It’s almost fall!!! Even though we are still suffering thru summer temps here in Tennessee, with less than 2 weeks left until October, it really is nearly fall… and I can’t wait!
I love all that fall involves! I LOVE cool crisp air (at least in some parts of the world!), chunky sweaters, warm fall drinks, and all of the fall flavors… especially pumpkin!!!
A Favorite Fall Flavor
And what is better than a pumpkin dessert? A yummy rich pumpkin dessert… with chocolate! So, if you are a fan of chocolate (like me), and a fan of pumpkin (like me!), then you are going to LOVE these pumpkin chocolate-chip bars! This would be a perfect dessert to enjoy while you and your family get your hygge on!!!
Delicious Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars
I found these bars a while back in an old Everyday Food magazine. If you are not familiar with Everyday Food, it was the little monthly magazine from the same folks that publish Martha Stewart Living. Everyday Food was published from 2003 until 2012 in digest form. It was a great resource with recipes aimed more at home cooks than chefs, and great special issues like the “Collectible Cookie Issue” that I found this recipe in!
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars, And Quick & Easy Recipe
When I saw this recipe, the bars looked extra yummy! And what was even better, is that when I tried them, they were as easy to make as they were delicious!
The pumpkin puree gives these bars that wonderful fall flavor that we all love! But it also helps to make these bars wonderfully moist!
It is best to line your baking dish with aluminum foil to help you lift your bars out of the pan. This will also make cutting the bars much easier!
Line your pan with aluminum foil to make cutting your bars much easier!
The butter in this recipe gives these bars an almost fudgy crumb similar to a brownie (of course without the cocoa). These bars have just the right amount of sweetness, in my opinion! I used coconut sugar when I made them, which gave them a darker color, almost like gingerbread!
Tasty & Nutritious Ingredients
I have sung the praises of pumpkin before due to its many health benefits! And although when you are looking for a recipe for a great dessert, the health benefits many not be at the top of your concerns!
However, if you are looking for a great “snack cake” that is a little healthier than this standard recipe, I have a few ideas for swaps that would make this an great afternoon snack or breakfast, not just a dessert!
- Decrease the butter to 1 stick and add in ½ cup of unsweetened applesauce (if you really want to go wild, you could replace the entire amount of butter with applesauce, but I would probably try half first!
- Add in 1-2 tablespoons of flax meal to your dry ingredients
- Replace the all-purpose flour with white wheat flour, whole wheat flour, or even a sprouted wheat flour.
- Use dark chocolate or bittersweet chocolate chips instead of milk chocolate chips to decrease the sugar content.
- If you are a nut lover, add 1 cup of chopped pecans or walnuts to the batter when you add the chocolate chips.
- Bars may dry out more quickly if using applesauce instead of butter, so you may choose to store individual bars in freezer for up to 6 months. Wrap each bar in plastic wrap and then keep in freezer bag in the freezer.
And if you don’t really have any desire to “healthify” your pumpkin chocolate chip bars, you have my permission to eat these bars for breakfast or a snack with no changes from the original recipe!! I promise, no judgment from me!
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp pumpkin-pie spice
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 2 sticks butter, softened
- 1 1/4 cup sugar (I used coconut sugar)
- 1 egg large
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup pumpkin puree, canned not pumpkin pie filling
- 1 package chocolate chips 12 oz pk (I use bittersweet)
- Mix all of the dry ingredients in one bowl and set aside.
- Then beat the butter and sugar together.
- Add the eggs and the pumpkin to the butter & sugar mixture.
- Slowly incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet ones, mix well.
- Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
- Bake on 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes
- Allow bake to cool completely before removing from pan.
- Once cool, use foil to remove bars and place them on a large cutting board.
- Cut bars and store in airtight container for 3 day, or freeze them individually wrapped in plastic wrap and placed in a freezer bag for up to 6 months.
Original Recipe published in Everyday Food Holiday 2006 & found on marthastewart.com.
Have you tried these awesome Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars? Do you have any other ideas for “healthifying” them? =) Let me know what you think in the comments below!!