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the ultimate thanksgiving pie bars

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Prep Time: 40 minutes

Cook Time: 1.17 hours

Servings: 24


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Step 1

Let the 16 ounces cream cheese for the cheesecake sit at room temperature until softened, 20 to 30 minutes.

Step 2

Coat a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Line with parchment paper so that it hangs off the two long sides to form a sling.

Step 3

Melt 6 tablespoons unsalted butter in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stovetop. Place 1 pound gingersnaps, 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar, and 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Process until fine crumbs form, about 30 seconds. Add the butter and process until combined, about 30 seconds more.

Step 4

Transfer the gingersnap mixture to the baking dish and press firmly and evenly into the bottom with the bottom of a measuring cup. Place in the freezer while you make the filling.

Step 5

Wipe out the food processor, then add the softened cream cheese, 1 cup granulated sugar, 2 large eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Process until combined, about 30 seconds. Add 1 can pumpkin purée and process for 30 seconds more. Pour the mixture over the crust and spread into an even layer with an offset spatula or table knife. Freeze until set, at least 2 hours or overnight.

Step 6

When ready to bake, if using frozen cranberries, let 3 cups sit at room temperature until slightly thawed, 20 to 30 minutes.

Step 7

Prep the following, adding them to a large bowl as you go: Peel, core, and chop 2 medium Granny Smith apples into 1/2-inch pieces. Finely grate the zest of 1 medium lemon (about 1 tablespoon), then juice the lemon (about 3 tablespoons). Add 3 cups cranberries, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Toss to combine.

Step 8

Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 325°F. If using a glass baking dish, let the dish of pumpkin cheesecake sit at room temperature while the oven heats.

Step 9

Chop pecans until you get 1/2 cup and place in a medium bowl. Add 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar, 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon, 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and stir to combine. Cut 1 stick cold butter into small cubes. Add the butter to the flour mixture and work into pea-size crumbles with your hands.

Step 10

Using a slotted spoon, gently transfer the apple cranberry filling over the frozen cheesecake, making sure the entire cheesecake filling is covered (do not add any juices that have accumulated in the bowl). Top with the crumble mixture, making sure not to press down when topping.

Step 11

Bake for 35 minutes. Rotate the baking dish, and continue baking until the topping is crumbly and browned and the center just barely jiggles, 30 to 35 minutes more.

Step 12

Place on a wire rack and let cool completely, about 1 hour. Freeze for 1 hour to ensure that you can cut clean slices. Let sit at room temperature for 10 minutes, then grasp the overhanging parchment to remove the slab from the baking dish. Place on a cutting board and cut into 24 pieces.

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