This is a tradition in my family. My daughter loves it, she will hurt you if you tell her that you ate the last piece! We were talking last night and I asked her if she was still planning to make a pumpkin pie. She laughed and said that she didn't want to do anything that might prevent a certain pumpkin dessert from showing up. I asked her if she would like to take over the Pumpkin Chiffon duties, there was silence on the line. Guess that I will be making this dessert again this year.
Pumpkin Chiffon has a graham cracker crust, a cheesecake layer (how can you go wrong with cheesecake?), a creamy layer of pumpkin and finally whipped topping. I am not sure about the origins of this recipe, but it is worth a yearly repeat! Make this recipe a day ahead and allow it to sit in the refrigerator, one less thing to do on Thanksgiving Day!
1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs (we use cinnamon graham crackers)
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
Combine the crumbs, sugar and butter. Mix until all crumbs are moistened. Press into the bottom of a 13x9x2 dish. Set aside.
8 ounces softened cream cheese
2 eggs beaten
3/4 cup sugar
Mix cream cheese, eggs and sugar together. Beat until fluffy and spread over the crust. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.
2 small packages or 1 large package of instant vanilla pudding
1 3/4 cups milk
2 cups mashed cooked pumpkin
1 cup whipped topping
Combine the pudding and the milk and beat for about 2 minutes using the medium speed of electric mixer. Add the pumpkin and cinnamon and mix well. Stir in 1 cup of whipped topping. Spread the pudding mixture over the cooled cream cheese layer.
Spread the remaining whipped topping over the pumpkin layer and sprinkle with 1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans. Store dessert in the refrigerator. This makes about 16 servings.
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