Brownie Bottom Cheesecake

filed under: Brownies · Cakes · Cheesecakes · Dessert on April 29, 2020

Brownie Bottom Cheesecake is a rich and creamy cheesecake that is layered on top of a sweet chocolate brownie mixture bottom, covered with a sweet sour cream topping. The cheesecake layer in this dessert is based on my Perfect Cheesecake Recipe!

Brownie Bottom Cheesecake

Yes, you read that recipe name correctly–two desserts in one! Brownie Bottom Cheesecake gives you the best of a brownie and cheesecake dessert in one easy to make treat! With a fudgy brownie bottom and cheesecake topping, you will have everyone fooled into thinking you were baking all day! And as a bonus, it is covered with a sweet and tangy sour cream topping. 

Hand Holding White Plate with Brownie Bottom Cheesecake Recipe with Sour Cream Frosting Topping and Fork Resting Next to It

Brownie Bottom Cheesecake Recipe

There are three parts to this recipe–the brownie mix, cheesecake, and sour cream topping. But don’t let that intimidate you. It’s a simple recipe that will give you a dessert that tastes like it was a lot more work than it was!

For best results, be sure to use room temperature eggs, butter, cream cheese, and sour cream. Let them sit out for a few hours before using them.

Brownie Mixture Ingredients* (full recipe below)

  • Flour
  • Dark cocoa
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Eggs
  • Granulated sugar
  • Butter
  • Vanilla

Cheesecake Ingredients

  • Cream cheese
  • Eggs
  • Granulated sugar
  • Vanilla

Sour Cream Topping

  • Sour cream
  • Confectioners’ sugar

*If you are using a boxed brownie mix for the brownie layer, mix according to package instructions, but pour only half the batter into the pan for the bottom layer. Use the rest for a half sheet of brownies.

Overhead Image of Brownie Bottom Cheesecake Recipe with Sour Cream Frosting Topping with One Piece Cut and Being Removed with Pie Server

How to Make Brownie Bottom Cheesecake

To get started, I used my brownie ingredients from my French Silk Brownies recipe. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt. Next, in a separate bowl and using a stand mixer or hand-held mixer, beat the eggs, sugar, butter, and vanilla. Be sure to mix it long enough until it gets nice and fluffy. With the mixer off, add the flour mixture into the egg mixture and mix on low until the ingredients are well combined. Pour this brownie mixture into a parchment-lined 9-inch springform pan. Of course, you can use a pie pan or other baking pan that is similar in size just make sure to line it with parchment. Pop that into the oven for about 12 minutes while you prepare the cheesecake layer. Please note that the brownies will not be fully set when you remove them from the oven.

One PIece of Brownie Bottom Cheesecake on White Plate with Fork Next to It

How to Make the Cheesecake Layer

To make the cheesecake mixture, beat the cream cheese in a large bowl. Add the sugar, and mix until creamy. Then, slowly add the eggs and vanilla, beating until smooth.

Spread this mixture carefully on top of the brownie mixture and bake for another 40 minutes at 350°F.   

When you pour on the cheesecake layer, start pouring on the outside edges of the pan and let the cheesecake naturally settle onto the brownie mixture.  This will ensure two even layers during the baking process. 

PRO TIP: If you pour directly into the center, the cheesecake batter will push the brownie batter to the edges.

The cheesecake is done when it is mostly set but still a little jiggly in the center. It will firm up as the cheesecake cools.  Let it cool before removing it from the pan. And, be sure the cheesecake is completely cooled before adding the sour cream topping.

Side View of Brownie Bottom Cheesecake with Fork Inserted and Removing the Tip

Sour Cream Topping

This no-bake sour cream topping for cheesecake adds a sweet and tangy flavor. I bet your favorite high-end restaurant does this too!  Not only does this topping add the most WONDERFUL flavor to your cheesecake, but it works great at covering imperfections if you didn’t water bath your cheesecake and have a raised edge on your cheesecake or some cracks. (If you do have cracks, it is possible that you may have overcooked the cheesecake or it cooled too quickly.)

