I’m so excited to be taking The Improv Cooking Challenge with Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker again! October’s Challenge – when I made my Apple Crumble Cheesecake With Caramel Sauce – was so much fun, I can’t wait to see what everyone’s made this month!
I knew I wanted to do something with gingersnaps and something I don’t normally do, so my first thought was some type of cheesecake. My problem: no springform pan and a fear that I wouldn’t figure it out in time for the challenge since this would be my first cheesecake from scratch! The answer: the craving chronicles’ recipe for cheesecake bars. No springform pan necessary!
So easy and so good! Here’s my recipe (adapted from the craving chronicles’ recipe who adapted hers from Kicked Up Cookie Recipes’ version).
- 2 firmly packed cups finely crushed gingersnaps (I prefer the triple ginger variety for lots of punch!)
- 1/4 cup butter, melted
- 1/3 cup organic canned pumpkin
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 3 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened (zap all three for 30 seconds in the microwave or 10 seconds each)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
While your oven is preheating to 325, make the gingersnap crust by mixing the cookies and the butter and then firmly pressing it into a lightly greased 13 x 9 pan. Bake the crust for 10 minutes or until firm and let it cool.
While the crust is cooling, stir the pumpkin, flour and pumpkin pie spice together in a bowl.
In a separate bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Then incorporate the eggs one at a time.
Pour 1 1/2 to 2 cups of the cream cheese mixture into the pumpkin mixture and stir to mix. I preferred having a more pumpkin-y cheesecake, so used 2 cups.
Pour the remaining cream cheese mixture over the gingersnap crust, then pour the pumpkin-cream cheese on top, smoothing it with the back of a spoon or a spatula.
Bake for about 30 minutes until the center is set, then cool the cheesecake at room temperature for an hour before chilling it in the refrigerator and then cutting it into bars.