At the beginning of October, Ben and I were at Walmart late one Sunday night. We were coming home from a church event and desperately needed a few things for our lunches the next day. Typically I avoid Walmart like the plague, especially in this town because it’s always so busy and it stresses me out… but sometimes it just can’t be avoided. We walked past the cream cheese and I saw the Holy Grail of cream cheese: Philadelphia Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese. PUMPKIN SPICE!! I couldn’t believe it. I got so excited. But for reasons unbeknownst to me, I decided I would get it “later.”
Why? I’m not sure, because I’ve regretted it ever since. Especially during every one of the three visits I’ve made to Walmart since that time looking for that stinking cream cheese has been met in failure as they have been out. 😦 And none of the grocery stores I’ve looked in have carried it at all. 😦 😦 😦 After entering into a state of depression and realizing that I may never get to experience the glory that is Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese, I decided that something must be done. I had to make it myself!
Guess what? Though I’ve never tasted the original, I don’t miss it one bit. The four ingredient version I whipped up in a couple of minutes in my food processor is slightly sweet and is absolutely heavenly.
Opening the jar is a delightful sensory experience as the unmistakable warm fall spices just jump out, waiting to be enjoyed. Plussssss, though I can’t say this for certain, my version uses real pumpkin puree for an authentic pumpkin taste–not some combination of natural and artificial flavors. How bout just some natural flavors? Sounds good to me, for sure.
This Pumpkin Spice Cream Cheese is perfect for spreading on bagels, for dipping apples or graham crackers, and for snacky spoonfuls. I suspect it would be glorious along with some Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins too, but I can’t verify yet. What could be wrong with double pumpkin?? Nothing much that I can tell. I’ll need to try that ASAP. 🙂 To make it more of a dessert spread, use a little more sugar–but I truthfully found it flavorful enough without lots of added sugar. If you make this after trying the original, do let me know how they compare, because I’m curious. From what I can tell, the original is more of a spread, and this version is slightly more airy and whipped, but that’s all I know for now. But alas… I know this is good. Really good. And for that, I am happy… even though it took several Walmart excursions to make it happen. Enjoy!
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened [I used Neufchâtel]
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 1/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
Combine all ingredients in deep bowl and beat on high with hand mixer for 2 minutes. Alternatively, you can use a stand mixer or whisk. Taste and adjust seasonings and sweetener as desired. Refrigerate for at least one hour before using for best taste, then use within a week.
Time: 10 minutes + time to chill.
Yield: ~ 1 1/2 cups.