Pumpkin Pie Bars

Ah, Thanksgiving. You strike again with your lackluster turkey and overwhelming number of side dishes.

It’s always a dash to stake your claim at our Thanksgiving table. The Irish bring every variety of potato, J-Tooch made not one but two versions of stuffing, and well, I have no idea how to cook a turkey.

Yet again, I am on dessert.

Pumpkin Pie Bars
adapted from VeryBestBaking

1 (15 oz.) can Libby’s pure pumpkin
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup quick oats
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup chopped pecans
2 eggs
2 tbsp. pumpkin pie spice (nutmeg and cinnamon come close)

Preheat oven to 375°. In a small bowl, combine flour, oats, 1/2 cup brown sugar and butter (I used my hands. Love a good mess.) Press the mixture on the bottom of an ungreased 13×9 in. pan. Bake for 15 minutes.

While that’s baking, combine granulated sugar, pumpkin, evaporated milk, eggs and spice in a medium bowl. Beat at medium speed until blended. Pour over crust and drop back in the oven to bake for 25 minutes.

In a small bowl, toss the remaining brown sugar and pecans. Sprinkle topping on top of pan and bake for a final 20-25 minutes. Yes, lots of baking time here.

Cool completely before cutting (*this is super important). Best when served warm and topped with whipped cream.

Truth be told, I was hoping for a more “solid” bar, like a brownie or granola bar. While the taste was there, these bars are essentially a mini slice of pumpkin pie. They’re moist and probably better eaten with a fork than as finger food.

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