Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

June 2, 2017

These Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust are the ultimate dessert recipe. Not only are these little bites the perfect size, but they come fully packed with a beautifully tasty Pecans + Graham Cracker crust, velvety pumpkin + spice flavored filling, and topped with light whipped cream + toasted pecans. Perfect for any day, family gathering, special occasion, or season.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan CrustI know it’s been a few days since I’ve made a REAL post, but it’s been a bit crazy! I’ve been battling the cold/flu so I’ve been trying to rest up and nurse myself back to health (And of course, My hubby has been taking care of me too and did a great job!). Awww, I know! Haha! He’s the best! Now, I’m feeling MUCH better and I’m ready to mingle again! Are you guys ready??

I do hope that you guys have been having a great week and start to your February thus far! Just to recap–today, I began my day with a bit of grocery shopping (even in this 20 degree weather in NYC), got a bit of work done, and had tacos for dinner (made by the Hubby & Boy, was that delicious) and decided to do a little baking. I was feeling for something a bit sweet but not too sweet since I’m just getting over this cold/flu so I went with making these.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

Trust me when I tell you, this recipe is light, fluffy, airy, and decadent. It was a HIT in my house and I’m sure that it will be in your house too!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

Ok, so can we talk about my inspiration behind these little bites for a sec? So, if you’ve been an avid reader of Orchids + Sweet Tea, then you’ll know that I’ve spoken a lot about my Southern roots. It’s definitely a huge part of who I am and how my love for food began.

Because of this, I’ve been inspired by a ton of Southern old favorites, which of course I’ve managed to create a twist out of. Don’t believe me? Check these Southerner’s Banana Pudding Cheesecake Bites, which pair my two loves together in one bite—-cheesecake AND banana pudding!

Growing up, I often had banana pudding (religiously) every weekend during a binge watch of horror films with my grandmother. Since then, I’ve grown to truly enjoy banana pudding and these bites didn’t disappoint one bit.

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

Want more cheesecake bites ideas?—-I figured that I would take things back to my first love—NY Style Cheesecake (with a Strawberry topping—my fave!), but add my own twist and interpretation on it! That’s when I created these New York-Style Cheesecake Bites.

Cheesecake was actually one of the first desserts I ever mastered. Crazy, right? I know. Interestingly enough, it became easier and easier to master with time, although I often used a store-bought crust and canned toppings. Haha. Don’t judge!

Now that I enjoy making my cheesecakes from scratch, I must say that every bite means something! Not only does it mean that it’s so much more delicious, BUT it means that you truly are able to evolve into something that you never thought you could, once you keep trying and cultivating your skills. I know—-you must be wondering how did I become so deep over a mere slice of cheesecake? Haha. Sorry. I just wanted to share a little back story and word of encouragement!

So, back to the sweets! OK. I’ve been a real, true lover of cheesecake for years! If you’ve been an avid reader of Orchids + Sweet Tea, then you’re probably already aware of how this love even begun.

Moving to NYC at the age of 13 was such a huge transition (in more ways than one), but more importantly, the food was a major transition. Fast forward to a year or two later, when I first introduced to my first real slice of Cheesecake and never putting down a fork whenever I see one close enough to grab a bite. Haha. Yup. My obsession is that real!

Don’t believe me? Checkout these Mini Salted Caramel Apple Streusel Cheesecake Bites, which are one of my faves! They will leave you reminiscing on a nice slice of apple pie with a crunchy, sweet streusel topping.

Flashback to a previous Birthday (either last year or the year before) when I decided to make these Mango Cheesecake + Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust instead of a Birthday Cake, because I just love doing things differently. I definitely have regrets because they turned out perfect!

Since tasting Pumpkin Cheesecake for the first time at a Starbucks here in NYC from the Cheesecake Factory, I’ve been hooked on the flavor profile of this little sweet treat!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

Let’s dig right into this recipe, shall we?

PECAN GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and prepare a 12-cavity cupcake pan with cupcake liners.

Grind the pecans + graham crackers, until almost finely ground (it’s OK to leave a few medium chunks, if your’e a lover a little crunch!). Combine the Pecan-Graham cracker mixture, cinnamon, pure cane sugar and melted butter in a small bowl and mix with a spatula until well incorporated.

Divide the mixture between the cupcake liners (about 2 Tbsps per well) and press down into the bottoms with your fingers (focusing on the middle) to ensure that it’s perfectly covering the bottom and sides (like a deep well).

Bake the crusts for about 5 minutes and then remove from oven and allow it to cool until you’re ready to use.

CHEESECAKE + FILLING:

In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix together on low speed: the cream cheese, pure cane sugar, and flour until combined. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl if needed.

Next, add the vanilla extract and the first egg and beat slowly until mostly combined. Then add the remaining egg and mix until well combined, still mixing everything on low speed. Now, add the sour cream, pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice, and cinnamon and continue mixing.

