Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

These are incredible. I found this recipe on mykitchencafe (can you tell I’m a huge fan of her site?), and I think she got it from Paula Deen. I was searching for a good seasonal recipe and this was exactly was I was looking for. Moist and pumpkiny, this bar (it’s really more like a cake) has a great flavor and texture. And the cream cheese icing is sweet and tangy and abundant. Seriously good. This recipe is one of my new favorites. (Sorry for the dark pictures. I made these in the evening and by the time they were done it was completely dark outside.)

Mike, who tried to tell me that he doesn’t like pumpkin, rated them a 3.75. (As a side note, after I questioned him and discovered that he liked these pumpkin bars, pumpkin muffins, and pumpkin roll, I realized that it is actually pumpkin pie that he has an aversion to, not pumpkin. I’m glad we cleared that up)

Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

*Recipe note: I used to never sift any ingredients. If the recipe called for sifting, I just ignored it. After an experience with some rather dry cupcakes, for which I blame the lack of sifting, I have changed my ways. I am a firm believer that sifting your ingredients when the recipe calls for it will produce a lighter, moister end result. That being said, sift the flour in this recipe. Thank you.

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Pumpkin Bars

Ingredients:

Bars:
4 eggs
1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 cup vegetable oil (can substitute 1/2 cup applesauce for 1/2 cup oil)
15-ounce can pumpkin
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda

Icing:
8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Mix the eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin together until light and fluffy. Stir together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until thoroughly combined and the batter is smooth. Spread the batter into a greased 13x9 baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes. Let cool completely before frosting.

To make the icing, combine the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the sugar and mix at low speed until combined. Stir in the vanilla and mix again. Spread on cooled pumpkin bars.

from My Kitchen Cafe