Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Cherry Chip Cheesecake

I have the same cake for my birthday every year -- it's been Cherry Chip since I can remember, possibly since my first birthday. I love that stuff. It's so good.

But I hate frosting cake. For one, I always accidentally buy the vanilla frosting (ick!) instead of the cream cheese. And I never remember to make the cake the night before so it's cooled in time to frost, meaning I frost it too early and it gets all crumbly and gross looking. Plus, smearing a bunch of frosting on top always makes me feel inadequate 'cause I know everyone else is doing the whole fondant thing and making Cake Boss-worthy creations. Blech.

Well, this year was a milestone birthday so I decided to take advantage of the occasion and switch things up. I stole this recipe from the Betty Crocker Web site and made DELICIOUS Cherry Chip Cheesecake Bars. (That's not what the site calls 'em, but I'm too lazy to look up the real name.)

I couldn't believe how easy it was.

You need:

1 box Cherry Chip cake mix
1/2 cup butter softened (not melted)
2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 container cherry frosting
3 eggs

Heat oven to 325 degrees. In large bowl, beat the cake mix and butter with an electric mixer on low until crumbly. (I thought for sure this part wasn't going to work, because it was still basically all cake mix powder when I was done. Trust me, though, it turns out. It's amazing.) Reserve 1 cup, and press the rest in an ungreased 13x9 pan.

In the SAME BOWL (so efficient!) beat cream cheese and frosting with the SAME ELECTRIC MIXER on medium until smooth. Add eggs and beat until blended. Pour over crust. Sprinkle with reserve crumbly mixture.

Bake for 45 minutes or until set. Cool completely, then cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

The end result was delicious. My husband has never raved so much. My 3-year-old helped make the whole thing, it was that easy. And in the end I just had to clean one bowl, one spoon and two beater thingies.

We're planning to experiment later with different kinds of cake and frosting, but this one will now be my official birthday celebration cake.