Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

I’m almost finished the 3rd week of my half marathon training (its 16 weeks in total, not sure if I mentioned that yet!) but it’s going pretty well. Of the 4 runs per week plus 1 day of sprints, I have only missed 1 run of 14. I thought I was being smart by trying to do all 5 runs on consecutive days to avoid doing them on the weekend. I was mistaken. Whoever created the program probably had good reason to space the rest days the way they did because otherwise you set yourself up for exhaustion. I found this out the hard way. However, lesson learned. So now I’m going to follow the plan as is, or as much as possible anyways.

Because I’ve done so well the first few weeks, I decided to reward myself with something delicious. Chocolate Cheesecake Bars delicious. Now some of you may think that it’s counter productive given all the hard work I’ve put into my training. But I think it’s just the opposite. It’s nice to treat yourself every once in a while, and then the motivation kicks in to get back to the pavement and work it off! It also helps that I now have coworkers to share my baking with so its not at home staring me in the face. Enjoy!

Chocolate Cheesecake Bars
Adapted from Taste of Home

3/4 cup of water
1/2 cup of butter
2 ounces of unsweetened chocolate
2 cups of flour
1 1/2 cups of packed brown sugar
1 tsp of baking soda
1/2 tsp of salt
2 eggs
1/2 cup of yogurt (I used vanilla)

Cream Cheese Mixture:
1 package of cream cheese (8oz), softened
1/3 cup of sugar
1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp of vanilla
1 cup of chocolate chip (I went wild and used a few white chocolate chips too)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease a 9 by 13 inch baking dish.

In a sauce pan over low heat combine the water, butter, and chocolate. Stir until melted and smooth and then set aside to cool. In a large bowl combine the flour through salt. Add the eggs and yogurt and mix well. Stir in the chocolate mixture until smooth. In a separate bowl beat the cream cheese through vanilla. Spread the chocolate batter into the prepared pan. Drop the cream cheese mixture by large spoonfuls into the chocolate batter. Use a knife to swirl. Sprinkle the top with the chocolate chips. Bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool and then cut into squares.

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