Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars

Creamy lemon cheesecake bars studded and swirled with blueberries. They’re prepared on my simple graham cracker crust and will absolutely be your new favorite dessert!

lemon blueberry cheesecake bars on a white plate

You’ll always hear me say that apple pie is my favorite dessert.

And that anything peanut butter is my predictable #2 choice, pumpkin pie is my best friend, salted caramel runs through my veins, and carrot cake is my middle name. But what you may not know about me is how much I adore lemon.

Or maybe you do know that by now

lemon blueberry cheesecake bars

I went a little nuts buying lemons at Costco last week. Two large bundles of them – about 10 lemons in each bundle. My original plans were to juice them with greens and apples during the week, but lemon blueberry cheesecake bars sounded so much better.

Well, maybe a little green juice with cheesecake bars on the side. Life’s all about balance, after all.

This recipe is a spin-off of my Blueberry Lemon Cheesecake Bars. Same flavors, but prepared differently. My originals have a streusel crumb crust and topping. Unworldly good. Try them! After you make today’s recipe, of course.

stack of lemon blueberry cheesecake bars

Today’s cheesecake bars start with a thick graham cracker crust. If it’s served on a thick graham cracker crust, I’m going to love it. Absolutely my favorite kind of crust these days. And the perfectly sweet accompaniment to the light and creamy cheesecake topping.

This is my basic graham cracker crust recipe and it fits into a 9-inch pie dish if you’re looking for a base for pies and cakes. I love it topped with brownies and toasted marshmallow. My graham cracker crust is slightly crunchy, nutty, buttery, and is not overly sweet like most crusts of its kind.

3 ingredients are all you’ll need for the simple graham cracker crust.

2 images of graham cracker crust ingredients in a glass bowl and crust mixture in a glass bowl with a spatula

The cheesecake topping is thick, sweet, tart, and lush. The creamiest of creamy, smooth as silk, and laughably simple to make. In fact, I use this easy, basic cheesecake filling as the base for all of my cheesecake bar recipes. (I link to a few of those recipes at the bottom of this post.)

Flavoring the cheesecake filling is a whole lotta lemon. Both lemon zest and fresh lemon juice – none of that fake lemon extract stuff. I used the zest of two medium lemons and the juice of one. I do not recommend using bottled lemon juice, which tends to be much stronger and acidic than fresh.

The cheesecake bars will have a light lemon flavor that’s not too sour, not too sweet. And certainly nothing to make you pucker up your lips! You’re going to load the cheesecake filling with blueberries. Tons of them speckled throughout each bar. The more, the better. I used a blend of frozen blueberries and fresh – so either will work just fine. The frozen blueberries let off some of their juices during bake time, giving the bars their beautiful purple pops of color.

Play around with the berries you use – I have a feeling raspberries, blackberries, and/or strawberries would be fantastic in these lemon cheesecake bars. Or leave the berries out completely for a simply pure lemon treat.

overhead image of lemon blueberry cheesecake bars

I wouldn’t change a thing about this recipe! Kevin and I both loved how light they tasted, as well as how the buttery graham cracker crust complemented the zingy, sweet lemon cheesecake filling. Finding the tasty balance between tart and sweet is tricky when it comes to lemon desserts, but these bars nail it!

Follow me on Instagram and tag #sallysbakingaddiction so I can see all the SBA recipes you make. 

More lemon recipes you’ll love:

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lemon blueberry cheesecake bars on a white plate

Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 4 hours, 50 minutes
  • Yield: 16 bars
  • Category: Bars
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Creamy lemon cheesecake bars studded and swirled with blueberries. They’re prepared on my simple graham cracker crust and will absolutely be your new favorite dessert!


