Nutella Swirl Cheesecake Bars

Creamy cheesecake bars on a simple graham cracker crust with a thick Nutella swirl.

overhead image of Nutella swirl cheesecake bars

Calling all cheesecake lovers… and Nutella lovers. This sinful recipe was made with YOU in mind. And umm… me too. I had a serious craving for Nutella last week and rather than smearing some on a banana, I swirled it into some cheesecake. I don’t know if I should apologize in advance or not. You’re absolutely going to fall in love with these and your pants are not going to get any looser. Umm, so worth it. Tis the season.

These Nutella cheesecake bars are sinful. So good that they should come with a warning label. They’re creamy, thick, cheesecakey, chocolate-y, and smooth. The perfect ending to a holiday meal. The ideal home-baked gift for all chocolate lovers. Heck, they’re perfect for ANY dessert lover.

And the best part? They’re so simple! Much, much easier than making an entire cheesecake from scratch. All the work is done in the oven as the bars bake and then in the refrigerator as the bars chill. We all have enough going on this time of year (and well, any time of year) that a simple hassle-free dessert is always welcome!

stack of Nutella swirl cheesecake bars on a white plate

You’re only going to need a few easy, cheap ingredients: graham crackers, butter, cream cheese, sugar, egg, vanilla extract, nutella. Yeah, that’s it. 8 ingredients total!

The base of these creamy cheesecake bars is the same graham cracker crust use in my s’mores pie and strawberry cheesecake bars. Grind up some graham crackers, mix them with melted butter and sugar. Press this mixture tightly into a pan and then top with the cheesecake batter.

The hardest part about today’s recipe is swirling the Nutella. Which is, in fact, quite effortless. If you’ve ever eaten Nutella, you know that it is quite hard to work with. So sticky! So thick! So gooey!

Those are all positive things, people. To make the Nutella easy to swirl, you may do 1 of two things. (1) Simply measure 1/3 cup of it into a small bowl and microwave for about 15 seconds. (2) Alternatively, you may sit the entire Nutella container into a large bowl of warm water for about 15 minutes.

The Nutella will be much thinner and easier to swirl using either option.

Nutella swirl cheesecake bars on a white plate

The cheesecake bars take about 30-35 minutes to bake. Be sure not to overbake them. The bars will be very puffy and the edges will be brown.

Let the bars cool at room temperature on a wire rack; the bars will sink back down as they cool. Putting the bars onto a wire rack will allow air to circulate to the bottom of the pan. Once slightly cooled (about 30 minutes) transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely – for at least 3-4 hours (or overnight).

Nutella swirl cheesecake bars in a glass baking dish

Sadly, these cheesecake bars take some planning ahead because of the long chill time. And waiting for them to chill is pure torture! You need them to be sufficiently chilled all the way through the center in order for the bars to cut neatly. As well as taste the best! Warm cheesecake – no thank you.

It is an enormous test of your self control to leave the nutella cheesecake bars alone in the refrigerator as they chill. But trust me – the end result is sooo worth it.

When the mood strikes you for a creamy, cheesecakey, Nutella treat – because let’s face it, that’s often – these cheesecake bars are your answer. I have a feeling this simple, 8 ingredient recipe will be in heavy rotation for the next couple of weeks. I have about 100 occassions to bake for (I need some holiday dresses – any suggestions?) and I know Nutella will always be a crowd pleaser.

stack of Nutella swirl cheesecake bars on a white plate

Plus, look how pretty they are! ♥ Cheesecake may just be my favorite way to eat Nutella now.

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stack of Nutella swirl cheesecake bars on a white plate

Nutella Swirl 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


Creamy cheesecake bars on a simple graham cracker crust with a thick Nutella swirl.



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


  • 16 ounces cream cheese (2 standard packages or 450g), softened to room temperature
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup (100g) Nutella, slightly warmed*


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line a 8×8 baking pan with aluminum foil with enough overhang on the sides. 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: Beat cream cheese, egg, sugar, and vanilla extract together with a hand or stand mixer until smooth and creamy, about 3 full minutes. Spoon filling onto the crust. Drop large spoonfuls of Nutella on top of filling and swirl gently with a knife.
  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. Lift the foil out of the pan and cut into squares.
  5. Store bars in a covered container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.


  1. Nutella: To make the Nutella easy to swirl, you may do 1 of two things. (1) Simply measure 1/3 cup of it into a small bowl and microwave for about 15 seconds. (2) Alternatively, you may sit the entire Nutella container into a large bowl of warm water for about 15 minutes.
  2. Double Batch: Recipe can easily be doubled and baked in a 9×13-inch pan, baking time will vary – about 45-55 minutes.

