Pumpkin Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake Bars

by Lauren | Celiac Teen on November 9, 2009

Say hello to my first grain free experiment. Before your mind wonders, this is not a “eww” or “yuck” experiment. No. This is a “I think I’m dreaming, somebody pinch me, ouch! That hurt, What’d you do that for?” experiment. It’s hunger-curing deliciousness. I had thought about sharing these at school (before I made them of course), but when they were done, I couldn’t let go. So, I’m sharing them with you. That way I don’t actually have to share.

This, in all of its goodness will be my entry into November’s Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free event, hosted by none other than the amazing Elana of Elana’s Pantry. This month is all about grain-free cakes and cupcakes. And since these are cheesecake bars, it’s a perfect fit! This post is also linked to Slightly Indulgent Mondays and Friday Foodie Fix!

I saw this recipe on Playing House, which is written by Amy, and although she’s not gluten free, she is a sweetheart, and her photos are always gorgeous. After seeing this recipe, I filed it away in the depths of my brain. When I had lots of pumpkin leftover from making a good amount of 3 minute cakes, this came to mind (and saved all of that innocent pumpkin)! Also, the recipe wasn’t filled to the brim with flour, so I figured it would be a good first attempt at grain-free baking. And boy was I right.
Its got everything a girl could want: pumpkin, cheese, chocolate, almonds, seasonal spices, and of course, a friend providing the recipe. And I’m going to return the favour. So now you’ve got to make these. Seriously, go. It requires a bit of waiting, so I’d recommend having a strategically placed snack after popping these in the oven. I ate some cheese. I guess it was on the brain…
Pumpkin Chocolate Swirl Cheesecake Bars
Adapted from Amy at Playing House.
Crust Ingredients
100g almond meal (about 1 cup)
2 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp cocoa powder
Filling Ingredients
2 8-ounce blocks cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup pumpkin puree
3 large eggs
3 tbsp almond meal
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ginger
1/8 tsp nutmeg
dash cloves
1/2 tsp salt
4 ounces semisweet chocolate
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line bottom and sides of an 8 inch square pan with tin foil or parchment paper, leaving an overhang on all sides.
2. Combine all crust ingredients until uniform. Press into pan and bake 12 to 15 minutes, until slightly firm. Set aside to cool.
3. Place softened cream cheese in food processor and blend until smooth. Add sugar, pumpkin, eggs, almond meal, spices and salt. Process until combined. Set aside.
4. Place chocolate in microwave safe bowl and microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between each, until melted. Add one cup of pumpkin mixture and stir to combine. Set aside.
5. Pour remaining pumpkin mixture into prepared pan. Drop dollops of chocolate mixture onto pumpkin mixture and swirl with a butter knife. Bake until cheesecake is set, but jiggles slightly when gently shaken, 40 to 50 minutes.
6. Cool in pan. Cover and chill until firm, at least 2 hours (up to 2 days). Using overhang, transfer cake to work surface. Using a knife dipped in hot water (and dried), cut into 16 squares.
7. Enjoy!
Note: I buy my almond meal in 100 g packages from my local grocery store, and used the whole thing. If you don’t, just use one cup – its basically the same thing.
My chocolate sunk under the pumpkin a bit. There is a lot more chocolate than you can see.
I promise.
I love the subtle swirls. Makes the blast of chocolate so much more exciting!
Lots of little squares. Tiny little squares. 2 by 2 inches each.
Oh no. Now I want one again. I just finished this ^ one…
and half of another one.
They’re light, yet rich. Pumpkin-y yet subtle. Seriously good. And its hard to eat more than one (okay, two…) portions because of the richness, so it stays around for awhile. This is good. Very good.
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{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

VeggieGirl October 17, 2010 at 2:00 pm

The swirl is mesmerizing! Love it :)

Jenn October 17, 2010 at 2:01 pm

This looks so delicious!!! I loved her pumpkin cheesecake bars when I saw them too, kudos to you for making them grain free!

WendyGK October 17, 2010 at 2:01 pm

I am getting so enthusiastic about almond flour and these look one more way to try it. (Like maybe tomorrow.)

Anncoo October 17, 2010 at 2:01 pm

This looks easy and delicious! Would like to try some :)

Julia @ Mélanger October 17, 2010 at 2:02 pm

These look delicious. I love almond meal!

Amy I. October 17, 2010 at 2:02 pm

Awww! Lauren, you’re the sweetest! I’m so glad you were able to play around with these to make them work for you, and they look stunningly delicious. I think I might just have to whip up another batch after seeing these again. Big hugs!!

Iris October 17, 2010 at 2:02 pm

I really wish you could just come to my house and bake for me all day long!

