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Easy Pumpkin Bars Recipe

These easy pumpkin bars are a delicious dessert or snack that you’ll want to enjoy with your family. They have the perfect balance of chewiness and crunch.

Bite of pumpkin bar on a fork

They’re fun to make and even more fun to eat. They’re good in the fall, but I’ll eat them any time of year.

I’ve always thought it was silly to wait until fall to have pumpkin because it’s available year-round. And it is so delicious. I mean, why wait when you can have it now?

After I made these, I did what I always do. I tasted them. Their deliciousness compelled me to taste them again. You know, just to make sure.

Sshh, don’t tell anyone, but I had a third. Since I like to have as balanced of a diet as possible, I made myself stop there.

In order to prevent my willpower from failing, I divided them up and gave some of them away. It’s always nice to share with other, and most people appreciate the treats.

Benefits of Pumpkin

Pumpkin is loaded with nutrients. Did you know that one serving has more than double the minimum recommended requirement of vitamin A?

According to Healthline, pumpkin contains vitamin C, fiber, manganese, copper, B12, and so much more.

You can enjoy quite a few benefits along with the delicious flavor. It is packed with antioxidants that fight disease and lower your risk of cancer.

Versatility of Pumpkin

Pumpkin is an extremely versatile food. In fact, I love these refreshing pumpkin smoothies any time of year.

This pumpkin butter tastes delicious on toast, biscuits, and also on crackers. When you want to make your family happy, bake these yummy pumpkin muffins.

Ingredients for Easy Pumpkin Bars

You can make pumpkin bars the old fashioned way with twice as many ingredients. Or you can make them this way without the hassle.

I simply make the crust from yellow cake mix, melted butter, cinnamon, and nuts. The filling has a can of pumpkin, sweetened condensed milk, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, and a dash of salt.

cake mix, sweetened condensed milk, can of pumpkin, crushed walnuts, eggs, cream cheese frosting, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon, butter, and salt

If you want twice as many pumpkin bars as what this makes, just double the ingredients.

Or if you want less, go ahead and make the whole batch and freeze what you can’t eat. Yes, these pumpkin bars freeze extremely well.

How to Make Pumpkin Bars

Put the cake mix and melted butter in a bowl and mix it until it has the consistency of wet sand.

You have a choice of adding the cinnamon to the crust or the filling. I chose to add it to the crust.

Cake mix and butter combined

Press the mixture into a greased pan. Make sure you even it out by pressing into the corners and across the middle.

You may use a spoon, a spatula, or your hands. Since I wanted it packed down tightly, I used all of them.

Crust mixture pressed into a greased pan

Next, scatter the nuts over the top and press them into the crust. This is super easy.

Nuts pressed into the crust

Now it’s time for the filling.

Mix the pumpkin, sweetened condensed milk, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.

I started out stirring it with a spoon.

pumpkin, eggs, sweetened condensed milk, pumpkin pie spice, and salt in a bowl

Once all of the filling ingredients were somewhat mixed, I pulled out my hand mixer and turned it on a medium speed to thoroughly mix everything together.

The beaters also incorporate a little bit of air into it, making it a tad lighter in texture.

hand mixer beating the batter

Pour the filling over the crust.

Using a spoon or spatula, smooth out the filling over the crust until the top is even.

Pumpkin filling in the pan

Put it in the oven and bake it until a toothpick comes out clean.

Check out the detailed recipe card below for the times.

Cooked pumpkin bars before being cut

Once it’s done, allow it to cool to room temperature.

Soften the cream cheese icing in the microwave and then drizzle it over the cooled pumpkin bars.

Spoon of topping being drizzled over the pan

Drizzle as much or as little as you want.

I like to drizzle a lot because the icing is very thin when it’s warm.

Cream cheese frosting drizzled the cooked pumpkin bas

Cut these bars into rectangles or squares and serve. I like to cut mine into 2” x 3” rectangles.

But it’s completely up to you to decide how big you want them.

2 pumpkin bars on a plate

More Options for Easy Pumpkin Bars

If you like a stronger pumpkin spice flavor, add an extra teaspoon of it. But first, make it according to the recipe below and adjust with your next batch.

If you prefer, you may use the entire can of cream cheese icing and cover the bars. However, the filling is already pretty sweet, so I chose to use the drizzle method.

Delicious Desserts

Make sure you have enough for seconds because people will want more. In fact, these easy pumpkin bars are addictive.

If I’d kept the whole batch in the house, my husband and I could have gobbled them up within days.

Pumpkin bars on a plate

Another dessert you may enjoy includes this delicious pineapple upside down cake that you can make in your rice cooker. Although you don’t have to have a rice cooker, I’ve discovered that it’s much moister than one baked in the oven.

Chocolate lovers will go crazy for this amazingly easy, super scrumptious chocolate walnut pie. Try baking one and see how fast it disappears. It’s the perfect dessert or treat for family and company.

More Great Recipes

If you enjoy discovering new recipes, check out Weekend Potluck at South Your Mouth, Meal Plan Monday at Big Bear’s Wife, Full Plate Thursday at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, and Over the Moon at Marilyn’s Treats.

Yield: 12 servings

Easy Pumpkin Bars Recipe

2 pumpkin bars with drizzled icing
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 box of yellow cake mix (regular or gluten-free)
  • 1/2 cup of melted butter (1 stick)
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup of chopped nuts (optional)
  • 1 can of pumpkin
  • 1 can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 3 tablespoons of cream cheese cake frosting

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray a pan (9”x13”) with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium-size mixing bowl, mix the yellow cake mix with the melted butter. Press this mixture into your baking pan.
  3. Gently press the chopped nuts into the crust.
  4. In a medium-size mixing bowl, mix the pumpkin, sweetened condensed milk, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. You can stir it by hand, but it’s much easier to use a hand mixer for 3 minutes. You want the mixture to be smooth and velvety.
  5. Pour this mixture over the crust and smooth the top.
  6. Bake for 40 minutes. Test it by inserting a toothpick into the center. If it comes out clean, it’s done.
  7. Cool for at least an hour. After it is cool enough, it is ready for the top layer.
  8. Scoop the frosting into a microwave-safe bowl and heat it in the microwave for approximately 30 seconds. Using a spoon, lightly drizzle the topping over the baked pumpkin filling.
  9. After the drizzle dries, cut your creation into bars. It is now ready to serve! Enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Yield

12

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 318Total Fat 15gSaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 54mgSodium 476mgCarbohydrates 43gFiber 1gSugar 24gProtein 5g

The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.

Did you make this recipe?

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Pouring nuts into the melted chocolate
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Jeannette Maher

Sunday 24th of November 2019

What size can of pumpkin, small or large? How many cups? Thanks

southernhomeexpress

Sunday 24th of November 2019

Hi Jeannette. You'll need a 15 oz. can of pumpkin. Make sure it's the pumpkin puree and not the pie filling.

Miz Helen

Monday 12th of August 2019

Congratulations your awesome post is featured on Full Plate Thursday 444! Thanks so much for sharing with us and hope you have a great week! Miz Helen

southernhomeexpress

Monday 12th of August 2019

Thank you, Miz Helen! I hope your readers enjoy these pumpkin bars!

Miz Helen

Saturday 3rd of August 2019

Your Pumpkin Bars look amazing! Thanks so much for sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a great week and come back to see us real soon! Miz Helen

Marilyn Lesniak

Friday 2nd of August 2019

Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared.

southernhomeexpress

Saturday 3rd of August 2019

Thank you, Marilyn!

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