Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Pumpkin Streusel Cheesecake Bars {Recipe}

I love cheesecake bars. I've made Strawberry-Rhubarb Cheesecake Bars, Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars, Cranberry-Gingerbread Cheesecake Bars. And now, Pumpkin Streusel Cheesecake Bars

What You Need:
For the Crust & Topping:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 cup chopped, toasted pecans
1 tsp. salt (if using unsalted butter)
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup unsalted butter, chilled

For the Filling:
2- 8 oz. block cream cheese (at room temperature)
1 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. ground cloves
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg

Note: I think I would like to have more filling, but my husband and children insist this is enough. If I double it, and like it, I'll report back.
** Update: I 1.5-ed the filling, and I think it was PERFECT. That used 3 blocks of cream cheese, 1 15-oz. can pumpkin, 1 1/2 cups brown sugar, 3 eggs, 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice... and it baked for an hour. Awesome yumminess!

Yield: 30-40 2" square bars

Make the Crust/Topping
Preheat the oven to 350-degrees (F).
*Note: You will divide this crust mix in half - half for the top, half for the bottom. I write this reminder up high so that I can remember myself, because I forgot recently, and put the whole batch in the bottom and into the oven before realizing my mistake.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine flour, toasted pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt (only add the salt if using unsalted butter).

Mix in the butter (cut into small pieces) with mixer or with a 'pastry cutter' until pea-sized crumbs form.
Pour about half of the mixture (about 2 1/2 cups) into a 9x13" pan lined with parchment paper.

Press the mixture into a tight crust on the bottom of the pan. Bake for 10 minutes while you make the filling.

Make the Filling

Combine room-temperature cream cheese, pumpkin, spices and brown sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat on medium speed until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, one at a time, adding the vanilla with one of the eggs. Mix each egg well until the batter is again light and fluffy.
Set aside.

Remove the bottom crust from the oven (after 10-15 minutes).
Pour the cheesecake mixture over the crust.

Top with the remaining crust/topping mixture.

Bake for 45-55 minutes at 350-degrees (F), or until the topping is golden brown and the bars don't seem too wiggly in the center when you shake the pan.

Refrigerate at least 3 hours to allow the cheesecake to set before slicing into bars.


Click the Links Below to See:
Fantastic Pumpkin Cake Recipe
Pumpkin Cupcakes with Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting
More Fall/Pumpkin/Apple Recipes

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