Change mixer attachment to a whisk and beat on medium-high speed for 5 minutes or so until completely smooth and lump-free.

Add a small amount of filling to each cupcake liner (about 2 Tbsps), repeating until all batter is used.

Bake the cheesecakes for 20-25 minutes, then turn off the oven and allow them to sit in the oven for another 5 minutes with the oven door halfway open to avoid cheesecakes from deflating. **NOTE: When baking, I always prepare a medium pot with water and add it to the oven as well, to keep cheesecake temperature even and to add moisture.**

Remove cheesecakes from the oven and allow them to continue to cool for another 15-20 minutes, before putting them in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

Once cooled, top with whipped cream, and toasted pecans (See Recipes below) and enjoy.

Bon Appetite!

MADE OUR RECIPE(S)?

If you choose to make these Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust or any other recipe from us, be sure to tag us on Instagram at #Orchidsandsweettea so that we can share the love!

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust

MINI Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 25 mins
Total Time: 40 mins
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Ingredients

PECAN GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST:

  • 1 cup Graham crackers, chopped (About 7-8 Graham Crackers)
  • 1/2 cup Toasted pecans (Add more if desired; just reduce Graham Crackers amount; See Notes!)
  • 2 Tbsps organic brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 3 Tbsps unsalted butter, melted

CHEESECAKE + FILLING:

  • 12 ozs. organic cream cheese, softened at room temp.  (That’s 1 1/2 packs!)
  • 1/2 cup  organic pure cane sugar
  • 3 Tbsps organic all-purpose flour (I use Bob’s Red Mills)
  • 2 tsps vanilla extract
  • 2 large organic eggs, room temp.
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 Tbsps low-fat sour cream
  • 1/8 tsp fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground pumpkin spice

TOPPINGS:

  • Whipped Cream, homemade or store-bought (See Notes!)
  • Toasted Pecans (See Notes!)

Instructions

PECAN GRAHAM CRACKER CRUST:

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and prepare a 12-cavity cupcake pan with cupcake liners.
  • Grind the pecans + graham crackers, until almost finely ground (it’s OK to leave a few medium chunks, if your’e a lover a little crunch!). Combine the Pecan-Graham cracker mixture, cinnamon, pure cane sugar and melted butter in a small bowl and mix with a spatula until well incorporated.
  • Divide the mixture between the cupcake liners (about 2 Tbsps per well) and press down into the bottoms with your fingers (focusing on the middle) to ensure that it’s perfectly covering the bottom and sides (like a deep well).
  • Bake the crusts for about 5 minutes and then remove from oven and allow it to cool until you’re ready to use.

CHEESECAKE + FILLING:

  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix together on low speed: the cream cheese, pure cane sugar, and flour until combined. Be sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl if needed.
  • Next, add the vanilla extract and the first egg and beat slowly until mostly combined. Then add the remaining egg and mix until well combined, still mixing everything on low speed. Now, add the sour cream, pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice, and cinnamon and continue mixing.
  • Change mixer attachment to a whisk and beat on medium-high speed for 5 minutes or so until completely smooth and lump-free.
  • Add a small amount of filling to each cupcake liner (about 2 Tbsps), repeating until all batter is used.
  • Bake the cheesecakes for 20-25 minutes, then turn off the oven and allow them to sit in the oven for another 5 minutes with the oven door halfway open to avoid cheesecakes from deflating. **NOTE: When baking, I always prepare a medium pot with water and add it to the oven as well, to keep cheesecake temperature even and to add moisture.**
  • Remove cheesecakes from the oven and allow them to continue to cool for another 15-20 minutes, before putting them in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
  • Once cooled, top with whipped cream, and toasted pecans (See Recipes below) and enjoy.
  • Bon Appetite!

Tips & Tricks

STORAGE: Leftover Cheesecakes can be stored (tightly wrapped) in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. For best results, keep cheesecakes in the freezer until the night before you’re ready to serve. Defrost by refrigerating.
TOASTED PECANS: Add chopped pecans to a baking sheet and toasting them in the oven (400 degrees Fahrenheit) for 5-10 minutes, tossing them halfway to avoid browning on one side.
HOMEMADE WHIPPED CREAM: In the bowl of an electric mixer on medium-high speed, whip the organic heavy cream (2 cups), using the whisk attachment for 4-5 minutes, until fluffy peaks begin to form. **NOTE: When it begins to thicken after the first 2-3 minutes, gradually add in 1 Tbsp vanilla extract and a pinch of sea salt.*

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Pumpkin Cheesecake Bites + Pecan Crust.

 

ORCHIDS + SWEET TEA

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  1. I am a pumpkin fanatic. LOVE it all year long. I happen to love cheesecake too. I know I would have a hard time only eating one of these (at a time).

  2. These look amazing. I love pumpkin pie but my husband doesn’t like the texture of it. I made a pumpkin cheese cake last year and he loved it. I’m gonna try this.