Orange Cheesecake Bars – Creamsicle Slice Recipe with Orange Ganache

This recipe for orange cheesecake bars reminds me a bit of the frozen Creamsicle bars that I used to love when I was a kid. These delicious dessert bars are the perfect addition to your collection of cheesecake recipes.

Yummy orange creamsicle bars for your holiday dessert table

The tasty recipe is a cross between a cheesecake and sugar cookies, delightfully flavored and baked and then sliced into handy bar servings.

These easy orange cheesecake dessert bars combine reduced fat cream cheese with sugar free orange jam and fresh orange zest along with white baking chips and Cointreau liqueur for a finishing touch that would be the pride dessert of any fancy dinner party.Orange cream bars with mint and white chocolate chips

And with the holidays right around the corner, this yummy cheesecake bars recipe will be the delight of your Thanksgiving or Christmas dessert table! For a delicious sweet treat, they aren’t even too bad in the calorie department which is something to consider this time of the year!

The recipe is super easy to make. Just prepare the crust (made from packaged sugar cookie dough, so it is very fast to do), then add the topping mix, bake, then cool and finish with the creamy white chocolate mixture.

The orange creamsicle bars can sit in the fridge all day and be ready at dinner, which gives you time to tend to other tasks. 

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Some of the links below may be affiliate links. I earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you purchase through one of those links.

Here is how to make these orange cheesecake bars.

Gather everything you need before you start. For me, this is one of the most important cooking tips that a home baker can do. Nothing is worse than getting part way through a recipe only to discover you are missing a key item.Ingredients for orange cheesecake bars recipe

You’ll need these ingredients:

  • refrigerated sugar cookie dough
  • fresh orange zest
  • reduced fat cream cheese, softened
  • granulated sugar
  • sugar free Orange Marmalade
  • Triple sec or Cointreau (orange extract also works if you don’t like alcohol in recipes)
  • Eggs 
  • heavy cream
  • orange gel food coloring
  • Butter
  • white baking chips
  • Fresh mint

Directions for the easy orange creamsicle dessert

Using a packaged cookie dough means that the crust is super easy to make.  No need to take out your food processor! Just press the packaged cookie dough evenly on the bottom  and partially up the sides of a 13 x 9 inch baking dish and then sprinkle the crust with orange zest.cookie dough base sprinkled with orange zest

This gives a fresh burst of citrus flavor to the base of the bars that is just amazing!

Combine the reduced fat cream cheese, sugar, marmalade and Cointreau in the bowl of a stand mixer for about 1 minute until the mixture is well blended. 

The mixture will have some chunks from the orange marmalade which will give it lots of yummy orange flavor as well as a bit of texture.orange cream cheese mixture

Next, beat in the eggs until the mixture is very creamy – about 2 minutes, then spread the batter over the prepared crust.prepared orange cheesecake batter

Bake for about 30 minutes until the crust is golden brown and the center of the creamsicle cheesecake bars is set. It is important the the center of the cheesecake is set so that the bars slice well. Cool for an hour in the fridge.

While the cheesecake is cooling, you can make the dreamy orange cream white chocolate ganache topping.

Baked orange cheesecake

Making the topping

Combine the whipping cream and orange gel food coloring in the microwave safe bowl. Just a few drops will give you a nice orange color.

Heat the mixture in the microwave for about 30 seconds or until it just starts to boil.

cream with food coloring

Add the butter and white chocolate baking and heat again and stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is creamy.

I did this in 10 second increments to make sure the chocolate didn’t seize. You will need to stir well between each heating to make sure that the chocolate morsels melt well.
butter, chocolate chips and cream with food coloring

Spread the white chocolate and cream mixture over the top of the cooled cheesecake bars evenly. You can easily see where the Creamsicle connection comes into play when you are spreading the orange layer.

The topping covers the top of the cheesecake in much the same way as the orange outer layer coats the ice cream in Creamsicles.

NOTE:  My ratio of cream and butter to chocolate chips results in a very thin topping that is more like a ganache than a layer. (it oozes over the sides of the cheesecake when cut.) 

If you want a more layered dessert, just reduce the cream slightly and add more white chocolate chips so that it sets more firmly.

Orange creamsicle cheesecake

All that is left to do now is put the cheesecake bars back into the fridge until everything is chilled and firm. 

Serve the orange cheesecake bars garnished with fresh mint and wait for the rave reviews!

Tasting these orange cream cheesecake bars

Every bite of these delicious cheesecake bars is a taste sensation. The cookie dough base will make you wonder if you are eating bars or cookies. 

And the cream cheese and orange marmalade filling is tangy and not too sweet with a rich cheesecake taste.

The top layer is sweet and creamy and finishes off the bars with a light sugary taste. Since it is thin, it acts like a ganache when the bars are cut and drips down the sides, covering the cheesecake layer. Tasting orange dreamsicle bars

The whole dessert is the perfect combination of a textured bottom crust with a creamy middle finished off with sweetness without a sugar overload. My kind of bar dessert!

