pumpkin spiced pop tarts

pumpkin spiced pop tarts

These pumpkin spiced pop tarts are a cozy weekend treat for the whole family.

Growing up in an Iranian home, breakfast usually consisted of Persian style tomato and egg omelette or barbari bread with a myriad of jams made from sour cherries or quince. As much as I love my dad’s tomato and egg omelette, we were always excited when American food hit the breakfast table.

Bisquick pancakes would make a rare weekend appearance and excitement broke loose when maman bought pop-tarts from the store. I can still remember opening the thin foil wrapper to release the unmistakable aroma of artificial vanilla and strawberry (or brown sugar cinnamon if that was more your vibe). The thick glaze shattered as you took your first bite; precisely why I was partial to eating my pop tarts at room temperature. Heating the pastries in the toaster always made the crunch of the glaze less pronounced.

I haven’t had a store bought pop tart in over a decade (because…adulting) but I can still smell and taste the deliciously processed delight. Since I miss the toaster pastries of my childhood but also want to snack responsibly, I developed these pumpkin spiced pop tarts as a healthier alternative that screams Autumn!

The pie crust is made with a blend of all purpose and whole wheat flour for flavor and texture. There is no partially-hydrogenated anything or food coloring. The filling is made with real pumpkin and lightly sweetened with brown sugar and spices.

Obviously, making homemade pop tarts takes a bit more effort than cracking open a box. However, it’s a fun weekend baking project and much more wholesome than it’s mainstream counterpart.

Try these other SepCooks favorites to get into the fall mood:

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pumpkin spiced pop tarts

pumpkin spiced pop tarts


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  • Author: Sepideh Esmaili Campos

Ingredients

Scale

Pie crust:

  • 1 ½ cup all purpose flour
  • ½ cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 16 Tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into ¼ inch cubes
  • ¼ cup ice water

Filling:

  • ½ cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
  • Pinch of kosher salt

Glaze

  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
  • 24 teaspoons half and half

Instructions

  1. To make the crust with a food processor: Combine the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, cornstarch, granulated sugar, and salt in the bowl of the food processor. Pulse the ingredients a few times to combine.
  2. Scatter the cold butter over the flour in the food processor. Pulse the food processor until the butter is coated with the flour and is broken down into pea sized pieces.
  3. Sprinkle two tablespoons of ice water over the flour and pulse a couple times. Continue to add the water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough just comes together.
  4. Divide the dough in half, wrap each half of the dough separately in plastic wrap creating two 1 inch disks of dough.
  5. Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour or overnight.
  6. To make the crust by hand: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, cornstarch, granulated sugar, and salt. Fully mix and remove any lumps.
  7. Sprinkle the cold butter pieces over the flour. Using your finger tips, toss the butter to coat with the flour. Rub the butter into the flour by squeezing pieces between your thumb and fingertips. Continue to work the butter into the flour until the butter is all coated with flour and the butter is in pea sized pieces.
  8. Add the water, one tablespoon at a time, tossing the dough between additions. Only add as much water as necessary to just hold the dough together. Lightly knead the dough a couple times until it just holds together, do not overwork the dough.
  9. Divide the dough in half, wrap each half of the dough separately in plastic wrap creating two 1 inch disks of dough.
  10. Refrigerate the dough for at least one hour or overnight.

Make the filling:

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and salt. Set aside.

Assemble pop tarts:

  1. When you’re ready to make the pop-tarts, remove the disks of dough from the refrigerator.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Place a sheet of parchment paper on the counter, sprinkle with flour.
  5. Place one of the disks of dough on top of the floured paper, sprinkle the top of the dough with some flour and place another sheet of parchment paper over the top.
  6. With the dough nestled between the two sheets of floured parchment paper, roll the dough out into a rectangle about ⅛ of an inch thick (the rectangle should be large enough to cut a 9X9’ square out from the center).
  7. Cut out a 9X9’ square. Cut the square into three, 3’ strips and cut each strip in half crosswise to create 6 rectangles.
  8. Use a bench scraper or flat spatula to transfer the rectangles of dough onto the prepared baking sheet.
  9. Repeat this process with the second disk of dough but keep the rectangles on the counter while you add the filling.
  10. Dip a clean finger in water and wet the perimeter of the dough that’s on the baking sheet.
  11. Drop a small spoonful of filling onto the center of the dough on the baking sheet. You might have leftover filling.
  12. Top each rectangle with another rectangle of dough and use a fork to crimp the edges together.
  13. Use a toothpick to poke holes onto the top of the filled poptarts (to allow steam to escape).
  14. Bake the poptarts in the oven until the crust is baked and slightly browned around the edges and on the bottom, about 20-25 minutes.
  15. Remove the pop tarts from the oven, let them cool completely while you prepare the glaze.
  16. In a small mixing bowl, combine the powdered sugar and maple syrup. Add one teaspoon of half and half at a time (if necessary) to thin out the glaze. The glaze should be thin enough to spread but thick enough to coat the pop tarts.
  17. Once the pop tarts are completely cooled, top each tart with the glaze.
  18. Let the glaze set at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.
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