Decadent Pumpkin Spice Mini Loaves with Cream Cheese Frosting and Chocolate Ganache

Autumn is one of our favorite times of year, and with that, our love for all things pumpkin spice kicks into gear.  A favorite recipe we like to make at this time of year – especially for an after school snack – is our pumpkin spice mini loaves. This recipe is a family-favorite because the mini-loaves look as good as they taste. Plus, we got creative, hiding a gingersnap cookie and delicious cream cheese center in the middle, and topping them with a drizzle of warm chocolate ganache. Mmmm.

The base recipe is an adaptation of another learned back in middle school, only this one we've really spiced up with a secret family spice mix, which includes cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger, as well some freshly ground black pepper. A healthier version can also be made by substituting the oil for coconut oil and the flour for gluten-free flour. But of course you can make it with the proposed ingredients as well. The pumpkin puree is the center of the recipe, so the other ingredients can be improvised easily. 

Although this loaf can be made as is, to make it a little extra special we've added a unique cream cheese treat inside and chocolate ganache drizzle on top. The result is a delightful marriage of flavors; the peppery pumpkin spice, the sweet cream cheese center (not to forget that cookie) and a smooth chocolate topping that will be making everyone coming back for more!  I love creating these treats for my friends and family because it’s a chance to show my creativity and passion in the kitchen. Even a simple – yet delectable – treat like these mini loaves can make a dull fall evening turn into a warm, inviting night, centered on eating, laughing and enjoying one’s company. Enjoy!

Servings: 2 dozen

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Ingredients

Ingredients for loaf recipe

1½ cups sugar (coconut or brown sugar)

½ tsp. each of cloves, nutmeg and pepper (both preferably freshly ground)

¾ to 1 tsp. each of cinnamon and ginger

¼ tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

2 eggs

1⅔ cup flour (gluten free or regular)

½ cup coconut oil (or vegetable can be used)

1 cup canned pumpkin purée

12 ginger snaps, broken into halves (gluten free or regular)

cream cheese center recipe (see below)

chocolate ganache recipe (see below) 

1 mini loaf pan (recipe makes 24 mini loaves)

Masterpiece Blender

Ingredients for cream cheese centers

8 oz. cream cheese

¼ cup stevia (coconut sugar or regular sugar can also be used) 

1 egg yolk

Ingredients for chocolate ganache

8 oz dark chocolate chips (we used the ones sweetened with stevia)

½ cup coconut milk (from the can) or whipping cream

Masterpiece Immersion Blender

Instructions

Instructions for the loaf

Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine all liquid ingredients into the Masterpiece blender. Add in spices, followed by baking soda and baking powder.  Then add the flour ½ a cup at a time and blend together until all the flour is dissolved.  Set aside.

Instructions for the cream cheese centers

In a bowl mix the cream cheese, sugar and egg yolk together with the Masterpiece immersion blender. Mix until thoroughly blended. Place into a small decorating bag with a larger hole tip. Set aside.

To assemble the loaves for baking

See video below for our example. Pour in approx 1 teaspoon of pumpkin batter into the bottom of each mini loaf pan. Place a half of a ginger snap on top of the first layer of pumpkin mix. Squeeze a long line (the length of the mini loaf) on top of the ginger snap layer. Using another decorating bag, pour the remaining pumpkin batter into it, and cover each cream cheese layer with pumpkin batter until covered. (Makes 24 loaves)

When the mini loaves have cooled, make the ganache at the very last because as it gets cooler it thickens.  So you will want to wait until the loaves have cooled before you begin to make the ganache. Drizzle ganache over loaves using a spoon. Note the coconut milk version takes longer to thicken.

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