Carrot Cheesecake Bars

You'd think it was my love of carrot cake that made me want to make this recipe. Or my love of cheesecake. Both would be good reasons.

But the deciding factor? The baby food carrots.

Exciting? No, not really, unless you're itching to test out a new baby food maker that has been sitting in your closet for months and when you just realized it will still be another 8 months before baby is born and is eating some solid food. Yes, I'm a little weird to be so excited about pureeing food, but a kitchen gadget is a kitchen gadget and I love them all. (Verdict on the baby food maker: awesome.)

I had a definite idea of what I wanted in my carrot cheesecake before I started trying recipes. For one, cheesecake always seems less intimidating to me in bar form, plus it is easier to share the calories that way, so I definitely wanted bars. Second, I wanted the cheesecake to have the depth of flavor, color and sweetness from real carrots, so that is where the baby food carrots and freshly grated carrots come in. Third, I feel like pecans and carrot cake go hand in hand so I made sure there were pecans incorporated into the crust.

The final carrot cheesecake bars are just amazing. They remind me of a carrot cake with cream cheese frosting all rolled into one. And not as messy. The pecans give them just enough crunchy texture, and the spices are well balanced with the carrot flavor. Though the ingredient list looks long for the cheesecake layer, it is quick to put together (especially if you aren't making your own baby food carrots) and makes a large batch that is easy to share. If you are a carrot cake fan, you will love these bars. If you are cheesecake fan, you will love them, too. And chances are that if you love both, are almost 8 months pregnant and want to use a new baby food maker, you'll think you just about died and went to heaven.

Carrot Cheesecake Bars


  • 1/2 cup pecans, ground finely in a food processor (optional)
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups crushed graham crackers. (Use 1 cup if adding pecans. Increase the amount to 1 1/2 cups if omitting the pecans)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp ground ginger
  • 3/4 cup pureed carrots - can use baby food (3/4 cups pureed carrots is about 1 1/3 cups chopped carrots, steamed and blended with 2 T water)
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded carrots (about 3 medium carrots grated on the small holes of a box grater)


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix pecans, graham crumbs, 1/4 cup sugar and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon in a small bowl. Stir in butter until well incorporated and press onto bottom of 13x9-inch pan. Bake 10 min.
  3. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugars until smooth. Add eggs; beat on low speed just until combined. Stir in the cream, cornstarch, sour cream, vanilla, lemon juice, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Fold in pureed and shredded carrots.
  4. Pour cream cheese mixture over graham crust and bake at 350 for 55-65 minutes or until center is just set. (There should be little to no wiggling when the pan is jiggled.) Cool completely on a wire rack and then refrigerate at least four hours before serving.
Prep Time: 15 min Cook Time: 1 hour Yield: 15-20 bars

Recipe Source: adapted from Taste of Home, Kraftrecipes.com and Marthastewart.com

7 Click For Comments:

You are TOO FUNNY!

Our baby shower theme is gardening, so maybe for dessert we can serve these alongside some carrots wrapped in a little ribbon. :) I will send the link to mom, chief party baker. :) 

These are so interesting!  Hope you're feeling good :)

Love carrot cheesecake...I baked once in a round pan..was rich and delicious. Love the bar shape too.

Mmm, carrot cheesecake is such a great idea!! Hehe, you're so cute trying out your babyfood maker :)

What an amazing looking cheesecake, Nicole! This looks absolutely mouthwatering and I'd definitely have trouble not digging into this for breakfast the next day. :) Great recipe!

Well I would say that is one awesome piece of kitchen equipment!  Thanks for sharing the recipe. It looks fantastic.

i've never seen carrot cheesecake bars but i am LOVING the idea!

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