Once the cheesecake is completely cooled, mix together the sour cream and confectioners’ sugar and spread it evenly over the top of the cheesecake. Finally, let the entire cheesecake cool in the refrigerator for at least four hours. I recommend letting it chill overnight. I know… the waiting is the hardest part! But, it will be worth it!

View of Cut Into Brownie Bottom Cheesecake showing the Inside and Fork next to it

How to Store Brownie Bottom Cheesecake

Cheesecakes are rich and filling, so even though you may want to eat the entire cheesecake in one sitting, it’s not always (if ever) possible. So, how do you store it to eat when you are craving a bite later? One easy way is to cover the cheesecake and store it in the refrigerator for a day or two. If you tightly wrap the cheesecake in plastic wrap or store it in an airtight container, it will last up to 3 days in the fridge.

But, if you are not planning to eat the cheesecake within those next few days, your best bet is to freeze it. I recommend freezing the cheesecake WITHOUT the sour cream topping. You can quickly whip that up and spread it on the cheesecake the day before you are ready to serve it. To freeze a cheesecake:

  1. Let the cheesecake cool completely.
  2. Place the cheesecake (uncovered) in the freezer for about an hour. I suggest that if you are keeping the cheesecake pie in the springform pan, remove the sides of the pan.
  3. After the hour in the freezer, take the cheesecake off the pan (you may have to pry it off with a knife), and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap.
  4. Place the wrapped cheesecake into a zipped freezer bag or wrap it in aluminum foil. Be sure to label and date the cheesecake.

This should keep your cheesecake lasting for up to 3 months.

Removing Piece of Brownie Bottom Cheesecake from Platter and Holding Up

Looking for More Cheesecake Recipes?

Chocolate Cheesecake

Peanut Butter Cheesecake

Cheesecake Recipe

Strawberry Cheesecake

Snickerdoodle Cheesecake

Reese’s Cheesecake Pie

Snickers Cheesecake Cake

Caramel Apple Cheesecake

Pumpkin Cheesecake

4.88 from 8 votes
Brownie Bottom Cheesecake
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
4 hrs
Total Time
4 hrs 50 mins

Bottom Brownie Cheesecake is the best of two desserts--fudgy brownies topped with a creamy cheesecake!

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Brownie Bottom Cheesecake
Servings: 12
Calories: 334 kcal
Author: Amanda
  • ¾ cup (94g) all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons dark cocoa powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 packages (16 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ cup sour cream,  room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons confectioners' sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

  1. In a large bowl add flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt. Whisk together ingredients until they are fully incorporated.

  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the eggs, sugar, butter, and vanilla until light and fluffy.

  3. With the mixer off, add in the flour mixture. Turn mixer on low and mix until ingredients are well combined.

  4. Pour the brownie mixture on the bottom of a prepared 9-inch springform pan.

  5. Bake for 12 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the cheesecake mixture.

  1. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese. Add the sugar and mix until creamy. Then, slowly add the eggs and vanilla, beating until smooth.

  2. Spread the cheesecake mixture on top of the brownie mixture. (The brownie mixture will not be fully set.)

  3. Bake for another 40 minutes at 350°F. Let cool before removing from pan.

  1. Combine sour cream and confectioners' sugar; spread over cheesecake. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours. I recommend letting it chill overnight.

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  • Tonya says:

    This sounds yummy. My two favorite things for dessert combined for a yummy dessert. Cannot wait to try this.

  • Pam says:

    Looks delicious

  • Marsha says:

    You indicated that you can substitute a brownie mix for the bottom layer. If you use a brownie mix, should you use the entire mix or just a portion of the mix? I would think that if you used the entire mix it might be too thick! In either case, the recipe looks delicious and rather simple! Thanks!

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Marsha! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. You would only need to use half the brownie mix batter for the bottom layer. Thanks for the question; I clarified that in the post. Have a great day!

  • Nazreen says:

    Can we freeze this I one person

  • Jeanette says:

    What if the brownie mix is for an 8×8 pan? Still use only 1/2, or all of it? I am using a GF brownie mix that works for the square pan so wasn’t sure if the bake time or amount would be different.

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Jeanette! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. Go ahead and use the entire box of your brownie mix. But, you may need to add 2-3 minutes to the brownie baking time. Plus, your brownie bottom will probably be a bit thicker. I hope this helps. Have a great day!

