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Pumpkin Pie Bars

Pumpkin pie is an undeniable staple of fall and holiday gatherings, but what do you do when you’re craving that delicious pumpkin flavor but don’t want to make an entire pie? Enter Pumpkin Pie Bars – the perfect solution! In this article, we’ll guide you through creating a small-batch version of this beloved dessert, perfect for satisfying your pumpkin pie cravings without the need for a crowd. We’ll cover everything from ingredients to variations and even provide keto and low-carb options to suit different dietary needs.

Ingredients:

For the Crust:

  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

For the Filling:

  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 2 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Whipped cream (for topping)

Instructions:

1. Preheat and Prepare:

  • Preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C) and line a 5×5-inch (or a similar size) baking dish with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on two opposite sides.

2. Make the Crust:

  • In a small bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and granulated sugar.
  • Press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared baking dish to form an even layer.

3. Prepare the Filling:

  • In another bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, sweetened condensed milk, egg yolk, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground ginger, and salt.
  • Pour the pumpkin mixture over the graham cracker crust and spread it evenly.

4. Bake to Perfection:

  • Place the baking dish in the preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the filling is set. It should have a slight wobble when gently shaken.

5. Cool and Serve:

  • Allow the pumpkin pie bars to cool in the dish. Once cooled, use the parchment paper overhang to lift the bars out of the dish.
  • Cut into squares, add a dollop of whipped cream on top of each, and enjoy!

Cook’s Notes:

  • For the graham cracker crumbs, you can use store-bought crumbs or crush graham crackers in a zip-top bag.
  • Sweetened condensed milk adds sweetness to the filling. Adjust the amount to your taste.

Creative Variations:

1. Nutty Crunch:

Sprinkle chopped pecans or walnuts over the crust before adding the pumpkin filling for a delightful crunch.

2. Cream Cheese Swirl:

Add a cream cheese swirl by mixing 2 tablespoons of softened cream cheese with a bit of sugar and a drop of vanilla extract. Drop spoonfuls of this mixture onto the pumpkin filling and use a toothpick to create a marbled effect.

3. Chocolate Swirl:

For a chocolatey twist, melt some dark chocolate and drizzle it over the pumpkin filling. Use a toothpick to create marbled patterns.

4. Oatmeal Streusel:

Top your pumpkin bars with a sweet and crunchy oatmeal streusel made from rolled oats, brown sugar, butter, and a dash of cinnamon.

5. Pecan Praline:

Add a layer of pecan praline on top of your bars by combining chopped pecans with butter, brown sugar, and a pinch of salt.

Keto and Low-Carb Adaptations:

If you’re following a keto or low-carb diet, you can still enjoy the flavors of pumpkin pie with these adjustments:

  • Crust Substitute: Replace the graham cracker crumbs with almond flour, crushed pecans, or a mixture of both for a keto-friendly crust.
  • Sweetener: Instead of granulated sugar, use a keto-friendly sweetener like erythritol or stevia in both the crust and the filling.
  • Dairy: Opt for full-fat canned coconut milk instead of sweetened condensed milk and use a dairy-free whipped topping.

These Pumpkin Pie Bars are the ideal solution for those moments when you’re craving the warm, spiced goodness of pumpkin pie but don’t want the fuss of making a full-sized dessert. Whether you’re baking for a small gathering or simply treating yourself, this small-batch recipe will leave your taste buds delighted. Feel free to get creative with toppings, variations, and dietary adaptations – the wo

rld of pumpkin dessert is rich with possibilities

Crust Upgrade:

For a keto-friendly crust, consider mixing almond flour, melted butter, and a sugar substitute. Press this mixture into the bottom of your baking dish.

Dairy-Free and Vegan:

To make this dessert dairy-free and vegan, use plant-based alternatives like coconut oil, coconut condensed milk, and a non-dairy whipped cream topping.

Pumpkin Pie Bars in a small batch offer all the flavors you love in a traditional pumpkin pie, with the convenience of a smaller serving size. Whether you’re embracing fall, satisfying a sweet tooth, or catering to dietary restrictions, these bars are a versatile and delightful treat. Experiment with creative toppings, try out keto or low-carb variations, and share your delicious results with friends and family. Happy baking!

Now, you have a more comprehensive blog post with additional creative variations and dietary adaptations for your readers to explore.

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