Southern Living
Active Time
15 Mins
Total Time
3 Hours 50 Mins
Yield
16 squares

Dreaming of a tropical vacation? Well, you may not be able to swing that this week, but we’ve got the next best thing—Coconut Cheesecake Squares. There’s no better cure for the wistful vacation blues than a batch of these dreamy bars; their not-so-subtle notes of coconut, lemon, and lime will transport you right to the tropics. These mess-free bars get their intense coconut flavor from both coconut milk and lots of flaked coconut. The cheesecake is flavored with lemon and lime to bring extra tropical flair.

A crisp, spicy cookie crust and a topping of toasted coconut are sandwiched by a tender layer of coconut cheesecake, offering a contrast in texture that delights the palate. Add a little island crunch by topping with chopped and toasted macadamia nuts. They’re a great bite-sized snack to brighten up the dessert spread and a lovely hostess gift—or you can keep them all to yourself. Munch on these squares and sip on a piña colada and you’ll feel like you’re lounging beachside in no time.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 325°F. Spray bottom and sides of a 9-inch square pan with cooking spray. Mix crushed cookies, butter, and 3 Tbsp. sugar in a small bowl until blended. Press mixture into bottom of pan. Bake 15 minutes. Cool completely.

Step 2

Beat cream cheese, 1 cup sugar, and flour at medium speed with an electric mixer 2 minutes or until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, just until blended after each addition. Add coconut milk, lime zest, and lime juice; beat at low speed until blended. Stir in 1 cup flaked coconut. Pour over baked, cooled crust. Top with remaining 1 cup flaked coconut.

Step 3

Bake at 325°F for 45 to 50 minutes or until set. Turn oven off. Let cheesecake stand in oven, with oven door open at least 4 inches, for 30 minutes. Remove cheesecake from oven. Cool in pan on a wire rack 1 hour. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving.