Tropical cheesecake bars perfect for picnics and parties

Aoife Noonan: Passionfruit pairs perfectly with mango for a sweet, tangy pop of the tropics

Summer means tropical flavours, even if the weather says otherwise. Regular readers will be aware of my penchant for sliceable bars. I love them, they are satisfying to make and to eat.

There are certain criteria I always factor in when creating recipes for these bars. They must have a sturdy base layer; this keeps them intact, and gives the filling a solid base to sit on without falling apart in your hand. On that note, bars need to be eaten with your hands, and should be three to four bites maximum. They should be easy to prepare and easy to transport once baked – perfect for all of your picnic and party needs.

These ones are like little pops of the tropics, stuffed full of flavours that work harmoniously together. Passionfruit is one of those things that can be off-putting to eat on its own due to its sourness, but balancing the tang with a little sweetness does wonders. It’s perfect match? Mango. I remember the first time I ever tasted an Alphonso mango, it was floral and juicy and so perfect that the flesh practically melted in your mouth.

When buying mangoes, they should feel ever so slightly soft and yielding in your hand. To prepare one: slice the “cheeks” from either side of the large flat stone, skin and all, then score the flesh in a crisscross pattern before turning inside out to reveal the little golden cubes of meaty flesh.


When looking for passionfruit, it is intuitive to choose ones that are shiny, round, and perfect. The opposite is superior here: buy passionfruit that are wrinkly and look a little shrivelled – these are the ripest and have sweeter passionfruit pearls and juice inside.

This week’s recipe is a soft and fluffy cheesecake bar with a spicy gingernut biscuit base. The cheesecake is spiked with lime, with little cubes of mango throughout and a passionfruit drizzle swirled on top.

These bars are a balanced blend of textures and flavour; sweet, sour, creamy and biscuity, making this dessert the perfect summer treat. They keep well for a few days in the fridge, and freeze well too.

Pro-tip: On a hot day, eat it straight from the freezer for a cheesecake ice-cream bar that is a cool taste of the tropics.

Recipe: Mango passionfruit cheesecake bars