Pumpkin Bars

So lately I have had the privilege of working for a local Williams-Sonoma, the couture store for professional and home cookware.

Before reading my next post, I should stipulate that nothing I write has been evaluated, validated, or endorsed by any representatives at Williams-Sonoma. These are my opinions, and mine alone (except for the recipes, which I did not make myself!)

That being said, I think it is a great store, with lots of fresh ideas. I also love the Williams-Sonoma blog, The Blender, which is also well-known for having lots of gluten-free and allergy-friendly ideas.

The following recipe is something I discovered on food.com (Click here to go to recipe) Pumpkin bars with the use of pumpkin butter and yellow cake mix. Excellent taste, very easy (shall we say, semi-homemade?), and easy to cut and take with you anywhere!

Lots of folks were coming into our store, saying that they had tried pumpkin bars using Williams-Sonoma’s Pecan Pumpkin Butter.Pecan Pumpkin Butter

I have the pleasure of enjoying this pumpkin butter in the store on a regular basis, while simultaneously fearing for my waistline!

Here is the progression of the making of these pumpkin bars. Notice that I have used the Trader Joe’s brand pumpkin butter for this recipe, which we happened to have on hand at home. Any pumpkin butter seems to work out just fine!

Candice Kumai, who I recently profiled on this blog, also has a homemade recipe here, which would make a nice after-dinner-party gift for folks!

 After reserving one cup of yellow cake mix for the top, I mixed in the left-over yellow cake mix with the butter and one egg to make the crust.

 I found that pressing in the crust was harder to do with a spoon. Clean hands worked out quite nicely!

   I originally thought the pumpkin was too runny, but it turned out quite nicely!

   The top crust is drier, and flakier. It reminded me of mixing the dough for scones! Do not be alarmed, as it is supposed to be drier on top (and probably absorbs some of that pumpkin in the middle layer!). I omitted the additional 1/4 cup of sugar from the crust, and it was still delicious!

Voila! Baked to perfection and just the right texture…not too cake-y, not too crumbly.

These babies are easy to take to work, book club functions, bake sales, etc.

Enjoy!

Special diets:

Gluten-free:

Check out these items I found via a quick google search! I have heard great things about the Cherrybrook Kitchen mixes, but try it out. I would omit the extra flour requested for the top crust. 

Vegan:

Check this out! And baking in ramekins? ALWAYS good! These pumpkin cream cheese bars look equally yummy. I also like the latter recipe’s use of spelt flour. Thankfully, pumpkin butter alone (despite its name) is vegan!

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