How to make Southern banana cheesecake bars

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We love cheesecake around this house, but we love cheesecake bars even more. After all, when you have a smaller dessert like the one you'll find in this recipe, you can enjoy more of it without guilt, right? Plus, cheesecake bars are so much easier to make than one large cheesecake. You don't have a springform pan to mess around with, you don't have to worry as much about them cracking, and they're more forgiving in general.
Cheesecake bars are so scrumptious you shouldn't be surprised if they disappear quickly after putting out a platter of them. Because squares are also not as filling as regular cheesecake, people will keep coming back for more and you will too. Some people like to top theirs with whipped cream, but we really love the taste of light and fluffy cheesecake and like to make that the star of the show.
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Cooktop Cove
Southern Banana Cheesecake Bars
16 bars
10 minutes
55 minutes
65 minutes
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
6 tablespoons butter, melted
2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 ripe bananas, sliced
1/4 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F and spray a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
Prepare the crust. Place the graham cracker crumbs and melted butter into a large bowl and mix well. Press the crumb mixture into the bottom of the baking dish and up the sides slightly. Some find pressing the bottom of a glass into the mixture can help make a firmer crust.
Add the cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer and whip until it's light and fluffy. Add the sugar and bananas and beat on medium speed until the mixture is smooth and the banana has been broken down into small pieces.
Add the sour cream and the vanilla and beat until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time, beating until smooth after each one.
Pour the cheesecake filling evenly over the crust. Bake for 45 minutes, until the center is almost set and it jiggles just a little bit.
Remove from the oven and let the cheesecake bars cool slightly, for about half an hour. Transfer the dish to the fridge and let it fully set for about 3 hours.
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