We will read about ourselves in the history books in 10 years. The Canned Pumpkin Shortage of 2009.

When it was discovered that unfavorable weather had killed 1/3 of the national pumpkin crop and thus that canned pumpkin would be scarce this fall season, the nation’s food blogging community, with a fervor that rivaled that of Black Friday’s most aggressive shoppers, hit the supermarkets in droves, all for the sake of snatching up every last can of Libby’s beloved pumpkin puree before it was too late. A few hospitalizations were reported as the thought of a pumpkin pie-less Thanksgiving pushed home cooks around the country to the edge of insanity. It was a dark time for our nation; one that we will hopefully never revisit.
And when my grandchildren ask me about it (Grandma, how did you EVER survive?). I will reply with a gleam in my eyes, knowing full well that, at least in my Whole Foods, pumpkin can be found lining the shelves in abundance, “You kids today don’t know how lucky you have it. Back then, we never knew what to expect. Would there be pumpkin? Or would we have walked the six miles to the store in three feet of snow only to be turned away, emptyhanded? Dark times, I tell you. Dark. Times.”
Yet, even though it is not bad as all that. You have to admit that the thought of going without pumpkin pie for another year made you twitch. Uncontrollably. For at least a minute or so.
Pumpkin Pie Bars
Makes 24, found on Joy the Baker who found it on the Kraft website

1 1/3 cups flour
3/4 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup brown sugar
3/4 cups butter, cold
1 cup oats
1/2 cup chopped pecans
8 oz cream cheese
3 eggs
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp vanilla

1. Heat oven to 350. Line a 9×13-inch pan with aluminum foil and then grease the foil. Mix flour, 1/4 cup sugar and 1/2 cup brown sugar in a bowl. Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Mix in the oats and chopped pecans.

2. Reserve 1 cup of the oat mixture for later use. Press the rest of the oats into the prepared pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Beat together the cream cheese, eggs, pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, remaining 1/2 cup sugar and vanilla. Pour over the crust. Sprinkle with the remaining oat mixture.

3. Bake for 25 minutes or until set. Let cool for 10 minutes. Use foil to transfer to a wire rack until cooled completely. Cut into 24 squares.

NOTES – I think this could be a bit more heavily spiced so next time I would use my own spice mixture, probably similar to the one I used in the pumpkin apple pie.

Also, please stop by Krazy Kitchen tomorrow for a special guest blogger post by yours truly!

You are reading this post on Eats Well With Others at https://joanne-eatswellwithothers.com. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of Eats Well With Others. All rights reserved by Joanne Bruno.
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36 Responses to Pumpkin Pie Bars

  1. Amy says:

    LOL. I’m telling you, I read about the shortage. Not quite your version, but they certainly made it sound severe.

    I think Natashya was right – it’s all a marketing plan to get us to buy more cans of puree. And it worked on me, as you know.

    And now I have a use for one more of my cans. Pumpkin Pie Bars…here I come.

  2. girlichef says:

    LOL!!! OMG, crack me up 😀 These look mighty tasty 😀

  3. Mmmm, pumpkin bars – love the cream cheese in them!

  4. Debbie says:

    I’ve heard there is a pumpkin shortage but it hasn’t affected us here in Va. Plenty of pumpkin around. Your bars look great!

  5. Kim says:

    Loved the post ;D I can almost see it as an SNL skit or something. These bars look great!! Yum- pumpkin with cream cheese. I’m currently overdosing on a pumpkin pie brioche I made the other day. I think I could eat pumpkin everyday.

  6. Barbara says:

    Funny post!
    And so true.
    Love the bars- guess I will use one of my hoarded cans of pumpkin.

  7. Pumpkin pie bars sounds really good, yum! I’ve heard of canned pumpkin shortage, how funny 🙂

  8. Muneeba says:

    Huh, I thought I was the only one who was affected by this shortage … but now I can see that the situation is more dire than I thought! You haven’t suffered too much though … those bars look delectable 😀

  9. SE(Denufood) says:

    read your post and story!fun!, the bars look perfectly delicious..

  10. Not only am I making these bars, but I’m reading your history lesson of the Great Pumpkin Shortage of 09 to my Chihuahuas. They too, need to know of the pain we are suffering.

  11. Donna-FFW says:

    Funny Funny Funny Funny.:) Thanks for the afternoon giggle. There certainly seems to be no shortage of pumpkin now, makes one wonder, was it a marketing ploy. Love it when Im cynical.

    The bars sound fantastic!!

