Pumpkin Butter Cheesecake Tarts
Pumpkin, Cream Cheese, Cinnamon & Pecans.
This recipe was inspired by a trip to Traders Joe’s at the start of pumpkin season. I get giddy when it first arrives — all my “pumpkin friends” are back on the shelf, if only for a short visit. One of my favorites is the Pumpkin Butter – something so yummy you can consume it straight out of the jar, it’s so addictive! I particularly like a spoonful mixed into steel cut oatmeal, add dried cranberries, nuts and a dash of cinnamon, and you’ve got a bowl of breakfast yum! It would be awesome for Thanksgiving morning — just saying.
One Bite – Less Guilt
Have you noticed how people refrain or ask for just a “tiny bite” of dessert these days? I have, because I am one of those people. I love a sweet treat, but then your house is occupied by only two, things need to come in small packages. Unless you’re having a party or guests for dinner, a pie or tart is just too much of a good thing. However, when the lusciousness is down-sized to just a bite, there is a lot less guilt having one …. or two. These are great for a party and they will disappear quickly. They can be frozen, though fresh baked is always the best. I am going to experiment with different fillings for Christmas – I’m thinking cranberry pecan, or chocolate walnut. I’ll let you know how those turn out.
The crust is adapted from a very old recipe from cooking light that I have kept in a binder – It doesn’t have a date but I would say it is at least 10 years old. Their version uses mascarpone cheese in the dough, I find that cream cheese works as a great substitution. The cheesecake filling is based upon my own experimentation for this recipe. I hope you enjoy them as much as my family and friends have.
PREP TIME - Minutes
COOK TIME - Minutes
- For the Dough:
- Dough Recipe adapted from Cooking Light
- ½ cup Pecans
- ¼ cup (4 oz) Reduced fat cream cheese (original used mascarpone)
- ¼ cup (1/2 stick) Butter, softened
- ¾ cup Flour
- 2 tbs. Powder Sugar
- For the Filling:
- 1 8oz cream cheese
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 large egg
- ¼ cup pumpkin butter
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- 16 Pecan halves fro garnish
- Preheat oven to 350.
- To make dough process pecans in food processor until fine ground (you should have about ¼ cup); set aside.
- Place ¼ cup cream cheese and butter in
bowlof electric mixer. Mix on medium speed until well blended.
- Add flour, powder sugar, ground nuts and
pinchof salt; mix until doughjust comes together. Alternately, you can stir together ingredient with a wooden spoon. Don't overwork the dough or it will become tough.
- Roll the dough into 16 1-inch balls, and press into bottoms and up
sideof cups of mini-muffintin.
- Make the Filling: Combine cream cheese and sugar and beat on high speed till well blended. Reduce speed to low. Add vanilla, egg, pumpkin butter and cinnamon. Mix well.
mixSpoon filling into prepared muffin cups.
- Bake tarts until crust begins to turn golden and filling is set - about 15 minutes. Let cool completely in tins. Unmold when cool. Tarts can be stored in a single layer in an airtight container.
- To serve: Top each tart with an additional dollop of pumpkin butter and add a pecan half.
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