Tag Archives: pumpkin bars

Pumpkin Sheet Cake

Pumpkin Sheet Cake

Due to a late Halloween (thanks to Hurricane Sandy) and an earlier than usual Thanksgiving, it is time to do some serious Thanksgiving planning around here!

This is a quick and easy dessert perfect for any fall holiday or for surprising the kids with a mid-week dessert just for the fun of it. It is amazing the bewildered (but joyful) looks on their faces when you produce dessert without any other reason than that you love them.

RECIPE:

Pumpkin Sheet Cake (or Pumpkin Bars) with Cream Cheese Icing

Pumpkin Sheet Cake

Pumpkin Sheet Cake (or Pumpkin Bars) with Cream Cheese Icing

4 eggs
1 2/3 cup sugar
1 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 16oz can of pumpkin (about 2 cups)
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Using a mixer, beat eggs, sugar, oil, vanilla and pumpkin until light and fluffy.  In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg. Fold into pumpkin mixture.

Spray a 15x10x1” jelly roll pan to make Pumpkin Bars or a 9×13” pan to make a Pumpkin Sheet Cake with cooking spray (preferably the kind with flour made for baking). Spread batter into prepared pan.

Baking Times: For 15×10” pan: Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until set.
For 9×13” pan: Bake for 35-45 minutes.

Cool in pan; frost in pan.

CREAM CHEESE ICING:
1 – 8oz package of cream cheese
½ cup butter
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
Pumpkin pie spice and/or cinnamon (optional)
Toasted finely chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

Using a mixer, beat cream cheese, butter and vanilla until light and fluffy. Beat in powdered sugar. Optional: beat in about 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon, if desired.

Frost cooled cake. Sprinkle with nuts and/or pumpkin pie spice for garnish.

Refrigerate cake until ready to serve.

 

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Marbled Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

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I recently tried a new pumpkin bar recipe that was really good. I found the original recipe on CookieMadness. We all really liked the bars, but as cheesecake is one of my favorite desserts, I think that next time I make these I will go heavier on the cheesecake marbling. It looked really pretty, and the cheesecake swirl helped make the  bars wonderfully moist, but the cheesecake part was not a real stand-out flavor.

These bars are made by preparing a pumpkin batter, which is spread into a 15×10” pan. The cream cheese layer is added to the top and then run through with a knife to create the swirled pattern.

An easy way to create a swirl is to start in one upper corner and run the knife back and forth diagonally across the pan to the opposite lower corner. Then start in the opposite upper corner and run the knife diagonally the other way.

DSC02267-1 Doesn’t that make a gorgeous swirl!

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Below is the recipe that I adapted (a little) from CookieMadness. Next time I will add more of the cream cheese batter (maybe double).

UPDATE (10/11/2011): My daughter made these last night with double the amount of the cream cheese batter. They were great! I will be making them that way from now on.

RECIPE:

Marbled Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

DSC02368-1

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
½ cup buttermilk or kefir
1 tsp vanilla
1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

Swirl (Double the ingredients below for a more pronounced cheesecake flavor):
8 oz cream cheese, softened
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla
1 large egg

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 15×10 inch pan  with cooking spray.

Pumpkin Batter: Mix together the butter, salt and sugar. With a mixing spoon or whisk, beat in eggs, pumpkin, buttermilk and vanilla until well blended, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Mix flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and nutmeg together; stir into batter. Reserve about ¼ of the batter. Spread remaining ¾ of batter evenly in prepared pan.

Swirl: In a second bowl, with a mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth. Add egg and beat until smooth. Drop tablespoons of cheese mixture over pumpkin batter, then drag a knife through to swirl. Drop reserved pumpkin batter over the top and swirl again. Bake on center rack until pumpkin batter springs back when touched, about 30 minutes. Let cool completely in pan, then chill for an hour or more.

Cut into 24 bars.

 

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