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Cherry Cheesecake Brownies

Cherry Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

These semi-homemade brownies are easy to make, and taste as delicious as they are pretty.
5 from 1 vote

Ingredients

For the Brownie Pan:

  • 3 teaspoons butter for greasing the pan and the parchment paper

For the Brownie Batter:

  • 1 box brownie mix (chewy fudge if possible)
  • Water (amount according to directions on brownie mix box)
  • Canola oil (amount according to directions on brownie mix box)
  • Egg (amount according to directions on brownie mix box)

For the Cheesecake Mixture:

  • 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese (the type in a block form)
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg

For the Brownies:

  • Brownie batter
  • Cheesecake mixture
  • 1 can (21 ounces) Cherry pie filling use about 2/3's of the can

For Topping the Brownies when Served (optional):

  • 1 can (21 ounces) Cherry pie filling the remaining 1/3 of the can from making the brownies can be used for the topping, plus another 1/3 from this can (or the preferred amount)

Equipment

  • An 8x8 metal or glass baking pan
  • parchment paper

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Or according to the directions on the box of brownie mix.

For the Brownie Pan:

  • Grease the bottom and all sides inside the baking pan with butter. Cut a piece of parchment paper that's large enough to fit inside of the pan as well as extend above all edges of the pan to use as a "handle". Add a crease to the paper inside each corner of the pan so the paper lays flat against the sides of the pan, and the corners. Alternatively, the paper can be cut into a "sling" where the paper extends above 2 opposing sides of the pan.
  •  Grease the parchment paper with butter.

For the Brownie Batter:

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the brownie mix, eggs, water and oil (or the ingredients per the box instructions).
  • Mix the ingredients until combined (or according to package instructions). Add the brownie batter to the parchment paper-lined pan. Using a soft spatula, spread the batter out as needed so its level. Set aside for a moment.

For the Cheesecake Mixture:

  • In a medium size mixing bowl, add cream cheese (softened), granulated sugar, vanilla extract and egg. Beat with a stand or hand mixer until light and fluffy.

For the Brownies:

  • Top the Brownie Batter with the Cheesecake Mixture - Using a soft spatula or serving spoon, add the cream cheese mixture in "dollops" on top of the brownie batter. Cover as much of the brownie batter as possible with dollops of the cream cheese mixture. It's fine to have some of the brownie batter showing after adding all of the cream cheese mixture.
  • Add the Cherry Topping - Using a spoon, add dollops of cherry topping on top of the cream cheese mixture and the brownie batter. I used about 2/3's of the can of cherry pie filling for this step so there's not too much red on top. Randomly placed is fine since the next step is to make the swirls.
  • For the Swirls - Using a wooden skewer or toothpick, make swirls through the brown color of the brownie batter, the white color of the cream cheese mixture and the red color of the cherry topping. Wipe the skewer or toothpick clean with a paper towel after making each swirl so that the colors don't "bleed" on one another.
  • Bake in a preheated oven until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean (about 52 to 53 minutes if using a metal baking pan).
  • LET THE BROWNIES COOL COMPLETELY BEFORE CUTTING THEM. Once cooled, cut the brownies into the desired servings.
  • Serve as is, in cut squares or rectangles, or serve on a plate topped with more cherry topping. Store the brownies in the refrigerator.

For the Cherry Topping When Served (optional):

  • As an option, top the brownies with a spoonful or two of cherry topping (or more if preferred).

Notes

TIPS

  1. Greasing the inside of the baking pan helps to make the parchment paper stick to the pan and stay in place.
  2. Greasing the parchment paper with butter (the side of the paper that the brownies are baked on) not only helps with easy removal of the brownies after they're baked, but it also adds a hint of butter flavor to the edges of the brownies.
  3. When making the swirls in the batter, wipe the skewer or toothpick clean with a paper towel after making each swirl so that the colors don't "bleed" on one another.
  4. Don't cover the baked cherry cheesecake brownies with plastic wrap because the wrap will stick to the top of the brownies (especially the cherry topping).  And when removed, the plastic wrap will pull off the top of the brownies.