Even though Thanksgiving has come and gone, that doesn’t mean pumpkin treats have to go too! These pumpkin pie bars are the perfect treat to keep the whole family happy all winter long, without tons of prep work!
I decided to grace the Thanksgiving dessert table with these delish bars and with so many people wanting to take them home, I knew I had to share the recipe!
Just a side note before getting into the ingredients: It will be much more accurate to measure out the graham cracker crumbs once they are already crushed. It would be pretty difficult to try measuring out the proper amount when using the sheets, but roughly 9 sheets of graham cracker should do the trick!
The butter should be measured prior to melting, as it takes up much less space once warmed. Too much butter will make the crust take longer to harden in the oven and could even mean having a soggy crust—yuck!
For the crust:
- 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 5 tbsp. butter, melt
For the filling:
- 15 oz. pumpkin puree (or canned pure pumpkin)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
- 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. pumpkin spice
- 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 8 oz. tub of whipped cream
- pinch of cinnamon/nutmeg
- Preheat your oven to 350F and line a 9×9 baking pan with parchment paper to make the removal of the bars easier later on.
- In a small bowl, mix the ingredients for the crust. It should be roughly the consistency of damp sand, but should not have any clumps. Be sure all pecans are finely chopped and if needed, use a food processor.
- Press the crust mixture into the baking pan and place in the oven for 5-8 minutes before setting aside.
- In a large bowl, combine all ingredients for the filling, starting with the wet ingredients. The amount of spice can be changed depending on preference, but refrain from changing salt and pepper as they accentuate the other spices.
- With the crust still warm, pour the pumpkin batter in the pan and place it in the oven for 45-60 minutes. For a 9×13 baking pan, the timing will be closer to 40-50 minutes.
- Remove from the oven only once the center is no longer jiggly. Set aside to cool on a wire rack and place in the fridge once it is room temperature. Keep refrigerated for one hour up to one day before serving.
- Top with whipped cream, chopped pecans, and a pinch of cinnamon or other spices.
- Happy eating!