Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Would people love fall that much if there weren’t pumpkins? I don’t think so. In recent years, we are witnessing a massive pumpkin popularisation. People started to include pumpkin in literally everything: chicken soup, bread, pasta, mousse, frosting, stews… The list is endless. And, I have to admit, I fell under this influence, too. Today, I’m going to share with you my favorite pumpkin (and fall) dessert: pumpkin cheesecake bars with shortbread crust.

How to Make Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust?

Making pumpkin cheesecake bars is easy-peasy. You need a few minutes of mixing, a few minutes of crashing cookies, and some time for baking.

Preparation time will also depend on if you are going to use canned pumpkin puree or make homemade one; if you are going to make shortbread crust from scratch, use store-bought one, or make one with ground shortbread cookies like I did.

So, I’ll share with you my way of preparation that proved to be the most convenient and delicious at the same time.

Step 1: Pumpkin puree preparation

To make pumpkin puree, start by cleaning your pumpkin from its seeds. Cut the pumpkin into pieces and put them in the preheated oven for 40-55 minutes until it becomes soft on the inside.

Baking time will depend on the pumpkin you are using. I used butternut squash and was baking it for 45 minutes. The outer side will probably be harder, so it is important to check if it’s baked by using the fork and trying to cut into the pumpkin with that fork.

When the pumpkin is baked, peel the pumpkin meat off and place it into a food processor. Mix it until you get a nice puree.

Now add some cinnamon, nutmeg and one tablespoon of flour. Blend these ingredients into the puree, and leave it aside for now.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Step 2: Making the crust

To make the crust, I used 7 oz of shortbread cookies and some water.

Place cookies into the food processor and pulse until you get the crumbs. Pour 4 oz of water over the crumbs and stir well.

Push the mixture on the bottom of the pan and bake the crust for 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Don’t worry if there will be some cracks. That’s because this shortbread crust is crumbly and made with water instead of butter.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Step 3: Mixing the cheesecake filling

Start by putting sour cream, cream cheese, sugar, vanilla extract and flour into one bowl, and mix well. When all the ingredients are blended together, it is time to start adding eggs one by one and whip the mixture each time. This part is done very quickly.

Step 4: Bringing pumpkin and cheesecake filling together

Pour cheesecake filling on the baked crust. Now use a teaspoon to randomly place pumpkin puree in the cheesecake filling.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Step 5: Baking and serving

Pumpkin cheesecake bars with shortbread crust are done when you notice a golden surface. So, after 40-45 minutes. Don’t overbake it! If the dessert is still jiggly, it means that it is perfectly baked!

Set the dessert aside, leave it to set properly, and don’t cut it for at least one hour.

As I said, it is best when you leave it in the fridge overnight. But, if you are really impatient, wait at least one hour just to make sure you will be able to cut it properly.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Do You Eat Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars Hot or Cold?

Like every other cheesecake, this one is better when eaten cold. In fact, it is the best the second day, after a whole night of refrigerating when the flavors blend together and make perfect flavor harmony.

But, if you need a last-minute dessert idea, these pumpkin cheesecake bars won’t disappoint you! I’m always impatient to wait for this dessert to cool, and I indulge in it while it’s still warm. Let’s just say that it is hard to stop on only one bar.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread Crust

Laura from Julie’s Cafe Bakery
This dessert is like a blend of pumpkin pie and cheesecake. In two words: perfect combination.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 40 mins
Cooling Time 1 hr
Total Time 3 hrs
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24 bars
Calories 133 kcal

Ingredients
  

Pumpkin Filling

  • 1 cup Pumpkin puree You will need a half of the pumpkin to make the homemade one.
  • 1 tbsp Flour
  • ½ tsp Cinnamon
  • tsp Ground nutmeg

Shortbread Crust

  • 7 oz Shortbread cookies
  • 4 oz Warm water

Cheesecake Filling

  • 1 cup Sour cream
  • 11 oz Cream cheese
  • 5 tbsp Sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 3 tbsp All-purpose flour
  • 3 Eggs

Instructions
 

Pumpkin Filling

  • Cut your pumpkin and clean it from seeds.
  • Put the pumpkin in the preheated oven for 40 to 55 minutes. The outer side will probably be harder, so it is important to check if it's baked by using the fork and trying to cut into the pumpkin with that fork.
  • When the pumpkin is baked, peel the pumpkin meat off and place it into a food processor. Mix it until you get a nice puree.
  • Now add some cinnamon, nutmeg and one tablespoon of flour. Blend these ingredients into the puree, and leave it aside for now.

Shortbread Crust

  • Place cookies into the food processor and pulse until you get the crumbs. Pour 4 oz of water over the crumbs and stir well.
  • Push the mixture on the bottom of the pan and bake the crust for 10 minutes in the preheated oven (350 °F). Don't worry if there will be some cracks. That's because this shortbread crust is crumbly and made with water instead of butter.

Cheesecake Filling

  • Start by putting sour cream, cream cheese, sugar, vanilla extract and flour into one bowl, and mix well.
  • When all the ingredients are blended together, it is time to start adding eggs one by one and whip the mixture each time.

Putting Everything Together

  • Pour cheesecake filling on the baked crust. Now use a teaspoon to randomly place pumpkin puree in the cheesecake filling.

Baking and Serving

  • Pumpkin cheesecake bars with shortbread crust are done when you notice a golden surface. So, after 40-45 minutes. Don't overbake it! If the dessert is still jiggly, it means that it is perfectly baked!
  • Set the dessert aside, leave it to set properly, and don't cut it for at least one hour. To get the best result, leave it in the fridge overnight and serve then.

Notes

Keep the pumpkin cheesecake bars in the fridge and eat them within 4 days.

Nutrition

Serving: 1barCalories: 133kcalCarbohydrates: 10.3gProtein: 2.7gFat: 9.3gSaturated Fat: 4.3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.7gMonounsaturated Fat: 3.5gTrans Fat: 1.1gCholesterol: 40.7mgSodium: 67.9mgPotassium: 69.4mgFiber: 0.5gSugar: 4.6gVitamin A: 116.1IUVitamin C: 1.6mgCalcium: 27.1mgIron: 0.5mg
Keyword pumpkin cheesecake bars, shortbread crust

  • Laura is the owner of Julie's Cafe Bakery. She started this blog with her grandma Julie who introduced her to the amazing world of cooking. She likes to experiment with different flavors, and her favorite flavors combo is chicken with coconut milk, curry and peanuts!