I tried making pumpkin swirl brownies a few years ago, and just wasn’t happy with the results, even after tweaking a recipe several times. They still sounded like a great idea though, so I decided to give them another try with my own version. These Pumpkin Swirl Brownies make a great dessert or snack for fall and winter! Continue reading
Have you ever heard of a “Dessert Mash-Up”? If you haven’t, it’s simply a yummy creation of two different desserts combined into one! It’s also the name of a new cookbook that has recipes like Blueberry Muffin Waffles, Pumpkin Cheesecake French Toast, Chocolate Cheesecake Sandwich Cookies, Snickers Cake Roll, Almond Joy Dip, and lots more. There’s also great color photos of the recipes that will make you want to start baking right away! Written by Dorothy Kern, author of the blog Crazy for Crust, the book has recipe sections for…
- Cookies, Brownies, and Bars
- Cake and Cheesecake
- Sweet Dips
- Holiday Recipes.
There are so many yummy recipes I found in my review copy of Dessert Mash-Ups, it was hard to decide what to make! Since it’s autumn, I thought the Pumpkin Pie Magic Bars would be the perfect thing to try. I am a big fan of Magic Bars but never would have thought of adding a pumpkin pie flavor to them–what a great idea! The recipe in the book makes a 9 x 9″ pan of bars–I decided to double the recipe and make a 9 x 13″ pan instead. I had a feeling I would like these so much, I’d want a bigger batch! 🙂 The pumpkin flavor in these bars is pretty subtle–they have more of a gingery, caramel flavor combined with the creamy sweetness of the white chocolate chips in the middle. All-in-all, these are very rich and super yummy–just the thing for satisfying your autumn sweet tooth! 🙂
PUMPKIN PIE MAGIC BARS from Dessert Mash-Ups
Makes a 9 x 13″ pan (I doubled the original recipe; halve these amounts for a 9 x 9″ pan)
- 48 to 50 gingersnap cookies
- 4 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 10 Tablespoons (or 1 stick plus 2 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 cups (one 12-ounce package) white chocolate chips
- 2 cups chopped pecans
- 1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
- 1/2 cup toffee bits
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 cup fat-free sweetened condensed milk (or you can use a 14-ounce can, which is a little more than 1 cup)
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Spray a 9 x 13″ pan with cooking spray or line with foil and spray with cooking spray for easy cleanup.
Grind the gingersnaps to a fine crumb in a food processor; you should have about 3 cups of crumbs. Place cookie crumbs in a medium bowl and mix with the sugar and melted butter. Press into the prepared pan.
Sprinkle the white chocolate chips, pecans, coconut, and toffee bits over the top of the crust.
Whisk together the pumpkin puree, sweetened condensed milk, and pumpkin pie spice in a small bowl or measuring cup and pour over the top of the bars. The mixture will just barely cover; use a spatula to carefully spread it to the edges.
Bake for 29 to 35 minutes, until the edges have started to brown. Cool completely before cutting. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Tip: Different brands of sweetened condensed milk come in different thicknesses. If it’s too thick to be pourable, you can transfer it to a microwave-safe bowl and heat it on high for 10 to 20 seconds until it becomes a little thinner.
These bars are definitely a treat–the sweetened condensed milk and the toffee bits combine to make a yummy caramel-like topping that really tastes great with the gingery crust! I think I’m going to have to try more of these dessert mash-up ideas–have you made any yourself?
After I made my Pumpkin Hummus, I had half of a can of pumpkin left over. What to do with it? I thought some of it might be good in a cream cheese spread. I was inspired by this recipe from Better Homes and Gardens. I wanted to sweeten the spread with honey instead of sugar (although you could use brown sugar instead if you want to have a thicker spread) and made some other changes, and this is what I ended up with!
It’s a lightly sweet and spicy spread with a very creamy texture that’s great on bagels or pumpkin bread for breakfast. Or, use as an appetizer spread on crackers or as a dip for fruit. It’s very soft and creamy when you mix it up so it does need to be refrigerated for at least an hour or two after mixing. Even after it’s refrigerated, it’s more creamy than other cream cheese spreads I’ve made–so if you want a thicker spread, use brown sugar instead of honey and omit the vanilla. If you don’t have all the spices I used in this, you can use 1 1/4 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice.
