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Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bars Recipe

These Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bars Might Be the Best Fall Treat You'll Ever Have

Pumpkin cream cheese bars always seem to pop up everywhere during the fall, but how do you make them? Well, picture this: you take pumpkin puree and add the heady, warm flavors of pumpkin pie, which gives you a delicious batter. Then, you spread it out in a pan and swirl in a generous dose of what is essentially cream cheese frosting. Sound like a near-unbeatable treat? That's because it is! Tender, tangy, and moist, these squares straddle the line between bar cookie and snacking cake, and you won't be able to stop at just one.

Ideal for the fall season, these bars are the perfect surprise to be mailed in a care package for a friend or a fitting finish to a casual autumnal dinner. Or, if you're feeling a bit indulgent, they're a great stand-in for your morning muffin. Keep reading for the full recipe, and get baking!

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bar Cookies

Adapted from Sunset Magazine

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Bar Cookies


  1. 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more for greasing the pan
    1 3/4 cups (12 1/4 ounces) granulated sugar, divided
    3 large eggs, divided
    1 cup canned pumpkin puree
    1 3/4 cups (8 3/4 ounces) all-purpose flour
    1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a 13-by-9-inch casserole dish.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the butter and 1 1/2 cups sugar until smooth. Whisk in 2 eggs, pumpkin, and 1/3 cup water until well blended. In another mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, and nutmeg. Fold into the butter mixture until no streaks of flour remain. Spread batter evenly in the prepared casserole dish.
  3. In a bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, remaining egg, and remaining 1/4 cup sugar until smooth.
  4. Drop cream cheese mixture in evenly spaced 1-tablespoon dollops over the batter. Use a butter knife to swirl the batter, gently folding some of the cream cheese mixture under the pumpkin batter.
  5. Bake until the center of pumpkin batter (not the cream cheese mixture) springs back when touched, about 30 to 32 minutes. Let cool completely in pan, and then cut into 20 bars.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Nicole Perry
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