dave got a Cheesecake Brownie on his birthday, I hear you say. Hmm well, if only that were possible. On his birthday Dave flew down to Bristol to be an usher as at old friend’s wedding. I would have loved to have been there, but it was just too much with JP and our little G who is still feeding round the clock. Our plan had been to meet for a sneaky birthday lunch before he got his flight, where I was going to present his ‘cake’, aka this amazing raspberry and pecan cheesecake brownie. That lunch was postponed due to work pressures. We had the lunch the following week, but by that point it felt a bit strange going to a restaurant with a homemade ‘cake’. So it got delayed again. Two and half weeks later he finally got his birthday cake. I think it’s fair to say he was seriously pleased. We all enjoyed it and there was still a good amount left. The left over pieces kept on disappearing and I eventually found him quietly eating one of the last in a lovely peaceful moment when the kids were all asleep and he had just made us both some mint tea.Print
Raspberry and pecan cheesecake brownie
I have kept separate the ingredients lists for the brownie and cheesecake to make cooking easier. For your shopping list eggs and caster sugar are listed twice as you’ll need 4 large eggs in total and 230g of caster sugar.
With baking, the size of the tin can be critical but that isn’t the case in this recipe. If your tin is a little large or smaller it should be fine – it will just impact on the thickness of the cheesecake brownie.
The brownie’s baking powder will be activated by the melted butter and chocolate. You want it to do it’s work in the oven and not sat on the side while you make the cheesecake mixture. Hence the cheesecake mix is made first:
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour
- Yield: Makes 15 squares
- 450g full fat cream cheese
- 1 lemon, zest
- 1 vanilla pod, seeds
- 50g caster sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 200g raspberries frozen or fresh
- 125g unsalted butter
- 100g dark chocolate
- 40g cocoa powder, sifted
- 32g plain flour, sifted
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 100g pecan, roughly chopped
- 180g caster sugar
- 2 large eggs, beaten
22cm/9” x 27½cm/11” baking tin – 4” x 6”
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/gas mark 4. Line the baking tin with baking paper.
- Cut the vanilla pod in half lengthways and use your finger to remove the seeds. In a large bowl mix the cream cheese, lemon zest, vanilla seeds and caster sugar until you can see an equal distribution of vanilla seeds.
- Add the eggs and mix until the mixture has an equal consistency. Add 150g of the raspberries. If you want a pink cheesecake then mix these in hard, if you prefer a white one with scattered raspberries, be as gentle as you can. The remaining raspberries will be added later.
- Melt the butter and chocolate together in a glass bowl placed on a pan of simmering water.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the cocoa, flour, baking powder and sugar. Add the melted butter and chocolate and stir this combination well. Then fold in the pecans. Finally add the eggs and gently fold again until everything is fully mixed.
- Pour the brownie mixture into the lined baking tray. Now spoon the cheesecake mixture on top. Scatter the remaining raspberries on top and push down a little into the mixture.
- Put in the oven for 20 minutes. Then remove and cover with foil so that the cheesecake doesn’t brown. Put back in the oven for another 20 minutes. Remove the foil and cool in the tray until completely cold and then put in the fridge for four hours. Remove from the tray with the baking paper and cut up into 15 squares. Let come up to room temperature – for 30 minutes, before serving.
This cheesecake brownie will last for 5 days in an airtight container. To freeze it, just wrap in cling film twice. Freezing does encourage the pink from the raspberry to leak into the white of the cheesecake, but it will still taste just as good.