Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars


For the Crust

1/2 cup unsalted butter

14 full sheets cinnamon graham crackers crushed into crumbs

1/4 cup packed coconut sugar

For the Cheesecake

four 8 Oz. Packages Cream Cheese, softened

1 1/3 cups granulated sugar

4 large eggs at room temperature

1 egg yolk at room temperature

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 cup sour cream at room temperature

one 15 Oz. can pureed pumpkin

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

For the Pecan Streusel

1 cup raw pecans

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2/3 cup flour

3/4 cup packed coconut sugar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup quick-cooking oatmeal

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup chilled unsalted butter cubed

Serve with:

whipped cream and vanilla ice cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Line a 9" x 13" baking pan with parchment paper and spray with cooking oil; set aside.

For the Crust

Melt butter, then add finely ground Graham crackers and sugar and stir until well combined.

Pour into pan and firmly press the crumbs down across the pan into an even layer.

Bake at 350 for 8 minutes, then remove and set aside to cool.

For the Cheesecake Filling

Put cream cheese and sugar into a bowl and beat on medium speed, 5 minutes until light and fluffy.

With mixer still running, add eggs one at a time, then egg yolk, mixing just until the yellow disappears after each egg, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.

Add sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla then mix until well incorporated.

Pour only 4 1/2 cups of this plain cheesecake on top of the cooled crust and evenly spread to the edges.

Place in a freezer while you prepare the pumpkin layer.

For the Pumpkin Cheesecake Layer

Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and ginger to the remaining plain cheesecake batter and mix until well blended.

Pour this pumpkin cheesecake onto the plain cheesecake and carefully spread over the plain cheesecake layer.

Bake Cheesecake Without Streusel

Bake cheesecake uncovered for 30 minutes at 350.

For the Streusel

Meanwhile, add pecans and vanilla extract to food processor, then pulse 3 times to slightly chop up pecans.

Add all remaining topping ingredients and pulse until it resembles coarse pebbles. (See notes if you don’t have a food processor.)

Bake With Streusel

After cheesecake has baked 30 minutes, remove it from the oven and evenly spread streusel over cheesecake.

Return to oven and bake uncovered at 350 for an additional 40 to 50 minutes or until cheesecake is firm around the edges but the center jiggles when shaken (it will finish cooking as it cools).

To Cool

Crack oven door open and allow cheesecake to cool in the oven for one hour.

Remove cheesecake and allow to completely cool on the counter (2 to 3 hours).

Cover tightly and refrigerate at least 6 hours before serving (best if 24).

Serve Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with plenty of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!
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