These delicious Pumpkin Bars are moist, packed with amazing pumpkin flavor, and topped with a silky smooth cream cheese frosting. This is an easy pumpkin bars recipe that’ll have you coming back for more!
As the weather begins to cool down I can’t help but pull out my cans of pumpkin puree! Although sometimes August comes, the weather hasn’t cooled down, and I’m still making all the favorite pumpkin recipes. My Pumpkin Coffee Cake is a definite first that comes to mind. It’s amazing! My husband doesn’t love pumpkin desserts, and he was raving about it! We also love bringing pumpkin into breakfast with our Buttermilk Pumpkin Waffles and Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pancakes!
Why This Recipe Works
- Silky smooth cream cheese frosting. These delicious libby’s pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting are so amazing! The frosting is so smooth thanks to using softened cream cheese and sifting the powdered sugar!
- Easy pumpkin bars. This libby’s pumpkin bars recipe comes together in no time at all! It only takes 10 minutes to prep and then up to 30 minutes to bake. Easy peasy pumpkin squeezy 😉
- Packed with rich pumpkin flavor. There is an entire 29 oz can of Libbys pumpkin puree in this pumpkin sheet cake recipe! You will love the prominent pumpkin flavor.
- Ground Cinnamon: Adding some extra ground cinnamon will add a stronger hint of flavor.
- Pumpkin Pie Spice: Pumpkin pie spice provides the perfect combination of warm spices!
- Egg Whites: By using beaten egg whites, we will get the perfect light and fluffy texture for these libbys pumpkin bars!
- Vegetable Oil: The vegetable oil will give this pumpkin sheet cake a super moist texture!
- Pumpkin Puree: Get the Libby’s pumpkin puree can — the big one! This is different than pumpkin pie filling which has added sugar and spices not accounted for in this recipe! You want just the right amount of pumpkin spice.
- Cream Cheese: You want the cream cheese to be softened so it combines much more easily.
- Powdered Sugar: Sift the powdered sugar to ensure the smoothest texture.
- Whisk the dry ingredients together. Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and salt together in a large mixing bowl.
- Beat wet ingredients together. Add the egg whites to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk until foamy. Change to the paddle attachment and add the sugar, oil and pumpkin puree. Mix until combined.
- Combine wet and dry ingredients. Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and mix until just combined.
- Pour batter into prepared pan. Pour the pumpkin bars batter into a baking sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Bake at 350°F for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the libbys pumpkin bars comes out clean. Remove and let cool completely prior to frosting.
- Make the cream cheese frosting. Beat the butter and softened cream cheese until smooth and light. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth. Add enough milk to create a smooth and spreadable consistency (I used 1 tsp of milk).
- Frost the libbys pumpkin bars with cream cheese frosting. Using a spatula, spread the cream cheese frosting on top of the completely cooled pumpkin bars. Cut and serve!
You want the egg whites have a milky white appearance to look frothy. It will be a step before soft peaks. This will make for soft pumpkin bars!
I’m sure these pumpkin bars would taste wonderful without the cream cheese frosting, but lets be real… who wants to do that?! A cream cheese frosting adds the perfect sweetness, creaminess, and soft consistency to the top of these pumpkin bars.
If the frosting is too thick, add a splash of milk. A little goes a long way so be careful. If you add too much milk, you can offset it by adding more powdered sugar until you get your desired consistency.
Use room temperature ingredients for the frosting. Pull the butter and cream cheese out of the refrigerator 30-60 minutes before starting. Note that the butter should be soft and malleable without being greasy or melted.
This best pumpkin bars recipe is my favorite recipe to bring to a halloween party or fall party because it’s perfect for a large gathering and everyone loves them!
Make Ahead, Storing, and Freezing
You can make these pumpkin bars ahead of time and just cover them until you want to serve them. The bars need to be refrigerated if they have the frosting on top.
Store the cream cheese frosting in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days. Remove and let come to room temperature. Beat to return to a fluffy texture before frosting.
To freeze pumpkin bars, it would be best to do so without the frosting since cream cheese frosting doesn’t go completely firm when frozen. Tightly warp the sheet pan with plastic wrap and freeze for up to 2 months. Remove and let thaw in the fridge overnight. Then make the frosting and frost.
It’s most likely from the cream cheese not being soft enough. When cream cheese isn’t soft enough, it will maintain some lumps. Make sure the cream cheese has been left out for at least an hour prior to making the frosting. You can also sift your powdered sugar to help get a smooth frosting.
You probably over baked them! These are incredibly moist pumpkin bars! You don’t want the over bake them or else they will indeed be dry. You can even pull the bars out when the toothpick in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. The bars will continue to bake a bit as they cool. However, you don’t want any wet batter on the toothpick! Also, be sure to not pack in your flour! Packing in the flour could result in extra flour which would create dry bars.
You can, however freezing them with the cream cheese frosting will be harder since the frosting won’t go completely hard. If you are freezing with the frosting, flash freeze the pan until the frosting is as firm as possible, then wrap in plastic wrap. You just want the frosting to be firm enough so the plastic wrap doesn’t stick to the frosting and become a mess later. Freeze for up to 2 months. Remove and let thaw in the fridge overnight.
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- Libby’s Pumpkin Roll
Libby’s Pumpkin Bars
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 4 egg whites
- 1 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 29 oz pumpkin puree - I use Libby’s pumpkin puree (the big can)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.
- In a large bowl sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or using a hand mixer, add the egg whites. Beat until foamy. Switch to the paddle attachment (or continue using the hand mixer). Add the sugar, oil, and pumpkin. Mix to combine.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix to combine.
- Spread the batter into the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean with no crumbs on it. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before frosting it.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth and fluffy about 2 minutes. Add the powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Add enough milk to create your desired consistency (I added 1 tsp of milk).
- Once the pumpkin bars have cooled, spread frosting on top!