Friday, December 20, 2013

Mini Pumpkin and Cream Cheese Pies

I wanted to make some kind of pumpkin dessert for Thanksgiving this year (yes, I know, this post is a little late).  I couldn't find a recipe that was exactly what I wanted so I decided to put a couple of recipes together instead.  These creamy pumpkin pies turned out great... and they're even better with vanilla ice cream!

I could have just made a pumpkin pie, but that seemed too ordinary.  I found this recipe for individual peanut butter cheesecakes and decided to use it to create a similar pumpkin cheesecake, except that I didn't have enough cream cheese to actually make cheesecake... and who wants to go back to the grocery store on Thanksgiving day?  Not me... so I improvised (pumpkin is a pretty forgiving ingredient so it worked out).  Besides, I wanted pumpkin anyway.  Too much cream cheese would have just gotten in the way!

Mini Pumpkin and Cream Cheese Pies

Makes 12 mini pies

4 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/8 tsp salt
12 oz. cream cheese
1 cup sugar
1 tsp
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
2 eggs
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves (ground)
1/2 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a 12-count muffin tin with 12 cupcake liners.

2.  Mix together graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, sugar (4 Tbsp) and salt until well combined.  Scoop a heaping tablespoon into each cup.  Use the rounded back of the tablespoon to press down into cups and slightly up the sides.  Set aside.

3.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar (1 cup) together until smooth.  Add vanilla and pumpkin.  Beat again until smooth.  While mixer is going, sprinkle in the flour and spices. Then add the eggs one at a time until they are fully incorporated.

4.  Add pumpkin mixture to cups until almost full.

5. Bake for 20 minutes or until centers are set.  Allow to cool to room temperature.  Serve at room temperature or refrigerate and serve later.


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