Food

Pumpkin Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

I love fall, the season of pumpkin. I made these Pumpkin Chocolate Cheesecake Bars with a chocolate cookie crust and a swirl of chocolate for a party this weekend and they couldn’t be easier, or more delicious. They are rich, needless to say – you could get 32 small squares from this 8-inch x 8-inch pan. This is great make ahead dessert – cool and refrigerate for up to two days prior to serving.

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • 20 chocolate wafer cookies (half a 9 ounce package) to make 1 cup crumbs – you can substitute chocolate graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted

For the filling:

  • 2 packages bar cream cheese (8 ounces each), room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips

Preparation

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on all sides. Set aside.

In a food processor, blend the cookies with sugar until finely ground (you should have about 1 cup crumbs); add the melted butter, and pulse until moistened. Transfer the crumb mixture to the prepared pan and press gently into the bottom. Bake until fragrant and slightly firm, about 12 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Place the cream cheese in food processor; blend until smooth. Add the sugar, pumpkin puree, eggs, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and salt; process until combined. Set aside.

Place the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave in 30-second increments, stirring between each, until melted. Add 1 cup of the pumpkin mixture to the melted chocolate; stir to combine. Set aside. Pour the remaining pumpkin mixture into the prepared pan. Drop dollops of the chocolate mixture onto the pumpkin mixture; swirl.

Bake until the cheesecake is set but jiggles slightly when gently shaken, 40-50 minutes. Cool in the pan. Cover; chill until firm, at least 2 hours (and up to 2 days). Using the overhang, transfer the cake to a work surface. With a knife dipped in water, cut into 16 large or 32 small squares.

What's Fresh from @RachaelRay

Rachael Ray