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A cheesecake bar on a white plate
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Cheesecake Bars

These Greek-yogurt-based German Cheesecake Bars are lighter and fluffier than traditional cheesecake and so much easier to make!
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: German
Servings: 20
Calories: 296kcal

Ingredients

Crust

  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter soft

Cheesecake Filling

  • 2 pounds greek yogurt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup vanilla pudding mix cook-and-serve-type (see notes)
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 11 oz cans mandarin oranges drained

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease a half sheet.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine flour, baking powder, eggs, sugar, and soft butter. Mix until a crumbly dough forms.
  • Empty dough out onto a clingfilm-covered workspace and press into a ball. Roll out between cling film. Transfer to baking sheet press into edges.
  • In the same bowl, mix together greek yogurt, sugar, eggs, oil, vanilla pudding, corn starch, and milk until smooth. Pour over crust and smooth out.
  • Evenly distribute mandarin oranges over the mixture.
  • Bake for 45-55 minutes until edges are lightly browned. Let cool before slicing and serving!

Notes

  • Like many German cakes, my cheesecake bars taste best on the second day which makes this recipe perfect to make ahead.
  • In Germany, cheesecake is made with quark, but greek yogurt is a great substitute in my experience and gives the same texture and consistency without having to strain it. But you could also use quark if you don't mind the price.
  • Some people also recommend ricotta as a substitute but I prefer greek yogurt because it is less expensive and easier to get.
  • Don’t use instant pudding for this recipe, you need a "cook and serve" pudding mix!
  • If you can get your hands on German Pudding mix (Dr. Oetker Vanilla Pudding) which doesn’t contain sugar, use one package instead of the 1/2 cup pudding mix the recipe calls for.
  • Instead of mandarin oranges, you can also use fresh berries, swirl jam into the cheesecake layer or just leave them out and make a plain cheesecake.
  • Homemade whipped cream tastes delicious with this cake.

Nutrition

Calories: 296kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 64mg | Sodium: 85mg | Potassium: 164mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 555IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 83mg | Iron: 1mg