Simply... Gluten Free October 17, 2010 at 2:03 pm

This looks amazing, you’re making me hungry!

Juliana October 17, 2010 at 2:03 pm

Oh Lauren, your swirl is absolutely amazing, so pretty…looks yummie, very tempting :-)

Christopher And Tia October 17, 2010 at 2:04 pm

Oh I made similar bars a few weeks back, using a recipe from http://www.themamadramalogues.blogspot.com

they turned out alright, but not quite blog worthy, hehe. I’m going to try these for sure :)

Valerie October 17, 2010 at 2:04 pm

Such pretty swirls! I’m also loving the texture!

sourcreamandjam October 17, 2010 at 2:05 pm

If that tastes as good as it looks, I’d be willing to bet it won’t last long! Yum!

Trissa October 17, 2010 at 2:05 pm

Wow Lauren – your creations are getting better and better! This looks fantastic… really really well done!

Winnie October 17, 2010 at 2:05 pm

YUM! Lauren that looks amazing!
I am getting a bit tired of pumpkin, but I’m going to have to make this at some point!

glutenfreeforgood October 17, 2010 at 2:05 pm

This looks delicious! And a great idea for the Holidays. Perfect timing, thank you. I’m definitely trying this.

Linda October 17, 2010 at 2:06 pm

That looks delicious. You did such a nice job with the swirl. Whenever I swirl something it doesn’t look as good as other pictures. I usually do a nut crust with cheesecake, but the recipe I use also uses some flour. Your almond crust sounds great.

Jill October 17, 2010 at 2:06 pm

These look so delicious! I love that you can adjust recipes to be grain-free. I think your swirls are perfect! :)

Y October 17, 2010 at 2:06 pm

Oh, very pretty! I like your portion sizes too 😀

Mer October 17, 2010 at 2:07 pm

Wow, these are beautiful and look delicious! Never would have thought to use pumpkin and chocolate together… yum!

Heather @ Life, Gluten Free October 17, 2010 at 2:08 pm

Yum! At times like this I wish I wasn’t allergic to eggs!

Doreen October 17, 2010 at 2:08 pm

This really looks good! I’m going to get some pumpkin soon too 😀

Anyway, I’ve linked you as CeliacTeen. Is that okay? Or do you have another blog name so that I can edit my blogroll?

Doreen of dollydoesdesserts

Chelsey October 17, 2010 at 2:09 pm

Oh, sweet Lord this looks good! I am so excited to try cooking with almond flour. Later this week I will get my first shipment in. I’m thinking this will be the first thing I will make. I just roasted a pumpkin today, and I thought ‘Hmm, what am I gonna do with this?’. Now I know.

Isa October 17, 2010 at 2:09 pm

These look so delicious and your swirls are perfect!
Congratulations for making them grain free!

Trish October 17, 2010 at 2:09 pm

You are amazing…. I quite by accident stumbled upon your site …I think I was following the trail of you sushi makers…grin! Anyway…I like what you have here…can I put you on my sidebar link I am starting for those who are celiac?

Amy October 17, 2010 at 2:10 pm

These are beautiful!! Pumpkin and chocolate are fabulous together. And, you’re one step ahead of me again because I haven’t even started to think about Go Ahead Honey for this month. I’m going to be busy this week.

Thanks for linking to Slightly Indulgent Mondays! This is definitely healthier – almond meal is great for those that need to eat grain free and they are a healthy source of fat. And the pumpkin adds such great vitamins, too. :)

Marillyn Beard October 17, 2010 at 2:10 pm

Lauren – the cake looks delicious! Wish I could try it if I had access to almond flour. At least I can enjoy it with my eyes :o) Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Sweet and Savory October 17, 2010 at 2:10 pm

Beautiful – just beautifiul. You are quite accomplished, Lauren.

gfe--gluten free easily October 17, 2010 at 2:11 pm

I don’t know how I missed these before! Stunningly beautiful, Lauren. I love how you shared how you came up with them … you have the mind of a baker for sure. :-) Some serious yum here, dear.


Karen October 17, 2010 at 2:11 pm

I actually want to lick my screen … THAT’S how great these look!!!

The Curious Baker October 17, 2010 at 2:12 pm

it looks lovely, one that I’ll be bookmarking for the future

Diane - The WHOLE Gang October 17, 2010 at 2:12 pm

You are so talented! Thank you for sharing this on Friday Foodie Fix.

Meghan H. November 6, 2010 at 10:34 am

My Mom has celiac and I would love to make her these for Thanksgiving! If I don’t have a food processor do you think I could use a mixer for step 3?

Lauren | Celiac Teen November 8, 2010 at 5:34 pm

Hi Meghan, I don’t see why not. I’m sure it would work – just make sure that there aren’t any lumps!

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