Friday, October 14, 2011

Pumpkin Gingersnap Bars

Pumpkin mania continues.  These bars are awesome.  They are the marriage of a bunch of recipes I saw online, and they are addictive.  I usually am okay with a taste of dessert.  I ate like 3 of these bars after having 2 bowls of soup.  Yes, I am a gluttonous pig, and you will join me in that title if you make these.  I put out a plateful for the kids and my husband at the whole plateful. I like them chilled, because you get the crunch of the gingersnap crust, the chewiness of a caramel layer, and the creaminess of the pumpkin topping.  If you are not a cheesecake lover, you will still like these.  The cream cheese lends a creaminess, but you cannot taste it.  Excuse me, I need to go get another one now! You need to make these! 



  • about 50 gingersnaps run through food processor to make crumbs
  • 1 stick melted butter
  • 1/8 cup brown sugar
  • 1 bag caramels
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened (I nuked for 30 seconds)
  • 1 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 heaping cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • dash salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (if you like less spice down this to 1 tsp.)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 cup molasses
  • 1/3 cup sugae
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 tbsp softened butter
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Preheat oven to 350.  Crush gingersnaps and pulse in melted butter and brown sugar.  Spread in a 9x13 pan.  Bake for 7-9 minutes until butter bubbles a bit. 
Unwrap caramels and in a double boiler or microwave safe bowl, place caramels, cream and butter.  If using microwave, stir at 30-60 second intervals, and if a double boiler, let it hang out, stirring periodically, while you work on the pumpkin layer.  I did the double boiler and it worked out great.  When caramel is melted  and smooth, dump over gingersnaps.  I tilted the pan and let the caramel pool to one side, then the other, until it was distributed.  The spatula seemed to pull the crust, so this method works great for spreading the caramel. 
This picture is so off center.  ah well!
For the pumpkin layer, whisk cream cheese, and pumpkin together.  Add eggs and vanilla and whisk.  Add brown sugar, vanilla, salt, spices and molasses and whisk until smooth.  Pour over caramel, titling pan if necessary to distribute evenly.
Bake at 350 for 10 minutes while preparing streusel.  Mix streusel ingredients together until it is about like bread crumbs, remove pan and sprinkle evenly over top.
Return to oven and bake additional 20-30 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean.  When cooked, remove from oven and let cool for 30 minutes and chill for at least an hour before serving.  The crust will need some pressure to cut and a very sharp knife.  Cut and serve chilled.

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