Super rich, fudgy, and downright delicious, these pumpkin cheesecake brownie bars with peanut butter cups are the ultimate pumpkin dessert. Made with a layer of thick chocolatey brownies, topped with silky pumpkin cheesecake and dark chocolate peanut butter cups, the three layers come together into the most decadent, rich sweet squares of ultimate goodness. Why choose between cheesecake and brownies when you can have both?
(links below are the gluten free & celiac safe products I used in this recipe)
- 2/3 cup melted refined coconut oil
- 1 heaping cup dark chocolate chips (if using a chocolate bar, chop into small chunks)
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 3/4 cup coconut sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup + 2 tablespoons gluten free 1:1 flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips
- 8 oz cream cheese, softened and room temperature
- 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup plain greek yogurt, room temperature
- 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 13 mini dark chocolate peanut butter cups, for the topping
Spray an 8 x 8 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom and sides with parchment paper. Allow the parchment paper to overhang on all sides so it’s easy to lift the bars out when done.
In a medium microwave safe bowl, add melted coconut oil and dark chocolate. Microwave in 30 second intervals, stirring after each until chocolate is melted and smooth. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, either using a hand or stand mixer, mix together the eggs, coconut sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix on medium speed until the eggs become pale and the mixture is thick, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Slowly pour the melted chocolate into the egg mixture and mix on low until combined. Add gluten free flour, baking powder, salt, and chocolate chips, mixing on low speed until combined.
Spread brownie batter evenly into prepared baking dish, set aside.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
In a large mixing bowl, either using a hand or stand mixer, mix together the cream cheese, coconut sugar, and salt on low/medium-low speed until smooth. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula. Add egg and vanilla extract, mix until combined. Scrape down the bowl again, then add the greek yogurt, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon. Mix until combined.
Gently pour the pumpkin cheesecake batter on top of the brownies and spread into an even layer. Cut the mini dark chocolate peanut butter cups in half and place evenly on top.
Bake for 70 to 80 minutes, or until cheesecake is done. To check cheesecake doneness, gently shake the pan. If the cheesecake is nearly set and only a small portion of the center jiggles slightly, it is done. Remove from oven and cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, then transfer to the refrigerator to cool completely for at least 2 hours or until the bottom of the pan is completely cooled.
Lift the bars out of the pan with the parchment paper and slice.
It’s best not to leave the bars in the pan to cool overnight as the parchment paper becomes soft and becomes difficult to remove from the pan without tearing.
Recipe inspired by ‘Butternut Bakery‘
Keywords: pumpkin cheesecake, brownie bars, gluten free cheesecake, peanut butter cups