The boys are on their fall break this week, and we’ve been in super relaxed mode around here. As the boys get older, a break from the routine of school is more welcomed than ever. We’ve been visiting our favorite parks early in the morning when it’s cool and not crowded – the high temps are still in the mid-90’s. I could sit and watch my boys dig, climb, chase, and pretend for hours. They were so meant to live outside, and when they are in their element, this mama can just enjoy seeing them play until they drop.
A couple weeks ago, my mom and I had a breakfast date and then visited a nearby bookstore. As we were browsing, I found the Better Homes and Gardens 100 Best Pumpkin Recipes issue and made these Chocolate-Swirled Pumpkin Bars from it. It’s a beautiful collection of the most amazing recipes! If you are in the mood for all things pumpkin, pick up a copy and I guarantee you will be inspired to bake!
That chocolate swirl is really more of a chocolate cheesecake swirl, and the mini chocolate chips are everything! My boys could not get enough of these, and they were the perfect way to ring in the new season. I mostly followed the recipe as written (yay me!), and the only things I did differently was bake it in a slightly larger pan, and add the ingredients in a slightly different order. It worked out just fine, and I cut it into 40 bars so it would definitely be a great option for feeding a crowd.
Well, we are off to the park before it gets too hot. Happy fall to us. Hope you have a great week!
Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #lovelylittlekitchen
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- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 4 eggs
- 15 ounce can pure pumpkin puree
- 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips, divided
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon milk
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a half sheet pan (13 by 18 inches) with nonstick spray.
- In a large bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ground cloves. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream sugar and oil together on medium speed, and then add eggs one at a time. Add pumpkin puree, and mix until smooth and creamy.
- Add the flour and spice mixture to the pumpkin batter a little at a time, mixing on low speed and scraping down the sides as needed.
- Pour the pumpkin batter into the baking pan in an even layer, and clean the mixing bowl. Set aside.
- In a small microwavable bowl, heat 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips for 30 seconds. Stir and then microwave 10 seconds at a time until they are completely melted.
- Add the melted chocolate and cream cheese to the mixing bowl, and mix on medium speed. Add the sugar, egg and milk and mix until well incorporated.
- Spoon dollops of the cream cheese mixture on top of the pumpkin batter and use a butter knife to swirl together.
- Sprinkle remaining chocolate chips evenly over the top. Bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
- Cool completely, then cover and refrigerate.
This recipe is slightly adapted from the Better Homes and Gardens 100 Best Pumpkin Recipes Issue 2016.