These cheesecake brownies are a rich and fudgy chocolate brownie topped with a layer of sweetened cream cheese. A show stopping dessert that’s easy to make and always gets rave reviews!

You can never go wrong with a good chocolate dessert, some of my favorite include chocolate coconut cake, chocolate peanut butter pie, homemade blondies and these amazing cream cheese brownies.

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Cheesecake brownies with a rich brownie base and cream cheese topping.

Brownies and cheesecake are both great desserts on their own, but when you combine the two, you get these fabulous cheesecake brownies that are worthy of any special occasion! Looking for more dessert inspiration? Don’t miss my Oreo brownies and cake truffles!

How do you make cheesecake brownies?

The first step is to make the batter, which is full of melted chocolate, butter, sugar, eggs, cocoa powder and flour. A generous amount of chocolate chips are also added to the mix. Part of the brownie batter goes into a pan, then a layer of cheesecake is poured over the top. The final step is to add dollops of the remaining brownie batter and swirl it with the cream cheese mixture. Bake your brownies, then cool and enjoy.

Brownie batter and chocolate chips in a mixing bowl.

Tips for cheesecake brownies

  • This recipe uses semisweet chocolate chips as the primary flavoring agent. The chocolate is both melted into the batter and stirred in as chips. Do not use Nestle Toll House chocolate chips for this recipe. Nestle chocolate chips do not melt smoothly and will not work in these brownies. I recommend using Guittard or Ghirardelli chocolate chips.
  • I use a long wooden skewer to swirl the batters together; a butter knife will also work.
  • These brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.
  • I recommend cutting these brownies into small pieces as they’re quite rich!

Brownies topped with a layer of cheesecake and dollops of chocolate batter.

Cheesecake brownie variations

I typically make these brownies as written, but you can add other flavors to the recipe to change up the flavor.

  • Raspberry: Stir 1/2 cup mashed raspberries into the cheesecake layer.
  • Mint: Add 1/2 teaspoon mint extract to the brownie layer and a few drops of green food coloring to the cheesecake layer.
  • Oreo: Sprinkle 3/4 cup of crushed oreos over the top of the brownies before they go into the oven.
  • Peanut Butter:  Add 1/2 cup peanut butter to the cream cheese layer.

Swirled chocolate and cream cheese brownie batters in a baking pan.

WHAT MAKES BROWNIES FUDGY?

These brownies are of the fudgy variety, which I prefer over the more cake-like brownies. Fudgy brownies have a higher fat to flour ratio, which means they contain more chocolate and butter than the cake style variety. Cake-like brownies also tend to contain more eggs than fudgy brownies.

Marbled cheesecake brownies with chocolate and cream cheese.

CAN YOU FREEZE BROWNIES?

Cream cheese brownies are a great candidate for the freezer. Simply wrap the bars individually with plastic wrap, then place them in a resealable bag in the freezer for up to 2 months. You can thaw your brownies at room temperature when you’re ready to eat them.

These cream cheese brownies have become one of my go-to desserts. They’re portable, delicious and look so very impressive! You’ll be sure to get rave reviews when you serve up this treat.

More decadent desserts

5 from 33 votes

Cheesecake Brownies

AuthorSara Welch
Cheesecake brownies with a rich brownie base and cream cheese topping.
These cheesecake brownies are a rich and fudgy chocolate brownie topped with a layer of sweetened cream cheese. A show stopping dessert that's easy to make and always gets rave reviews!
Time
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Serves 12

Ingredients 

For the brownie layer

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter cut into cubes
  • 1 3/4 cups semisweet chocolate chips divided use, do not use Nestle
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • cooking spray

For the cheesecake layer

  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 or 9 inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang of parchment on both sides. Coat the parchment lined pan with cooking spray.
  • For the brownies: Place the butter and 1 1/3 cups of chocolate chips into a large bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments until just melted. Stir until smooth.
  • Let the chocolate mixture cool for 5 minutes. Whisk in the sugar, then whisk in the eggs, one by one. Finally, whisk in the vanilla extract.
  • Add the flour, cocoa powder and salt to the bowl. Stir gently until just combined. 
  • Reserve 1/4 of of the brownie batter in a separate bowl. 
  • Fold the remaining chocolate chips into the larger amount of the brownie batter.
  • Spread the larger amount of batter evenly into the prepared pan.
  • For the cheesecake filling: Place the cream cheese and sugar in a bowl. Beat with a mixer for 2-3 minutes or until smooth and creamy. Add the egg and vanilla extract, then beat until smooth.
  • Pour the cheesecake mixture over the brownie batter in the pan.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of very hot water to the reserved brownie batter. Stir until smooth.
  • Dollop the brownie batter over the cheesecake. Use a skewer or knife to swirl the two batters together.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the brownies comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached.
  • Cool the brownies completely.
  • Use the parchment overhang to lift the brownies out of the pan. Cut into squares, then serve.

