It’s been a while (over a month actually) since I last popped in to share my coconut angel food cake recipe, and I’m hoping that today’s Snickers Cheesecake Bars will be just the ticket to help you forgive me. Pretty please?
As I mentioned last time, I have had a very good reason for being AWOL over the past six weeks, and it’s all down to my brand new home. Yep, we’re all moved and semi-settled in to our first proper home (that we actually own!) and it has definitely been a busy few weeks. Much less painting and sorting out has been done than planned, but we’ve got loads of time ahead, and it’s better not to rush into things right? That’s what I’m telling myself anyway.
But you’re here for the baking, not my life story.
Totally addicted to Snickers
Anyone who knows me knows that I go through phases when it comes to my favourite chocolate bars. The classic Wispa does hold a big place in my heart, and I’m rarely seen too far away from a Twirl. But lately I just can’t seem to stop eating Snickers bars.
I’ve baked with Snickers before, but this time we’re going to be making an easy peanut butter baked cheesecake, filled with Snickers pieces, all on an Oreo and roasted peanut base. If you’re not a fan of peanuts then step away from my blog for the next few minutes, because this is pure PB heaven.
The buttery biscuit base is the same classic that you’ve seen many times before. Oreo cookies blitzed together with roasted peanuts, and then held together with plenty of melted butter. It’s a classic for a reason. We’re not going to bake the base just yet, but instead pop it in the freezer to harden up whilst we make the peanut butter cheesecake.
Bake It Off
I’ll level with you – this is my first baked cheesecake. I’ve made many chilled ones (Snickers, Creme Egg, Maltesers) but I’m a bit of a novice when it comes to the baked kind. And if every baked cheesecake I make in the future turns out like this one, I’ll be one happy puppy.
Baked cheesecakes are slightly easier than chilled ones, as you’ve not got to worry about over-mixing the cream cheese and making it too runny. There’s no cream to whip either – just dump the ingredients into a bowl and mix together well.
You should have a nicely chilled Oreo cookie base by this point, so go ahead and pour the cheesecake batter on top, and spread it all out nice and smooth. Get the batter right up to the edges and into the corners, and then sprinkle the top with chocolate chips. Be generous!
How do I know if my cheesecake’s ready?
The scariest part of baking something new, is not having a flipping clue about knowing when it has finished baking. There’s no fool-proof method here… a toothpick inserted in the middle will not tell you a thing. You’re going to have to do the wobble test.
Give the whole tin a gentle wobble, and if the whole top of the cheesecake moves around, then put it back in the oven. You want the very middle of the cheesecake to still be wobbly, but the majority of the cake to be firm. The middle will set once you pop it in the fridge.
Looks-wise, you want the majority of the surface of the cheesecake to still be a pale golden colour, but with a ring of golden brown around the outside (about half an inch). And the top of the cheesecake shouldn’t be shiny and wet-looking at all, and should instead have a matte appearance (like the top of a brownie – but hopefully without the cracks!).
I drizzled by Snickers cheesecake bars with some store-bought salted caramel sauce, but if you’re feeling up to it then definitely go ahead and make your own. Sometimes it’s just easier to squeeze it out of a bottle when you’ve been slaving away in the kitchen – there’s no shame in that.
When will I post again? Only time will tell. I’m planning to try and get back into my one-post-a-week rhythm, but there are still so many boxes to unpack and many peach walls to paint over. I won’t make any promises, but you should be seeing new recipes again before the month is out.
Snickers Cheesecake Bars
For the base
- 300 g Oreo cookies
- 50 g salted peanuts
- 120 g unsalted butter melted
For the cheesecake
- 450 g full fat cream cheese - I used Philadelphia
- 1 large egg
- 50 g caster sugar (US granulated sugar)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 150 g smooth peanut butter
- 4 Snickers bars chopped into pieces
- 50 g dark or semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Drizzle with caramel sauce optional
For the base
- Preheat the oven to 180°C / 355°F (160°C fan) and grease and line the bottom of an 8 inch (20cm) square brownie tin - preferably with a loose base. Crush the Oreo cookies and peanuts into fine crumbs. The easiest way to do this is in a food processor, but you can also crush them by placing them in a sturdy plastic bag and bashing them with a rolling pin.
- Place the Oreo and peanut crumbs into a bowl, and add the melted butter. Stir together until the crumbs are evenly coated with the butter, and then spoon into the pre-prepared tin. Press the Oreo mixture right up to the edges and into the corners of the tin using the back of a spoon, and level out the top, pressing down to make sure it is nice and compact. Place the tin in the freezer to set whilst you make the topping.
For the cheesecake
- Place the cream cheese, egg, sugar, vanilla, and peanut butter into the bowl of your stand mixer (or a large bowl) and beat on medium until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed. Add the chopped snickers pieces to the bowl and gently fold together.
- Remove the chilled base from the freezer, and spoon the cheesecake batter on top. Spread out the cheesecake using the back of a spoon and then sprinkle the chocolate chips over the top as evenly as possible.
- Place the cheesecake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes. The cheesecake should be lightly golden around the edges, and there is only a slight wobble when you knock the side of the pan. Place the pan on a wire rack until completely cold, and then place the tin in the fridge for two hours until the cheesecake has completely set. Remove the cheesecake from the tin and cut into 8 bars (or 9 squares), and then drizzle with caramel sauce if wanted.