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close up of 4 sliced cheesecake bars

Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake Bars

  • Author: anita | wild thistle kitchen
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 12 cheesecake bars 1x


These Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake Bars are impossibly creamy and so easy to whip up. A perfect Thanksgiving dessert!



for the crust

(this is the exact crust from my Pumpkin Swirl Cheesecake Recipe)

  • 30 or so gingersnap cookies
  • ½ stick (4 tablespoons) soft butter
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

for the cheesecake filling

  • 3 8-ounce blocks of cream cheese at soft room temperature
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 3 eggs at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste or extract

for the pumpkin swirl

  • 2 cups of prepared cheesecake filling
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tablespoon dark rum or bourbon if you want to get fancy


  1. Preheat oven to 350 for the crust and line a 9x13 baking pan with 2 sheets of parchment so that it overhangs on all sides. 
  2. In a food processor, pulse gingersnaps until finely ground. 
  3. Add remaining crust ingredients and pulse until totally combined.
  4. Transfer to parchment lined pan and press into an even layer.
  5. Bake for 10 minutes, remove from oven, reduce oven to 325 and let crust cool while you make the filling.
  6. Wipe or rinse your food processor bowl and blade and proceed with filling.
  7. Place all filling ingredients (not the pumpkin or pumpkin pie spice!) in the food processor and blend until very smooth. This is why a food processor is nice because you don't have to add things in stages.
  8. Make the pumpkin swirl by adding two cups of prepared filling to a bowl with the pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice. Add rum or bourbon if desired. Whisk well to combine.
  9. To assemble, pour a thin layer of the plain cheesecake filling onto prepared crust.
  10. Next, add a few pools of pumpkin filling, followed by plain. Keep alternating until all filling has been used.
  11. Take a butter knife or chop stick and swirl fillings together.
  12. Bake at 325 for 45 minutes or until the filling is set but still a little wobbly in the center.
  13. Allow to cool to room temperature and then place in fridge for at least 6 hours but overnight is best. 
  14. When completely cold, lift the bars out of the pan using the parchment paper, place on cutting board and slice into squares as big or small as you like.


If you don't have a food processor, crush the gingersnaps in a plastic bag and mix crust ingredients in a bowl. 

You can use a hand mixer, stand mixer to make the filling but if you do, you'll want to cream the cream cheese and sugar before adding the remaining ingredients.

  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: dessert, thanksgiving
  • Method: baking

Keywords: pumpkin swirl cheesecake bars, cheesecake bars, pumpkin cheesecake