Garnish with some fresh mint for an even brighter taste. You could even drizzle the bars with some sugar free chocolate syrup for a delightful orange chocolate taste!Orange cheesecake bars with chocolate drizzle

Nutritional Information for these easy orange cheesecake bars

This recipe makes 24 bars.   Each bar works out to 176 calories with 5.5 grams of saturated fat and 11.6 grams of sugar. This is not too bad for a dessert that tastes as decadent as these orange creamsicle cheesecake bars do!

If you are following the WW plan, these bars work out to 6 freestyle points each.

Keeping the calories lower is easy

In this recipe, like so many of my recipes, I take a traditional dessert idea and try to make it lower in calories, fat, and sugar.

Since orange cheesecake with cream and white chocolate would be pretty off limits to most diet plants, a few tweaks makes this dessert more weight loss friendly.Sliced orange creamsicle cheesecake bars

There are lots of ways to make a traditional cheesecake recipe more diet friendly. For this recipe I made these substitutions:

  • Switch out the full fat cream cheese for a 1/3 lower fat variety.  Since you will be using 2 packages, this can save quite a bit in the fat grams calculation.
  • Keep the sugar to just a scant 1/4 cup. (You can also use Splenda or another sweetener in place of sugar to save another 2 grams of fat and about 10 calories per slice)
  • Use a sugar free orange marmalade for a bright orange flavor. This saves 117 calories and 36 grams of sugar on the whole recipe.
  • Limit the amount of white chocolate chips.  I only used 1/2 cup for the topping. Even though the topping is very thin, it still adds a load of flavor and sweetness.
  • Add orange zest for extra flavor as well. 

Making just these few changes will save a no-no dessert into a “yes, please” sweet tooth temptation.

Key note: Another way that the calories are kept low is by portion control – a key to more healthy eating.  I could have made this into a normal cheesecake in a spring form pan, but would have ended up with about 12 servings at most. There are 24 bars in this recipe which halves the calories just by the baking method.

Cheesecake bar with orange ganache topping

This orange cheesecake bar recipe is the perfect new sweet treat to add to your Thanksgiving or Christmas dessert table and is perfect all year round for a burst of summer time freshness. 

Take some along to your next pot luck gathering. The bars will be a hit for sure!

Pin these orange cheesecake bars for later

Would you like a reminder of these delicious creamsicle bars? Just pin this image to one of your dessert boards on Pinterest so that you can easily find it later.Orange Cheese cake bars are the perfect sweet treat to finish off any dinner party meal.

Admin note: This post first appeared on the blog in January of 2014. I have updated the post to add new photos, a printable recipe card and a video for you to enjoy.

Yield: 24

Baked Orange Cheesecake Recipe

Baked Orange Cheesecake Recipe

These orange cream cheesecake bars have been lightened down a little to make them more diet friendly but don't let that fool you - the taste is all there!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Additional Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 55 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 package of refrigerated sugar cookie dough
  • 2 tbsp orange zest
  • 2 - 8 oz packages cream cheese, at room temperature (reduced fat)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup of Sugar free Orange Marmalade
  • 1 teaspoon Triple Sec - Cointreau also works
  • 2 large Eggs
  • 3 tbsp heavy cream
  • 2 drops orange gel food color
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons unsalted Butter
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • Fresh mint and a few white chocolate chips to garnish

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 350°F. Flour your fingers and press the cookie dough evenly on bottom and party way up the sides of an un-greased 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with orange zest.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar, orange marmalade and Triple Sec on medium-high speed about 1 minute or until well blended.
  • Add in the eggs; beat about 2 minutes or until well blended and mixture is very creamy. Spread this mixture evenly over the prepared crust.
  • Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the center is set. Cool for one hour in the fridge.
  • In a small microwavable bowl, make the orange cheesecake topping by heating the whipping cream and food color uncovered on High about 30 seconds or just until it starts to boil. .
  • Add the butter and baking chips; stir until chips are melted. Spread mixture evenly over the cooled bars.
  • Refrigerate for about 1 1/2 hours or until chilled and firm.
  • Cut into 24 bar. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate.
  • Garnish with fresh mint to serve.
  • Notes

    If you don't want to use alcohol in the recipe, orange extract will also give an enhanced orange flavor.

    Recommended Products

    As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases but the price is the same for you.

    Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    24

    Serving Size:

    1

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 176 Total Fat: 10.2g Saturated Fat: 5.5g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: .5g Cholesterol: 34.5mg Sodium: 135.8mg Carbohydrates: 18.6g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 0g Sugar: 11.6g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 2.7g
    Nutritional information is approximate due to natural variation in ingredients and the cook-at-home nature of our meals.
     

    Share on Social Media

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *