My husband does not like cheese.
I know, it was probably rude of me to blurt that out and startle you like that without a proper warning. People are typically surprised to learn that about him, and I know he’s probably tired of the shocked responses by now, as well as the teasing from me. But when you live with someone and you tend to cook meals for the both of you and you love cheese, it’s just a fact that you will not get to eat it quite as often as you’d like. Which, honestly, is probably not the worst thing ever, since cheese is not exactly a health food (although I’m pretty sure we make up for any lack of cheese in other ways). He does have “cheese” rules though: he likes cheese when it is not the dominant flavor in any dish, i.e. pizza must have pepperoni or another type of meat, and he will tolerate more mild flavored cheeses as compared to stronger flavored goat and feta cheese when incorporated into dishes. But cutting up some baguette and cheese to enjoy with a glass of wine? He can’t do that. Feeling sorry for me yet?
So when I came across this recipe for Easy Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake Parfaits, I sent it to him with the question of “should I make this?” already assuming that he’d shut the idea down right away, but figuring that it never hurts to try.
However, he responded with an excited “Yes!” He still surprises me.
You’d think I know by now whether or not he likes cheesecake, and, to be honest, he may have mentioned it at some point in the past, but when you are married to someone that does not like cheese, it’s not very often that suggestions of cheesecake making would even come up.
This cheesecake was so easy to make, especially compared to the traditional baked variety. The most time-consuming part of the process is baking the cookies. I highly recommend that you use the cookie recipe provided because….brown butter. It gives the cookies such an added depth in delicious, buttery, flavor.
The original recipe had served the cheesecake parfait style in individual glass jars, which would be adorable; however I do not have any, so I thought the next best thing would be to get some more use out of my cute new tart pan. Though the pan was a bit big for the amount of cheesecake made, it still worked very well.
I highly recommend making this recipe as further effort to unite cheese lovers and haters worldwide.
No Bake Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake
Slightly adapted from How Sweet it is
For the Brown Butter Oatmeal Chunk Cookies:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cups rolled oats
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 cup chocolate chunks
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Heat a small saucepan over medium-low heat and add butter. Whisking constantly, cook butter until bubbly and until small brown bits appear on the bottom of the pan – about 5-6 minutes. Watch closely and immediately remove the butter from the heat, whisking for an additional 30 seconds or so. Set aside and let cool completely. Note: It does not need to solidify at all, but it should not be warm to the touch. I put mine in the fridge for a few minutes to speed up this process.
In a bowl, combine flour, salt, baking powder, oats and cinnamon, mixing, then set aside.
Once butter has cooled, add to a large bowl. Whisk in sugars, stirring until smooth. Add in egg and vanilla, whisking until smooth once again. Slowly begin to stir in dry ingredients, using your hands if necessary (I did) to bring dough together. Fold in chocolate chips, distributing them evenly. Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.
Form dough into balls and place about 2 inches apart on a nonstick baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until bottoms and edges are golden. Let cool before serving.
For the Chocolate Chip Cheesecake:
- 12 chocolate chip cookies
- 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 4 ounces mascarpone cheese, softened
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
In the bowl of an electric mixer, add the cream cheese and mascarpone. Beat on medium speed until the cheeses are mixed and slightly creamy, then drizzle in the condensed milk with the mixer still going. Add in the vanilla extract and beat the mixture until it is creamy and smooth.
Take 10 of the chocolate chip cookies and either add them to a food processor or place them in a resealable plastic bag. Pulse (or crush) the cookies into small pieces. They should not be as fine as graham cracker crumbs – but still want them crumbly. Having some larger pieces in there is okay too. Take a few spoonfuls of the crushed cookies and stir them into the cheesecake mixture. I didn’t measure this part.
Next, take some of the crushed cookies and spread them on the bottom of the pan. Add a layer of the cheesecake mixture and spread the best you can on top of the crushed cookies (doesn’t have to be perfect). Alternate with another layer of crushed cookies, then another layer of cheese, and finally, another layer of crushed cookies as a topping (the layers may be ordered differently depending how big your pan is-I was starting to run out of ingredients-but it doesn’t have to look “perfect” to still taste amazing.)
This keeps in the fridge for 3-4 days-just cover tightly with plastic wrap. I like to take it out for 10-15 minutes before serving, but that’s just my preference. It tastes pretty delicious either way.
We both loved this cheesecake. I especially loved the creamy sweet flavor of the mascarpone cheese and am already dreaming up more uses for the half empty container I have left. The crunch of the cookies made it delicious as well.
When I served this, Jose looked over at me and asked, “So….this is probably pretty awful for us, right?” Be under no impression whatsoever that this is a health food recipe. But it’s cheese….and chocolate chip cookies….and all the good things. And I like to sometimes pretend that dessert does not truly “count.” So, indulge and enjoy.