PUMPKIN SPICE CREAM CHEESE SPREAD by NancyCreative, adapted from Better Homes and Gardens
Makes 1 1/2 cups
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese or light cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 3 Tablespoons honey (or substitute brown sugar for a thicker spread)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
In medium bowl, blend all ingredients together until smooth (if using an electric mixer, blend on medium speed). Pour mixture into a small serving bowl, then cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. Makes about 1 1/2 cups of spread. Serve on bagels or pumpkin bread for breakfast. Or, serve as an appetizer with crackers or apple and pear slices.
If you like pumpkin-flavored things, you’ll need to try this out! What other ways do you like to use leftover canned pumpkin?
We’ve had several weeks of chilly weather, and I’ve been making more soup! This time I decided to try Pumpkin Black Bean Soup. I adapted my recipe from one I found at Taste of Home. It’s a savory-flavored soup that tastes a little like chili. So if you like chili and black bean soup, I’m sure you’ll like this! In addition to the pumpkin puree, which gives the soup a nice creamy consistency even though you don’t really taste the pumpkin much, other healthy ingredients include diced tomatoes, onions, and garlic.
PUMPKIN BLACK BEAN SOUP by NancyCreative, adapted from Taste of Home
Makes about 8 servings (2 quarts)
- 2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
- 2 medium onions, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 cups (24 ounces) vegetable broth
- 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar (I used Bragg’s)
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Optional: dash of salt and pepper, to taste
- For garnish: 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream) and 1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions
Place beans and tomatoes in a food processor; cover and process until blended. Set aside.
In a large pot or Dutch oven, saute onions in oil until tender. Add garlic and saute 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, pumpkin, vinegar, and bean mixture, blending well. Add cumin, chili powder, cinnamon, and, if desired, salt and pepper to taste.
Bring soup to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Ladle into soup bowls and garnish each serving with plain Greek yogurt and sliced green onions. Each 1 cup serving is about 240 calories.
I never seem to get tired of making and eating soup, and it’s fun to try different recipes! Have you made any soups using pumpkin as an ingredient?
I like cookies of all kinds…crispy, crunchy, chewy, gooey…you name it! These cookies happen to be soft and puffy, with a cake-like texture. And they are yummy! I adapted these Pumpkin Pecan Cookies from a recipe I found at VeryBestBaking.com. I added a little ground ginger to the batter and topped the cookies with an extra-rich, thick, creamy glaze and a pecan half. You can also add some finely chopped pecans to the cookie batter if you want.
The original recipe says it makes 36 cookies, but I ended up with 31–I must have made mine a little too big! So, you should get at least 31 cookies from this recipe, and maybe a little more. I found that the cookie batter was easier to work with if it was refrigerated a little after mixing. I refrigerated mine for 15 minutes, but I think a half hour would be even better. It will make it easier to scoop out your Tablespoonfuls of cookie dough.
These cookies are easy to make and great for this time of year, as we get closer to Thanksgiving…you may even want to make some for Thanksgiving weekend!
PUMPKIN-PECAN COOKIES by NancyCreative, adapted from VeryBestBaking.com
Makes 31 to 36 cookies
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (I used unbleached flour)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
- 1 cup canned pure pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup finely chopped pecans (optional)
- Whipping Cream Glaze (see recipe below)
- 31 to 36 Pecan halves, for garnish
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease baking sheets.
Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger in medium bowl; set aside.
In large bowl, beat sugar and butter until well blended. Add in pumpkin, egg, and vanilla, and beat until smooth. Fold in finely chopped pecans, if using. Gradually beat the flour mixture into this pumpkin mixture, and mix until well-blended. If you have time, refrigerate the cookie dough for 15 minutes to a half hour, for easier scooping.
Drop cookie dough by rounded Tablespoons onto your greased baking sheets. Bake for 14 to 15 minutes or until edges are firm (be careful not to over bake, or the cookies will be too dry). Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes (if you leave the cookies on the sheets any longer, they may stick, even if your pan is non-stick), then remove to wire racks to cool completely.
When cookies are completely cooled, spoon the Whipping Cream Glaze on each cookie and top with a pecan half.
WHIPPING CREAM GLAZE
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- 6 to 6 1/2 Tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons melted butter
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Combine all ingredients in a medium size bowl and blend until smooth. Use a spoon to dollop the glaze onto each cookie, then top with a pecan half (this is a thick glaze–if you’d like it thinner or even thicker, you can adjust the amounts of powdered sugar and whipping cream). You can use a little glaze or a lot…it’s up to you! If you put it on any heavier than I did (see above photo), you may need to make a little more glaze.
Hope you enjoy these cookies! What kinds of cookies do you like to bake in the fall?
Linked to Cookie Plan Monday.