Now doesn’t the name of this recipe just sound yummy? .... that’s cuz it IS yummy…. Cherry Cheesecake Parfaits… makes you just want to have one right now… doesn’t it?
This is a quick and easy “Throw Together” dessert. I usually keep certain staples on hand… things we like… stuff that I use in a number of recipes… and things I make pretty often… among them… Cool Whip in the freezer, milk and cream cheese in the fridge… cherry pie filling and pudding mix in the pantry… oh and vanilla wafers… well read on.. I explain that one down further… Warren is guilty as charged on that one..
The recipe is from Kraft… all I did was change the fruit and a couple of minor method changes… they used a mix of fresh blueberries and sliced strawberries… which does sound pretty yummy too… but I didn’t like the strawberries at the market… so I substituted canned cherry pie filling… you could use just about any fruit… fresh or pie filling…
The recipe calls for vanilla wafers (Warren is positively addicted to them… well so is Bubba… Warren made the mistake of giving them to Bubba and Duke on our road trip to New York … and now Bubba recognizes the box… he looooves them… well he loooves anything sweet… so now I always seem to have them in the house)… graham crackers would work just as well….
The recipe uses Philadelphia Cream Cheese, milk and Cool Whip…. They don’t specify so the assumption would be that the ingredients are the full enchilada… whole milk, real Cream Cheese and Cool Whip…
You can easily substitute lower fat or non-fat milk, light cream cheese and/or light or fat-free Cool Whip… I didn’t substitute this time… I actually followed their instructions..well almost… I did use light Cool Whip. I always use light Cool Whip.
I will definitely use non-fat milk next time…. this pudding –Cool Whip mixture is pretty thick… it could use a little thinning …. But that’s just my humble opinion.. it was terrific the way it is… but I like to cut the fat where I can without sacrificing taste or quality… and here is a perfect place to do it.
I followed their instructions… my cream cheese was softened… it was at room temperature for a long time.. my mixer fitted with the paddle attachment did beat it smooth… but when the milk was added… and I added it gradually.. it took quite awhile to get all the tiny lumps of cream cheese out… and even then it really wasn’t that perfectly smooth… you have to scrape the paddle or, if using a hand mixer, the beaters, often. I added the dry pudding then continued to beat it… that finally got the little lumps out… the milk needed something with a little substance to make the cream cheese mix evenly in.
Their directions say to “whisk in” the Cool Whip….. you really just need to stir it well …whisking would deflate some of the airiness from the Cool Whip… which is not really what you want.
I made one other minor change… I mixed in the full 1 ½ cups of Cool Whip… and didn’t garnish the parfait with any Cool Whip.. I felt it needed a little more Cool Whip in the pudding mix… you could garnish it with a little more but I didn’t think it needed any more… so I didn’t do that.
This recipe was so quick and easy… it was put together and ready to serve in less than 15 minutes… it really was very good… perfect for a last minute dessert for the family or unexpected company … why slave in the kitchen all the time… give yourself a little break… a yummy dessert and no work… what could be better?
Recipe: Cherry Cheesecake Parfait
All you need:
1 (8oz.) pkg. Philadelphia Cream Cheese, softened
1 ½ cups cold milk
1 (3.4 oz.) pkg. JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding
1 ½ cups thawed Cool Whip Whipped Topping
24 Nilla Wafers, coarsely chopped
Cherry Pie Filling
All you need to do:
Beat the cream cheese with a mixer until creamy.
Gradually beat in the milk.
Add the dry pudding mix and continue to beat until all the little lumps of cream cheese are out and mixture is smooth.
Mix in the Cool Whip.
Layer each dessert dish with the pudding, wafers and pie filling… add another layer of pudding then cherry pie filling and sprinkle with wafer pieces. (You really can layer this as you prefer… this is how I did it).
This makes about 8 smaller servings.. about 4 more realistic servings.
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