  • Marie Brydle says:

    what can I use instead of a springform pan?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      You can use a pie pan, I would just make sure it is lined with foil or parchment for easy removal.

  • vicky says:

    I only have a 10in springform pan. If I use it will it be too thin of brownie layer and cheesecake layer?

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Vicky! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. You should be fine using a 10-inch springform pan, but we have not replicated that, so you may need to adjust the baking time. Have a great day!

  • Donna says:

    When you say line with parchment of foil, does that include up the sides of the pan as well?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Just the bottom of the pan. It is a springform so the sides of the pan will be removed for easy slicing and serving.

  • sooz says:

    Made for my kiddos last day of school (at their request). Huge hit! It was delicious and so easy to make!

  • Jonathan Walker says:

    This was awesome. Just curious to how could I adjust recipe to have more cheesecake? Meaning would it hurt to double the cheesecake part?

  • Estella says:

    Amanda I love your videos and your passion for baking and cooking that always come through.
    You’ve inspired me . I made your spatchcock chicken and one of your Apple cakes.
    Keep on keeping on.

  • NS1 says:

    Is the sour cream topping optional?I live in an area where I cant often get my hands on sour cream.Can I do a whipped cream topping?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Yes, it is optional. You can always add a chocolate ganache or whipped cream to the top! 🙂

  • dee says:

    Lovely recipe! A question — is it 2 tsp, or 2 tbsp confectioners sugar for the topping? Even at 2 tbsp it was still unpleasantly tart, but maybe it depends on the sour cream. A challenge to wait the 4+ hours to chill before tasting!

  • Sue Gordon says:

    For a lg gathering, can u make this in a 9×13 pan

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Sue! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. We have not tested this recipe in a larger pan so I can’t say how the ingredients would need to be adjusted. Have a great day!

  • Karen says:

    Can we freeze this????

  • Gittle says:

    Hi. Is it 2 x 16oz cream cheese? Or 16oz all up?
    Thanks so much

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      16 total ounces 🙂

  • Denise says:

    Hi Amanda. I would like to make this in an 8inch tin and with only 8oz cream cheese. How long would I bake for

  • Teri C. says:

    5 stars but have not made this yet, only because two of my favorite desserts in one. Ok question: I’m going to try and make this in a 9×13 pan. I’m using a brownie mix and probably will dbl. the cream cheese mixture. Just need to figure out the bake times.

  • Emy says:

    i like this cake because it’s look so very delecius.👍😍

  • Deanna Batt says:

    A friend posted a link to your website on FB. I haven’t been able to leave your site since. I think I am obsessed. My only question would be, I thought I saw a recipe for a vanilla cake and now I don’t see one. Do you have one?

    • Elizabeth Keeney says:

      Hi, Deanna! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. We do have a yellow pound cake or try this white cake recipe. I hope this helps, and have a great day!

  • Susan says:

    Do you spread the sour cream mixture on the cheesecake while its still hot?

  • Bekah says:

    Looks delicious! I like to make individual cheesecakes in muffin tins. Any idea on bake times?

  • Cheryl says:

    I made this cheesecake for Christmas. It was delicious and the cream cheese filling was perfect! Unfortunately around the edge was like a rock. I have never had that happen with a regular cheesecake. It seems to bake too long for brownies. Any suggestions?

    Thank you!

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Oh no! So sorry that happened. It could have been baked a bit too long. Every oven is different. The trick to checking when a cheesecake is done by trying the wobble test. Just open the oven door and give the pan a gentle but firm rap with a spoon to see if it wobbles. It should wobble just slightly. An underbaked cheesecake will ripple and jiggle noticeably. The key to a perfect cheesecake is a subtle wiggle—not a sloshy jiggle.

  • Lisa Cray says:

    Hello! I am a young baker, and I really wanted to get out of my comfort zone and make my mothers favorite thing, Cheesecake! Her second favorite? Brownies of course. When I found this recipe I knew it would be perfect. It was absolutely amazing and I would advise ANYONE who comes across this recipe to make it right now!! I’m truly in love.