It's still Indian summer where I live when I made these and I keep yearning for colder weather and rain. So I keep baking with fall flavors. It's like my version of a baking rain dance. If I make enough stuff with apples or pumpkin, maybe autumn will actually arrive. We can only hope.
I'm not even a super huge fan of pumpkin but I like it well enough and even though it's available year round, I tend to bake with it mostly around this time of year. Although caramel I'm down with at any time. So pumpkin caramel blondies seemed like a perfect dessert to make for work last week.
Sadly, I could not take a good picture of these to save my life. Which is truly sad as these were pretty good and the pictures don't do them justice. They were moist thanks to both the pumpkin and the caramel and both flavors marry well. I actually would suggest not adding the semisweet chocolate chips if you want to stick to a more pure pumpkin and caramel combination. The semisweet chocolate does provide a contrast if that's your thing but I think I would prefer the blondie without it.
Either way, these make for a good fall dessert. Bonus that they're easy to make too. It's best to wait until they're completely cool before you cut them and serve or they won't cut very cleanly and they'll be a bit too gooey.
Loaded Pumpkin Caramel Blondies
From Taste and Tell
2-1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
dash of cloves
1 cup butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
1 cup Pumpkin Spice Hershey kisses, roughly chopped (about 28)
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup toffee pieces
1 11-ounce bag caramels, unwrapped
1/3 cup evaporated milk (I used whole milk)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9x13-inch baking dish with parchment paper or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a bowl, combine the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, salt, nutmeg and cloves. In another bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar. Stir in the egg and vanilla, then add in the pumpkin. Add in the dry ingredients and stir just until combined. Add in the chopped Hershey’s Kisses, white chocolate chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips and toffee pieces.
3. Pour about 2/3 of the mixture into the prepared pan. The mixture will be fairly thick – use a spatula to spread the mixture to the edges. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
4. While the blondies are baking, combine the caramels and evaporated milk in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until the caramels are melted and the mixture is smooth.
5. After the blondies have baked for 10 minutes, remove and carefully pour the caramel over the top. Take the remaining dough and drop by spoonfuls over the top of the caramel. Return the pan to the oven and let bake an additional 30 minutes, or until cooked through.
6. Let cool completely before slicing and serving.
Related post on The Pastry Chef's Baking: Pumpkin snickerdoodle bar