Dessert has never tasted so good with Carla’s Ginger Pumpkin Bars with Cream Cheese Icing!
GINGER PUMPKIN BARS WITH CREAM CHEESE ICING
2 tablespoons butter (for greasing)
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 can pumpkin puree (15 ounces)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3/4 cup crystallized ginger (finely chopped, tossed in 1 tablespoon flour)
CREAM CHEESE ICING:
2 packages cream cheese (softened, 8 ounces each)
1 stick butter (softened)
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a metal 9×13-inch baking dish with butter and line with parchment leaving a 2-inch overhang on both sides. Grease parchment.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin and mix until combined.
In a large bowl add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and black pepper and whisk to combine.
Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture in batches, and mix until just combined. Add the crystallized ginger and fold to incorporate. Remove to the baking dish and bake for 40 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Ice with cream cheese icing, cut into squares and serve.
For the Cream Cheese Icing: In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the cream cheese and butter and beat until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add the powdered sugar gradually, beating until well combined. Add the vanilla and mix to combine.
Tip: Bake the pumpkin bars the day before Thanksgiving and allow to cool in the baking dish. Make the icing the day of Thanksgiving and ice before dinner.