Pumpkin cake bars. They sound so sweet, don’t they? For me, just the name brings to mind visions of holiday family gatherings peppered with sinful desserts full of sugar, refined grains, and unhealthy fats. Not only is it hard to stay away (so hard that I’m rarely ever successful), but it’s even harder to not pack on the pounds. But you know me, I wouldn’t bring you a recipe like that! These Pumpkin Cake Bars are not only devoid of refined foods, they’re actually grain-free and dairy-free, too.
They’re the perfect alternative to sickly holiday desserts, and you won’t even feel like you’re depriving yourself.
This recipe for Pumpkin Cake Bars was shared by Megan Keatley of Health-Bent. Meagan used to be a pastry chef. These days she’s an avid CrossFitter and healthy, Real Food rebel. She’s also a web designer. Just take a look at her site’s logo, and you’ll already see that we have a lot in common:
Did you miss it? Here’s a hint:
Now to the recipe for delectable Pumpkin Cake Bars!
Pumpkin Cake Bars with Cinnamon Icing
Yield: 9 bars
For the Pumpkin Cake
1 c pumpkin puree
1 c almond butter (where to find nut butters from properly soaked nuts)
1/2 c raw honey (where to find raw honey)
2 eggs (from pastured hens!)
1 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1 t vanilla extract
1 t cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 t cloves
For the Pumpkin Cake
Preheat your oven to 350F.
In a medium sized bowl, combine all the cake ingredients and mix thoroughly to combine. Pour into an 8×8 oven safe baking dish (I suspect you could squeeze 12 cupcakes out of this recipe if you use a muffin tin). Bake until completely cooked through, about 30 minutes.
For the Cinnamon Icing
In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and use either your mixing blade attachment or a whisk to beat the ingredients until fluffy.
Once the pumpkin cake has cooled, cut it into 9 squares and remove from the pan. Now…if the cake isn’t completely, 100%, no doubt in your mind, cool you are not allowed to proceed. I’m telling you, if your cake isn’t cool, the icing will just slide right off into a pile of goopiness and all will be wasted. If you haven’t experienced what disastrous-ness comes from not heeded the above warning, you only need try it one time to learn.
Use a small offset spatula or a spoon and drizzle the frosting over the top.
Store the Pumpkin Cake Bars you haven’t immediately annihilated in the fridge. The icing will harden in the fridge, let it come to room temp if you’d like it soft. If you’d like it softer, faster (for the impatient types, like myself) the frosting will melt beautifully if you stick the cake bar in the microwave for 30-45 seconds. Goes great with your morning coffee or tea!