Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars

Oh, it’s that time again…where pumpkin flavor everything starts showing up…and I LOVE it.  From the pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks to cans of pumpkin appearing at the end of grocery store aisles, it’s definitely one of my favorite times of the year.  It signifies the end of summer, which is kind of sad, but it also means a relief from the ridiculously hot temperatures in the South.  Today there is no humidity, a nice breeze and I’m sitting here tying in my sun room with all the windows open…it feels heavenly (it’s still 83 degrees, but what a difference no humidity makes!).  What a perfect day to start off some fall baking.  

Golden and so pumpkiny!  These baked up perfectly! 

As I do with most of my bar cookies, I left these just a bit underdone.  I hate dried out cookies!  These are moist and almost take on a pumpkin pie consistency.  I kept them in the fridge after they cooled. 
Makes 24 bars

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bars

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 package (12 oz) semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9×13 baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until smooth.  Add egg and vanilla and beat until combined.  Mix in pumpkin puree.

Combine the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda and salt in a small bowl.  On low speed, mix dry ingredients into wet until just combined.  Fold in chocolate chips.

Spread batter evenly in pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost clean, about 30-35 minutes.  Cool completely in pan.  Cut into 24 squares.