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Chocolaty Pumpkin Bars

No recipe image available.Amber, a mother of two from Massachusetts, sent us a recipe for one of her children's favorite afternoon treats. To give it a healthy makeover, we included some whole wheat flour for extra fiber, used a whole can of pumpkin versus the half can called for in the original recipe, and nixed the two sticks of butter for canola oil an excellent source of health-enhancing omega-3 fats.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup pecans, very finely chopped
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs, beaten
1 (15-ounce) can 100% pure pumpkin
1/2 cup canola oil
1/4 cup 1% lowfat milk
1/2 cup mini chocolate chips

Cooking Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Lightly oil or coat a 15 x 10 x 1-inch baking pan (jelly roll pan) with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Whisk together the flour, whole wheat flour, sugar, pecans, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, pumpkin, canola oil, and milk. Add to the dry mixture along with the chocolate chips and stir to combine.
  4. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

Makes 30 bars.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1/30 of recipe): 140 Calories, 8 grams Total Fat, 2 grams Saturated Fat, 0.42 grams Omega-3 fat, 95 milligrams Sodium, 16 grams Carbohydrate, 2 grams Fiber, 2 grams Protein

Recipe created by Janice Bissex, MS, RD, and Liz Weiss, MS, RD, authors of The Moms' Guide to Meal Makeovers and founders of the free online Meal Makeover Moms Club at www.MealMakeoverMoms.com.