Jam and Cream Cheese Bars

Jam & Cream Cheese Bars | Pinky's Pantry

Jam and cream cheese bars made with regular cream cheese. The cheese is more melty and gooey.

I wanted to try making something new for dessert so decided to browse through my old cookbooks in search of something easy and different. I saw this recipe for cream cheese danish in “Mr. Food Ooh-So-Easy Recipe Collection.” It sounded like it would be delicious. Of course, I had to give it my own twist so I changed a few things up. I added the jam and omitted the egg yolk. I also cut down on the sugar so it wouldn’t be too sweet. Then, instead of topping it with the egg white and pecans, I got the idea from a similar recipe on allrecipes.com to top it with butter and sugar, only I used turbinado sugar so it would have a nice crunch. It turned out great! The family loved it.

Jam & Cream Cheese Bars | Pinky's Pantry

Jam and cream cheese bars made with fat-free cream cheese. The cheese is firmer, though still soft.

I made it again a second time only this time, I decided to try doing a healthier version. I used reduced-fat crescent rolls, sugar-free jam, fat-free cream cheese sweetened with splenda, and a heart-healthy margarine which I cut down to 1/4 cup. It turned out really good! My only complaint was that I thought the healthier version seemed a bit salty. I think when fat is removed from a food, they replace it with salt to make up for the flavor that’s lost so using all the fat-free ingredients upped the saltiness quotient in the recipe. Still, it made a salty-sweet, creamy dessert that even those watching their waistlines could have a piece of without regretting it in the morning.

Whichever version you choose to make, this recipe is definitely a keeper. It would be equally good served as a dessert with coffee after dinner, or for breakfast or brunch in the morning.

JAM & CREAM CHEESE BARS

  • 2 cans refrigerated crescent roll dough
  • 1 cup jam (any kind you like)
  • 2 (8 oz.) packages cream cheese
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup margarine, melted
  • ¼ cup turbinado sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Grease a 9×13 inch pan.
  2. Press one can of the crescent rolls into the bottom of the prepared pan.
  3. Spread jam over crescent layer. Feel free to add more or less jam if you prefer.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese, ½ cup sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla until smooth and creamy.
  5. Dollop cream cheese mixture over jam layer and spread smooth with a spatula.
  6. Unroll the second can of crescent rolls and place on top of the cream cheese layer. Do not press down.
  7. Pour the melted margarine over the top crescent layer, spreading it evenly to the edges.
  8. Sprinkle turbinado sugar all over the top.
  9. Bake 25 minutes or until top is crisp and golden.

To Make the Healthier Version:

  • 2 cans reduced-fat refrigerated crescent roll dough
  • 1 cup sugar-free jam (any kind you like)
  • 2 (8 oz.) packages fat-free cream cheese
  • ½ cup splenda
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup heart-healthy margarine (like Brummel & Brown), melted
  • ¼ cup turbinado sugar

Follow the same procedure above.

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