This post was originally published in October 2014. I’ve updated the pictures and tweaked the recipe slightly to be even better.
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Swirl Brownies
Once upon a time I made a rich chocolatey brownie swirled with with a smooth pumpkin cheesecake and enjoyed one piece after another. Today, I’m eating a bowl of ramen noodles, sitting in my cold office, and staring at these long gone brownies wishfully. Just look at that dark chocolate and pumpkin cheesecake layer!
This is a standard brownie recipe with pumpkin mixed in for extra pumpkin layer. Then I swirled in a cheesecake layer. Half of that cheesecake layer is plain and half is pumpkin cheesecake. That makes the pretty two-toned effect.
The brownie is thick, dense and soft. Not too chewy thanks to the addition of pumpkin, but rich like a brownie should be. When I tweaked the recipe. I added an extra egg for more chewy brownie texture.
How to make pumpkin swirl brownies
Getting the pretty swirl on top isn’t too hard. I chose to use only about 3/4 of the pumpkin mixture and then regretted it because I wanted more cheesecake on top. Take your pick on how much cheesecake batter to use. Using less will probably make prettier swirls, but more will taste better.
I simply spoon the cheesecake mixture on top in strips and then take a butter knife or toothpick and run it through the batter to make a criss cross pattern. Then swirl it in a couple circles for good measure. Be careful not to over-swirl or it will turn into mud.
Let me know in the comments if you make this recipe. I think it would be perfect for a fall potluck or party, maybe even Thanksgiving dessert.
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup canned pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup cocoa
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1/3 cup canned pumpkin
- 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease and four a 9 x 13 inch baking pan. Beat together melted butter, sugar, pumpkin, eggs and vanilla together in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the cocoa, flour, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix together until combined. Pour batter into prepared pan.
- To make the cheesecake filling, beat together cream cheese, sugar egg and vanilla in a medium bowl. Reserve about 2/3 of a cup of this mixture. This will be the white cheesecake swirl layer. Mix the pumpkin into the remaining cheesecake mixture. You will have to colors of cheesecake batter. Starting with the white batter, spoon the mixture onto the brownie batter in thin rows. Then do the same with the pumpkin cheesecake batter. Don’t worry if they touch or its not perfect. It’s art. Run a butter knife through the batter in a grid pattern to get the swirled look. Don’t over do it.
- Bake at 350 F for 20-23 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool completely and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before slicing. Makes 24 brownies.
This recipe first appeared on Uncommon Designs last month where I am a contributor!
Follow along on my pumpkin, cheesecake and chocolate craze with these other recipes!