Pumpkin Cheesecake Swirl Brownies – Great Halloween Party Dessert Idea

Pumpkin. Why are there so many pumpkin recipes? It seems that October is all about pumpkins and apples. November is as well. I guess it could be worse, it could be all about brussel sprouts and olives. VILE! I guess it’s good that I love both apples AND pumpkins.

I was talking with a coworker yesterday about baking a pumpkin cheesecake, and she inspired me to make pumpkin cheesecake brownies. I’ve never made these or even tried them. But, I know I love pumpkin and I know I love brownies. They have to be a good combination. The inspiration for my brownies came from another blogger at Pass the Sushi . Her pictures looked yummy, so I knew this was going to be good. I did use my own brownie recipe, found here, but I followed her recipe for the cheesecake. What I didn’t do was follow her instructions. Oops! The cheesecake was supposed to be layered in the middle of the brownies. If you make the same mistake that I did, you will understand why she said to layer the cheesecake in the middle. The cheesecake is heavy and causes the brownies to sink. They still taste ok, but they certainly didn’t look as pretty as I’d hoped. I will write the correct instructions below, including using a smaller pan so you can get thicker brownies. I think these would be much better if they were thicker. But, they do taste really good, and the pumpkin cheesecake layer smells delicious.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Swirl Brownies
Adapted from: Pass the Sushi and Allrecipes.com
Printable Recipe

Brownie Layers


1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Cheesecake Layer

Cheesecake Batter:

6 oz cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9×9 inch baking pan.

For brownie layers – in a medium bowl, mix together the oil, sugar, and vanilla. Beat in eggs. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt; gradually stir into the egg mixture until well blended. Spread half the batter evenly into the prepared pan.

For cheesecake layer – Cream together cream cheese and sugar. Continue mixing and add in egg, flour, pumpkin, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger and cloves, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until well mixed.

Pour cheesecake mixture on top of the first layer of brownie mixture and then top with remaining brownie mixture.

Using a butter knife, slowly swirl the mixture to ensure that the brownie and cheesecake layers are swirled together. This is done by slowly pulling the knife through the mixture horizontally first and then vertically. Do not stir or mix.

Place brownies in oven. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the brownie begins to pull away from edges of pan and toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack before cutting into squares.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Bam's Kitchen
    Oct 22, 2011 @ 20:04:32

    Yummm. This brownie pumpkin cheesecake sounds very addictive! Great make ahead dish!


  2. Betsy DiJulio
    Feb 02, 2014 @ 15:38:03

    I had the EXACT same thing happen with a vegan Red Velvet Cream Cheese recipe I was creating and had figured out exactly what you did: the cheesecake layer weighted down the center causing the brownie batter to climb up the edges of the pan and sort of curl over. Thank you for the affirmation and confirmation of a remedy. I’m going to try again using your second method. Cheers!


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