1 c. canned pumpkin
1 c. plus 2 T. granulated sugar, divided
½ c. packed brown sugar
4 egg whites, divided
½ c. low fat buttermilk
¼ c. canola oil
2 c. all-purpose flour
2 ½ t. baking powder
½ t. baking soda
2 t. pumpkin pie spice
1 t. cinnamon
¼ t. salt (optional)
1 8-oz. pkg. Neufchatel cream cheese (1/3 reduced fat), softened
¼ c. pepitas, chopped (optional)

In a large bowl, stir pumpkin, 1 c. granulated sugar, brown sugar, 3 egg whites, buttermilk and oil, until combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Add to pumpkin mixture and fold gently just until moistened. In a small bowl, beat cream cheese, remaining granulated sugar and remaining egg white until well blended. Spoon half the pumpkin batter into a 9×5-inch loaf pan sprayed with cooking spray. Spread the cream cheese mixture in a layer over that batter. Top cream cheese layer with remaining pumpkin batter. Spread the top pumpkin layer a little bit with a silicone spatula, but it is okay if a little cream cheese is still visible. Sprinkle the top layer with chopped pepitas, if desired. It helps to gently pat the pepitas into the batter. Bake at 350° for 60-65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Loosen bread from sides of pan; cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack; cool completely. Yields 1 9×5 loaf (about 16 servings).

Amy Breimayer, Westphalia