These pumpkin bars are made with pumpkin puree and fall spices, then topped with cream cheese frosting. Easy to make and the perfect dessert for fall!
Today’s dessert is perfect for fall and a great use of extra pumpkin you might have sitting around: Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting. The secret to these moist and flavorful pumpkin bars is a rich and creamy frosting that is swirled in the batter before baking. Another secret ingredient is shredded carrots! Not only do they add extra vitamins and nutrients, but the shredded carrots keep the batter super light and moist. The end result is a pumpkin bar scented with warm fall spices and dotted with delicious cream cheese.
- For the pumpkin bars: whole wheat pastry flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, salt, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, brown sugar, coconut oil, eggs, egg whites, pure pumpkin, and a large carrot.
- For the cream cheese frosting: light cream cheese, sugar, and skim milk.
How to Make Perfect Pumpkin bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
Start your pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting by mixing all of your dry ingredients in one bowl and your wet ingredients in another. Then you’ll slowly add your flour mixture to the wet ingredients until fully incorporated.
Then take your pumpkin mixture and spread it evenly in a prepared baking dish.
Then in a small bowl, whisk the cream cheeese, sugar, and milk until smooth and combined. Next using a spoon, dollop some of the cream cheese frosting evenly across the pumpkin mixture.
Using a knife, make cutting motions across the top of the cream cheese and pumpkin mixture to create a swirled design. Then toss in the oven at 350 for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let your pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting cool before cutting and serving, and enjoy!
Frequently Asked Questions:
Could I add chocolate chips to these?
If you’re a fan of pumpkin chocolate chip cookies or muffins, adding chocoalte chips to these pumpkin bars would also be tasty!
How do you store pumpkin bars?
Keep them in an airtight container for up to a week in the fridge, or a couple days at room temperature.
Can pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting be frozen?
Yes you can! They actually freeze pretty nicely, like lots of cake-like desserts. Airtight container and they an freeze for over a month.
More Pumpkin Recipes
- Healthy Baked Mac and Cheese with Pumpkin
- Pumpkin Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies
- Pumpkin Banana Oatmeal
- Healthy Pumpkin Applesauce Muffins
- Pumpkin Pie Chia Seed Pudding
Did you try this recipe and like it? The next time you make it, snap a picture and share it to your socials! Tag @thelemonbowl and #thelemonbowl so we can admire and share your dish.
One of my favorite fall desserts, my pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting will quickly become your favorite, too. What’s your favorite pumpkin recipe?
No fork required.
Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ⅓ cup coconut oil (melted)
- 2 eggs
- 2 egg whites
- 15 ounces pure pumpkin (from can)
- 1 large carrot (shredded)
Cream Cheese Topping:
- 4 ounces light cream cheese
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon milk
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 15 x 10 jelly roll pan with non-stick butter spray.
- In a small bowl, wisk together flour, spices, salt, baking powder and baking soda.
- In a large bowl, beat together sugar and butter substitute with an electric mixer on high until crumbly.
- With mixer on medium, slowly add eggs one at a time.
- Continue mixing and add pumpkin and carrots.
- Add flour mixture to the wet mixture until well combined.
- Pour into jelly roll pan.
- In a small bowl, wisk together cream cheese, sugar and milk until smooth.
- Drop teaspoon-fulls of topping over pumpkin batter and swirl and cut mixture into batter with a butter knife.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Cool in pan completely on wire rack before cutting into squares.
I just finished making this recipe,baked it 9×13 because I I don’t have a jelly roll pan. Can the finished bar be frozen? Also it’s tanking longer to bake in my pan because it’s thicker. Smells devine
You could freeze these, but I’d let them thaw slowly in the fridge overnight or they won’t stay moist.
I substituted the flour for coconut flour (sifted) the sugar for swerve and the sugar in the frosting for swerve confectionery sugar. Added some vanilla extract to the frosting. Left out carrots.
That sounds amazing Nina!
This pumpkin bar recipe knocked my socks off. I usually make the same pumpkin bread every year but I wanted to try something different with pumpkin. It is moist and has great flavor from all the spices and the cream cheese was perfect and didn’t over power the pumpkin. The hubby loved it. I gave him a fork with his piece and he said I don’t need a fork.
Oh my gosh this makes me so happy to hear!!!! Thank you so much!
Can these be successfully frozen?
Yes for sure!
I found this recipe on Pinterest and thought I was all set to make it, but I didn’t purchase whole wheat pastry flour, but regular whole wheat flour. I couldn’t find the pastry flour at my store. I am new to cooking in a more healthy manner. Will my flour make it too dense and not even worth trying?
Regular whole wheat flour is fine but I definitely suggest trying whole wheat pastry flour if you’re in to healthy baking! It makes pancakes, muffins, breads, cookies, etc. much lighter but still has plenty of protein and fiber. Good luck let me know!
Ohh one other idea – use half whole wheat and half all purpose. :)
I did end up going half and half. My two-year-old had a blast dumping in ingredients for me! I used a metal 9×13 pan because I didn’t have a jelly roll pan so it was more like cake, but was so moist and delicious! I also used pumpkin my husband had cooked from fresh and had been in the freezer since last fall. It thawed wonderfully and worked very well. I will keep looking for the pastry flour. Thank you!!
Oh I’m so impressed you used fresh pumpkin!! So glad you enjoyed it – we will be making this again soon!!! BTW a jelly roll pan is just a fancy term for a baking sheet or cookie pan with sides. :)