Meet Alex Caspero
Alex Caspero is a Registered Dietitian, New York Times Bestselling Plant-Based Chef and mom of two. She aims to cut through the nutrition noise by providing real-life, nourishing tips for body and mind. Learn more about Alex.
Now you don’t have to choose between pumpkin or pecan pie! Have both with these healthy vegan pumpkin pie bars with a pecan crust.
Pecan on the bottom, pumpkin pie on top, it’s a Thanksgiving party in your mouth. These vegan pumpkin pie bars are a dessert showstopper that will wow everyone.
Plus, these squares are both gluten-free and vegan so they accommodate the eating preferences of almost anyone at your holiday table. I’ve made these bars evert year since I first created them back in 2014 and they are a major hit every time. You know it’s a good dessert when these bars are gone before anyone’s touched the regular pumpkin pie!
The best part about these bars is that they are easier to put together than traditional pie. The pecan pie base is made in just minutes in a food processor and the pumpkin filling comes together in no time.
Once you try these pumpkin bars, it’ll be hard to go back to regular pie again.
Because I can never choose which pie flavor I love more, I’ve decided to combine my two favorites– pumpkin pie and pecan pie– into one dreamy bar. Problem solved!
I cannot wait for you to make this one! One of my favorite fall desserts with rave reviews from readers who’ve tried it. Typically, when I bake desserts for the blog it involves at least 2-3 rounds of testing. One-to-two attempts to get it right, and another to double check the recipe and photograph. With all that extra food, I usually become everyone’s favorite co-worker.
After I made these bars, BL persuasively recommended the leftovers not see the interior of my office. Ha! Good thing they freeze well.
To make these bars, you’ll need ingredients for both the pecan crust and the creamy pumpkin pie filling.
While they are perfect on their own, the dollop of coconut whipped cream on top completes the pie experience. I used my basic coconut whipped cream recipe (tutorial here) and added a sprinkle of cinnamon. Top with finely chopped pecans and these bars are a complete showstopper.
Line a 8×8 inch baking square pan with a parchment paper overhang. This helps for easy removal of the bars once they are completely cooled. To do this, cut two large strips of parchment paper longer than the baking dish, then overlap in the middle.
To start, you’ll make the pecan crust by place 2 1/2 cups pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Then, add in the butter and pulse again until combined. The texture should be like wet sand.
Press the pecan pie filling into the prepared baking dish and bake for 8-10 minutes until just golden brown.
In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup and cornstarch until dissolved. Then, place that alongside the the remaining ingredients in the base of the same food processor and blend until creamy, scraping down the sides as needed.
If you don’t have all of the individual spices, you can substitute in 2 1/2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice instead.
Pour the filling onto the pecan crust and bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until completely set. The only downside to these bars is you have to let them cool completely before serving. Which is complete torture when your whole house smells like cinnamon, nutmeg and toasted nuts.
Who has the patience to wait hours before taking a bite?! My advice- make them in the evening, and place them in the refrigerator before you head to bed.
Instead of enjoying dessert after a large holiday meal, like Thanksgiving, I prefer to indulge the next morning. My day-after ritual involves relaxing on the couch while outfitted with a Christmas movie, oversized cup of black coffee, and a giant plate of pie from the evening before.
I’ve been doing this since I was a kid, and it’s my favorite memory of Thanksgiving with my family. Even though we were a four woman household, we usually passed on Black Friday sales to cuddle on the couch and pass around Thanksgiving leftovers. While my sisters were active members of the turkey sandwich club, Friday was my pie day.
Trust me when I say that these bars pair well with coffee. Grab a blanket, grab a book, and relax on the couch– coffee (or tea!) in one hand, these bars in the other.
If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, and tag your Instagram photos with #delishknowledge . I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking!Print
Pumpkin Bars that taste like pumpkin pie, with half the effort The best part about these bars is that they are easier to put together than traditional pie. Once you try these vegan pumpkin pie bars, it’ll be hard to go back to regular pie again.
Creamy Pumpkin Pie Filling:
*For best results, place the can of full-fat coconut milk in the fridge. After opening, carefully remove the top layer of thick cream. If your coconut milk is too watery, omit it all together as too much liquid in these bars won’t allow them to set up correctly.
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