Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

Ah Thanksgiving, a time to give thanks and to be with family & friends and FOOD! This year, it's a potluck Thanksgiving and guess who's in charge of dessert? I love chocolate, cheesecake and pumpkin pie. Why not have all three? ONE BAR! This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart and it's incredibly decadent. It has the richness from the cream cheese and the sweetness from the semi-sweet chocolate swirls. It also has the warmth from the pure pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice. If Thanksgiving tasted like a dessert it would be these Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars! Here's how I made them.

You'll Need:

For the Crust
20 chocolate graham crackers
2 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the Filling
2 packages bar cream cheese (8 ounces each)
1 cup sugar
1 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin puree
3 large eggs
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon pumpkin-pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on all sides. Set aside.
In a food processor, blend cookies with sugar until finely ground (you should have about 1 cup crumbs); add butter, and pulse until moistened.
Transfer crumb mixture to prepared pan, and press gently into bottom. Bake until fragrant and slightly firm, 12 to 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Place cream cheese in food processor; blend until smooth. Add sugar, pumpkin puree, eggs, flour, pumpkin-pie spice, and salt; process until combined. Set aside.

Place chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl; microwave in 30-second increments, stirring between each, until melted. Add 1 cup pumpkin mixture; stir to combine. Set aside.
Pour remaining pumpkin mixture into prepared pan. Drop dollops of chocolate mixture onto pumpkin mixture; swirl. Bake until cheesecake is set but jiggles slightly when gently shaken, 40 to 50 minutes.
Cool in pan. Cover; chill until firm, at least 2 hours (and up to 2 days). Using overhang, transfer cake to work surface. With a knife dipped in hot water, cut into 16 squares.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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