Are you sick of pumpkin yet? I really, really hope not, because you need to make these pumpkin bars. They are so so so so so so so so sooooooo good.
Brown butter. Cream Cheese. Toasted Walnuts. PUMPKIN. Gaaahhhhh. You just can’t go wrong here.
My mom makes these pumpkin bars every year. They are amazing as is, but let’s just face it, brown butter makes everything better sooooo… I re-created them with brown butter. Then I threw in brown sugar and walnuts too for the heck of it. Hey, why not?! We’re gettin’ cray in the kitchen.
Speaking of cray, don’t freak out, there are five sticks of butter in this recipe. I know, I know, that’s a lot of butter; however, this recipe makes A LOT of bars, so it kind of evens out. Plus, they are just too good to not eat. YOLO. Run an extra few miles this week.
Butter is back anyways, right? It’s ok.
The bars itself are not too sweet and have the perfect amount of pumpkiny-spice flavor. They are soft, moist (sorry if you hate that word), and cakey with just a little bit of crunch from the walnuts.
Then there is the frosting. Ooohhhh, this frosting! Cream cheese frosting is always incredible, but with the addition of brown butter… incredible to the max. I kid you not.
Make these. Eat five. Save six more for yourself. Then bring the remaining to work/bake sale/Friendsgiving/Thanksgiving/wherever people accept baked goods. Since the recipe makes so many bars no one will even know that you hoarded some for yourself.
You should have them for dessert after eating this soup. Pumpkin, pumpkin everywhere.
- 2 cups walnuts
- 1¼ cups butter (2 ½ sticks)
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ⅔ cup white sugar
- 29-ounce can pumpkin puree
- 2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger
- ¼ teaspoon cloves
- ¼ teaspoon all spice
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1¼ cups butter (2 ½ sticks)
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2-4 cups powdered sugar
- Pre-heat the oven to 350° F. Grease an 11x17-inch jelly roll pan.
- To toast the nuts: spread walnuts on a baking sheet and bake for about 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Stir them around occasionally (every 5 minutes or so) to ensure they are not burning. Once toasted, chop roughly and set aside.
- To brown the butter: melt butter in a medium saucepan. Whisk the melted butter until brown specks appear at the bottom, it will froth and foam a bit. Watch closely and be careful not to burn. It should be a light brown color and have a nutty aroma. Save one cup for the bars and one cup for the frosting.
- In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine 1 cup of brown butter, the eggs, sugars, and pumpkin. Mix on medium until lights and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Add in the dry ingredients and mix until thoroughly combined. Stir in the walnuts.
- Spread the batter in the prepared pan and bake for 27-30 minutes. Let the bars cool completely.
- To make the frosting: cream together the cream cheese and butter, about 3 minutes. Stir in vanilla. Add 2 cups of the powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add the remaining powdered sugar ½ cup at a time until desired consistency is reached.
- When the bars have cooled completely, spread the frosting evenly over the bars. Cut into squares and serve! Store leftovers in the refrigerator.
Slightly adapted from allrecipes.com.
PS- I took a break from knitting and watching Christmas movies on Hallmark to write this. Is that bad? I might be getting too far ahead of myself.