When Fall comes there is one thing I am most excited about. The return of canned pumpkin on the shelves! I start out small. Buying maybe 4 cans of pumpkin on my first spotting. Then I get a bit crazy. I need to stock up for the rest of the year. How can I not have 10 or so cans of pumpkin in my pantry by mid-October? And what do I use these cans and cans of pumpkin for? Healthier recipes!
Pumpkin is a great ingredient in baking, cooking and no-bake recipes such as this one. It’s simple and easy to use and best of all… it’s super tasty and healthy! Now I’ve already been making my pumpkin waffles, pumpkin muffins and even a pumpkin oatmeal shake. But I hadn’t yet tried anything with pumpkin and cheesecake before. So this past weekend I decided to try out a no-bake recipe for pumpkin cheesecake bars. And they were delicious.
If you have a can of pumpkin lying around you have to try it!
Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars
- 1 package (8 oz.) neufchatel cheese, softened*
- 1 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/3 cup agave nectar (or 1/2 cup sugar)
- 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1 tub (8 oz.) Cool Whip Free whipped topping, thawed, divided
- 1 package graham crackers (about 24), crushed
- 4 tablespoons light butter, melted
Line an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish with plastic wrap. Mix graham cracker crumbs and melted butter until the crumbs resemble moist sand. Push crumb mixture into dish with your fingers evenly to create a level crust on the bottom. Make sure to get the crumbs into the corners of the dish as well.
Beat cream cheese, pumpkin, agave and pumpkin pie spice with electric mixer on low speed for one minute. Increase speed to medium and mix for another 3 minutes or until no lumps are visible. Gently stir in 2-1/2 cups of the whipped topping. Cover and refrigerate remaining whipped topping for later use.
Spoon cream cheese mixture into crust and refrigerate 3 hours or overnight. Serve topped with remaining whipped topping. Store leftover cheesecake in refrigerator.
*How to Soften Cream Cheese
Place completely unwrapped package of cream cheese in microwavable bowl. Microwave on HIGH 10 to 15 seconds or until slightly softened. If you cannot find neufchatel cheese in your grocery store just go for the reduced fat cream cheese. Same thing, different name.
Serves 16 | 5 WW+ Points