Key Lime Swirl Cheesecake Bars

In my opinion, the best desserts are chocolate, but key lime desserts come in a close second.   This is a great Summer treat with a twist on your typical key lime pie.  I took them to a picnic recently and it was great to have a dessert you could eat with your fingers and wasn’t messy.

This was also a really fun recipe to make, especially the part where you add the food coloring and then make the swirls.  So if you have kids, that would be a fun thing to let them do to help with the cooking.

One thing you should know about this recipe, is it involves a lot of waiting:  chill the curd, chill the batter, bake, let cool, then chill some more.  The time I was actually preparing and cooking was not that much, but if you add in all the chilling in the refrigerator, it turned into a multi-hour process.  So you might want to make it a day before you’re planning to eat it.  But all the waiting just made eating them that much sweeter!

Key Lime Swirl Cheesecake Bars

Key Lime Swirl Cheesecake Bars


  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 8 tbsp (1 US stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • Lime Curd:
  • 8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup plus 4 tbsp. lime juice
  • Cheesecake Filling:
  • 2 bricks (8 oz. each) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs plus one large egg white
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup prepared lime curd, divided
  • Liquid green food coloring
  • Liquid yellow food coloring


    For the Crust:
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 10×10 pan with parchment that overhangs the edges. Mix the butter and graham crackers together and press into the bottom of the pan evenly. Bake crust for 5 minutes and allow to cool completely.
  2. For the Lime Curd:
  3. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl using an electric mixer. Slowly add the eggs and yolks one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Pour in lime juice and mix again. Expect the mixture to look curdled, this is normal.
  4. Cook the mixture over medium heat in a saucepan until it looks smooth (no longer curdled.) Increase the heat slightly and cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture thickens. Clip a thermometer (if you have one) to the side of the pan and cook until the mixture reaches 170 degrees.
  5. Remove the curd from the heat. Transfer the curd to a bowl and press plastic wrap on the surface of the lime curd to keep a skin from forming. Chill the curd in the refrigerator. The curd will thicken further as it cools. Covered tightly, it will keep in the refrigerator for a week and in the freezer for 2 months.
  6. For the Cheesecake:
  7. Beat cream cheese and sugar in a large bowl with mixer on medium high speed until smooth. Beat in eggs on low speed, 1 at a time. Beat in sour cream and vanilla, then flour just until blended. Remove 1 cup of batter and reserve. Pour the rest of the batter over the crust.
  8. Tint 3/4 cup of lime curd with the liquid food coloring until lime-rind green. You will use a few drops of both green and yellow food coloring.
  9. Mix 1/2 cup of tinted lime curd with the 1 cup of reserved batter. Place spoonfuls or dollops of this mixture in no particular fashion on top of the plain cheesecake batter. Dollop the remaining 1/4 cup of lime curd across the previous mixture. Use skewer or toothpick to swirl the mixtures together to create a marbleized effect.
  10. Bake for 35 minutes at 325 degrees F. Let cool completely in pan then refrigerate. Lift cheesecake out of the pan with parchment overhang. Cut into bars before serving.

Source:  Confessions of a Cookbook Queen


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  1. Pingback: Peach Cheesecake « normalcooking

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