These easy vegan Pumpkin Cheesecake Swirl Brownies are moist, fudgy, super delicious and much healthier than traditional American brownie recipes. They’re refined sugar-free, almost flour-less and can be made gluten-free too! The perfect low calorie dessert for pumpkin season in fall!
Vegan Pumpkin Brownies with Cheesecake Swirl
Who can guess that there is half a pumpkin hiding in these Cheesecake Brownies? Try the recipe and convince yourself – you’ll be surprised! 🙂
Pumpkin purée as an egg substitute!
While traditional brownies and classic New York Cheesecake are made with lots of eggs, I used pumpkin instead in this vegan recipe. Just like mashed bananas or apple sauce, pumpkin purée is a great egg substitute too. It has not only a binding property, but also makes any cake really moist!
Healthy, low calorie and low fat
But these pumpkin brownies are not only egg-less and dairy-free, they have also other health benefits. They contain no refined sugar, no dairy milk, and no butter, making them a great vegan alternative to traditional brownies that will also save you some calories, sugar and fat!
Ingredients and notes
To make these brownies, you’ll only need a few simple ingredients that are easy to find at the grocery store. Here are all the ingredients you need listened with some helpful information.
- Pumpkin: If you want to make homemade pumpkin purée, you will need about ½ Hokkaido pumpkin (about 21 oz / 600 g diced). This will give you the amount of pumpkin purée needed for this recipe (15 oz / 430 g in total). Alternatively, you can use canned pumpkin purée.
- Flour: I like to use spelt flour, but you can also use all-purpose flour or gluten-free flour.
- Cocoa powder: Make sure to use 100% cocoa and not drinking cocoa which contains a lot of sugar. Otherwise the brownies will turn out very sweet and soggy.
- Baking powder: or use half the amount of baking soda instead.
- Spices: Cinnamon or pumpkin spice, a little salt and optionally a pinch of bourbon vanilla or vanilla extract.
- Raw cane sugar: or other sugar to taste.
- Vegetable oil: for example, canola or sunflower oil, or other neutral-flavored oil.
- Coffee or dairy-free milk: optional if the brownie batter is too thick.
- Vegan cream cheese: is needed for the pumpkin cheesecake layer. Make sure it has room temperature so it combines better with the other ingredients.
- Cornstarch: or vanilla pudding powder is also needed for the pumpkin cheesecake layer to make it firm.
- Chocolate chips: for the topping.
How to make Vegan Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownies
As always, I recommend checking out this step-by-step instruction first, including the 5 tips and the recipe video. Then you can find the full recipe with exact measurements in the recipe card below!
Step 1: Make pumpkin purée
To make pumpkin purée yourself, first cut the pumpkin into rough cubes and place in a pot. Cover with a little water and cook for a few minutes until soft. Then drain the cooking water and let the pumpkin steam out briefly so that the remaining liquid can escape. Then blend.
*Tip 1: You can also roast the pumpkin in the oven until soft, then blend.
Step 2: Make the pumpkin brownie batter.
For the brownie batter, first mix together all the dry ingredients and all the wet ingredients separately. Then pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and stir everything together until it forms a fairly thick batter.
*Tip 2: To avoid lumps, I recommend sifting flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and cinnamon.
Step 3: Make the pumpkin cheesecake mixture.
To make the cheesecake layer, simply mix all ingredients with an electric handheld mixer until creamy.
*Tip 3: Make sure all ingredients are at room temperature so they combine better.
Step 4: Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake Swirl Brownies.
First, spread ⅔ of the brownie batter in a baking dish. Then carefully spoon the pumpkin cheesecake mixture on top, followed by the remaining ⅓ brownie batter. Now gently tap the pan to smooth out the batter. Then use a wooden skewer to draw a marbling pattern and finally sprinkle some chocolate chips on top.
*Tip 4: Lightly grease the baking pan first and then line it with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides. This way you can easily lift out the brownies later.
Step 5: Bake and let cool.
Bake the brownies at 356 °F (180 °C) for about 45-50 minutes. Then let them cool completely in the pan and put them in the fridge overnight. The next day you can carefully lift out the brownie cheesecake and cut it into pieces. Enjoy!
*Tip 5: If you want the brownies to be less moist, you can increase the baking time by 10-15 minutes.
Fancy a fruity variation?
