Want to step up your brownies? These Swirled Raspberry Cheesecake Brownies are not only gorgeous and vibrant, but absolutely brimming with decadent flavor and fudgy and succulent texture.
Beautifully balanced between chocolaty, fruity, and tangy, this next-level brownie recipe has delicious and distinct layers. Plus, the raspberry swirl is so romantic making this one of my favorite romantic Valentine’s Day treats.
As an environmental scientist, I always try to stick to seasonal eating! It’s one of the easiest (and most delicious!) ways to support local farmers and improve your carbon footprint.
Green tip: Seasonal and local foods have less associated transportation costs and fuel emissions. Check when raspberries are in season in your area with this Seasonal Food Guide.
Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake Brownies Ingredients
Here’s everything you’ll need for the brownie layer:
- Unsalted butter. It absolutely must be softened for best results.
- Granulated sugar.
- Vanilla extract.
- All-purpose flour.
- Cocoa powder. I used dark.
Quick note: you can use a boxed brownie mix as a shortcut if you prefer!
Here’s what you’ll need for the cheesecake layer:
- Cream cheese. Make sure it’s completely softened!
- Sour cream.
- Granulated sugar.
Finally, here is what you need for the raspberry swirl:
- Granulated sugar.
Fresh vs Frozen Raspberries for Baking
Frozen raspberries are perfectly delicious, and even encouraged in this recipe.
Raspberries are a warm-weather crop, thriving in the summer months. Buying produce locally and while it’s in season is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint in terms of food miles.
An ingredient’s food miles is the distance that particular ingredient has traveled to get to the produce aisle in your supermarket, into your cart, and then onto your plate.
If you are buying fresh raspberries in the winter in a colder climate, you can assume it’s been imported—and quickly.
Frozen raspberries are harvested and frozen at their peak and are generally transported in a more sustainable way since they stay frozen in transport (likely by ship instead of a plane— much less fuel!).
While the best practice is to buy locally and in-season, buying frozen fruit means less pesticide residue, likely fewer food miles, and less food waste. And for this recipe, in particular, they work perfectly!
Green tip: If you are buying produce that is out of season, consider buying frozen to support produce that is associated with less pesticide residue, likely fewer food miles, and less food waste.
How to Make Raspberry Cheesecake Brownies
How to Make Your Raspberry Sauce
Add the fresh, clean raspberries and sugar to a saucepan over medium heat. Bring it to a boil, then use a wooden spoon to stir. Allow it to simmer and thicken for about 5 minutes over medium heat.
Then, push it through a sieve to filter out the seeds. This step is completely optional but makes the swirling a little bit easier.
If you do decide to sift out the seeds you can save them and use them to a vibrant raspberry vinaigrette.
Set the raspberry sauce aside to cool.
How to Make Your Brownie Layer
For this fudgy brownie recipe, you’ll start by creaming together your butter and sugar. Make sure your butter is softened and use a hand mixer on high to whip with the sugar for about 3-5 minutes until well-combined.
Then, add your eggs and vanilla extract and whip again until just combined.
Next comes the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Whip together and use a rubber spatula to integrate the dry ingredients that stick to the bowl.
You’ll be left with a thick batter. Smooth it out into a lined 8×8 or 9×9-inch baking dish and set aside.
How to Make Your Cheesecake Layer
It’s imperative that your cream cheese is softened for this step. Add it to a large mixing bowl with the sour cream, sugar, and egg.
Use your hand mixer again (make sure you clean it first!) to whip together until smooth.
Then, pour the cheesecake batter on top of the brownie layer and use a spatula to smooth it out so it’s in an even layer.
Swirling the Raspberry into the Cheesecake
Pour your raspberry sauce over the cheesecake batter in a zig zag motion.
Then, take a knife and swirl it back and forth in the opposite direction. Just make sure to be careful with the knife and not to push too deep. You don’t want your knife to hit the brownie batter and dredge it up into the cheesecake layer.
Bake at 350°F for 45-55 minutes until the brownies don’t wobble at all when you shake the pan. Then, allow to cool and set for at least 3 hours before slicing.
How to Properly Store Your Brownies Topped with Raspberry Cheesecake
These delicious brownies will last for 2 days in an airtight container at room temperature. In the refrigerator they will last up to a week!
Why You Should Make these Raspberry Swirl Cheesecake Brownies
- They’re pretty. Those swirls are both easy and impressive.
- The texture. Those fudgy brownies can only be elevated by the pillowy cheesecake layer on top.
- They’re bursting with flavor. The raspberry brings a tangy zing to the cheesecake that is perfectly complemented by the rich chocolate.
- They’re the perfect way to say “I love you”. Valentine’s day and every day.
Fudgy Swirled Raspberry Cheesecake BrowniesPIN Print RATE
- 9×9-inch or 8×8-inch baking pan
- 6 ounces raspberries ( fresh or frozen)
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened (½ cup butter = 1 stick)
- 1 ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour (6 tablespoons = ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons)
- ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I used dark)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
- ¼ cup sour cream
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- Make your raspberry sauce by adding your raspberries and sugar to a saucepan over medium heat. Use a wooden spatula to stir and break down the raspberries, then simmer for about 5 minutes to thicken.
- Optional: push your sauce through a sieve to sift out the raspberry seeds. Set the sauce aside to cool.
- Line a 9×9 or 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper and preheat your oven to 350°F.
- To a large mixing bowl, add the softened butter and sugar and use a hand mixer on high to cream together for about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the eggs and vanilla extract and mix again until just combined.
- Add the flour, cocoa powder, and salt and mix to combine. Use a spatula to integrate any dry ingredients that are stuck to the sides of the bowl. You'll be left with a thick batter.
- Add brownie batter to the lined baking dish and spread it out with a spatula to form an even layer.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the softened cream cheese, sour cream, granulated sugar, and egg and use the clean hand mixer on high to mix until smooth.
- Pour the cheesecake batter over the brownie batter and smooth out with a spatula.
- Pour the raspberry sauce over the cheesecake batter in a zig zag pattern. Use a knife to swirl the raspberry sauce in the cheesecake batter.
- Bake for 45-55 minutes. You'll know they're ready if you shake the pan and the batter doesn't wobble. Allow to cool completely (for at least 3 hours) before slicing.
- Take it slow and clean as you go—there are a lot of moving parts in this recipe!
- You can use either fresh or frozen raspberries.
- Make sure your butter and cream cheese are both softened for best results.
- If you love brownies as much as I do, you’ll love this collection of my greatest brownie recipes!