These Peaches and Cream Crumble Bars are a hybrid of a cheesecake and a peach pie.
It’s not often that reality matches my expectations. Sometimes what I imagine will be a beautiful and romantic stroll around the pond turns out to be an adventure in dodging angry geese and hopping over poo piles. And sometimes what I think will be a mundane trip to Sam’s Club turns out to be a laughter and fun filled date night with the hubby.
Then there are those rare occasions when all the wishful hopes you had for something actually come to fruition. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it feels like magic. And magic is exactly what happened with these Peach Cobbler Cheesecake Bars.
When I set out to make these, I had a very specific vision in my mind. I wanted something that would have the comforting warmth of a crumbly peach cobbler combined with the cool creaminess of a bowl of fresh peaches and milk. I wanted warm muggy evenings, trees heavy with fruit, umbrellas fluttering in the breeze. I wanted the feel and taste and texture of summer in a bar.
My expectations weren’t high or anything.
In concept, these are just a hybrid of a cheesecake and a peach cobbler, but I hesitate to use the word “just” in this case. Because really, is anything ever “just” cheesecake and cobbler? That’s like saying I “just” won the lottery last week. No biggie, right?
But I digress. The recipe is broken up into three parts. First, a shortbread crust is baked until puffy and golden brown. The crust is layered with a smear of peach jam, fresh sliced peaches, and a rich cheesecake drizzle. Finally, a gently spiced crumble tops it all off. The end result? A sweet, creamy, crumbly mess of summer goodness.
These bars taste like family reunions, the thrill of new love, the sweet steadiness of a best friend. They’re all warm spicy days and cool creamy nights. Familiar, but exciting. Comforting, with a hint of mischief.
You can serve these straight from the fridge or straight from the oven (give them about a half hour to cool a bit!). I preferred them just a little warmer than room temp. That seemed to be the sweet spot where the cheesecake just started to meld into the peaches and the ginger and cinnamon really shined.
So find yourself a tree loaded down with fiery orange peaches, pluck a few of the best, and head home to make these bars. Pour yourself a glass of lemonade, kick your feet up, and enjoy the taste of summer.
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 2 cups flour
- 1/2 cup peach jam
- 3 large peaches, thinly sliced
- 12 oz. cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 stick butter, melted
- 1 cup flour
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- For the shortbread crust: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13 x 9 in baking dish with foil, then grease the foil on all sides. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter until it begins to soften, about 30 seconds. Add sugar and salt and beat on low speed until just combined. Add the flour and beat on low speed until incorporated then increase to high speed and beat until a cohesive dough is formed. Using your fingers, press the dough into the baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or until puffy and golden brown.
- For the filling: Spread peach jam evenly over the crust, then layer with sliced peaches. To make the cream layer, beat cream cheese and sour cream on high speed until smooth. Add sugar and 1 Tablespoon flour and beat another 30 seconds. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until smooth and thoroughly combined. Pour cheesecake mixture over peach slices. Set aside.
- For the topping: In a small bowl, combine flour, sugars, ginger, cinnamon, and salt. Pour melted butter over all and use your fingers to mix together until coarse crumbles form. Sprinkle over the top of the cheesecake layer. Bake again at 350 for 30 minutes or until crumbles are golden brown and center is set.