If you want to modify this recipe a bit, you could also make a compote with fruits and integrate a fruit layer. You can find the instructions in my recipe for “Cheesecake Brownies with Cherries“.
Some fruits that are in season during fall include apples, pears, and plums.
How can I store brownies?
Leftover pumpkin brownies will keep covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days and can also be frozen in portions. Then, if needed, simply thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
This Pumpkin Cheesecake Brownie Recipe is:
- Vegan (plant-based)
- Dairy-free (lactose-free)
- Super delicious!
- The perfect dessert for fall and winter!
More vegan pumpkin recipes
If you love baking with pumpkin, feel free to check out these cake and pie recipes too!
- Best Pumpkin Bread
- Chocolate Marble Pumpkin Bread
- Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars with Cinnamon Streusel
- Pumpkin Cake with Cheesecake Swirl
- Best Vegan Pumpkin Pie
- Pumpkin Doughnuts
- … or try my Best Vegan Brownies, healthy Zucchini Brownies, delicious Hazelnut Brownies or Cherry Cheesecake Brownies!
If you try this recipe for Vegan Pumpkin Brownies with Cheesecake Swirl, feel free to leave me a comment and a star rating! And if you take a photo of your yummy brownie cheesecake bar and share it on Instagram, please tag me @biancazapatka and use the hashtag #biancazapatka because I love seeing your remakes! Happy baking! 🙂
Vegan Pumpkin Brownies with Cheesecake SwirlAuthor:
You do not have a fitting cake pan at hand right now? Try my Cake Pan Conversion Calculator!
Homemade pumpkin purée (optional):
- ½ (600 g) Hokkaido pumpkin about 21oz/600g diced - yields the amount of pumpkin purée needed for this recipe (15oz/430g in total)
- 1 cup (125 g) flour spelt, all-purpose or gluten-free flour (*see notes).
- 3 tbsp (20 g) cocoa powder 20 g
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon or pumpkin spice
- 1 pinch of salt
- ½ cup (100 g) raw cane sugar or other sugar
- 6.3 oz (180 g) pumpkin purée *see notes
- ¼ cup (60 ml) neutral oil e.g. canola or sunflower oil
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) coffee or dairy-free milk (optional if needed*)
- ⅓ cup (60 g) vegan chocolate chips
*Note: Check out the recipe video, step-by-step pictures and tips above!
Make pumpkin purée
- Cut the pumpkin into cubes and place in a pot. Cover with a little water and cook until soft, about 20 minutes. Then drain the cooking water and let the pumpkin steam out briefly so that remaining liquid can escape. Then blend until smooth.
Prepare oven & baking dish
- Preheat the oven to 356 °F (180 °C). Lightly grease an 18x23cm or 21x21cm baking pan (or similar size) and line with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides (for easier removal).
- Sift the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and cinnamon into a mixing bowl. Then add salt and sugar and whisk everything together.
- In a measuring cup, mix the pumpkin purée with the oil and coffee (or dairy-free milk).
- Now pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. (The batter should be pretty thick, but still pourable - as shown in the video or pictures above. You can add more liquid or flour if needed*).
- Place all ingredients for the cheesecake layer in a mixing bowl and mix with an electric handheld mixer until creamy.
Assemble Pumpkin Brownies
- First pour ⅔ of the brownie batter into the prepared baking pan and spread it out evenly to cover the bottom. Then carefully spoon the pumpkin cheesecake batter evenly on top. Lastly, spoon the remaining ⅓ brownie batter on top and then gently tap the pan against your work surface so that the batter spreads evenly. Use a wooden skewer or spatula to create a marbling, then sprinkle some chocolate chips on top if desired.
- Bake the brownies for about 45-50 minutes (if you want them to be less moist, you can increase the baking time by 10-15 minutes).
- Let them cool completely in the pan, then put them in the refrigerator overnight. The next day, carefully lift them out using the overhanging parchment paper and cut into pieces.
- Gluten-free: you can sub gluten-free 1 to 1 baking flour.
- Coffee: coffee makes the chocolate flavor more intense, but you can use any dairy-free milk instead.
- Pumpkin purée: You can also prepare the pumpkin purée in the oven or buy canned pumpkin purée.
- Fruit: If you want to try a fruity variation, check out the recipe for my "Cherry Cheesecake Brownies".
- Storage: Keep the brownies covered for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or freeze them in portions.
- More tips and information about the recipe are mentioned in the blog post above!
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