Chocolate-Covered. Peanut Butter. Cheesecake. On sticks. Seriously, could these sound any better? Besides, everything is better when it’s on a stick.
This was one of the many treats that I served up at my sister’s baby shower. Among all those other sweets, these were the standouts. They were also the first of the leftovers to disappear, since it’s just so easy to grab just one more bite every time you walk by the fridge.
The name really says it all. Creamy, peanutbuttery cheesecake with a chocolate shell. They are particularly good straight out of the freezer where they will keep for at least 2 weeks. They’d probably be fine for longer, but that’s as far as they made it in my house. I had some problems cutting the cheesecake into neat squares, but I have that problem with everything. Learn from my mistakes: be patient, mark your even squares out before you start, and wipe your knife down with hot water after each cut. They were still awesome even if they were lumpy.
I followed the recipe largely as originally written, but I decreased the shortening in the chocolate coating quite a bit. I might consider increasing the peanut butter next time. I adore peanut butter, and it ended up being drowned out a bit by the rich chocolate and tangy cream cheese.
Chocolate-Covered Peanut Butter Cheesecake Bites adapted from The Food Network
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 3 8 oz. packages (1.5 lbs) cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 2 large egg yolks
- 1 Tbsp vanilla
- 1 3/4 cups creamy peanut butter
- 12 oz good quality dark chocolate, chopped finely
- 3 Tbsp vegetable shortening
- Toothpicks or small lollipop sticks
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Use foil to line an 8×8 pan, leaving a generous overhang on two sides (this is your sling to lift the finished cheesecake out of the pan) and spray the foil with nonstick spray.
Beat the creamcheese and sugar until very smooth. Add the cream, yolks and vinilla and mix on low till just combined. Stir in peanut butter.
Pour the mixture into the 8×8 pan and bake for 15 minutes. Lower the heat to 200 degrees (opening the door for a bit to allow the excess heat to escape) and cook for ~45 minutes. The edges will be set, but the center will still be wobbly. Turn off the oven and let the cheesecake cool in the oven for 45 minutes. Cover the cheesecake and transfer to the fridge for at least 8 hours.
Remove the very chilled cheesecake from the pan using the foil sling (it’s much easier to cut when nice and cold) and carefully slice into 1.5 inch cubes using a long knife. Arrange cubes on a sheet pan and stick a toothpick into each square. Freeze the squares till firm – at least an hour.
Melt the chocolate and the shortening together in a small deep bowl. I like to use the microwave at 50% power (nuke for a minute, stir, nuke again in 30 second intervals as needed), but if you prefer you can use a double boiler. If you do, be careful not to get any water into the chocolate.
Take the bites out of the freezer and dip them one by one into the chocolate (holding by the toothpick) and place onto a sheet pan lined with wax paper or a silpat. Put them back into the fridge till the chocolate hardens and then serve – or (and this is my preference) stick them into the freezer until nice and hard and then transfer to a airtight container for storage or serve straight from the freezer.
They are good at room temperature, or fridge temperature too, but definitely best frozen.