Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars

I am a big fan of Smart Balance products, especially their butter. Its a simple blend of butter with olive oil so the saturated fat is far less than standard butter. I also like that the ingredients listed make sense and isn’t a list of chemical I can’t pronounce.

These bars were a big hit at a get together I had at my house several weeks ago and they were fun to make.

Yield: 12     (serving size: 1 bar)


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (6 3/4 oz.)

1/2 cup packed brown sugar or (1/4 cup Splenda Brown Sugar Blend)

dash salt

3 tbsp. chilled Smart Balance Stick Butter, cut into small pieces

cooking spray


1 1/4 cups canned unsweetened pumpkin or fresh (see recipe below)

1/2 cup granulated sugar or (1/4 cup sugar + 1/4 cup Splenda Baking Sugar)

1/2 cup packed brown sugar or (1/4 cup Splenda Brown Sugar Blend)

1 (8 oz.) pkg. fat-free cream cheese, softened

1 (8 oz.) pkg. 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened


3/4 cup egg substitute or 6 large egg whites

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1/4 tsp. ground allspice

1 large egg

Remaining Ingredients

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1 tbsp. water

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. To Prepare Crust – lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with  knife. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add flour to pan; cook 5 minutes or until light brown, stirring frequently. Remove pan from heat. Transfer flour to bowl; cool completely.
  3. Place cool flour, 1/2 brown sugar, and salt in a food processor; pulse 5 mtimes or until combined. Add chilled butter; pulse until mixture resembles fine meal. Press 1 cup flour mixture evenly into bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking sprya; reserve remaining flour mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or until crust is lightly browned.
  4. To Prepare Filling – spread pumpkin in even layer on several layers of paper towels; cover witha dditional paper towels. Let stand 5 mintues.
  5. Combine granulated sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar, and cream cheeses in a bowl. Beat with electric mixer at medium speed 2 minutes or until smooth. Scrape pumpkin into bowl using rubber spatula. Add egg substitute or egg whites and next (4) ingredients; beat until smooth. Scrape batter into baked crust.
  6. Combine reserved flour mixture and pecans in a small bowl; sprinkle with 1 tbsp. water. Squeeze handfuls of topping to form large pieces. Crumble over filling.Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes or until filling is firmly set. Remove from heat; cool in pan on wire rack t room temperature. Cut into 12 bars. Serve at room temperature.

Based on recipe from Cooking Light Annual Recipes, 2008

For Fresh Pumpkin

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Remove stem from pumpkin; cut in half crosswise. Scoop out seeds and membranes. Coat cut sides and inside of pumpkin with cooking spray.
  3. Bake, cut sides down, on baking sheet coated with cooking spray at 375 degrees for 1 1/2 hours or until flesh is tender. Let cool. Scoop out flesh; puree in food processor. Drain pulp in colander lined with heavy-duty paper towels or cheesecloth to remove excess liquid.
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