Cheesecake
a slice of crunchy sugar-topped creme brulee cheesecake sitting on a plate, ready to serve

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Taste: I love the intense vanilla aroma and flavor of the vanilla bean paired with the tangy flavor of the cream cheese, which is offset by the sweetness of the sugar.
Structure: The best part! The crust is chewy and buttery, the filling is thick, smooth and succulent, and the brulee topping is incredibly crunchy.
Relief: Much easier than a full cheesecake or Crème Brûlée!
Professionals: Tasty reinterpretation of the classic dessert.
Against: Not exactly diet friendly, but hey, at least the bars are smaller than slices of large cheesecake!
Would I do it again? Yes, it's a real crowd pleaser.

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You know what's awesome about these Crème Brûlée Cheesecake Bars?

They require no custard making skills, no molds, no water baths, nothing too difficult.

These bars are even easier than a traditional cheesecake. Definitely simpler than traditional Crème Brûlée!

Slices of Crème Brûlée Cheesecake Bar, ready to serveSlices of Crème Brûlée Cheesecake Bar, ready to serve

But really the best part? You can set it on fire with a kitchen torch! If you don't have one, you can also use a grill, but a kitchen torch gives much better results. Plus it's just plain fun to use. Add one to your wish list!

a slice of Crème Brûlée Cheesecake on a plate with a bite taken off to show how creamy and rich the filling is and how crunchy the sugar topping is!a slice of Crème Brûlée Cheesecake on a plate with a bite taken off to show how creamy and rich the filling is and how crunchy the sugar topping is!

It's also nice to see the sugar turn into liquid, take on a deeper color, and harden completely in just a few minutes. Don't get too carried away, though, or you might set off the smoke detector.

Also, make sure you burn the topping on a heat-resistant work surface with nothing flammable nearby.

Who knew cheesecake could be so fun?

Crème Brûlée Cheesecake Bars Recipe Tips

How to make a smooth and creamy cheesecake

  • Make sure all ingredients are completely at room temperature.
  • The cream cheese must be specifically totally softened.
  • If it's cold, the cream cheese will need to sit on the counter for several hours, or you may need to microwave it until it's completely soft.
  • To ensure there are no lumps, be sure to scrape the bowl thoroughly after adding each ingredient. Even if you have a whisk that scrapes as it works, it doesn't always catch everything, especially at the bottom of the bowl.
  • If it's a cold day, the cheesecake often has lumps and you use a metal bowl, you can place the bowl under warm water and dry it thoroughly before mixing the cheesecake batter.

Key ingredient of Crème Brûlée

The key to creating that delicious, rich Crème Brûlée flavor is VANILLA. I love using vanilla paste in this recipe because it gives a generous dose of vanilla without having to open and scrape a vanilla pod. If you prefer to use a capsule, use one. If you only have the extract, simply use the same amount of the paste called for.

Crème Brûlée cheesecake bar on a plate, with other bars placed on a cooling rackCrème Brûlée cheesecake bar on a plate, with other bars placed on a cooling rack

What can I use instead of graham crackers?

You can use the same amount by weight of digestive biscuits, vanilla wafers, Biscoff biscuits or any crunchy biscuit you want! Keep in mind that Biscoff biscuits are a little richer than graham crackers (which are drier), so add enough butter until they hold together when pressed.

Use a metal baking pan for cheesecake bars

How to make Crème Brûlée cheesecake in advance

The cheesecake bars can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator. Don't cover the bars with sugar and brulee until just before serving. The longer you let the mulled sugar sit, the more the sugar will begin to liquefy and no longer be crunchy.

How to Store Crème Brûlée Cheesecake Bars

  • Store cheesecake bars uncovered (without mullet) in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Uncoated cheesecake slices can also be frozen. Wrap each slice in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to a month. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before topping with sugar, reheating and serving.
a slice of Crème Brûlée Cheesecake on a plate, on top of a folded napkin, with a fork next to it, ready to eata slice of Crème Brûlée Cheesecake on a plate, on top of a folded napkin, with a fork next to it, ready to eat

More cheesecake bar recipes:

How to do

Creme Brulee Cheesecake Bar

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooling time: 4 hours

Cooking time: 45 minutes

Total time: 5 hours

These Crème Brûlée Cheesecake Bars transform the classic French dessert into something even easier and tastier! Graham cracker crust, vanilla bean cheesecake filling and a crunchy mulled sugar topping.

ingredients

For the brulee topping:

Instructions

For the dough:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8 inch square metal pan with foil, leaving an overhang.
  • In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the graham crackers until finely ground. Add the butter and blend until moistened. Press into bottom of prepared pan. Bake until lightly browned and set, about 8 to 10 minutes. Allow to cool and reduce oven temperature to 300°F.

For the cheesecake:

  • In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth. Add the sugar and continue beating until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl.

  • Add the cream, then the eggs, the egg yolk, the vanilla paste and the salt one at a time and beat until the mixture is well blended and smooth, being careful not to overmix. Scrape down sides of bowl as needed.

  • Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake at 350°F until the cheesecake is firm but still slightly jiggly in the center, about 35 minutes. Don't overcook.

  • Place the cheesecake on a wire rack to cool completely in the pan. Cover and chill until firm, at least 4 hours.

  • Using the overhang of the foil, transfer the cheesecake to a heatproof work surface and cut into squares.

  • Sprinkle the top of each square with sugar and torch the upper part with a kitchen torch until it takes on a deep amber color. Alternatively, use a grill to brown the sugar (but don't go far – it quickly goes from mulled to black!). Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Show us!If you make this recipe, be sure to take a photo and share it on Instagram with #manageheat so we can all see it!

Notes on the recipe

If you don't have vanilla bean paste, use 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
Store cheesecake bars uncovered (without mullet) in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The sugar coating should be added and flamed just before serving, so it remains crunchy.

Photo by Ashley McLaughlin.

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