It’s been too long since I’ve shared any recipes! I get carried away with my stamping projects and it probably looks like that’s all I ever do! I’ll have lots of recipes to share this summer, and here is my first one.
Blueberries are cheap right now. A pint for $1? Sign me up! When produce is cheap, I load up. Then after I’ve made 3 recipes with it and I still have some remaining, I make a last ditch effort to use up what is left before it goes bad.
That’s where today’s recipe came from. I had 3 cups of blueberries left (down from the 12 that I started with), and they were starting to get mushy. I had zero inspiration for what to do with them, so I did what I always do when I need an idea. I headed on over to Pinterest. I searched and searched for something that sounded tasty and not terribly complicated, and then I found it. Blueberry Lemon Pie Bars. Sounded good, and it required 3 cups of blueberries. I’m in.
I decided to change the name to ‘Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars’ because nothing about ‘pie bars’ gives any indication of the wonderful deliciousness of the cream cheese filling. As a side note, the lemon flavor in these bars is mild. If you want a stronger lemon flavor you could add more lemon juice and zest.
Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars
- 1 cup butter, melted
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Zest of one lemon, divided in half
- 2 cups flour
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 6 ounce container lemon flavored yogurt (regular or Greek)
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
- ½ cup flour
- 3 cups+ blueberries (fresh or frozen, thawed)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line an 8″ x 8″ or 9″ x 9″ baking pan with foil. Leave extra foil hanging over the edges.
- To make the shortbread crust: Stir the melted butter, sugar, vanilla, salt, and half of the lemon zest together in a medium bowl. Add the flour and stir until combined. Reserve ¾ cup of the mixture and place in the refrigerator until needed. Press remaining crust evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 18 minutes while you prepare the filling.
- To make the filling: Use a mixer to beat cream cheese on high until smooth. Add eggs and mix. Add sugar, yogurt, remaining lemon zest, lemon juice, and salt and mix thoroughly. Add flour and mix just until combined. Gently fold in 3 c. blueberries (reserving a few for the next step) with a spatula.
- Pour filling into crust and add a few blueberries on top of the filling. Remove reserved crust from the refrigerator. Crumble it using a fork and sprinkle over the filling. Sprinkle lightly with sugar. Bake bars for 55-60 minutes, or until a toothpick placed in the center of the pan comes out mostly clean. Allow pan to cool at room temperature on a wire rack. When completely cool, chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
- When bars are chilled, lift out of the pan using foil overhang and cut into squares. Store in the refrigerator.