When I think of cute summer parties, I always think of adorable summer dresses, drinks with a splash too much of spirits, and lots of little fruit appetizers. You know the ones: fruits impaled with skewers, grilled fruit on shortcakes dolloped with cream, and fruit artfully arranged around a bowl of sweet Fruit Dip.
I saw a friend make Fruit Dip once. And she didn’t make it with yogurt (like I would have). I’m pretty sure it involved a lot of Cool Whip, cream cheese, and sugar. Yum.
Then you’re standing around this Fruit Dip, dipping away, so proud of yourself for eating fruit at a party and praying they won’t notice that you’re the first to tackle the hamburger platter as it finally arrives on the buffet table.
And…then you notice that you ate all that Fruit Dip. Whoops. Dip problems.
Which is where Cheesecake Strawberries are SO genius!
Think about it! There’s only so much filling you can put in each one. And you’re not scooping and shoveling as much dip as possible onto your fruit. They’re perfectly portioned and totally adorable.
Plus, if you’re the one that brings them to the party…everybody loves you. Easy as that. Guaranteed.
Also, if you were so inclined, or if you just happened to realize that you don’t have cream cheese in your fridge but you do happen to have the vegan alternative (I currently have Go Veggie brand in my fridge), you could make these vegan and nobody would know the difference! Ten million points for you (because you just used what you already had in your fridge, sneaked a vegan dessert onto the pretty party table, and didn’t tell a soul!).
Of course, use your favorite cream cheese here.
And definitely use a Strawberry Huller if you have one or were planning on buying one! I have this amazingly nifty little guy, from OXO*, which gives you the same size space in each berry for your filling! And its SO easy to use!! You just stick it through the top of the green caps on the berry, twist, and out it all comes! Tah-dah!
After you’ve hulled your strawberries, I stand mine up in a small dish so they’re easier to fill. I put my filling into a Ziplock bag, snip the end, then fill each up.
Then, I sprinkled the tops with crumbled up grahams. Confession? My graham crumbs weren’t from crackers…they are from the critter variety (bunnies, bears, you know). But still, they’re grahams!
And don’t forget to make plenty! You’ll probably be trying to make more than you’re eating, so take that into account. What a fun little summer dessert. Perfect for a party, picnic, bridal shower…or just because you need a treat.
(for 12-16 cheesecake strawberries)
strawberries, washed, hulled
¼ cup cream cheese
4 tsp. powdered sugar
¼ tsp. vanilla extract
2 Tbs. graham cracker crumbs (it’s easier to sprinkle with a bit extra)
~After your strawberries are washed, dried and hulled, arrange them in a bowl so they are propped up.
~In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Stir carefully (with a fork) until they are combined, then whip vigorously with your fork to make the filling creamy and slightly fluffy.
~Transfer the cheesecake filling to a Ziplock bag and snip a small corner off the bag. Carefully fill each strawberry and add a bit extra to the top of the berry.
~If you’re going to take and serve the berries right away, sprinkle the graham crumbs over the tops of the cheesecake. If you’re going to wait a few hours, place the filled berries in the fridge, carefully wrapped so the cheesecake isn’t squashed. Top the berries with the graham crumbs before you’re ready to serve them (if you top them then place them in the fridge, the graham crumbs will soften). Enjoy!
*Note: OXO sent me the Strawberry Huller to use however I please. I was not monetarily compensated for the use of this product or for my recipe. The opinions stated are totally my own.