Pumpkin Bars with Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting

Pumpkin Bars with Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting

From the Thermador and Tastespotting Ultimate Recipe Contest
Sumbitted by: Jaclyn Bell
http://cookingclassy.blogspot.com 


Pumpkin dishes are a Thanksgiving classic. These are so easy to prepare and the end result is fantastic!


Easy
20 servings
15 minutes prep
35-40 minutes bake time

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 cup light-brown sugar
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted and whisked to cool slightly
1/2 cup applesauce
3 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
Cinnamon and whole or chopped pecans, for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger, set aside.

In a separate large mixing bowl, using an electric hand mixer, blend together light-brown sugar, granulated sugar, melted butter and applesauce until well combine.

Add eggs and vanilla extract and mix until well blended, then add pumpkin and mix until well blended.

Add dry mixture and mix just until combine. Pour and spread mixture evenly into a buttered 13 x 9 inch baking dish and bake in preheated oven about 35 - 38 minutes until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out with a few moist crumbs attached.

Allow bars to cool completely (Tip: cover the baking dish after 15 minutes of cooling to seal in moisture) then cut into bars and frost with Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting (alternately you can frost bars first then cut into squares) and dust lightly with optional cinnamon and garnish with optional pecans.

Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:
1/3 cup butter, softened
6 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3 cups powdered sugar

Directions:
In a large mixing bowl, using and electric hand mixer, whip together butter and cream cheese on medium speed until very light and fluffy, about 3 - 4 minutes. Mix in vanilla. Add powdered sugar and mix until well blended and smooth.