Keywords: nutella cheesecake bars


Comments are closed.

  1. Jess @ On Sugar Mountain says:

    I have been seriously craving nutella lately…and what should appear in my reader but these beautiful bars! Brilliant! 😀

    1. Perfect. You must make these then, Jess!

  2. I like your mom’s style!

  3. Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl says:

    Nutella is my favorite, always! These bars look too yummy! Must try! 🙂

  4. Nora (Buttercream Fanatic) says:

    These bars are making me forget I don’t like cheesecake. I think I do like it in these!

  5. That thick cookie crust looks amazing against the soft, creamy cheesecake filling! Yummmm! I am a bit of a Nutella obsessive also. I try to make sure I don’t leave any in the house so I won’t attempt to eat it out of the jar! x

    1. I try to never keep Nutella in the house as well, Laura. It’s so tempting!

  6. Natalie @ Obsessive Cooking Disorder says:

    OMG, boyfriend’s gonna get uber fat with this goodies. Thanks!

  7. Sally, these look amazing! I really want to try them, but I do not like graham cracker crusts at all (gasp!). I was thinking Nilla Wafers. Do you think those would go well with the flavors or do you have another recommendation?

    1. Hey Erin! Yes, Nilla Wafers would be fantastic as the crust. Though I’m unsure of the correct measurements. I’m sure you can find a nilla wafer crust recipe online to fit this size pan, though. You could also try an oreo crust like this one-

      1. You are so quick! Thank you! I had briefly considered an Oreo crust as well, but thought maybe it would compete with the Nutella too much. Obvious answer? I’ll try them both! Ha! Keep up the good work!

  8. I totally adore food bloggers who put measurements AND weights in the recipes. Makes it so much more simple for those of us who bake with a scale instead of a cup measure. Thanks for that AND a great recipe. Adding this one to my list (getting longer and longer!!)

  9. Sally, these look utterly delicious. I’d love to make it in a 9 inch round springform pan… Any suggestions about how to adjust the recipe so I can do this? Thanks!

    1. No changes necessary. The bars may be a little thinner than mine and may take a few less minutes in the oven. Enjoy!

  10. Like it

  11. WOW…cheesecake. graham crackers. AND Nutella?!
    That is too good to be true!! I think those would be perfect to bake for the neighbors!!! Thanks for the recipe!!

    1. Thanks Kelly! Let me know if you try them out.

  12. I made this recipe for a Christmas party the other night. The only thing I did differently is pour the sugar in with the graham crackers to blend. Anyway, It was a hit. The buttery graham cracker crust is delicious. It’s definitely in my “Keeper” folder now. As opposed to making it in a springform pan, the square sizes makes portioning smaller “party size” servings so easy too. We’re making it again tonight for my daughter’s school Christmas party. Thanks for the great recipe idea!

    1. That’s great Greg – so happy these bars were a hit. I agree, they’re just much easier to bake as well as serve in comparison to an entire cheesecake.

  13. Oh my goodness! This looks like pure heaven! There is little I love more than nutella and cheesecake! Especially together! YUM!

  14. I made these yesterday with Trader Joe’s’ vegan cream cheese substitute because my husband is somewhat lactose-intolerant, and followed the directions exactly as they are listed here. They turned out really good! I suppose if you want to make these entirely vegan, you could use Earth Balance in the crust, and Rawtella in the topping. I don’t know if all graham crackers have real honey in them, but Annie’s Organic do, so beware if you’re a vegan who does not eat honey.

  15. These were great! My family and I really enjoyed them 🙂 Thanks a lot for the recipe, Sally! You should come up with a oreo cheesecake recipe hehe

    1. I have an oreo cheesecake recipe in my upcoming cookbook, actually! 🙂 Happy you liked these Justine. Thanks for reporting back!

  16. Jayne @ Tenacious Tinkering says:

    I’m so excited t make this for this Sunday. My baby brother (all of 21 years old) is bringing his girlfriend home for the first time and I’m both excited and nervous. Cheesecake + Nutella are the perfect combo for the first time meeting with my baby brother & his girl.

    1. Jayne, you just cannot go wrong with these Nutella Swirl Cheesecake Bars. They are the perfect dessert to impress!

      1. Jayne @Tenacious Tinkering says:

        One more question. Do you think the bars will be as good if I double the filling? We love our cheese a lot and would love to have a higher cheese to crust ratio . Thanks! 🙂

      2. Hi Jayne! The cheesecake would bake over the edges of the pan if you double the filling. Perhaps you could 1.5x the filling and bake in a 9-inch (not 8-inch) square pan.

