I knew from the second that bar code crossed the scanner at the grocery store that I was IN TROUBLE……you see, I have avoided Nutella for over 5 years. I love it so much that when I buy the jar, I might as well just grab the biggest spoon and finish it in one sitting. Even worse, I bought a box of vanilla wafer to spread it on. When I was pregnant with Hunter, Drew and I would go most Saturdays to Marche for brunch and they had individual packets of Nutella and as my treat and since I couldn’t have my usual brunch mimosa, I would get one little packet, go home and dip animal crackers in it and then eventually lick whatever was left in the packet until I my nose, chin and mouth were covered in it. It was actually a really sad sight because once it was gone I was chocolate faced and nearly in tears and knew that I had to wait another week before doing it all over again.
Fast forward 5 years later and the willpower against Nutella has diminished once again with this pregnancy. This time my weakness fell after a long workout at the gym, so of course I was hungry and justifying the calories. I just went ahead and bought the whole jar but not before I put in my basket, put it back on the shelf, put it back in my basket, placed it on the grocery belt, took it off, put it back until eventually it was scanned, in my bag and paid for. I nearly didn’t make it home before tearing into the ‘nilla wafer and Nutella. Thankfully I have a mile drive home from the store, because any longer would deem that stuff over!
So now that I had this jar and these vanilla wafers and the willpower of Hunter trying to say no to a huge pile of donuts sitting in front of him with no one around to tell him not to eat them, I had to think of ways to get rid of it besides a one-sitting ingestion causing the recommended extra 250-300 prenatal calorie consumption to turn into 2,500-3,000 in a 10-minute time span. With that the idea of making them into a dessert for my mom’s birthday came about and now you have Nutella Cheesecake Bars. I have said this before that a cheesecake without a vanilla wafer crust is definitely a cheesecake lost. I just think that it takes that cake to a whole other level and will always use it for mine.
Sadly the recipe only uses 1/3 of a cup of Nutella, which barely made a dent in the jar, so I may just have to do the most horrifying thing in the world and just toss what’s left and look away in sheer torment and never look back. My post-natal clothes will thank me!
- 1 1/2 cups crushed reduced fat vanilla wafers
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 packages (16 oz each) 1/3 less fat cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cups Nutella, microwaved in a glass bowl for 2 - 15 second increments
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine melted butter and crushed vanilla wafers in a bowl and stir until all butter is absorbed. Line an 8x8 baking dish with aluminum foil over the sides so that it can be easily lifted out. Press crust mixture into bottom of pan. Bake in oven for 5 minutes. Remove and let cool about 10 minutes.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine cream cheese, vanilla, sugar and egg and beat on medium speed for about 3-4 minutes until light and fluffy. Pour into baked crust and spread evenly.
- Pour melted Nutella across top in a back and forth fashion. Using a fork, mix Nutella into cream cheese mixture to create a marbled effect.
- Place in oven and back 30-35 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack for about an hour. Place in the refrigerator to chill 3-4 hours or for best results overnight.
- Remove aluminum foil from baking dish and slice cheesecake into 12 bars and serve chilled.
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