Ingredients

Crust

  • 10 full-sheet graham crackers (or 1.5 cups graham cracker crumbs)
  • 6 Tablespoons (90g) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar

Filling

  • 16 ounces cream cheese (2 standard packages or 450g), softened to room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar
  • zest of 2 medium lemons*
  • juice of 1 medium lemon*
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (225g) fresh or frozen unthawed blueberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper with enough overhang on the sides to easily lift the chilled bars out as a whole. Set aside.
  2. Make the crust: Using a food processor or blender, pulverize the graham crackers into a fine crumb. Pour into a medium bowl and mix with melted butter and sugar. Press into the lined pan. Bake for 5 minutes. Allow to cool as you prepare the filling.
  3. Make the filling: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese for 1 minute on medium speed until smooth. On medium speed, beat in the egg, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice, and vanilla extract together until smooth and creamy, about 3 full minutes. Gently fold in the blueberries. Spoon filling onto the crust.
  4. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cheesecake has set up and the edges are lightly browned. The bars will be very puffy, but will sink slightly down as they cool. Allow to cool for 30 minutes at room temperature on a wire rack and then chill in the refrigerator for at least three hours.
  5. Lift the parchment paper out of the pan and cut into squares.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: The bars stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can freeze the bars for up to 3 months. Then, thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
  2. Lemons: 1 medium-size lemon = approximately 1 tablespoon of lemon zest = 2 to 3 tablespoons of lemon juice

Keywords: lemon blueberry cheesecake bars

72 Comments

  1. These are delicious!!! I LOVE cheesecake and this recipe did not disappoint! Thank you for sharing you recipes, it has been so long since I have got right into my cooking and thanks to your inspiration I will definitely be cooking a lot more often! ✌

  2. Michelle Witunsky says:

    Hello! Just popped in to write that I just absolutely love these bars and have been making them at least once a summer for, oh I don’t know maybe 5 years or so? I did change the crust, I prefer an oatmeal cookie type bottom, so have been using difference recipes for that, but thank you so much for the inspiration and the recipe- they are just wonderful. I often make them to take to a music festival and will freeze them with parchment paper between layers, and when i pull them out they are a huge hit.

  3. Made these today. I used blackberries and added some animal cookie crumbs to my crust (I always add them to my graham cracker crust).

    They’re excellent. Not too sweet or tangy. Just perfect. I also made the dogs some of Sallies peanut butter dog treats today. As always, followed the recipe and they turned out perfect.

    I love Sally’s recipes.
    I’m waiting on her to post a cream cheese Danish so that I can work up the courage to attempt them. I want to do personal sized ones for sharing.

  4. I am very excited to make this recipe, it looks delicious! I was wondering if I could add lavender to these bars, (since I have so much of it,) thinking it would be pretty good. Any way how much do you think should use? Thanks Sally

    1. Hi Avery, You can certainly try it! I’m unsure of how much you would add (a lot depends on the type of lavender you are using).

  5. My only 8×8 pan is glass. Will a glass pan bake these well, or would it be better to use a metal springform pan?

    1. Hi Mollie, a glass pan works just fine. It’s what I usually use.

  6. These look amazing and since lemon and blueberries together are a favourite flavour combination, I can’t wait to try this recipe. I was wondering though, would this recipe work as mini cheesecakes?If so do you have an idea what the baking time would be? Love your recipes!

    1. Sure can! The bake time will be quick, I’m unsure exactly how long they will take.

    2. These look good and I want to give them a try! Do you think they’d go well with mixed berries? I have a big bag or frozen mixed berries with blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries.

      1. Hi Reem, You can use 1 and 1/2 cup of mixed berries instead of all blueberries. If frozen, do not thaw.

  7. AMAZING! I have been baking a lot during quarantine and specifically lemon blueberry treats.
    These turned out really well. I omitted the sugar in the crust as I had bough graham crackers with cinnamon sugar topping. It set very well and will definitely make again.

  8. Hi Sally,
    If I am making these for a get together tomorrow can I leave them in the fridge overnight before cutting them?

    Thanks!

    1. Yes, They will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

  9. Hi all,
    Think I need some help! I’ve baked this for 30 minutes more than stated and it’s still not set! Any suggestions? I’ve put it back in again.

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Lisa, Any chance you used frozen berries? That would certainly increase the bake time.

  10. Hi there!
    So excited to try these bars this week!
    As a rule of thumb, I generally double the ingredients of a recipe that calls for a 9-inch square pan in order to use a 9×13 pan. Would you recommend doubling this recipe for a 9×13 pan? Also, what would you recommend for the baking time for a 9×13 pan? Thanks!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Emily, Yes, double the recipe for the 9×13 pan. The bake time will be longer, but I am unsure of the exact amount of time.

