Pumpkin Pie BarsJanuary 6, 2010
Back in October, I went on a hunt for pumpkin recipes and had lofty goals to whip up a ton of pumpkin goodies. As is often the case in my life, my excitement fizzled quickly and, well, I never got around to making most of the recipes I set aside. Oops.
Come December I found myself with a lot of events to bake for, cans of pumpkin in my pantry, and a stack of un-tried recipes. Unacceptable!
The Pumpkin Pie Bars came to me courtesy of Anne’s Eats, one of my go-to blogs for all things yummy. She hasn’t let me down yet, and this was no exception. These bars are not solid like blondies or brownies, but have the texture of a pumpkin pie, just as Annie says in her own blog post. I love oatmeal and pumpkin, so it was a great little combo of the two. I took these to Christmas dinner at my sister’s house and found out that most of my family doesn’t care for butterscotch, so I’ll leave the chips out next time, but otherwise, they’re amazing. I brought home four to tuck into the fridge for treats and had eaten them all within three days. I was a sad puppy when the last one was gone.
Pumpkin Pie Bars
For the crust and topping:
1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
½ cup brown sugar, firmly packed
12 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup old-fashioned oats
For the filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
½ cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree
1 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Butterscotch chips, for topping
Preheat oven to 350. Line a 9×13″ pan with foil, extending the foil over the edges to make removal easy later. Spray the foil with a fine mist of nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
Combine flour, sugar and brown sugar in a medium bowl, whisking together to combine. Add the pieces of cold butter and cut together with a pastry blender until it resembles coarse crumbs (I finally got to use my pastry blender!). Stir in the oats. Set aside 1 cup of the mixture. Pour the remaining mix into the prepared pan and press into the bottom in an even layer. Bake for 15 minutes.
Combine cream cheese, sugar, eggs, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla on medium until smooth and creamy. Pour the filling over the pre-baked crust, sprinkle with reserved crust mixture and butterscotch chips (optional). Bake for 25 minutes, remove from the oven, and after allowing to cool in the pan for a few minutes remove to a wire rack (use the foil to pull the entire pan of bars out in one piece) for complete cooling. Cut into bars and serve cold or at room temperature. Great topped with whipped cream, too!