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cheesecake shortbread bars

Cheesecake Shortbread Bars

Easy recipe for cheesecake made in a food processor, lends the creamiest texture and is set atop a lemony, crumbly shortbread crust.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Servings 10


Lemon Shortbread Crust

  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into cubes

Cheesecake Filling

  • 2 packages cream cheese 16 oz
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or paste
  • 1/2 cup sour cream or labneh
  • Juice of a lemon to taste optional
  • two large eggs


  • Preheat the oven to 325 F and line an 8×8 or 9×9 square pan with parchment paper (two longer pieces which make a + sign will make the easiest to lift out).
  • In a food processor combine all the dry ingredients for the crust. Pulse it to just combine and then add the butter. Run the food processor until the dough comes together in wet, sandy crumbs.
  • Press the dough into the bottom of the pan into one even layer. Bake it for about 30 minutes, until it is golden.
  • Wipe your food processor completely clean (no crumbs left) and process the cream cheese, vanilla, lemon juice, sour cream, sugar and salt until there are no lumps of cream cheese (scraping down as needed).
  • Add the eggs and process to just combine, no more.
  • When the crust is done, pour the cheesecake filling into the pan. Place the square pan in a 13×9” cake sheet pan and pour very hot water into the cake pan to make a water bath.
  • Place the cheesecake and it’s water bath into the oven and bake for about 40 minutes, until the center is still a little jiggly but the sides are set.