October 25, 2015

Pumpkin is at its peak, and we have the perfect two-bite dessert for the holidays. This variation of our mini Salted Caramel Cheesecakes swaps in pumpkin, fall spices, and a gingersnap crust that's to-die-for. What's not to love? Just wait for the oooh's and aaah's.

Individual Pumpkin-Spice Cheesecakes with Salted CaramelThis recipe makes 12 perfectly portioned cheesecakes. You can also make 24 itty bitty cheesecakes in mini muffin tins; they’ll only need to bake 10 to 12 minutes.

30 gingersnap cookies2 tablespoons canola oilCooking spray2/3 cup packed light brown sugar2/3 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt1/2 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin puree8 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract1/8 teaspoon table salt2 large eggs1/2 cup granulated sugar2 tablespoons water1 tablespoon butter1/2 cup evaporated milk3/8 teaspoon flake salt

1. Preheat oven to 300°.

2. Place cookies in a food processor; process until finely ground. Add oil; pulse to combine. Coat a 12-cup muffin tin well with cooking spray. Divide cookie crumb mixture evenly among muffin cups; press crumbs firmly into bottom and up sides using a small drinking glass. Bake at 300° for 9 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from oven; cool on a wire rack.

3. Wipe food processor clean. Place brown sugar, yogurt, pumpkin, and cream cheese in processor; process until smooth. Add pumpkin pie spice, vanilla, table salt, and eggs; process until smooth. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups. Bake at 300° for 17 minutes or until centers of cheesecakes barely move when pan is touched. Remove pan from oven; cool on a wire rack to room temperature. Cover pan; refrigerate cheesecakes 3 hours or until well chilled.

4. Run a thin knife around outside edge of each cheesecake. Carefully remove cheesecakes from pan; place on a platter. Chill cheesecakes until ready to serve.

5. Combine granulated sugar and 2 tablespoons water in a medium, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until sugar dissolves, stirring gently as needed to dissolve sugar evenly (about 3 minutes). Continue cooking 12 minutes or until the color of light brown sugar (do not stir). Remove from heat; carefully stir in butter and milk (caramelized sugar will harden and stick to spoon). Place pan over medium-high heat until caramelized sugar melts. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute. Remove pan from heat; cool caramel to room temperature. Cover and chill 1 hour or until slightly thickened. Spoon about 1 tablespoon caramel over each cheesecake. Sprinkle cheesecakes evenly with flake salt.

CALORIES 266; FAT 10.8g (sat 4.4g, mono 4.1g, poly 1.3g); PROTEIN 5.7g; CARB 37.2g; FIBER 0.7g; CHOL 51mg; IRON 1.6mg; SODIUM 296mg; CALC 90mg

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