Classic recipe, new spin: Strawberry pretzel cheesecake

Dessert is a beautiful thing and I don’t believe I have to say goodbye just because I’m eating healthier.

Jon found this classic recipe for Strawberry Pretzel Salad and shared it with me.

Ok, first…why this is called a salad, I don’t know. If you do, explain it to me.

It looked like a variation on cheesecake, so that’s what I decided to call my version. The original version used full-fat cream cheese, whipped topping and strawberries in syrup. All told, it added up to about 255 calories per slice (1/24th of the sheet).

The only thing I did not change up was the pretzels, butter and sugar. Next time, I might use a little less butter and try Splenda or something. Even without those changes,  I got the calories down to about 145 calories per serving .

The family enjoyed it, so I thought I’d share. I’m trying to cook more, so it feels awesome to know something I made turned out pretty well.

Strawberry pretzel 'cheesecake' made by me
Strawberry pretzel ‘cheesecake’ made by me

Here’s what you need:

8 oz Neufchatel Cheese, softened
3 cup Whipped topping, frozen, low fat (like Cool Whip)
2 cups pretzels, crushed
1 cup granulated sugar + 3 tablespoons Granulated Sugar
1.5 stick butter, unsalted
2 cup, unthawed strawberries, frozen, unsweetened
2 – 3 oz boxes Sugar Free Jello Strawberry
2 cups boiling water


DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Crushed pretzels and put into mixing bowl.
Add melted butter and 3 tablespoons of sugar.
Combine and press into a 13×9 pan.
Bake for 8-10 minutes until set.
Allow to cool.

In a mixing bowl, combine 1 cup sugar and the cream cheese.
Spread cream cheese mixture on top of crust.

Boil 2 cups water
Mix in Jello and stir completely
Add in frozen strawberries and allow to set for about 5 minutes

Then, pour Jello mixture on top of cream cheese layer.

Immediately refrigerate. Allow to chill for at least 3-4 hours.
Fold in whipped topping.

Serving Size: Cut into 24 squares