  12. teresa says:

    your writing is so fun! these bars look incredible, a perfect way to reminisce about the dark days of no pumpkin!

  13. Katy ~ says:

    LOL I am not a Libby’s pumpkin fan but when I went to the grocer’s they were out of my beloved One Pie canned pumpkin that I ended up buying Libby’s and feeling quite cheated. Then I saw the One Pie and bought even more LOL. I think I have enough pumpkin puree for several seasons, seeing that the dates are good for about 18 months or more, grins.

    Your pumpkin bars look simply scrumptious. I’ll make sure and save a can to make these.

  14. Mari says:

    Dude this is so true! I went to the supermarket last week and they were sold out of Libby’s! I asked the manager to restock asap and they did, thankfully (((((phew))))) crisis adverted!

    yums to those bars

  15. Tashalee says:

    I am already a fan of this blog…I had no idea all this was going on on the other side of the street. Great photos and cooking! ~Tlee

  16. Hilarious! I wasn’t even aware there was a pumpkin shortage. Those pumpkin bars look fabulous, I love cream cheese in desserts!

  17. My market had quite an abundance too – they even had a second display of it on a whole other aisle. I was happy. I would be happier if I had these bars! Scrumptious! I love the oats and cream cheese!

  18. Velva says:

    I had no idea that there was a potential pumpkin shortage-YIKES! I think my grocery shopping trip tomorrow will include a few extra cans, if they can be found. 🙂
    These pumpkin bars looks really yummy.

  19. Hahaha…I love your version of things. Much more dramatic and exciting. I think my tensest moment was when I couldn’t find any right before a pumpkin-themed cupcake contest deadline. When the grocery worker pointed me to the last can, I swear I coulda hugged him. I’ve had this recipe bookmarked for months. Thanks for the heads up about spicing. I like mine strooong.

  20. Marisa says:

    Those bars look awesome. Great post too, you made me laugh! Just a question – approx how many cups of pumpkin did you use? We don’t get tinned pumpkin over here… 🙂

  21. Sophia says:

    I’m not so worried about the shortage, actually. I prefer kabocha to pumpkin, and kabochas aren’t in shortage, thank god!

    But wow..these pumpkin bars actually look REALLY gorgeous, and the pumpkin shines through!

  22. Debinhawaii says:

    Fun post and the bars look delicious and well worth a bit of hospitalization to get the pumpkin. 😉

  23. Half Baked says:

    Pumpkin pie is my favorite. I wondered what was up a couple of weeks ago when I went to 3 grocery stores looking for pumpkin, only to come away empty handed! Pumpkin shortage…nnnooo! Well it’s back in the stores now so I’ve got to get a can and make these!!!

  24. Elra says:

    Reall? I have no idea. It is pretty possible though, although must say that I would be dissapointed if it is happening right now, because I really want to male this bars of yours. Looks pretty tempting Joanne.

  25. Great recipe. I am going to use it for my daughter’s lunch.

  26. For some reason, I always think everything is better in a “bar” format. But, I am a recovering cookie-oholic.

  27. I hope read don’t read about people doing time on the pumpkin thieving rap because of the pumpkin shortage.

    Quick, pass me one of those bars, they look delish!

  28. Palidor says:

    I didn’t even know there was a shortage. Well, you can have my allotment ’cause I don’t like pumpkin. Although… your bars are tempting me otherwise! Seriously, those look absolutely delicious.

  29. Nat says:

    Those would have VENISHED in no time…. They are like Pumpkin brownies…look extremely treatful and yummy…! I especially like the cream cheese and chopped pecans in there…

  30. Noooo, say it isn’t so! These look so good – another one on my must make this fall! Thanks for your awesome guest post at The Krazy Kitchen today! 🙂

  31. oh boy do these ever sound delicious 😀 love pumpkin bars!

  32. monicajane says:

    I knew nothing about the shortage but I’ve bought four pumpkins this year which I’ve been happily roasting…hadn’t thought of buying canned pumpkin…

    this looks really yummy…I still have one large pumpkin left to roast so perhaps I’ll make these and save the rest…don’t do dessert too often but pumpkin desserts are a delight!

  33. So cute! 😀

    I love pumpkin bars. I’ll have to hurry and try these while there’s still time!

  34. Graziana says:

    please don’t be too shocked… pumpkin cans doesn’t exist in italy!
    we have to buy fresh pumpkin (whole or cut into slices) and cook it.
    a new story to tell your grandchildren

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