Pumpkin Cheesecake Streusel Bars

Pumpkin Cheesecake Streusel bars2

I remember Thanksgiving when I was a kid. I’ve mentioned before that my mom was not much of a cook. In her defense, as I’ve said, she was a single mom who worked ungodly hours and even had she been home, it just wasn’t her passion. Thanksgivings that I remember were fairly rushed because her long term b/f worked as a train engineer and we always had Thanksgiving dinner at like 2pm so he could get to work. Always pissed off my brother, sister and myself. I think that, being the children of divorce, we wanted that whole Norman Rockwell ideal on holidays and that just doesn’t happen in real life. I remember a fairly dry turkey, stuffing that was actually pretty good, mashed taters, the ubiquitous sweet potatoes covered in marshmallows which I still love, (on a side note, I remember the year my brother wanted something different and made sweet potatoes with oj in them and no marshmallows. No one ate them lol. Sorry, Steve.), plus two store bought pies- pumpkin and pecan.

Nowadays, even before I blogged, I go a bit more all out. Holidays give me an excuse to make all those seasonal things that I’ve had tabbed in cookbooks and magazines for like 37 years. The end result is enough food to feed 478 people which was great when I had a ton of people at home, not so much now, especially this year when there will be only 5 of us here. But will that stop me? No. I’ll still make far too much and be grateful we are able to do so. That will include a pumpkin pie or two, a pecan pie and quite possibly this cheesecake.

One of the holiday-ish recipes I have had tabbed forever was this recipe. I found it in a 2006 issue of Bon Appetit, their 50th anniversary issue which was pretty awesome as magazines go.

Now, if you try this, like I told my husband, remember, this is a cheesecake, not a typical pumpkin pie. So it’s tangier and the texture is different. But trust me, this is NOT a bad thing. The crust and the topping are one and the same, just used differently. Both are crunchy, sweet enough to be a good foil to the filling and topping and just plain yummy. The filling is creamy, spicy, slightly tangy and nice and pumpkiny.  I doubled the recipe (because it used only a partial can of pumpkin and I HATE that) and added a good bit more in the way of spices as well as some vanilla plus the crust/crumbs didn’t have any spice at ALL which bored me so I added some there too. If you like pumpkin pie, if you like cheesecake, if you like “normal” pumpkin cheesecake, you need to try this one. It’s pretty yummy and I’m glad I doubled the recipe though I’m sure my thighs and hips aren’t so happy with me. For the record, I’m posting this in the quantities they used, If you want to double it as I did, it’s easy enough to do :-)

You know the drill…

This looks like it has a lot of steps and ingredients, but really, it all comes together quickly since the bulk of the ingredients are just the spices.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Streusel Bars

  • Crust/crumb topping-
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 3/4 cup old fashioned oatmeal
  • Filling-
  • 1 8 ounce package cream cheese, room temp
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • Topping-
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Butter a 9 inch square pan (or use something like Bakers Joy which is what I did) and set aside. Have ready a 9×13 inch rimmed baking sheet.
  2. To make the crust/crumbs, combine the flour, salt, brown sugar and spices. Using a pastry cutter, cut in the cold butter until it resembles small crumbs. Stir in the pecans and oats.
  3. Press 3 1/2 cups of the mixture firmly into the bottom of the 9 inch pan to form the crust. Spread the rest of the mixture onto the 13×9 inch pan. Put both in the preheated oven.
  4. Bake the sheet pan for about 15 minutes or until golden brown, stirring once or twice during baking. When it’s done, break it up into smaller bits and set aside. For the crust, bake for about 30 minutes, until golden brown and firm.
  5. For filling- Using a hand mixer, combine all the filling ingredients. Beat until smooth. Pour onto the hot crust and return to the oven.
  6. Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes, until it is set, looks dry at the center and is beginning to puff up around the edges.
  7. While it bakes, make the topping. Simply combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.
  8. When cheesecake is done, remove from the oven and spread the topping over it. Return to the oven for five minutes. Take out and set onto a rack to cool completely, about 2 hours. When it is totally cool, take the reserved broken up crumbs and sprinkle evenly over the cheesecake. Press down lightly to make them adhere. Chill the cheesecake until cold. To serve, use a sharp knife dipped in hot water to make clean cuts.

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3 thoughts on “Pumpkin Cheesecake Streusel Bars

  1. If I remember correctly, it was made with fresh grated sweet potatoes, raisins, and walnuts — and orange juice, as you mentioned. Yes, it was rather disgusting.

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