pumpkin-cheesecake-brownies‘Tis the season for all things pumpkin spiced. I’m racking my brain, trying to remember when this fall craze even became a ‘thing’. I mean, I’ve been eating pumpkin pie since my dawn of time… but the pumpkin spiced everything seems to have gradually evolved over the last decade.

Thanks, Starbucks.

No, seriously… Thanks, Starbucks, because I loves me some pumpkin flavored goodies and you’ve ensured they will be in my face, everywhere I look, for all eternity.

I also loves me some fudgy bittersweet chocolate brownies. And this is a no brainer flavor combination. A one-two-punch that’ll knock your taste buds right on their little asses.

A Culinary TKO.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bittersweet Chocolate Brownies
(makes 24 good sized brownies)
2 1/2 cups bittersweet chocolate (divided)
1 tbsp espresso powder
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
4 eggs (room temperature)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
4 oz cream cheese
1/2 cup pureed pumpkin
3 tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 egg

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 9 x 13″ baking pan, then line it with parchment paper leaving overhang on the sides for easy removal.

Melt the chocolate, espresso powder and butter in a heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring until smooth. Off the heat, whisk in both sugars then let everything cool slightly. Whisk in the eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, cinnamon and salt, then spread the batter in the prepared pan.

In a medium mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until it’s free of lumps, then add in the pumpkin, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Add in the egg and beat until combined.

Using a tablespoon, drop globs of the cheesecake batter on top of the brownie batter in evenly spaced rows. Use the back of a knife to swirl the cheesecake batter through the brownie batter to make a masterpiece of a marble pattern. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup bittersweet chocolate chips all over the top. Because, why not?

pumpkin-cheesecake-brownies-3Bake in the preheated oven for 40 – 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let the brownies cool to room temperature before lifting them out of the pan. Cut them into 24 good sized brownies.

Now, this step is crucial for brownie success. Pour yourself a cold glass of milk (or crack open a pumpkin porter), curl up in a comfy chair, turn on the latest episode of your favorite flavor of trashy t.v., and enjoy every last bite of pumpkiny, chocolatey goodness.

pumpkin-cheesecake-brownies-2OMFG. SO GOOD.