  11. Pam Hoffmann says:

    So delicious! Perfect amount of lemon tartness with the sweetness of the blueberries is to die for! Since blueberries are in season here right now I used fresh. Love the thick crust also. It holds up well to the weight of the filling. Although these are thick and creamy the lightness of the flavor keeps them from being too sweet. I doubled the recipe and made a 9×13 pan. Baked them for about 50 minutes and that seemed to be just about right.

  12. I made this over the weekend and it was amazing. The flavor of the lemons and blueberries was so intense it was a hit with family and friends!

  13. Hi Christina, I recommend following the baking instructions used for these mini cheesecakes.

  14. Hi Sally! This might be a silly question, but do you grease the parchment paper? Looking forward to making this over the weekend!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      No need to grease the parchment paper, Reem!

  15. Hi Sally. I love your recipes. I tried the lemon blueberry cheesecake bar for our lunch group at work this week. I doubled the recipe and cooked it 9 minutes past what the recipe called for and left it in the oven with the door opened slightly and it came out perfect!

  16. Thanks for the really excellent recipe. I deviated very slightly, made a short bread crust and instead of lemon zest I threw 1/4 lemon into food processor and mulched it to smithereens. They’re addictive.

  17. Hi sally! Just wondering if i omit the lemon do i have to change the volume of the other ingredients? And can this recipe be made in a 9” square pan?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Sha, If made in a 9 inch pan they will be a little thinner. If you omit the lemon you may wish to cut the sugar to 1/4 of a cup. Enjoy!

  18. Chelsea Kovesh says:

    Hi Sally,
    This is my first ever comment – on any site. ‍♀️‍♀️
    Anyway, I live in Israel and you have both taught me and saved me with your recipes! Everything here is done by scratch and thanks to all of your notes and conversion tricks – I have taught myself how to bake from scratch! All of the recipes I have made have come out perfect! You are incredibly talented. Thank you! Now down to business……. we have Shavuot on Sunday, which is a dairy based holiday and I would like your advice on how to combine your ‘Blueberry Swirl Cheesecake’ – minus the swirl WITH your ‘Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Bars’. (Basically no swirl, but I want to add lemon juice/zest and blueberries) Can you please help?
    Thanks again for sharing your amazing talents!!!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Chelsea, we’re so happy to read that you love our recipes, thank you! You could beat in about 1 Tablespoon of zest and 1/4 cup of fresh lemon juice to the blueberry swirl cheesecake and sprinkle blueberries on top of the cheesecake before baking like with the bars (instead of the swirl). We haven’t tested this, but would love to hear how it goes for you!

  19. Hi, this turned out so yummy! My family LOVED it! How can I convert this recipe for a 8″ springform pan?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi E, you can certainly make these cheesecake bars into a traditional cheesecake. A 9 inch pan would be ideal, so you may have a bit of leftover crust and filling (you can make a few mini cheesecakes with the leftovers if desired). Use our cheesecake post as a guide for baking temperature and time. Let us know how it goes for you!

  20. I have made this with blueberries and strawberries and both times it was perfect. Thanks yet again, Sally for making me look like I know what I’m doing!

  21. Hi Sally, your recipes are always great. Do you have an idea if egg replacer would work well in this recipe? My MIL has allergies to wheat (celiac), egg and almond. She loves my baking and has requested a lemon treat for her birthday. I can get GF Graham crackers, but what do you think about egg replacer in this? Also, if you have any other baking recipes that omit these 3 ingredients, I’d love to try them too. Thanks, always your fan Sally.

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kika, we’ve never tested this recipe (or any of our cheesecake recipes) with egg replacer before, but we would love to hear how it goes if you give it a try! How sweet of you to bake for your MIL – I’m sure she appreciates it! Here’s a link to all our recipes that are naturally egg-free AND gluten-free, you’ll just have to look out for ones with almonds.

  22. A+ recipe. Got rave reviews from serious and finicky dessert people. And it freezes extremely well. Make it this summer, and use at least some frozen blueberries which makes it a beautiful color (and the more thawed they are, the bluer the batter, if you like that kind of thing).

  23. And yet another AMAZING Sally dessert!

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