  17. Sally, what kind of cheese would you suggest I use of these: ricotta, mascarpone, or cheeses such as Philadelphia? Which would be the best? In my country there is no product on the shelves labeled as “cream cheese”. 🙂 Thank you!!

    1. Hi Remszi! How about using ricotta instead? I’ve never tried it before though, so I can’t say if the bars’ texture will be exactly the same. I personally love ricotta cheesecake!

  18. Hi Sally – just wanted to let you know that I tried out this recipe and these cheesecake bars are ultra delicious. I’m from Australia where graham crackers are not readily available, so when my work colleagues travel to the US I always beg for a box. They’re so good taste-wise as a base for cheesecakes. And nutella of course is everyone’s perennial favourite. Thanks for your gorgeous blog and recipes (love that you have gram measurements for us metric folk). I do hope I can get my hands on your book in Australia. Ps: your chewy choc chip cookies worked a treat for me as well. They’re too good. Best regards, Ann

    1. I’m very happy you loved both recipes, Ann! Thanks so much for reporting back to me about them. Love these cheesecake bars!

  19. Hi! I’ve been looking for something to do with the 2 big jars of Nutella my uncle sent me, and found these. I owe my friends cheesecake cups and was thinking of making these instead. If I use a mini muffin tin, how long do I have to keep in the oven? 🙂 Thanks!

    1. I would say about 10 minutes. Enjoy!

  20. What can I substitute graham crackers with? Digestive biscuits?

    1. Sandy, digestive biscuits are a great alternative to those not living in the US.

      1. Baked according to your recipe, every bite is heavenly! One question though, the crust doesn’t seem to be sticking to the filling. Any remedy for this? And also what is the best way to swirl into a nice pattern? Thanks again for sharing this yummilicious recipe!

  21. Does anyone know if I could substitute the nutella with peanut butter (hazelnut allergy)?

    1. Absolutely! Enjoy.

  22. Hey Sally
    We are travelling back to my home country in about 15 days and I have leftovers from both this and the lemon blueberry cheesecake bars. I put them in an airtight container and into the freezer so I can take them with me. Will they last or get ruined ?
    Thank you 😀

    1. They will be fine in the freezer for a few weeks, yes. Safe travels!

  23. Hi Sally

    I’m a big fan of your recipes and just love how creative you are but these bars seem to taste really mild. If i were to bake them again I would add an extra 1/2 cup of sugar

  24. Marlene Bellamy says:

    Sally, you said in response to an earlier question that these can’t be frozen. I’m wondering why, as I make chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake bars that freeze beautifully and have frozen other cheesecake desserts. (And thanks for all your great recipes!)

    1. To be honest, Marlene, I do not care for the texture of previously frozen cheesecake or bars – so I don’t suggest it for my recipes. But you can do whatever you prefer.

      1. Thanks for the info, Sally. I’ll wait to make them when I know we will devour them right away!

  25. Sally, do you think this would work in a regular spring foam cheesecake pan to make a cheesecake?


    1. Perhaps. I would double the recipe to make a cheesecake though – I am unsure of the bake time. You could also use this recipe and swirl in Nutella instead of the blueberry swirl I used.

  26. I’d like to try this recipe as a cheesecake in a spring form pan for my brother’s birthday. Any adjustments to the recipe you can recommend?

    Bh the way, I made the bars for a holiday party last year at work. One of my coworkers asked me to make a batch for her family’s Christmas Eve dinner.

    1. So glad these bars were a hit last year. You can definitely it is as a cheesecake, though it will be a little thin. How about you use this cheesecake recipe:

      And then swirl in the Nutella as directed in this recipe.

  27. I made these last week and they were a HIT! The only thing I did differently was swap out the graham cracker crust for a crust made out of Chips Ahoy. I used about 10 chocolate chip cookies and put in food processor to crush up and used the same way as the graham crackers. To die for!! LOL =)

  28. Would this recipe work for mini cheesecake bites?

    1. Absolutely! I am unsure of the bake time.

  29. These look phenonemal! My kids love Nutella and cheesecake! The two together will be a favorite for sure! Have you ever tried presenting this recip[e as a round cheesecake instead of bars? Just wondering if it slices well.

    1. I have not, but I know readers have. They’ve used my cheesecake recipe here:

      And swirled in about 1/2 cup of Nutella. As I said- I have never tried it myself before- but I’ve heard back with great success!

  30. I made these over the weekend, and they were gobbled up with compliments! The homemade graham cracker crust was wonderful – I was inspired to give this recipe a try as an excuse to try out your recent baking basics posting on making the perfect graham cracker crust. It was so simple (even with the rolling pin method), and tasty. Thank you once again for another delicious treat!

    1. Thanks Pam!

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