You’d think after the pumpkin bread and pumpkin pecan pie, I’d have gotten my fill of pumpkin baked goods. Ha! Not a chance. This week I kept wondering what new spin I could put on this yummy fall vegetable. Something with cream cheese, for sure. But cheesecake is out till I can get my hands on a new spring form pan. I do NOT want a repeat performance of the pie. I’m still trying to clean up my oven from that mess. What works well with cream cheese….brownies!! Yes, cream cheese pumpkin brownies. THAT’S what I want. So I searched and searched and actually couldn’t find a recipe for the exact confection I was craving.
I’ve never been one to experiment with baking. Everything has to be measured so precisely and added at the right time or you’ll end up with an unrecognizable ball of goo. But this time I decided to take a chance. I mean, really, what could I screw up by adding a little pumpkin pie filling to the cream cheese topping? Turns out nothing. I’m so glad I gave this a shot, because it turned out so well!! Delicious fall spices and smooth, ever-so-slightly-sweet cream atop decadent chocolatey-ness. How is it that no one else has come up with this before?? Well, turns out Cara at Cara’s Cravings came up with something similar for the last BrownieBabes event. Maybe I didn’t exhaust all possible outlets before I set out on my own, but I’m still glad I took this challenge on. I’m definitely more inspired to experiment more with my baking.
Also, I have to say that two of the components of this dessert I got from other sources–the brownie base is from Cooking Light and the Cream Cheese Swirl is from Ash at Delish.
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Brownies
5 tablespoons stick margarine
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate
2/3 cup Dutch process or unsweetened cocoa
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large egg whites, lightly beaten
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup cooked pumpkin purée
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 large egg, beaten until frothy
1 tablespoon heavy cream
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground allspice
Pinch of ground nutmeg
Cream Cheese Swirl
4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 Tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F. Melt margarine and chocolate in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in cocoa; cook 1 minute. Stir in sugar, and cook 1 minute (mixture will almost form a ball and be difficult to stir). Remove pan from heat; cool slightly. Gradually add warm chocolate mixture to egg whites and egg, stirring with a whisk until well-blended. Combine flour and baking powder; add flour mixture to chocolate mixture, stirring well. Spoon batter into a 9-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray.
Cream softened butter and sugars. Add butter and heavy cream. Add pumpkin, spices and vanilla. Mix well. Set aside.
Beat cream cheese and 1 Tbsp butter in medium bowl until light and fluffy. Add 1/4 cup sugar and beat until well blended. Beat in egg, 1 Tbsp flour and 1/2 tsp vanilla. Pour evenly over brownies. Drop teaspoonfuls of pumpkin mixture across pan. Set unused pumpkin mixture aside. With a knife tip, make figure eights in the cream cheese and pumpkin mixtures until swirled, being careful not to mix in the brownie batter.
Bake at 350F for 40-50 minutes. Do not over bake. Cool completely before cutting.
*Use the remaining pumpkin pie filing to make a mini pumpkin pie. I used premade pie crust that I had on hand and a small salsa dish that just fit the amount of pie filling I had left.