Pumpkin Cheesecake Crumble Brownies

pumpkin cheesecake crumble brownies

It’s Fall 2020. We need chocolate! We need pumpkin spice! And we need it drenched with caramel! These satisfying brownies check all of the boxes with multiple layers of comfort. A rich chocolate brownie is the base. The next layer is heavenly pumpkin cheesecake. The topping is a buttery crumble that rivals the best crumb cake. Finally, as if that isn’t enough, it’s drizzled with caramel sauce!

If it sounds complicated, don’t worry, it’s not. Each layer is super easy to make. You can use your favorite store bought caramel sauce to top it with. Vanilla ice cream and/or whipped cream are optional, but highly recommended toppings also. Just saying.

The layers go unexpectedly well together and make the perfect dessert for Halloween or Thanksgiving. I’m even going to add these beauties to my Christmas dessert table this year. Enjoy! You deserve it.

pumpkin cheesecake crumble brownie
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Pumpkin Cheesecake Crumble Brownies
Chocolate brownies with pumpkin cheesecake and crumb topping, topped with caramel sauce.
Course Dessert
Servings
Ingredients
Crumb Topping
Pumpkin Cheesecake Layer
Brownie Layer
Course Dessert
Servings
Ingredients
Crumb Topping
Pumpkin Cheesecake Layer
Brownie Layer
Instructions
Crumb Topping
  1. In a medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt.
  2. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or your fingers until well-combined and crumbles are pea-sized. Press crumbles together to make large quarter-sized chunks.
  3. Set aside in refrigerator.
Pumpkin Cheesecake Layer
  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese with an electric mixer until smooth.
  3. Add pumpkin, eggs, sugar, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg and beat until well combined. Set aside.
Brownie Layer
  1. Melt 1 stick of butter in a large microwaveable bowl.
  2. Stir in sugar until combined
  3. Stir in cocoa powder, vanilla, baking powder and salt.
  4. Add the eggs and beat until smooth
  5. Add the flour and mix until just combined.
  6. Spread brownie batter into prepared baking pan. Smooth with a spatula.
  7. Spread pumpkin cheesecake batter over the top of brownie batter. Smooth with a spatula.
  8. Sprinkle crumb topping evenly over the top of pumpkin cheesecake layer.
  9. Bake for 40-50 minutes until a toothpick inserted into pumpkin cheesecake layer comes out clean.
  10. Let cool completely. Cut into squares and serve with caramel sauce.
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Peaches & Cream Profiteroles

Peaches & Cream Profiteroles by Brownie Mischief

Summer is nearly over, and after the recent heatwave here in Southern California, I’m more than ready to welcome fall weather. But before I put on my fluffy sweater and dive into pumpkin spice everything, I want to enjoy the tail end of peach season, don’t you? Farmer’s markets and stores near my home are still brimming over with fresh peaches, so I picked up some peaches and decided to give them a proper goodbye and send them off in style.

Peaches & Cream Profiteroles by Brownie Mischief

I created some luscious peaches and cream filled, bite-size puffs of choux pastry, called profiteroles. They’re like cream puffs, only smaller. The filling is creamy, but so light and airy that I’m convinced that these profiteroles have no calories! The recipe I’m sharing with you uses fresh peaches, but feel free to substitute frozen peaches if fresh peaches aren’t available. There are a lot of steps to this recipe, but the steps are done in stages and are very easy to do.

Peaches & Cream Profiteroles by Brownie Mischief

I decorated my profiteroles with fresh, pesticide-free miniature rosebuds, also known as spray roses. If you can’t find miniature rosebuds, pesticide-free rose petals would be a good substitute. You may not get a chance to embellish these little beauties. They have a way of popping into people’s mouths even before you can decorate them!


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Peaches & Cream Profiteroles

Bite-sized puffs of choux pastry filled with a creamy, fresh peach filling and topped with fresh peach icing.

Course Dessert
Cuisine French

Servings


Ingredients
Peach Purée

Peaches & Cream Filling

Profiteroles

Peach Icing

Course Dessert
Cuisine French

Servings


Ingredients
Peach Purée

Peaches & Cream Filling

Profiteroles

Peach Icing


Instructions
Peach Purée
  1. Purée peaches in a blender or food processor. Strain puréed peaches through a sieve. Stir in lemon juice.

  2. Place puréed peaches in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat.

  3. Reduce heat and simmer until peach purée is reduced by half, about 5 minutes.

  4. Remove form heat. Add peach flavoring, if using, and set aside to cool completely.

Peaches and Cream Filling
  1. Bring milk to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat.

  2. Meanwhile, whisk sugar, cornstarch and salt together in a small bowl. Add the egg and whisk until smooth.

  3. When milk starts to boil, remove from heat and pour 1/3 of the hot milk into the egg mixture and whisk to combine.

  4. Pour the egg mixture into the remaining hot milk and cook over medium heat, stirring continuously, until the mixture thickens and comes to a boil.

  5. Remove from heat. Stir in butter and extracts.

  6. Pour mixture through a sieve placed over a bowl. Cover pastry cream with plastic wrap. Let cool.

  7. Set aside 2 tablespoons of cooled peach purée. Add remaining peach purée to cooled pastry cream and stir to combine. Chill in refrigerator.

  8. In a medium bowl, whip heavy cream to stiff peaks with an electric mixer at high speed. Fold whipped cream into peach pastry cream mixture. Set aside in refrigerator.

