Lemon Cheesecake Bars are a delightful treat that seamlessly blends the indulgence of cheesecake with the refreshing zest of lemons. This Weight Watchers-friendly recipe offers a guilt-free option without compromising on flavor.
Crust: A Foundation of Flavor
Begin with the crust, a harmonious mixture of reduced-fat graham cracker crumbs, melted unsalted butter, and a touch of sugar substitute. This foundation creates a crunchy yet slightly sweet base, setting the stage for the creamy layers above.
Cheesecake Layer: Creaminess Redefined
The heart of these bars lies in the velvety cheesecake layer. Two blocks of reduced-fat cream cheese are whipped to perfection with sugar substitute, creating a luscious texture. To enhance the richness, two large eggs, a quarter-cup of plain non-fat Greek yogurt, vanilla extract, and the bright essence of lemon zest and juice are masterfully incorporated. The result is a heavenly blend that satisfies both the sweet tooth and the desire for citrusy freshness.
Baking Brilliance: A Culmination of Flavors
Bake this masterpiece in a preheated oven at 325°F until the center is set, with the edges delicately browning. The aroma that fills your kitchen is a promise of the delectable experience to come. Once out of the oven, let the bars cool in the baking dish, and then refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours or, ideally, overnight. This patience rewards you with a firm yet velvety texture that elevates the entire dessert.
Topping Touch: Whipped Perfection
The crowning glory of these bars is a generous layer of fat-free whipped topping. This addition not only enhances the visual appeal but also introduces a light and airy element, balancing the richness beneath.
Presentation and Enjoyment: A Feast for the Senses
Gently lift the chilled bars out of the baking dish using the parchment paper overhang, and cut into squares. The result is a visual spectacle, a medley of textures and flavors ready to delight your taste buds. Share these Lemon Cheesecake Bars with friends and family, or savor them as a personal indulgence during moments of blissful self-care.
Conclusion: A SmartPoints Success
In crafting these Weight Watchers Lemon Cheesecake Bars, we’ve embraced the principles of mindful indulgence. The recipe allows for the enjoyment of a classic dessert without compromising on the goals of a balanced lifestyle. Each bite is a testament to the artistry of creating a treat that is both delicious and mindful of dietary choices.
Weight Watchers Lemon Cheesecake Bars
For the crust:
1 cup graham cracker crumbs (reduce fat if available)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar substitute
For the cheesecake layer:
16 oz (2 blocks) reduced-fat cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup sugar substitute
2 large eggs
1/4 cup plain non-fat Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
For the topping:
1 cup fat-free whipped topping
Preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C) and line an 8×8-inch baking dish with parchment paper, leaving some overhang for easy removal.
In a medium bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and sugar substitute for the crust. Press the mixture evenly into the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
In a large bowl, beat the softened cream cheese and sugar substitute until smooth and creamy.
Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Then, add the Greek yogurt, vanilla extract, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Mix until well combined.
Pour the cream cheese mixture over the crust in the baking dish, spreading it evenly.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes or until the center is set. The edges may slightly brown.
Allow the cheesecake bars to cool completely in the baking dish, then refrigerate for at least 3-4 hours or overnight.
Once chilled, spread the fat-free whipped topping over the cheesecake layer.
Lift the bars out of the baking dish using the parchment paper overhang. Cut into squares and serve.