• 1 box of Samoas Girl Scout Cookies
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne
  • 8 oz. whipped cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated white sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree

It’s mid Winter and we are all staring Spring in the face as daffodils, jonquils, and tulips start their ascent out of soil and into the air above. The holidays are over and we are free to do as we wish with our time. It’s the beginning of birthday season and gardening season and dreaming of summer vacations.

It is also GIRL SCOUT COOKIE season!!!

I was a Girl Scout. I started as a Brownie at age 5. I got my first badge in cooking and baking. I enjoyed camping trips, learning activities, having special friends, and being part of something amazing for young girls. Some of the troupe remained my best friends all through my youth. Those 7 years of my childhood are some of my most treasured memories.

This year the little girls in brown and green are celebrating the Samoas cookie’s 40th birthday! I’ve been eating them for at least 3 decades, how about you?

The annual “Girl Scout’s of Western Washington” Cookie recipe contest is going strong and this year the competition all received Samoas cookies. So I have been busy these last 3 weeks, stretching my creative muscles. I’ve made 4 different recipes, ranging from calzones to ravioli to empanadas to dessert bars. The savory track worked well enough, and all of my taste testers said they liked the sausage, onion, goat cheese, pumpkin, chili, cookie ravioli…BUT…alas, this cookie is sweet and has a lot going on. Shortbread, caramel, chocolate, and coconut. And the ravioli just wasn’t something I would go back for more of, so I had to go with my dessert bars instead. These taste balanced and have a bit of heat that lingers in the back of your mouth after you are done. Everybody wants seconds of these goodies!

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I now present to you my contest entry; Samoas Spicy Pumpkin Bars.

It’s still pumpkin season in my home. I grew 6 sugar pumpkins in my garden and I was gifted several more pumpkins by friends and neighbors. So we’ve been eating pumpkin all Winter. Pumpkin is traditional and local to Western Washington. It grows well and cooks easily and goes into so many yummy meals, desserts, soups, and drinks. So I wanted to celebrate pumpkin and the Samoas and their marriage in my fine bar cookie.

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To prepare this treat you’ll need several mixing bowls, your food processor, a baking pan, whisk, spatula, and wooden spoon.

(My 4.5 year old son helped me make this, so feel free to have your brownie or girl scout on hand to assist.)

Line your 7X11 inch glass baking dish  or (8″X8″ square pan) with parchment paper or non stick spray.

In the food processor crush one box of Samoas girl scout cookies.

Melt 1/4 cup butter in a small bowl in the microwave.

Combine the cookie crumbs with the butter in the small bowl and add chili powder, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. Stir. Add coconut flour. Stir.

Reserve 1/2 cup of this mixture for later use. Press the rest into the bottom of your lined baking pan.

In a separate bowl combine sugar, cream cheese and eggs. Mix until just combined. Spread 1/2 of this mixture over the pressed crust, spreading evenly.

To the other half of that cream cheese, sugar, egg mixture; add pumpkin. Stir. Pour all of that into the pan and spread evenly.

Sprinkle the reserved cookie crumb spice mixture over the top.

Bake in 300 degrees oven for 55 minutes or until set and allow to cool in oven with door ajar for one hour.

Cool completely before slicing. Sprinkle with a dash of cayenne before serving for an extra bite!

If you are using a fresh pumpkin, here is my METHOD of easily slicing, gutting, and cooking the flesh. You may also used canned.

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I hope you enjoy trying this recipe!

samoas contest

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cookies

cookie crumbs

garden pumpkins

pumpkin puree

before cooking

Cookie sales occur February 27-March 15. Here is a handy cookie locator in case you don’t know a troupe member.

above the bites