Kiddo in the Kitchen : Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

KIK 1 mixer
We're trying a little something new here at the blog. Once a month or so, kiddo is going to pick a recipe and I'll help him make it...or he'll help me...or something. I'm thinking once a month...but we all know I'm a quitter, so we'll see how it goes! ;)

KIK 1 collage
{I'm pretty sure there is a pile of laundry in the background on my dining room table. Ignore that.}

Kiddo spends a lot of time in the kitchen. Not necessarily cooking, but he knows it's where to find me. If I'm not baking, I'm normally in the pantry grabbing a handful (or two) of chocolate chips straight from bag.

The kitchen is also where kiddo learned the concept of trust. When he was about 4, I called him in to taste some chocolate sauce I had just made. He wouldn't try it.

"It's really'll love it," I said.

Shakes head. "No...I don't want any."

This went on for about 5 minutes...I He was going to eat the chocolate.

"Sweetheart...Mommy will never tell you something is really yummy to trick you into eating it. Look, I'll never tell you broccoli is really yummy. I'll tell you that it tastes pretty good with some butter and salt, but it's never going to taste as good as a chocolate chip cookie. THIS, this chocolate sauce tastes as good as a chocolate chip me."

He tried it.

He trusts now.

Now you'll have to trust us.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars
So, onto the recipe. I knew as soon as he peeked over my shoulder as I read cookies and cups, that this was going to be our first recipe... Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars.

{If you haven't been to cookies and cups...GO! It is filled with all kinds of deliciousness...and is really funny to boot (that's an expression, right?)}

Here's how to make them:
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars
{adapted from cookies and cups & The Essential Chocolate Chips Cookbook}

1 & 1/2 c. graham cracker crumbs
5 TBSP butter, melted
2/3 c. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Cookie Dough:
5 TBPS butter, room temp.
1/3 c. packed light brown sugar
3 TBSP sugar
1/4 tsp coarse salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3/4 c. flour
1 c. chocolate chips

Cheesecake Filling:
10 oz. cream cheese, room temp.
1/4 c. sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract

1/3 c. chocolate chips
1 tsp shortening

Preheat oven to 325.

For the crust:
Grease a 8x8 pan with butter, line pan with parchment paper and butter the paper, leaving enough to extend over the sides.

Crush graham crackers into crumbs to make 1 & 1/2 cups. Add to butter and stir until crumbs are moistened. Stir in chocolate chips.

Press crust mixture into bottom of pan. Bake for 6 minutes. Set pan on wire rack to cool.

For cookie dough:
Using mixer and the paddle attachment, mix butter, brown sugar, sugar, salt, and vanilla extract at medium speed until smooth. Adjust mixer speed to low and add flour. Mix just until incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips. Set aside.
KIK 1 cookie dough

For cheesecake:
Using mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add egg and vanilla extract, beating just until blended.
KIK 1 face
{It helps if you make a face!}

KIK 1 mixer watch
KIK 1 drum collage
{And, have you ever noticed how your Kitchen Aid makes a little beat when mixing? Kiddo recommends drumming along. I may need to change the name of this segment to Kiddo & the Kitchen Aid!}

Pour batter into cooled, baked crust. Drop cookie dough by teaspoonfuls over the top of the filling.
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

Bake about 30 minutes, or until set. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely. Place in the refrigerator to chill several hours.
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

For the topping:
Combine the chocolate chips and shortening and melt in the microwave at 30 second intervals at 50% power. Stir after each interval; repeat until melted.

Drizzle over the bars before serving.
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars
They were rich and delicious; I highly recommend serving them with sparkling water to wash them down!

My only complaint, and I hate to complain about cookie dough and cheesecake, is that they are a little hard to cut into nice squares. These two in the pictures are the only pretty ones I got.

{My other complaint...I'm still seeing the effects of these on my thighs!}

The verdict: Kiddo gives these bars a thumbs-up!
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake Bars

What do you love baking with your kids?

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