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Mocha Cheesecake Squares

by on January 6, 2009 · 23 comments

I was going through a stack of old recipe cards and came across one with a picture of a big & flashy mocha cheesecake. It looked delicious, but I couldn’t justify making a whole cheesecake for just the three of us and cheesecake isn’t the easiest thing to share. A few days later, after giving up on the idea of cheesecake, I found this recipe for a mocha cheesecake bar cookie (origin unknown). Using an 8 inch metal pan and weighing out half the ingredients, I made a half batch. Now I wish I’d made a full batch because these are excellent. Plus, they can be frozen. So below is the full batch recipe, but you can always have it if you wish to save your half can of condensed milk and half brick of cream cheese for another use.

Mocha Cheesecake Squares

Mocha Cheesecake Squares

1-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup powdered sugar (sifted if you have time – I didn’t)
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt plus an extra pinch
12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 (14-ounce) can (1-1/4 cups) sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon instant coffee crystals dissolved in 1 tablespoon hot water
2 large eggs
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Line a 13×9 inch metal baking pan with Release foil or line with regular foil and spray foil with cooking spray.

Combine flour, powdered sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt in bowl of food processor. Add butter and pulse until coarse and mealy. Alternatively, you may mix dry ingredients in a bowl and cut in butter with a pastry cutter. Press into bottom of pan and bake for 15 minutes.

Rinse out food processor bowl – no need to use soap. Add cream cheese and condensed milk and process until smooth. Add coffee and process; add eggs and process just until eggs are mixed in. Alternatively, you may beat the ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Pour over crust. Bake for 20 minutes or until set.

Cool completely on a wire rack then refrigerate. When firm, cut into squares. Melt chocolate chips in the top of a double boiler or in a heat proof bowl set over simmering water. Transfer melted chocolate to a resealable plastic bag and with a scissors, snip off a tiny corner of the bag.
Drizzle melted chocolate over squares.

Note: I actually did the drizzling before cutting the squares and things worked out fine.

Makes 24

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Published on January 6, 2009

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Sue January 6, 2009 at 1:38 pm

Those are very good looking bars!

VeggieGirl January 6, 2009 at 1:53 pm

Food porn!

Catherine January 6, 2009 at 3:05 pm

Anna, your cheesecake bars are the best! I’m still making the dried pineapple bars from a few months ago! These will go into the “gee, I need something kinda decadent, but easy” rotation.

Carole R. January 6, 2009 at 3:06 pm

Gee, Anna, do these look good. Since there are only two of us I’ll make the half btch later in the week.

Katrina January 6, 2009 at 3:09 pm

Gorgeous! Yep, you’ve got the knack at cheesecake bars. Have you ever made the ccc one from Bake or Break? I’ve meant to for so long and just haven’t gotten to it. Well, you should see the stack of recipes I just haven’t gotten to but want to! Guess it’s a good thing, or I’d for sure weigh even more!

Therese B. January 6, 2009 at 3:22 pm


These look fab! I will make them. I have cream cheese. Do you think I could sub espresso powder for the instant coffee? Perhaps a little less espresso? Your thoughts?

I have to sympathize with you on the GS cookie sales. I remember those days all too well. Everyone wants to PURCHASE the cookies…but the responsiblity of being THE COOKIE COORDINATOR…a thankless job. I wish I lived closer I would help you out!! You are a saint for taking it on.

Lisa CC January 6, 2009 at 4:04 pm

Hi Anna. love the blog! when are you going to post a new top 10 recipes? they are great for those of us who can’t make too many of your recipes.

janet January 6, 2009 at 5:44 pm

These looks divine! Thanks, Anna! Belated Merry Christmas and Happy 2009 to you and your family. Your recipes are always the best!

Cathy - wheresmydamnanswer January 6, 2009 at 6:06 pm

These are wrong on so many levels but right on way more!! Just means more time on the treadmill!!

JenJen January 6, 2009 at 6:21 pm

Mmmmmm, those look delicious! I think they are worth the extra time at the gym :-)


Marie January 6, 2009 at 6:51 pm

Anna, what kind of cocoa do you use in these. I got a lovely basket of goodies for Christmas that included some Sharffenberger cocoa which I know is expensive. Should I use it or save it for something where the cocoa is more pronounced.

Your blog gave me some great ideas through the holidays and I made your one-bowl chocolate chip cookies for our open house. They’re my favorite chocolate chip cookie ever.

bakingblonde January 6, 2009 at 7:26 pm

YUM! I love bar recipes, so much easier than cookies and easier to transport!

Jenn's Baking Chamber January 6, 2009 at 7:57 pm

Those look gorgeous! wish I could try one, I guess I will just have to make them as well!!!

Sara January 6, 2009 at 8:29 pm

These look really pretty!

Anna January 6, 2009 at 8:54 pm

Thanks for all the comments on the cheesecake squares. It’s fun hearing from people (as usual).

To answer a few of the questions…

…Therese, I think espresso powder would work, but instant coffee has a really distinct flavor that works well here. I would take espresso over instant coffee as a drink, but sometimes instant coffee tastes really good in cheesecakes and cookies. If you buy a little jar of Folgers crystals, I can point you toward some other recipes that make use of it. I can think of a Rice Krispy bar and a macaroon (both from FoodTV) that are great.

Lisa, I guess we’re about due for a Top 10. Maybe next week.

Marie, any cocoa will do. I used Ghirardelli and the crust was delicious. Also, I’m glad you like the One Bowl CCC’s! I went through a phase where those were my favorite.

Hi to everyone else up there in the comment section too!

LJ Marinello January 7, 2009 at 8:19 am

Looks great! Question – do you cool these on the rack in the baking pan? At what point do you remove from the pan? Also, at what point would I freeze these? Before cutting? Could I remove from oven, cool in pan, and then go right to freezer? Thanks! Planning ahead!!!!!

Anna January 7, 2009 at 8:24 am

Hi LJ,

Yes, you just set the pan right on the wire rack and let it cool. You could freeze them at any point after they’ve cooled. And I definitely would not cut them before freezing. Good luck!

Linda January 7, 2009 at 9:59 am

I’m having coffee right now…send a couple of those over! :-)

Michelle T. January 18, 2009 at 11:17 pm

I made these tonight for a small group gathering. They turned out fantastic! Thank you SO much!!! I only had Irish Creme instant coffee but that seemed to work fine.

Amy February 1, 2009 at 7:59 pm

I made these on Friday and they were great–went over really well–but I’m frustrated with the chocolate drizzling business. I followed the original recipe and cut before drizzling, and that didn’t work well at all. The bars were cut, but the chocolate was solid across, so when you scooped them out, you tended to either take the chocolate from the neighboring bar, or leave all your chocolate on the bar still in the pan!

I am NOT good at drizzling…any tips? I used the Ziploc bag with the corner cut off, but it just did not go well. My husband said the chocolate probably should have been hotter so it would stick to the cheesecake–as it is it just separates really easily–but if it’s hotter, then I can’t hold the bag!

meryem December 30, 2010 at 7:43 pm

hi anna

i love your blog, just want to ask you a question, can i make these moka cheescake square in 13*9 glass pan, i dont have matal pan

thank you

meryem December 30, 2010 at 7:45 pm

hi anna

i love your blog just want to ask you a question can i make thse moka cheescake square in my 13*9 glass pan , i dont have metal pan

thank you

Anna December 30, 2010 at 10:42 pm

I think it would work. Usually when I use glass pans I reduce the heat by 25 degrees F.

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