Cheesecake Bars

from melskitchencafe.com

Makes an 8-inch Square Dish of Bars

*Plan Ahead: The bars need to cool completely (about 2 hours) and chill in the fridge (about 3 hours) before serving.

Crust:

2 cups crushed graham crackers

8 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled

3 tablespoons light brown sugar

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

Filling:

2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened

2/3 cup (4 2/3 ounces) granulated sugar

2 large eggs

┬╝ cup sour cream

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line an 8-inch square baking dish with foil, letting edges hang over the side, and grease foil.

Combine the graham cracker crumbs with the butter, brown sugar, flour and salt and mix well. Sprinkle the mixture into the prepared pan and press into an even layer. Bake the crust until beginning to brown, 12 to 15 minutes.

Beat the cream cheese until smooth in a large bowl, scraping down bowl and beaters as needed. Gradually beat the sugar until incorporated, about 1 minute. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until completely combined. Beat in the sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla until combined.

Pour the filling over the crust. Bake the bars until the edges are set but the center still jiggles slightly, 35 to 40 minutes.

Let the bars cool completely in the pan, set on a wire rack, about 2 hours, then cover with foil and refrigerate until chilled, at least 3 hours or up to 24 hours. Remove bars from pan using foil and cut into squares and serve.