Blueberry Coconut Cheesecake Bars
These Blueberry Coconut Cheesecake Bars are my ode to spring. A crunchy layer of butter, oats, and toasted almonds create the perfect base for the creamy cheesecake, sweet blueberry, and toasted coconut that layered on top.
Oh blueberries…sweet, juicy blueberries, you’ve finally made your way back into our lives after a long, cold winter, and we’re ever so grateful.
I don’t mind winter, but it doesn’t take too long before I become bored with its limited variety of fresh produce. What I really crave is fresh spring and summer produce. I look forward to it the minute its dust trail disappears.
Remnants of its vibrant flavors live on in the freezer section, but it’s not the same. To me, freezer fruit is smoothie territory. I prefer the real deal for everything else.
Finally, signs of life are beginning to trickle its way into grocery stores and local markets. Just the other day, I stopped dead in my tracks and did a double take at the blueberry display to make sure what was before me was really there in the flesh.
And then I quickly proceeded to load my cart. Did I need five cartons of fresh blueberries–no way! Did I buy five cartons of fresh blueberries–totally!
These Blueberry Coconut Cheesecake Bars were born out of necessity. I overloaded on blueberries, and I had to use them before they kicked bucket.
A added a bit of shredded coconut to make things interesting and handful of sliced almonds for crunch. The buttery shortbread, creamy cheesecake, sweet blueberries, and toasted topping will have you reaching for more.
Blueberry Coconut Cheesecake Bars
Yield: 1 (8-inch-by-8-inch) square pan
Total Time: 45 minutes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
- 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted + cooled
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 and 1/2 cups blueberries
- 1/2 cup blueberry preserves
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds, divided
- 1/3 cup shredded coconut, divided
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1 large egg
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 8-inch-by-8-inch square pan with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, oats, almond flour, lemon zest, and kosher salt. Stir to combine. Stir in melted butter and vanilla extract until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press a little more than half of the mixture into the bottom of your prepared pan.
- To make the cheesecake: Add cream cheese and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat until smooth and creamy, about 1 minute. Beat in the egg, lemon zest, and vanilla and lemon extracts until smooth.
- Evenly spread the cheesecake mixture over the shortbread mixture. In a small bowl, add blueberries. Gently fold in the blueberry peserves. Spread the blueberry mixture evenly over the cheesecake layer. Sprinkle the remaining oat mixture over the blueberries. Top with sliced almonds and shredded coconut.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown and apples are tender.
- Cool completely in the pan. Remove and cut into squares. Store the cooled squares in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.