Friday, September 25, 2015

Harvest Cheesecake Bars

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BakeInTheFun #CollectiveBias

Fall has officially kicked off and it's time to celebrate! This is by far my favorite time of year - from the cooler weather and the changing of colors in nature to the harvest-time activities and recipes. We have so many fun Fall traditions that I'm excited to get started and wanted to start the fun with some fall-time inspired baked goodness. {make sure to check out the giveaway at the end of this post for a KitchenAid mixer that would certainly assist in fall baking!} I love, love, love all of the Fall-themed baking ingredients, candies and drinks that fill store shelves during Autumn so much that I couldn't help but grab a little of each during my last trip and create a special treat to start the season with.

These Harvest Cheesecake Bars are packed with fall flavors! From a soft pumpkin-y crust and the apple-y cheesecake to the delicious streusel-type topping sprinkled with M&M's® Pecan Pie candies. Not only are they are easy to make but they will fill your house with a delicious autumn-time scent.

To start the Harvest Cheesecake Bars off you'll just need a box of Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Perfectly Pumpkin Cake Mix 15.25oz, an egg, butter and vanilla. If you want to change things up and use a different flavor for the crust Pillsbury™ has a couple other fun fall options to choose from - Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Caramel Cake Mix 15.25oz or Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Cinnamon Bun Cake Mix 15.25 oz. I've already thought up a few delicious creations to make before the season is over!

For the cheesecake filling I added Mott's® Apple Sauce Original, because nothing makes me think about fall more than apples. Just mix together cream cheese, sugar, eggs, vanilla and Mott's® Apple Sauce Original then pour on top of the easy-peasy pumpkin crust.

To top off these tasty bars I first sprinkled with M&M's® Pecan Pie candies and then topped with a struesel-like mixture of oats, brown sugar, flour and butter.

Let 'em bake for 30 minutes, let cool and cut into bars. Then watch them disappear. Seriously, these are the perfect way to kick off fall. We washed ours down with some Snapple® Apple while sitting outside in the brisk fall air. Snapple® is releasing a Snapple® Fall Spice drink that would be more fitting, however I was unable to locate any - but my eyes will be peeled for it this season!

Harvest Cheesecake Bars
yields approximately bars
1 box Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Perfectly Pumpkin Cake Mix 15.25oz
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup butter, softened
Cheesecake Filling
2 8oz. cream cheese, softened
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 large eggs
½ cup Mott's® Apple Sauce Original
½ cup M&M's® Pecan Pie
½ cup flour
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup quick oats
¼ cup butter, softened
1 Heat oven to 350. Line 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper.
2 Mix together cake mix, egg, vanilla and butter until well incorporated. Press into bottom of baking pan using fingertips. {I used a plastic sandwich baggie to help avoid mixture from sticking to my fingers}
3 Mix together cream cheese and sugar until smooth. While mixing add vanilla and eggs, one at a time, until smooth. Mix in applesauce until just incorporated. Pour mixture on top of crust in baking pan.
4 Stir together flour, brown sugar, quick oats and butter. First, sprinkle M&M's® on cheesecake, then sprinkle oat topping on top.
5 Bake for 30 minutes.
6 Let cool, cut into bars and enjoy!

I was able to locate all of my baking goods at Walmart, from the M&M's® in the Halloween candy section to the Pillsbury™ Moist Supreme® Perfectly Pumpkin Cake Mix 15.25oz on display with other seasonal baking goods. 


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