Nutrition

Calories: 381kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 83mg | Sodium: 128mg | Potassium: 217mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 565IU | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 2.5mg

Hello! I’m Sara!

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Comments

  1. Made these and they came out amazing! Could I double JUST the cheesecake batter to have a thicker layer of it? How long would I have to bake it for?

    1. You can double the recipe, if you increase the number of servings the ingredients will automatically recalculate!

      1. Hello Sara
        If I double the recipe and used the same pan size would it be ok? Would it be the same baking time?

  2. Took more than half the cream cheese topping and stirred in powdered freeze dried strawberries. Poured all the brownie batter in the pan, spread on the strawberry mixture, then dropped on the plain cheesecake and swirled it. Waiting to see how it turns out.

  3. Regarding the cocoa powder – did you use natural or dutch process?
    I think I read somewhere that dutch processed should be used in recipes that don’t call for baking powder or baking soda.
    Thanks

  4. Doubled the recipe for.9×13 and completely forgot to fold in the remaining chips 🙏 realised only after spooned on the cream cheese 😅 Popped them in oven amyways, let’s see what happens 😳

  5. Do I need to put this cheesecake brownies on the refrigerator or it is okay to just leave it in room temp? If so, how long? I’m planning to sell this online. Thank you!

      1. Hi,

        Can I use Hershey chocolate chips? And regarding the pan it’s not a spring form it’s a loose bottom pan which you slide up..

  6. 5 stars
    The brownie part was extremely fudgy. Reminded me of ghirardelli’s triple chocolate mix. I had never made brownies using chocolate chips before so this was a new learning opportunity.

    For me, the cheesecake part almost overpowered the brownie, but that’s just a personal preference. The cheesecake is delicious, but I’ll probably add half as much later.

    Definitely make this recipe! It’s easy, and you’ll get some of the fudgiest brownies ever. The ingredients being simple meant that I could make it in Japan where some things are hard to find. Also, definitely let the brownies cool fully like the recipe says, despite how difficult it is to do so.

  7. Hi 🙂 if I don’t have enough chocolate chips for the batter, can I use more cocoa powder?
    Thanks!

  8. 5 stars
    I was looking for some way to use up some cream cheese that had been in the fridge a while and came across this recipe. These are amazing, my son said they were restaurant worthy (which is a compliment). I used Kirkland chocolate chips, which I find work great in all my chocolate baking, and whole wheat flour. Love how the cheesecake swirls with the very fudgy brownie. Yum!

  9. Hi, thanks for the recipe!!
    Do you store these cheesecake brownies in the refrigerator or leave it outside?

    1. 5 stars
      Delicious! It was still very runny though when pulled out I’d the oven at 35min… at 45min took it out again and it was still extremely fudgey! I wonder if why. But they taste amazing!

  10. 5 stars
    These are absolutely amazing! Followed the directions exactly but used a cake pan! They came out great! Thank you for the wonderful recipe! I will make these every time I have a brownie craving.

  11. 5 stars
    I made these brownies for Mother’s Day this weekend….they were heavenly! Moist, almost fudge-like brownies with the cream cheese topping that was just the right consistency. It has become one of my favorites!

  12. 5 stars
    I only use Ghiradelli chocolate in my baking repertoire. it melts evenly and does enhance the final result greatly. I have used Godiva chocolate chips too… they may be new for a lot of bakers but they were offered at holiday time in my local Harris Teeter market. . They are expensive but worth it! You are correct about Nesle chocolate. Not conducive to baking at all or melting in a recipe. Thanks for a great recipe!!

  13. 5 stars
    Please please make these brownies. They’re delicious! Way better than any box mix and the recipe is so easy. I use Callebaut chocolate sticks chopped up instead of chocolate chips and I also add a heaping teaspoon of espresso instant coffee. Really deepens the chocolate flavor.