Amish Pumpkin Bars
These Amish pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting are the best pumpkin bars ever! Although, I also do love pumpkin pie bars.
But this recipe is for pumpkin cake bars. And they are delightfully moist and fluffy and seriously addicting!
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I love all things pumpkin!! And I love fall! It's my favorite season!
And guess what, it's almost that time of year again! Yay!!
I get so exhilarated when I see signs of autumn approaching again. Cool, crisp mornings are a welcome and refreshing break after Missouri's long months of oppressing humidity and heat.
It's still August, so I know that summer isn't over yet. But here I am baking all kinds of pumpkin goodies already because I can't wait. And I was craving pumpkin cream cheese bars once again.
And anyway, who is to say that we can't eat pumpkin bars all year long? There's no reason that we should wait for fall to enjoy these delicious pumpkin treats.
Sheet Pan Pumpkin Bars
If I was living by myself, I might be looking for 9 x 9" pan recipes for bars. But since I'm baking for my family of six, I hate recipes that make only a small pan full because they'll be gone within a couple of hours.
I look for recipes that make a big sheet pan full of bars, such as this Amish oatmeal chocolate chip bars recipe. (And yes, I literally make these bars at least a couple of times a month.)
And thankfully, this Amish pumpkin bars recipe makes a (jelly roll size) sheet pan of bars. So I cut them into about twenty-four squares and put some in the freezer in hopes that they'll last longer.
Although around here, bars and cookies constantly disappear from the freezer too, since everyone seems to love them half frozen. It's amazing how quickly my baked goods get devoured.
But I understand that one person will not get a sheet pan of bars eaten within a week. So you may be thinking that this recipe makes too much.
The good news, however, is that these pumpkin bars freeze well. So you can cut them in squares and place them into an airtight container. They will be good for up to a couple of months.
Now you have some handy treats in the freezer for whenever you get a craving. Remove the desired amount from the freezer and allow about a half hour for them to thaw.
What Kind of Pumpkin Should I Use to make Pumpkin Bars?
Truth be told, I can't tell the difference in taste between bars that were made with fresh pumpkin or a can that I bought from the store.
So, if you don't feel like going through the trouble of cooking and pureeing fresh pumpkin, feel free to buy a can. That's what I often do.
(Note: do not use pumpkin pie mix, just plain pumpkin puree.)
But sometimes the shelf is empty, and it's hard to find canned pumpkin at the supermarkets over pumpkin season. So it's nice to have an alternative, and I cook a fresh pumpkin.
My Amish mom always planted butternut squash, and she used those to make pumpkin pie, etc.
They work well, and I planted some this year. So I will be cooking my butternut squash and freezing the puree to use in my pumpkin recipes.
I also love using the little pie pumpkins. They make great pumpkin puree.
But I do not recommend using the giant jack o' lantern pumpkins. Honestly, I've never actually tried them, but I've been told that they aren't very good.
Roasting pumpkins seems to be an easy and popular method to make the puree. But you can do whatever works for you.
My mom always peeled hers and cooked them in a big pot with a bit of water until they were soft. Then she pureed the pumpkin in a blender and canned it.
Pumpkin Pecan Bars
This pumpkin bars recipe does not ask for pecans, and I love them without. But they are also really good with chopped pecans. And sometimes it's nice to have that extra crunch.
So if you like pecans, feel free to stir some chopped pecans into the batter before spreading it onto the baking sheet.
Or you could also spread chopped pecans on top of the cream cheese frosting.
If you enjoy these Dessert Bars, perhaps you'd like to try more Amish Pumpkin Recipes...
Amish Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe
- 1 1/2 c. sugar
- 1 c. canola or vegetable oil
- 4 large eggs
- 1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin (or about 2 c. fresh pumpkin puree)
- 2 c. all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 4 oz. softened cream cheese
- 1/4 c. softened butter (4 Tbsp.)
- 2 c. powdered sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp. milk
- pinch of salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- In a mixing bowl, beat sugar, oil, eggs, and pumpkin until creamy.1 1/2 c. sugar, 1 c. canola or vegetable oil, 4 large eggs, 1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin (or about 2 c. fresh pumpkin puree)
- In a seperate bowl, mix the dry ingredients.2 c. all-purpose flour, 2 tsp. baking powder, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. salt, 2 tsp. ground cinnamon, 1/4 - 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
- Gradually add the dry mixture to the pumkin mixture and mix to combine.
- Spread the pumpkin batter into a greased 10" x 15" baking pan (jelly roll size).
- Bake at 350° for about 25 minutes ( a toothpick should come out with only a couple of crumbs).
- Cool completely then top with frosting. Cut into squares and serve.
- Store the bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. These bars can also be frozen for later use.
- In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese then add softened butter and beat until creamy.4 oz. softened cream cheese, 1/4 c. softened butter (4 Tbsp.)
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and beat on high speed until light and creamy.2 c. powdered sugar, 1 tsp. vanilla extract, 1 Tbsp. milk, pinch of salt
- Spread the frosting over the top of cooled bars.