On the menu: Pumpkin Pecan Butterscotch Cookie Bars
A few weeks ago, my best friend and I decided to be baking pen pals. She would send me a box full of homemade goodness from Minnesota, and I would return the box filled with goodies from my kitchen in Maine. One week later, I had a box of tasty oatmeal raisin cookies on my doorstep. I savored the first few cookies before realizing, “Crap! I have to make something to send to her now!” Clearly, I am a very good best friend. After a bit of thought, I knew that I couldn’t just send Taco (that’s what we call each other, and we’ve forgotten why) any old cookie, though. I had to make it good.
I had a can of pumpkin and a bag of butterscotch chips in my pantry, and I was trying to think of how to combine the two. Lo and behold, Joy the Baker had already put the two together in some scrumptious looking cookies. (I must digress here to tell you how much I have come to adore Joy the Baker after discovering her blog a couple of months ago. She has a fabulous podcast with fellow blogger Tracy, and it’s the first and probably only podcast that I’ve subscribed to. Joy is, as she often says, real life. I totally dig it.) I added some pecans and some spices to the original recipe and baked them in one big pan to mix it up a bit.
Everything was going well until I realized I had accidentally DOUBLED the amount of vegetable oil called for in the recipe. Um…oops. I went ahead and baked the bars, but I made sure to keep my eye on them in the oven. They came out a little wet, and they were awkwardly cakey, but those slight imperfections were cast away upon my first bite of one of these bars. Pumpkin and butterscotch make a killer flavor combination! The bits of sweetness from the butterscotch chips was just delightful in these bars; Kevin and I couldn’t stop eating them! Fortunately, I was able to get a few sent off to my dearest Taco in Minnesota. I hope she likes them as much as we did!
Check out those fun socks she sent me! I love them. Happy Halloween!
Pumpkin Pecan Butterscotch Cookie Bars
adapted from Joy the Baker
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
pinch of ground cloves
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup canola or corn oil
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Position a rack in the middle of the oven . Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter and lightly flour a 9×13 baking pan. If you’d like thinner bars, use a 15x10x1 inch jelly roll pan.
Stir the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon together in a medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the eggs and sugar until smooth and lightened in color, about 1 minute. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl as needed during mixing. On low speed, mix the oil, pumpkin, and vanilla until blended. Mix in the flour mixture to incorporate it. Mix in the chips and pecans.
Bake for 30-35 minutes (20-25 minutes for thinner bars) until the bars are golden brown and the batter looks like it has set. Let cool a bit before cutting into bars.