Cheesecake brownies (includes: from scratch and from the box methods)

I have always had a bit of a sweet tooth and nothing gets me like a really good chocolate cake or chewy delicious brownies! When my mom started making cheesecake brownies I thought I was in Heaven! They have all the delicious chewy-ness of regular brownies with the added bonus of a cheesecake-like layer. This fantastic dessert will leave your guests begging for the recipe.

That being said, there are a couple of methods to make this dessert. Method 1 involves my grandma's homemade Hershey's syrup brownies with the added cream cheese layer. Method 2 is the boxed brownies (still very tasty) and cream cheese layer. If you are a stickler for making things from scratch, I strongly recommend the Hershey's brownies. If you've already got a box of brownies or wanna whip something together quick, go for one of Betty Crocker's boxed brownies. In either case, always make the cream cheese layer first as it will need to be soft.

Cream Cheese Layer
2 packages (8oz) cream cheese (I recommend Philadelphia 1/3 less fat cream cheese)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 large egg

Beat all filling ingredients together until well mixed and set aside.

*Note: this recipe makes a lot of the cream cheese layer, like 50% of the brownie is actual brownie and 50% is cream cheese layer. If you want more like 1/3 to 2/3 cream cheese to brownie, I recommend cutting the cream cheese in half (1 package), reducing the sugar to 1/4 cup, and reducing vanilla to 1 tsp. One egg still works just fine for the half batch.

Hershey's Syrup Brownies
1 cup sugar
1 stick margarine, softened
4 eggs
1 can Hershey's syrup
1 cup flour

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Cream together the margarine and sugar. Mix in eggs two at a time. Add the flour and mix. Then, stir in the Hershey's syrup. Pour in a 9"x13" greased pan.

Betty Crocker Boxed Brownies (follow the directions for "cake-like brownies")
1 box of Betty Crocker Original Supreme (or style of your choice)
1/4 cup oil
3/4 cup water
2 eggs *(makes the brownies cake-like and thus easier to marble)

Mix ingredients until well blended. Pour into a 9"x13" greased pan.

Adding the cream cheese layer: After you have poured the brownie batter into your greased pan, start adding spoonfuls of the cream cheese layer to about 6 points spread out on the brownie layer. Then use a knife or spoon and drag it length-wise across the pan at about four points. Next, go cross-wise in the pan about 6 times. You should start seeing the marbled pattern of brownie and cream cheese combining. Do this a few more times. If you still have cream cheese layer left, you may add more and marble again, or just save it for something else.

Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out mostly dry (keeping in mind that the cream cheese layer may stick a little more to the toothpick than batter).

I really hope you enjoy these delicious brownies! They go great with whipped cream, ice cream, strawberries, or just by themselves.

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