Cream cheese frosted pumpkin bars

    4 hours 50 min

    A sweetened and lightly spiced pumpkin cake, is frosted with a delectable cream cheese frosting. The bars are perfect for packed lunches, dessert, snacking, picnics, elevenses or afternoon tea. They are also freezer-friendly if left unfrosted.

    88 people made this

    Makes: 36 

    • 175g unsalted butter
    • 400g caster sugar
    • 4 eggs, beaten
    • 425g pumpkin puree
    • 250g plain flour
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    • 115g walnuts, chopped
    • Topping
    • 115g cream cheese, softened
    • 75g unsalted butter, softened
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 350g icing sugar, sieved

    Prep:15min  ›  Cook:35min  ›  Extra time:4hr cooling  ›  Ready in:4hr50min 

    1. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4. Butter and flour a 25x38cm or similar sized Swiss roll tin.
    2. In a large bowl, cream together 175g butter and caster sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the pumpkin. Combine the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg; stir into the pumpkin mixture. Mix in walnuts. Spread evenly into the prepared tin.
    3. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven or until skewer inserted near the centre comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
    4. In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese, 75g butter and vanilla until smooth. Gradually blend in sugar, then beat until smooth. Spread over cooled pumpkin bars. Cut into squares.


    Pumpkin puree can be purchased online or simply make your own by steaming pumpkin flesh till tender and pureeing with a liquidiser.

    Cook's note

    You can also make these into cupcakes or muffins. Simply adjust the baking time accordingly.

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    Reviews & ratings
    Average global rating:

    Reviews in English (68)


    Yes, the name is a bit misleading, as these are not bars, but cake. The only reason this matters is that these "bars" are best served like a sheet cake, on a plate, with a fork. I wouldn't call these a grab-and-go type thing. Nonetheless, I was entirely pleased with these. While I do like pumpkin bars/cakes made with vegetable oil, I did appreciate that this was made with butter and the taste difference is noticeable and pleasant. I'm not a big fan of nutmeg, and the recipe seemed a little short on spice, so in addition to the cinnamon I substituted 1 tsp. of pumpkin pie spice for the 1/4 tsp. nutmeg. And, because I'm kind of tired of the same ol' cream cheese frosting I made a caramel frosting instead, and sprinkled some crushed cinnamon cookies over the top. It was a great flavor combination, but this cake is so moist and flavorful it would be great with no frosting at all.  -  19 Oct 2009  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Excellent, but it is more of a cake than a cookie bar. I made it with fresh pumpkin puree and substituted 1 cup brown sugar for the white sugar and added 1/2 tsp of allspice. It was moist and delicious and doesn't even need the frosting!  -  30 Oct 2002  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    It was very easy to prepare foolproof! I did not want the frosting to be extremely sweet and only used 2 cups of confectioner's sugar and 6oz. of cream cheese. It was great! My whole family enjoyed it and it made my sister-in-law jealous!  -  25 Nov 2004  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)