Drop everything and make these Hawaiian Cheesecake Bars as soon as you can, but be warned, you will have to make sure there are people around to share with or you WILL eat the entire pan. You guys, I’m not even kidding. These are my new favourite bar and I am totally enamoured with them. These are going to be on my Easter dessert table every single year! I’m also thinking of making them for Christmas.
The Best Cream Cheese Dessert: Hawaiian Cheesecake Bars
You guys, if you love pineapple and coconut you simply have to make these squares. Oh oh and shortbread! These squares have a decadent, sweet buttery shortbread base as well. Forget cheesecake, forget all other bars, these squares are the love child of both and has all of their best features! I wasn’t exaggerating when I said that these were my new favourite bar- these are now my go-to cream cheese dessert bar of choice for when I need something for my own parties or to take with me. This is a crowd-pleaser and you will have people begging you for the recipe, so make sure you tell them! Or you know, pretend it’s a secret family recipe, I won’t tell anyone.
Tips & Tricks for Baking with Cream Cheese
- You now how I knew that this was an old recipe? Because it told me to bake the bars for 15-20 minutes. That my dears is only long enough to toast the coconut and NOT get the cheesecake to a safe eating temperature! It takes a good 40 minutes to heat the cheesecake layer to the 165 °F mark which means that you have heated the eggs enough to kill any possible bacteria. Ah, the good old days, when you threw raw eggs in anything and just baked the topping. You have to heat cream cheese layers up to the safe temperature if you use eggs in them.
- If you constantly have problems with cream cheese not smoothing out, microwave it to the point of ALMOST melting. I kid you not, it works like a charm! Just don’t cook it and it’s fine. I actually don’t even work with cream cheese until I’ve warmed it up anymore, it’s not worth the lumps!
- You can adjust the sugar to taste if you like, simply add the sugar BEFORE the eggs and taste test! This is perfect for me however!
These bars slice up incredibly well considering how they are cream cheese filled and they freeze perfectly! Make them ahead of time for your holiday meal and then freeze them. Simply defrost them the day of the dinner and serve! These are so perfect for a sideboard dainty tray, or tea time or breakfast Monday morning.
Side note : if you are like me and like frozen chewy squares, these are a good choice! Just let the shortbread defrost so that it doesn’t hurt your teeth. Am I the only one that like to eat frozen dessert squares?
Are you wanting some other fabulous squares recipes? Try these:
- Raspberry Coconut Bars
- Easter Dessert: Pineapple Slice
- Ambrosia Salad Squares
- Cream Cheese Filled Red Velvet Bars
- Mars Bars Squares
Happy baking! Let me know if you tried them in the comments below!
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The old fashioned Hawaiian Cheesecake Bars need to come back in fashion! A shortbread crust followed by a pineapple cheesecake layer, topped with buttery toasted coconut makes these my new favourite bar!
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup salted butter room temperature
- 16 oz cream cheese room temperature, very soft
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 16 oz crushed pineapple well drained (about 1 1/2 cups of pineapple when done, you can use two cans)
- 2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
- 2 Tbsp salted butter melted
- Preheat your oven to 350 °F.
- Combine the flour,granulated sugar and butter until well combined and crumbly. Press the mixture into ungreased 9 X 13 pan. Bake in the oven for 14-19 minutes. Remove and let cool slightly while prepping the other layers.
- Beat the cream cheese until smooth, then add in the granulated sugar, eggs and vanilla. vanilla. Stir in the drained pineapple. Spread over the baked crust.
- Combine the coconut and the melted butter. Sprinkle over the pineapple layer filling.
- Cover the pan with tinfoil.
- Return to the oven and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the tinfoil and bake another 15-20 minutes until the coconut is well browned.
- Let cool and slice. This freezes exceptionally well!
I couldn't find a 16 oz can of crushed pineapple so used two cans and it ended up being 1 1/2 cups of very well drained pineapple.