Thursday, November 17, 2011

Improv Challenge - Chocolate Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies

One week until Thanksgiving and you still don't have a dessert?  We are not big fans of Pumpkin Pie, but give us some cheesecake or brownies and we are all set!  This month's IMPROV CHALLENGE   has a new home over at Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker .  Kristen has taken over the series so we can continue sharing!
The theme this month is Pumpkin and Cream Cheese.

These brownies are the best of both worlds!  Rich and decadent, these sweet treats will be a welcome change after you've stuffed yourself silly.

These are made-from-scratch and do take a little extra time, but you can make them 2-3 days in advance and wrap in an air-tight container and refrigerate.

Pumpkin Cheesecake:
  • 3 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
Brownie Batter:
  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 4 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cups butter, cut up
  • 2-1/4 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Line a 13 x 9 x 2 baking pan with foil; extending over the edges of the pan.  Grease and set aside.

In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese and 1 Tbsp. butter on high for 30 seconds.  Add 1/2 cup sugar.  Beat until will combined.  Beat in 1 egg, pumpkin, 1 tsp. vanilla, cinnamon and ginger.  Stir in 1 Tbsp. flour; set aside.

In a small glass bowl, combine chocolate and butter.  Microwave at 30 second intervals until just melted (about 1-1/2 minutes).  Transfer chocolate/butter mixture to mixing bowl.  Gradually add the 2-1/4 cups sugar, beating on low speed until combined.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in milk and vanilla.  Gradually beat in flour mixture just until combined.

Spread chocolate mixture evenly in prepared pan.  Spoon cheesecake mixture in several mounds on top of the chocolate batter.  Using a spatula or spoon, gently swirl the cream cheese mixture into the batter.
 Sprinkle with walnuts
(I could have swirled them a little more)
Bake 60 minutes or until center is just set.  
Cool on wire rack
Use foil to lift brownies out of pan
Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 3 days
These are very rich - I cut them into 1 inch bites
The pumpkin flavor is very subtle and I'll bet your guests will be.....
Gobble Gobbling these up!

Happy Thanksgiving All!
Makes 36 servings
Joy of Desserts
Mom's Crazy Cooking


  1. These look amazing, Patti! I want to dive right in :)

  2. Hello fellow Improv Blogger. Your recipe looks fantastic! Cannot wait to try it. Come visit. We have pumpkin velvet cake.

  3. I'm definitely going to make these Yummy Brownies!

    Thanks for Sharing :)

    ~ Jill

  4. those look really really yummy!! i wish my stomach wasn't doing somersaults because i would really like to eat a whole pan of those brownies right now

  5. Definitely adding these to my must make immediately recipe pile. These look delicious!

  6. These look sooo good! My husband loves brownies, so maybe I can sneak the pumpkin in without him knowing :)

  7. Love the pic of the pumpkin swirls on top-sounds great:@)

  8. I love desserts with swirls in them! They're so much more fun to eat! I guess it's the inner child in me...

  9. Um, yes please! I'll take two :) They look wonderful.

  10. Great sounding recipe and they look divine.

    If you haven't already, I'd love for you to check out my Improv Cooking Challenge recipe: Praline Pumpkin Cheesecake.

    Cook Lisa Cook

  11. oh these look really yummy!! need to try this!

  12. What a great way to incorporate pumpkin! Love this!

  13. Sometimes "made from scratch" is so worth it! Looks yummy :) Stopping by from the Improv Challenge!

  14. I love the swirled effect of the brownies! Gorgeous.
    I did the challenge too and I made a pumpkin cheesecake. I'd love for you to check it out.

  15. I love pumpkin, cheesecake and brownies! I never thought about putting all three together. Thanks for the recipe idea, Patti.

    Oh, and my Mom is a Patti with an I too!


  16. You just cannot go wrong when you combine chocolate and cheesecake! Those bars are YUMMY!!

  17. Hey! Great Thanksgiving treat!
    Come to A Themed Baker's Sunday where this week's theme is Thanksgiving treats. Be sure to vote on the side bar for next week's theme as well! Happy Holidays!

    Cupcake Apothecary

  18. Lookin good! Brownies are a hit or miss with me but I'm sure to love them with chocolate, and pumpkin and cheesecake!

  19. These look so delicious. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Happy Thanksgiving.


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