These chocolate chip pumpkin bars are a hit in our house. The texture is almost like a moist brownie but with pumpkin flavors. Even the pumpkin pie haters love to grab a piece of this bar.
Disclaimer: I have received products from Imperial Sugar to use in my recipes. The recipes and opinions are mine.
About the title – let me just say that I was really tempted to add some rum in this! I guess I already said way too much!
These bars are made for #choctoberfest 2018. Just two more days left to enter the raffle . Remember there are over $400 worth of prizes to win with just a few clicks or taps on the screen !!!
Imperial sugar is the gold sponsor for #choctoberfest 2018. It is their 175th anniversary ! Imagine that ! They must know their business really well to stay strong for so long. Happy 175th Anniversary Imperial Sugar! Don’t forget to checkout their Halloween treats .
I have used two of their products in this recipe – the light brown sugar and the powdered sugar. Oh and here is another reason for me to recommend their products – it is pure 100% non GMO cane sugar !
The light brown sugar is used in the bar and it makes the bars a little darker and the light molasses flavors go great with pumpkin and the spices. The powdered sugar went into making the frosting. I have to be honest here, usually I am not a fan of frosting, but this cream cheese frosting is yum ! ?
Back to the bars these are moist, and full flavor and definitely not cake like. It is an easy one-bowl recipe. The flavors in these bars mature as it stays. Which means , that it will taste better the next day, that is if you save some for the next day
Here is what you need for the bars
- Pumpkin puree
I have used unbleached all purpose flour in this recipe . That is what I would recommend as well. You an substitute whole wheat flout for a part of it – up to 50 %. Any more you will have to change the recipe .
This recipe needs a little leavening as the ingredients make it very moist and dense. 2 tsp baking powder per cup of flour is what I have used here. Omitting the leavening will make the bars a little more dense.
Since we are using brown sugar, baking soda can be substituted – if doing so add ½ tsp to ¾ tsp baking soda and no more.
What goes best with pumpkin – pumpkin pie spices of course. Here I have used 1 Tbsp. The spices are mellow and not overpowering. Use 1 ½ Tbsp if you like stronger flavors. Use store bought pumpkin spice mix, or cinnamon , ginger , cloves and nutmeg in the following proportion 4:2:1:1 .
Pumpkin puree is used in this recipe . This is the cooked pumpkin that is pureed. Be aware that it is not the same as the canned pumpkin pie filling. You can make it yourself or get a good quality canned one. If you want to make it check out my post on how to roast pumpkin . Scoop the roasted pumpkin and blend and you are all set.
I use brown sugar in this recipe , Imperial Sugar light brown sugar to be exact. The molasses in the sugar is the biggest flavor draw for me. The warm flavors of the spices and the molasses seems to be a natural match.
To frost or not is entirely up to you. Personally I liked the contrast cream cheese frosting provided, and it happens to be my favorite frosting as well ? .
In other words if I were to frost this bar , it will be cream cheese frosting! Slice and serve !!!
So this happened while I was shooting! Little monkeys were understandably impatient after school :-).
BTW there is still time to enter the raffle
For more details on #choctoberfest 2018 and the prizes to win checkout the welcome post !
Chocolate Pumpkin Spice Bars
- 2 C AP Flour
- 1 Tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
- 2 Tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 Tsp Fine Sea Salt
- 1 C Butter, Unsalted
- 1 C Brown Sugar I used Imperial Sugar
- 1 Egg Large
- 1 Tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1 C Pumpkin Puree Notes
- 1½ C Semisweet Chocolate chips
Cream Cheese Frosting
- ½ C Cream Cheese
- ½ C Butter Salted/unsalted
- 4 - 5 C Powdered Sugar
- ½ Tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- Make sure that all the ingredients are at room temperature before proceeding.
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking pan and set aside. In a medium bowl, mix the dry ingredients - flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, and salt - together. Set aside.
- Using an electric mixer, or spatula beat the butter until fluffy. Add the sugar and cream the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the egg and mix well. Mix in the vanilla. Add the pumpkin puree and mix well. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients using a spatula until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
- Spread batter evenly in prepared pan. Bake bars for 35-40 minutes or until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan and a toothpick inserted in center comes out with just a few moist crumbs (gooey chocolate) attached.
- Transfer the pan to a cooling rack. Cool completely in pan. If frosting , spread the frosting evenly on top.
- Cut into squares and serve.
Cream Cheese Frosting.
- Bring the cream cheese and butter to room temperature.
- Beat the butter until it is soft and increased in volume.
- Add the softened cream cheese to the butter and beat until fluffy. Beat in the vanilla extract.
- Add the powdered sugar in batches and mix in (lowest setting if using electric mixer) until the mix is shows soft peaks.
- Use pumpkin puree and not pie filling mix.
- To make your own pumpkin puree check out this recipe.
Important: Values are only estimates. Actuals vary depending on ingredients and serving size.
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