A HEALTHY Gingerbread Molasses Pumpkin Bar…. This might seriously be my favorite breakfast, lunch, snack and dessert right now. Think creamy pumpkin pie on a perfectly spiced molasses cookie…. it’s the beauty of fall all wrapped into a dessert bar (breakfast bar, snack bar, lunch bar, after workout bar….ok lets be honest, these aren’t lasting long in my house) Now the first time I tried to make these I replaced the fat/moisture giving butter with greek yogurt, used WAY too much flour and in an attempt to make the pumpkin set, I massively overcooked them. What I bit into after all that was a very thick, bland, DRY cookie with a bit of pumpkin on top. VERY DISAPPOINTING. So reducing the flour, increasing the butter just a bit, replacing the yogurt with applesauce, and increasing the molasses and spices has resulted in awesomeness!! I actually didn’t think that was a word but it captures how I feel about these bars and spellcheck went with it so there ya go.
I admit, this looks like a TON of ingredients but once you read it through, you’ll see that it’s a lot of spices but most if not all of the ingredients will be things you already have. Its very important to me that my recipes be simple and easy enough to do while juggling the realities of life. While I made this my three year old was constructing a fort out of EVERY SINGLE blanket, sheet and pillowcase that we own. The only reason that the towels didn’t make it in is b/c the shelf is above 3 feet. Of course by the time I caught on to what he was doing, I didn’t have the heart to stop him…he’d been working so hard and really, what’s another pile of laundry that needs folding…so yes, simple and easy is GOOD…… ok, enough chit chat…let’s bake.
Gingerbread Molasses Pumpkin Bar
- -GINGERBREAD CRUST-
- 3/4 cup white whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup milled (ground) flaxseed
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 3 tablespoon melted butter
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- -PUMPKIN LAYER-
- 15oz canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling just pureed pumpkin)
- 1 egg
- 1 egg white
- 1/3 cup granulated (white) sugar
- 2 teaspoon pumpkin spice
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
Preheat oven to 350
Line a 9 x 13 baking dish with foil and grease with any cooking spray. (The foil will make removal and cutting of the bars SO MUCH easier. Trust me.)
In a small bowl combine your flours, flaxseed, baking soda, salt, ginger and nutmeg.
In a medium sized mixing bowl, beat the butter, applesauce, molasses, brown sugar, egg and egg yolk together.
Slowly add the dry ingredients and beat well.
Pour into your lined baking dish and set aside.
In another medium sized bowl, beat together your pumpkin, egg, remaining egg white, granulated sugar, pumpkin spice, cloves, and cornstarch.
Spread evenly over the cookie dough and bake for 20-25min. Mine was done at 22min. Please be sure not to over bake or the cookie portion will be dry.
Once it was cooled completely, lift out of dish by the foil and cut into bars. I cut mine into 12 medium sized portions for just under 200 calories and served with some light whip and dark coffee...hmmmm.
195 calories per serving