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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Berry Cheesecake…in a Jar

I had a hankering for a cheesecake involving goat cheese, but since the temperature has been warmish, didn’t want to heat the house by using the oven for that long. So I came up with this, instead.

It’s yumminess in a jar.  Why?  So I could, in theory, take it on a picnic.  Or for lunch.  Or upstairs to my big reading chair on a hot afternoon, along with a large frosty glass of iced tea.

I wanted a no-bake filling, so I started out with the “no-bake cheesecake” my grandma made.  Then I added some goat cheese for tanginess, fat-free Cool Whip to lighten it up, and fresh berries on top rather than a cooked cherry topping.

I did turn the oven on for a bit to bake the graham cracker crusts.  I wanted them to be a bit crunchy.

I let them cool while I mixed the filling, then spooned it in and smoothed it into all the corners and such by tapping the jars on the counter.

After all that work (it took less than thirty minutes and only got one bowl dirty), I screwed the lids on and popped them in to chill until dessert time.

When ready to serve, I topped them with fresh strawberries and blueberries and garnished with a sprig of mint from the garden (I love writing that!).  If you wanted to take them on a picnic, I would freeze them without the berries, then top just before leaving for your picnic.  They’ll be perfectly thawed yet still chilled when you need them!

Berry Cheesecakes

(makes 6 jars but you could also just make one 9” pie instead…but that’s not as fun!)
1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 Tbsp melted butter
3 Tbsp brown sugar
4 oz goat cheese, softened
1 can (14 oz) fat free sweetened condensed milk (NOT evaporated milk)
4 Tbsp lemon juice
2 cups (about half a small tub) fat free Cool Whip
fresh berries for topping
6- 8 oz mason jars

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. To make crusts: Combine graham crumbs, melted butter, and brown sugar in large bowl. When well mixed, spoon about 4 Tbsp of the mixture into each jar., then press firmly with the back of the spoon to form your crust. Place the jars on a cookie sheet for baking, just to make it easier to put them in and take them out of the oven.

3. Bake 6 to 8 minutes, until slightly darker. Remove from oven and let cool while you make your filling.

4. To make filling: Cream together goat cheese and sweetened condensed milk, then stir in lemon juice. Fold whipped topping in, then spoon into jars, dividing evenly and leaving room for berries.

5. Replace lids and chill until ready to serve. Top with fresh berries
 Click here to print the recipe

Linking up to The Taylor House Thursday Party   
and Frugal Girls Chic and Crafty


  1. Oh my gosh, that looks so good. Love cheesecake and those adorable jars--I think I'll throw a party just to make these. I believe it's time to start an official "Megan O: Chef Extraordinaire" cookbook. Bet I could even sell copies!

  2. Awesomeness! Even more so because you used goat cheese! Goat cheese is the cat's meow to me. Mmmmm. I'm going to try these. See? These little jars DO come in handy for EVERYTHING!


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