If you’re looking for an easy way to make pumpkin pie, these healthy pumpkin pie bars are for you! It’s a simple recipe that involves a pecan almond flour crust, grain free and dairy free making them the perfect paleo holiday treat.
This post is sponsored in partnership with Bob’s Red Mill. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that help Fit Mitten Kitchen bring you new recipes!
I couldn’t let another season pass by without bringing you everyone’s holiday favorite:
PUMPKIN PIE… in bar form! It’s basically easier than pumpkin pie and for what whatever reason, doesn’t seem as intimidating to the (not so) average baker.
Traditionally, pumpkin pie (in its circle form) is made with a flour crust. If you’ve never made your own crust before I know this can seem overwhelming.
It’s more of a shortbread style crust, if you will, and it’s easy peasy.
Paleo Pumpkin Pie Bars with pecan almond flour crust
Pumpkin pie will forever remind me of my “Nana.” In her old age, she most certainly lost her filter.
One Thanksgiving, everyone was sitting in the living room chatting amongst one another and out of nowhere we hear,
“I would like a small piece of pumpkin pie, please. With lots of cool whip.”
My sisters and I just look at each other and start laughing like, “Okay so which one of you is going to fulfill Nana’s request?”
It still cracks me up to this day.
I’d like to think my Nana would approve of my homemade pumpkin pie bars, but she was somewhat of a traditionalist.
I doubt she (or anyone else for that matter) would know these are dairy-free and made with coconut milk instead of heavy cream though…
LET’S MAKE THEM.
Ingredients needed for paleo pumpkin pie bars
- canned pumpkin – We’re using an entire can of pumpkin here (yay!). I wouldn’t recommend roasting a pie pumpkin for this recipe, as I can’t promise the texture will stay the same once baked.
- eggs – provide structure for the filling and will make sure the bars cook properly. I don’t have a sub here for vegan, but if you try an egg replacer, let me know.
- coconut sugar – You can also use date sugar or maple sugar. Really any kind of granulated sugar works here. Whatever you typically use when baking is fine.
- maple syrup – Acts as part of the liquid, but also sweetens the pumpkin pie filling.
- full fat canned coconut milk– full-fat coconut milk is best here if going for the dairy free recipe. If not dairy free, heavy cream or half and half would be best. I haven’t tried this recipe with other milk (i.e. oat or cashew) so I can’t say how it’d turn out.
- tapioca flour – just a bit is necessary to help hold things together.
- pumpkin spice & cinnamon – obviously pumpkin pie spice is needed. Then we add a bit more cinnamon for more flavor.
- vanilla extract – always vanilla when baking!
- salt –just a pinch enhances flavors.
The Pecan Almond Flour Crust:
We’re using Bob’s Red Mill Super-Fine Almond Flour for the crust, making these healthy pumpkin pie bars grain free and a paleo friendly dessert.
Bob’s is my go-to, my main man (literally) when it comes to just about all of my pantry baking ingredients. You just can’t go wrong with their amazing quality and product line up!
Their Super-Fine Almond Flour is made from blanched almonds (not whole almonds, that’s “almond meal”) and is perfect for all of your grain-free baking needs.
Just see all of my almond flour recipes, here.
How to Make this Pumpkin Pie Bar Recipe
Let’s dive in to how we make these healthy pumpkin pie bars. As mentioned previously, it’s really quite easy.
For equipment you’ll need:
- 9×13 pan OR a quarter sheet pan ( <— what I used) lined with parchment paper.
- measuring cups
- food processor or small blender (for the crust)
- large bowl
- whisk, electric hand mixer or stand mixer
Step 1 – Make the Almond Flour Crust
Process again until the dough forms. Then press down into a parchment lined pan and bake for about 10 minutes at 350ºF.
Allow the crust to cool for 15 minutes before making the pumpkin pie filling.
Step 2 – Prepare the Pumpkin Pie Filling
I like to use an electric mixer here to ensure everything is well combined. If you don’t have an electric mixer, be sure to whisk the eggs and pumpkin together first before adding the rest of the ingredients.
Step 3 – Bake the Pumpkin Pie Bars
Pour the pumpkin pie filling over the baked crust and spread smooth .
Bake for 35-40 minutes, until middle has just set.
Step 4 – Chill bars in fridge
My bars took 40 minutes and at first I thought they were overdone because the color was a little dark, but after chilling in the fridge for a few hours the pie filling set and lightened up.
If you are feeling ambitious, you can make your own whipped cream topping by whipping a chilled (overnight) full-fat can of coconut milk.
I use my stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment; whip cream until light and fluffy.
But there are loads of dairy-free whipped topping alternatives if you’re looking for a store-bought option.
You can make these pumpkin pie bars in advance, the morning of up to one day ahead. The longer the bars sit, the softer the crust gets. Be sure to store in fridge until ready to serve.
If you make this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and review below! I love hearing from you and it helps others learn about the recipe too. Xx Ashley
Pecan Almond Flour Crust
- 2 cups Bob’s Red Mill Super-Fine Almond Flour
- 1 cup raw pecans
- 2 TBSP coconut sugar
- 4 TBSP ghee (or coconut oil, or dairy-free butter)
Pumpkin Pie Filling
Make the Crust
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and line 9×13 pan or quarter sheet pan with parchment paper; set aside.
- Process the pecans in your food processor into little pieces. Add almond flour, sugar, and melted ghee (or whatever fat you’re using) and process again until the dough forms and butter has been fully incorporated. Evenly press crust mixture into a parchment lined pan. (Try to make layer as even as possible.) Bake for 12-15 minutes at 350ºF. Allow the crust to cool for 15 minutes before making the pumpkin pie filling.
Make the Pie Filling
- In a large bowl using electric mixer, combine canned pumpkin, eggs, sugar, maple syrup, full-fat coconut milk, vanilla, tapioca flour, spices and salt; mix until smooth. (If you don’t have an electric mixer, be sure to whisk the eggs and pumpkin together first before adding the rest of the ingredients.) Pour the pumpkin pie filling over the baked crust and spread smooth.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, until middle has just set.
- Chill bars in fridge for at least 3 hours, up to overnight.
- Cut into squares and serve with dollops of whipped cream. Enjoy!
To make homemade Whipped Coconut Cream
1 (15 ounce) can of full-fat coconut milk must be refrigerated for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight. Remove cream only from can (discard water or save for smoothies) and whip with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add up to 1 tablespoon maple syrup, or powdered sugar to taste.
DIY PUMPKIN PIE SPICE BLEND: 3 Tablespoons Ground Cinnamon + 2 teaspoons Ground Ginger + 2 teaspoons Nutmeg + 1-1/2 teaspoon Ground Allspice + 1-1/2 teaspoon Ground Cloves. Store in jar with lid.
These bars are best made up to 1 day in advance, or 3-4 hours ahead. The longer the bars sit (past 2 days) the softer the crust gets.
Bars can be cut into 24 for smaller squares if needed.
I did not text this recipe in an 8×8 or 9×9 pan, but that may work. Baking time will need to be adjusted, likely an additional 10+ minutes needed for pie filling (not the crust).