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Nutty Cream Cheese Brownies

by on March 15, 2011 · 10 comments

This weekend I gave my favorite cream cheese brownie recipe a run for the money by trying a cream cheese brownie recipe from The Texas Country Reporter cookbook.

While I love the old one, this new one was packed with walnuts which toned down the sweetness and added more texture. Plus I made adjustments. I toasted the nuts, threw in some almond extract for subtle flavor undertones (a little goes a long way), added chocolate chips and made the cream cheese layer a bit more tart by adding sour cream. The brownies were excellent. The cream cheese layer didn’t brown too much and the brownies had a fudgy, dense, texture. I l enjoyed these quite a bit even though they weren’t as tart and cheesy as my favorites. And because they are sweeter and don’t have such a huge proportion of cheesecake, they might be even more of a crowd pleasing than the others.

cream cheese brownies

Recipe: Nutty Cream Cheese Brownies

Summary: Chocolate fudge brownies marbled with a layer of cream cheese and sour cream

creamy cheese brownies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 4 (1-ounce) squares unsweetened chocolate (114 grams)
  • 6 oz /160 grams butter, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar (392 grams)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour (126 grams)
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
  • Filling:

  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese softened (230 grams)
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream (30 grams)
  • 1/3 cup sugar (60 grams)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13×9 inch metal pan with foil and spray foil with cooking spray.
  2. Lay the walnuts on a cookie sheet and toast for about 8 minutes or until aromatic. Remove from oven and let cool. Chop.
  3. Melt the chocolate in a microwave –safe bowl (50% power for 1 1/2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds) or in a bowl set over simmering water. Set aside to cool.
  4. Prepare filling first. Beat cream cheese, sugar, sour cream and vanilla in a small mixing bowl with a hand-held mixer. Reduce speed to low and beat in the egg. Set aside.
  5. Prepare brownies. Beat butter and granulated sugar in a large mixing bowl for about 3 minutes. Beat in eggs, one by one. Beat in melted chocolate, salt, vanilla, and almond extract. By hand, stir in the flour until it is incorporated, then stir in the chopped walnuts and chocolate chips.
  6. Spread chocolate mixture evenly in pan. Drop spoonfuls of filling over brownie batter, then very lightly drag a knife through to make the batter look marbled and blotchy – I don’t drag it too much because I like big clumps of cream cheese mixture.
  7. Bake at 350 F. on center rack for 45 minutes.
  8. Let cool completely, then chill for a few hours.  Lift from pan and cut into 24 squares.

Quick Notes

These are best on Day 2, but still taste great on Day 1. Also, the cook time I’ve listed is prep time and bake time. If you include chill time, it’s longer.

Variations

Use a different type nut

Cooking time (duration): 60

Diet type: Vegetarian

Number of servings (yield): 12

Meal type: dessert

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

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Published on March 15, 2011

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

lynn March 15, 2011 at 10:19 am

Yum, Anna, these look heavenly. I will have to print out this recipe, too. I’ll bet it would be a real crowd pleaser. Brownies and cream cheese — how can you go wrong? Last night I made some “breakfast brownies,” with pancake mix and cocoa powder and raisin bran, of all things. I figured brownies for breakfast can’t be a bad thing, can it? ;) Off to try one . . .

Mackenzie@The Caramel Cookie March 15, 2011 at 10:28 am

Mmm these look so thick and rich!

Lisa Ernst March 15, 2011 at 2:59 pm

Generally the idea of cream cheese brownies doesn’t really tempt me, but this recipe, with the walnuts and chocolate chips added in changes my mind.

Katrina March 15, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Mmm, they look good. I’m all for nuts in brownies.

Sue March 15, 2011 at 4:13 pm

Everything about these sounds wonderful! Your favorite recipe is pretty wonderful too. :-)

Gloria March 15, 2011 at 7:34 pm

These look so delicous! I have not been a cream cheese and chocolate fan in the past, but I too could be sold on all the chocolate and nuts with a little bit of cream cheese. Plus they look so pretty all swirled and everything!

vanillasugarblog March 15, 2011 at 7:57 pm

i love nuts in my brownies. so many people i know hate nuts in them. i find that so odd.
i just saw a midori bundt cake on here? must go to that now….

the blissful baker March 15, 2011 at 8:11 pm

Yum! The addition of almond extract sounds fabulous!

ChocolateCentral March 21, 2011 at 6:44 pm

Oh my —! These really look good. I am a brownie freak. I’m not so big on cheesecake, but I love it mixed into brownies, and you’ve added walnuts to boot. I can’t wait to make these for my next “girlfriends with toddlers” playdate.

Lotta July 7, 2011 at 9:41 pm

Hi! I just found your blog and I really like it! These brownies look delicious, I really like cream cheese in cakes! I like trying new recipes, especially from other countries and there are so many “american” cakes and cookies to try here that aren’t very common or easy to find in Sweden.

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