Monday, April 1, 2013

Lemon Cheesecake Bars

I hope you guys all had a great Easter.  I don't know about you, but food is always a huge part of holidays in my family.  And I definitely love me some food.  There are just certain foods I have to have for holidays or it doesn't seem right.  This weekend I realized most of those foods relate to breakfast.

For Christmas it's cranberry bread.  My mom always makes cranberry bread and it doesn't feel like Christmas morning if I don't have it.  So if we're not going to their house, I make cranberry bread and take it with me wherever I go.  For Easter it's biscuits and bacon gravy with boiled eggs and bacon.  You put the gravy over a sliced boiled egg and it's delicious.  The boiled eggs were always part of what we hunted for Easter morning, you know, with the candy filled plastic eggs as well.  We dyed them the day before and then the Easter Bunny hid them.

I knew Easter morning wouldn't work well to have B&Gs for breakfast because we were headed out for church pretty early so I made them Saturday morning.  My husband isn't a big fan of breakfast but knows how much I love holiday breakfasts so he goes along with it.  I even dyed eggs on Friday.  Yup, by myself just because it was fun.
Only a couple left.  There's still a little  bacon gravy left too, I'm thinking breakfast this morning.  Except I'm not going to eat all five eggs.  Deviled eggs are in our future too.

Okay, so while we're on the topic of food....  When we go to my in-laws for holidays, we always do a big meal with that whole side of the family.  Everybody brings a dish or two and it's always delicious.  I always scramble to come up with something new to make.  I usually bring dessert but I like to switch it up and try new recipes.  So I was tossing around the idea of a peach pie or a key lime pie but neither one was quite striking me.  Then it hit me, lemon bars.

There was a lady at my parents church who was an amazing cook (she has since passed away).  For my aunt's funeral she made the best lemon bars.  We were already out and about so I called my mom for the recipe so I knew what to buy.  As she was telling me the recipe, I didn't really think it sounded like what I was thinking of, but I knew if it was Sammy's recipe it would be good either way.    So, it totally was not what I was thinking of, but they were so good.  I didn't even bring very many back home with me.  And I may have eaten one for breakfast.

Lemon Cheesecake Bars
1 box yellow cake mix
2 eggs (divided)
1/3 c. oil
1 (8oz) package cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. sugar
2 tsp lemon juice
In mixing bowl mix cake mix, 1 egg and oil until crumbly.  Remove 1 cup of crumb mixture, pat remaining in bottom of 9x13 pan.  Bake 15 minutes at 350.  Beat together cream cheese, sugar, lemon juice, and remaining egg until light and smooth.  Spread over baked crumb mixture.  Bake 15 minutes longer.  Drizzle glaze over cooled bars.
1 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
2 T water
Combine all ingredients mix well.

Okay guys, I have to be completely honest.  Now that I'm typing out the recipe, I totally didn't follow the directions.  I missed the fact that I was supposed to bake it 15 minutes twice.  I just did the crumb layer, pressed it down, and then poured the cream cheese mixture over and baked.  They turned out fine that way. It probably wouldn't hurt to actually follow the directions though.  Oops.

So, how was your Easter?  Anybody else so tied to holiday food traditions?  Did you make something super delicious for the holiday?  


  1. Those look delicious Mary!! We made sugar cookies and icing and of course I ate most of it! :)

    1. Yum! I rarely have the patience to make cookies but they're always delicious.

  2. I love lemon anything! I have a spring birthday and my mom makes me a lemon cake every year. mmmmmmmm.....

    1. Mmmm. Me too! I really wished these were more lemony. Next time I'm definitely using more lemon juice.