Profiteroles
  1. Preheat oven to 425º F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Combine water, butter and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat.

  3. Reduce heat. Add flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until mixture pulls away from the sides of the pan and forms a ball.

  4. Transfer mixture to a bowl and let cool for a few minutes.

  5. Add eggs one at a time and beat with an electric mixer at medium speed, until smooth.

  6. Transfer mixture to a piping bag, fitted with a large round tip. (**I used Ateco tip 808.)

  7. Pipe 1 inch balls, about 1 inch apart onto prepared baking sheet. Smooth tops with a wet finger.

  8. Bake 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  9. Use a skewer to poke a hole in the bottom or on the side of each profiterole.

  10. Place peaches and cream filling into a piping bag fitted with a medium round piping tip. (***I used Wilton tip 12)

  11. Place tip into the starter holes and fill each profiterole with filling.

Peach Icing
  1. In a small bowl, whisk all icing ingredients together and spoon over filled profiteroles. Decorate as desired. Serve immediately.


Recipe Notes

*To make peaches easy to peel, blanch them  in boiling water for about 45 seconds, then dunk  in ice water.

**To find Ateco tip 808, click here.

***To find Wilton tip 12, click here.

Peaches & Cream Profiteroles by Brownie Mischief


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Purple Berry Cake with Silky Cream Cheese Frosting

Purple Berry Cake with Silky Cream Cheese Frosting by Brownie Mischief

Purple is passionate. It’s mystical. It’s regal. Don’t we all know someone whose favorite color is purple? It’s painfully obvious. They can’t hide it. They don’t want to hide it. They can’t just be friends with purple. They’re in a relationship with purple. The first time I made this Purple Berry Cake, a purple lover I know said that when she saw it, it spoke to her soul. This cake is, what I like to call, a double-take cake. People stare. They can’t resist it’s charismatic charm. Once they stop staring and taste it, they fall hopelessly in love.

Purple Berry Cake with Silky Cream Cheese Frosting by Brownie Mischief

Fresh berry purée is added to the batter, creating a soft, moist cake. The layers are brushed with berry syrup, which helps keeps the cake moist and gives it a nice punch of berry flavor.  I used blackberries and blueberries, but you can use any combination of purple berries that you like. After baking, the color of the cake layers will be a brownish gray with a hint of purple, depending on your berries. I think I need to come up with name for this color. How about Silverberry? You can see tiny flecks of the berries in the cake and I think the color is lovely, especially with the lavender frosting. If you want a more purple cake, feel free to add some gel food color to the batter. I used Wilton Violet gel food color to achieve the pretty lavender cream cheese frosting. The extra butter and the addition of heavy cream makes this frosting silky and spreadable.

Purple Berry Cake with Silky Cream Cheese Icing by Brownie Mishchief

I’m obsessed with edible flowers lately, so I garnish my baked goods with them whenever I can get my hands on some. I found these pansies in the produce department of my local food market. If you can’t find pansies, pesticide free violets or rose petals would also be pretty. Make sure to apply them to your cake right before serving, since they are delicate and will wilt over time. Brush some of your berries with a little dab of edible gold luster dust for an extra regal touch.

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Purple Berry Cake with Silky Cream Cheese Frosting
Course Dessert
Servings
6-inch cake (serves 6)
Ingredients
Purple Berry Cake
Silky Cream Cheese Frosting
Finishing Touches
Course Dessert
Servings
6-inch cake (serves 6)
Ingredients
Purple Berry Cake
Silky Cream Cheese Frosting
Finishing Touches
Instructions
Purple Berry Cake
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Spray two 6-inch cake pans with non-stick cooking spray and line with parchment paper circles.
  2. Purée the berries in a blender or small food processor.
    Puree fresh berries.
  3. Strain puréed berries through a sieve. Reserve 2/3 cup berry puree. Set aside remaining puree for syrup.
  4. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  5. In a large bowl, beat 1 1/4 cups (8.75 ounces) sugar, oil, eggs and vanilla extract with an electric mixer on medium speed, until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
  6. Add flour in two additions, alternating with buttermilk, beating at medium speed just until combined.
  7. Stir in the reserved 2/3 cup berry purée.
  8. Pour batter evenly into the prepared cake pans. Bake until a toothpick inserted into center of cakes comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes.
  9. Cool cakes in pans for 10 minutes. Remove cakes from pans and continue cooling on wire racks.
  10. Meanwhile, make berry syrup. In a small saucepan, heat the remaining berry purée, remaining 1/4 cup sugar (1.75 ounces) and 1/4 cup water over medium-low heat. Stir together and bring to a boil. Cook until sugar is dissolved. Set aside to cool.
  11. Split each cake layer into two and brush with berry syrup. Fill and frost cake with Silky Cream Cheese Frosting.
Silky Cream Cheese Frosting
  1. In a large bowl, beat butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer at medium speed, until smooth.
  2. Add vanilla extract and salt and beat until combined.
  3. Gradually add powdered sugar and beat medium speed until combined.
  4. Add heavy cream and beat at low speed until smooth and creamy.
  5. Add gel food color with a toothpick, a little at a time, until desired shade is reached. Beat at low speed until well blended.
Finishing Touches
  1. Garnish top of cake with fresh berries. Brush a few of the berries with edible gold luster dust. Garnish with fresh flowers immediately before serving.
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