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Squash Cheesecake Bars

September/October 2007

Your rating: None Average: 4 (33 votes)

Pureed winter squash gives most of the body to these leaner cheesecake bars.



READER'S COMMENT:
"I liked the subtle flavor and right out of the fridge the squares came out very clean when cut with a very sharp knife. They must be served room temperature or even warm - the cold mutes the flavor too much. My husband loves them; and...
Squash Cheesecake Bars Recipe

Makes: 18 bars

Active Time:

Total Time:

Ingredients

  • 9 low-fat graham crackers, (4 1/2 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, (not quick-cooking or steel-cut)
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup sugar, divided
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons nonfat milk
  • 8 ounces nonfat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese, (Neufchâtel), at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup squash puree
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray
  2. Process graham crackers, oats, 2 tablespoons sugar, 1/4 cup flour and butter in a food processor until finely ground. Add milk; pulse until completely moistened.
  3. Transfer the graham cracker mixture to the prepared pan and evenly pat into the bottom. Bake for 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, reduce oven temperature to 325°. Beat both cream cheeses and the remaining 1/2 cup sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium speed until creamy, scraping down the sides occasionally. Beat in squash puree until smooth. Beat in eggs one at a time. Finally, beat in vanilla, cinnamon, salt and the remaining 3 tablespoons flour. Scrape the filling into the pan, spreading evenly over the crust.
  5. Bake until set and the edges are light brown, about 35 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack, then refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cutting into bars.

Tips & Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
  • To make your own squash puree, halve and seed one medium acorn or butternut squash. Place, cut-side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 375°F oven until soft, about 50 minutes. Cool, then scrape out the flesh with a fork. Or simply use frozen (thawed) or canned squash puree. Find frozen squash puree near other vegetables in the freezer section and canned squash near the canned pumpkin.

Nutrition

Per bar: 146 calories; 6 g fat (3 g sat, 1 g mono); 37 mg cholesterol; 18 g carbohydrates; 5 g protein; 1 g fiber; 209 mg sodium; 79 mg potassium.

Carbohydrate Servings: 1

Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 fat



More From EatingWell

Recipe Categories

Ethnic/Regional
American
Health & Diet Considerations
Low carbohydrate
Ease of Preparation
Easy
Total Time
More than 1 hour
Servings
8 or more
Preparation/ Technique
Bake
Meal/Course
Dessert
Season
Fall
Winter

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