Double duty~~that’s what these ‘Spiced Pumpkin Pecan Oatmeal Bars’ are~~ well, really triple or quadruple duty! They’re not real sweet, so they can handle the cream cheese icing and chocolate ganache. If you don’t want to do that, then don’t!! Leave them ‘au naturale’! You might want to eat them as a snack, for breakfast or as a dessert. You can bake them as ‘bars’, but you also might want to dollop them on a cookie sheet, press them down a little, and make nice big chewy soft cookies. Slather a little whipped cream cheese on one, top with another cookie and you have a cookie sandwich! These are gluten-free (for some!) and have the good healthy coconut oil in them~~if you haven’t checked out the health effects of coconut oil, then you’re missing some valuable information for your diet!
Makes: 48+ bars
Preheat oven to 350
What you need:
1 15 oz can pumpkin puree
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp Jamaican allspice (or regular allspice)
2 beaten eggs
1/3 cup coconut oil
6 cups old-fashioned oats
½ cup self-rising white cornmeal
1 cup dried cranberries
1 ½ cups chopped nuts (pecans or walnuts)
Cream Cheese Icing:
2 cups whipped cream cheese (softened in microwave about 20 seconds)
¾ cup confectionery sugar
Chocolate Ganache Drizzle (optional)
What you do:
In a large mixing bowl, combine the pumpkin condensed milk, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and blend well. Add the eggs and oil and blend. Begin adding in the oatmeal one cup at a time and blend. Sprinkle on the cornmeal and blend. The mixture will be thick. Work in the cranberries and nuts.
(Note: I baked in two 8×11 tart pans. If you don’t have that, then a cookie sheet works!) Pat and pack mixture (using your hands) into a cooking spray coated cookie sheet (approximate size 11×17 or slightly larger) where the bottom has been lined with parchment paper. Bake in a pre-heated 350 oven about 22-25 minutes.
Let cool completely. Combine the whipped cream cheese and confectionery sugar and ice the bars. Drizzle with chocolate ganache (optional) using a squeeze plastic container. Cut into your desired size ‘bars.’
These freeze very well!
©Alice D’Antoni Phillips Ally’s Kitchen