Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Brownies

I love Saturdays.  I especially love beautiful Saturdays when I can get out for a nice long run.  This morning did not disappoint.  I slept in a bit (until 7am!!) and when I got up, it was still a bit chilly at 41 degrees.  But, the sun was out and the birds were chirping and by the time I headed out the door, it was close to 50 degrees.  Fabulous!  I do love the peace and solitude of running in the dark but I also enjoy my Saturday mornings when the world is awake and people are out walking their dogs, walking their driveway in robes and slippers to grab the morning paper, or sitting on their porches drinking their first or third cup of coffee.  I love running.

I also love brownies.  It’s true.  And when I found this recipe for brownies made with pumpkin, it was like I hit the jackpot!  Pumpkin isn’t just for Fall and the holidays, you know. Pumpkin is full of vitamin A and can take the place of some fat in many of your baking recipes.  If you can make a brownie that’s delicious, light, and pumpkin-y, why would you choose not to?  Well, I opted TO make them and …. okay, I ate three.  I’m not ashamed.  They were light, speckled with chocolate, and oh so delicious. Om nom nom!!!


Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Brownies

1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1 egg
2 egg whites
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat over to 350 degrees. Line an 11×17 baking pan with parchment paper or spray with non-stick cooking spray with flour.

2. In a large bowl, mix pumpkin, egg, egg whites and oil until smooth. Set aside.

3. In a medium bowl, mix dry ingredients (flour through brown sugar) until combined. Add to the wet ingredients and mix until thoroughly incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips.

4. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely before cutting. (This allows the brownies to set.)

5. Gobble them up!


Recipe courtesy of Six Sisters Stuff

Spicy Pumpkin Bread

Something I like to do when I’m baking is try to make the recipe I’m using a little lighter. It can be a challene but, usually the results are both impressive with calorie and fat count reduction and delicious.  I love baked goods – sometimes more than I should but who doesn’t?! – and I don’t want to feel guilty about eating them or maybe I should say more than one serving. 🙂

Thing 2 was flipping through some of my cookbooks yesterday and she stopped on a recipe for pumpkin bread. She said that it sounded good and you know what? She was right! I really wanted some so I snagged a couple cans of pumpkin at the grocery store. I love great ideas! Anyway, the recipe she selected was a Cooking Light recipe that had been lightened with great results. So, in looking at it, I decided I could probably lighten it even more. There are some great ways to make a recipe lighter by substituting yogurt (use Greek for a higher protein count) or applesauce for the fat (oil, eggs, milk) in a recipe. You can even use pumpkin! Of course, pumpkin is already a major part of this recipe so…. 🙂 Something I recently learned is that flaxseed can be substituted for an egg and will give you some great omega-3s. Anywho, I’ll give you my recipe, the directions, and the calorie count first. Then, I’ll give you the original and that calorie count. Make the alterations that work for you. Either way, you’re definitely going to want more than one slice of this warm, spicy, and delicious bread.

Spicy Pumpkin Bread

2 1/2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup plus 8 teaspoons Splenda brown sugar blends
One 5.3 ounce container plain Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 tablespoon flaxseed plus 3 tablespoons water
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
Cooking spray
1/3 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups, level with a knife. Combine flour and next 7 ingredients (flour through cloves) in a large bowl, make a well in the center of the mixture.

Combine sugar and next 4 ingredients (sugar through pumpkin); stir well with a whisk until smooth.

Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.

3. Spoon batter into 2 (8 x 4-inch) loaf pans coated with cooking spray; sprinkle with walnuts (if desired).

Bake for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool loaves in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pans. Yield: 2 loaves, 12 slices per loaf (serving size: 1 slice)

NOTE: If you’re tempted to fiddle with the spices (maybe substitute pumpkin pie spice for the allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves), don’t.

Calories 102; Fat .4g; Cholesterol 8.1mg; Sodium 148.9mg; Potassium 56.8mg; Carbs 20.4g; Fiber 1.1g; Sugar 6.3g; Protein 3.0g

Original recipe:
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup fat-free milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
1/3 cup chopped walnuts

Calories 161; Fat 4.7g (sat 0.8g, mono 1.3g, poly 2.3g); Protein 3.1g; Carb 26.9g; Fiber 1.3g; Cholesterol 18mg; Iron 1.4mg; Sodium 138mg; Calcium 46mg

Ginger-Chocolate Pumpkin Custard

YAY!  Dessert!  And it’s PUMPKIN!!  I received this recipe from a friend – thanks Lori! – and, well, it’s pumpkin and it’s dessert and there’s chocolate involved…..how could I NOT make it right away?  So easy, and So. Very. Delicious!  Things 1 and 2 literally inhaled theirs and proceeded to lick the little ramekins clean. The husband called it “pumpkin pie on crack” which, apparently, is a good thing. 😀  It’s basically pumpkin pie reworked and made fancy.  Even the pumpkin pie purist will love it and their waistline will thank you since some of the ingredients have been swapped with smarter choices.  The recipe came from a grocery store newsletter and is definitely worth making.  Um…in fact, this recipe is so good….and so light….that I recommend you make it several times as preparation for your Thanksgiving or Christmas feast.  You know what they say, practice makes perfect and this recipe is the perfect dessert to practice with.  A light custard that tastes EXACTLY like pumpkin pie filling topped with  a crunchy ginger and chocolate topping.  Um…if you’re not going to eat yours, I’m still hungry.  🙂

Ginger-Chocolate Pumpkin Custard

1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin

1/3 cup sugar or sugar substitute equivalent to 1/3 cup sugar

2 tablespoons honey or pure maple syrup

1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/2 cup refrigerated egg product or 2 eggs, lightly beaten

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup evaporated fat-free milk

Ginger-Chocolate crunch

8 gingersnap cookies, coarsely broken

2 ounces dark or bittersweet chocolate, chopped

2 teaspoons finely chopped crystallized ginger

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease eight 4-ounce ramekins; set aside. For filling, in a bowl, combine first 4 ingredients. Add egg product and vanilla. Beat with a fork until combined. Gradually stir in milk. Pour in ramekins. Place on a 15x10x1-inch baking pan.

2. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until center appears set. Remove from oven. Top each with gingersnaps, chocolate and crystallized ginger. Bake 5 minutes more. Cool 1 hour on a wire rack. Chill at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours before serving.

Makes 8 servings

Nutrition facts per serving:

(with sugar) 167 calories; 3g total fat (2g saturated); omg cholesterol; 104mg sodium; 31g carbohyrdate; 2g dietary fiber; 23g sugar, 4g protein

(with sugar substitute) 138 calories; 3g total fat (2 saturated); 0mg cholesterol; 104mg sodium; 24g carbohydrate; 2g dietary fiber; 16g sugar; 4g protein