Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Bars
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Friday, September 25, 2015

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Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Bars

Kelly Mike - Friday, September 25, 2015

Ingredients

  • 230g unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 200g packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 large Eggland's Best egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 228g pumpkin puree
  • 250g all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 and 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice1
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
CREAM CHEESE SWIRL
  • 224g brick-style cream cheese, softened to room temperature2
  • 50g granulated sugar
  • 1 large Eggland's Best egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 32g pepitas tossed in a sprinkle of ground cinnamon

Directions

  1. Adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat oven to 350°F. Grease or line the bottom and sides of a 9x13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment, leaving an overhang on all sides. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl using a hand-held or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and beat on medium high speed until fluffy and light in color. Beat in egg and vanilla on high speed. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. On medium speed, beat in the pumpkin until combined. The mixture will look curdled; that's ok.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt together until combined. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined. Do not overmix. The mixture will be thick. Spread 2/3 of the batter evenly into the prepared pan; it will be a relatively thin layer. The rest will be added in step 5.
  4. In a medium bowl using a hand-held or stand mixer filled with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the sugar, egg, and vanilla. Beat on high speed until completely combined. Drop random spoonfuls on top of the pumpkin batter.
  5. Drop the remaining pumpkin batter on top of the spoonfuls of cream cheese. With a rubber spatula or knife, begin gently swirling the two together. Both mixtures are thick, so go slowly. Jiggle the pan back and forth to get the layers to settle into the pan. Don't worry if it looks messy; everything will come together in nice swirls as the bars bake. Sprinkle cinnamon-pepitas on top of the swirled batter.
  6. Bake the bars for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached. Allow the bars to cool completely at room temperature, then transfer to the refrigerator for about 2 hours before cutting into squares. Leftover bars can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. They're SO good on day 2!
  7. Make ahead tip: These bars can be made 3 days in advance and kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Bars freeze well, up to 3 months. Simply thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.

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