Pumpkin Bars

by Kelsey from Rhode Island

Gather

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
3 large eggs
1 cup solid-pack pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
1 cup milk
1 cup chopped walnuts

Frosting:
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 cups confectioners’ sugar

Go

1. Heat oven to 350° F. Coat 10-by-15-inch pan with cooking spray.
2. Mix together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg in a bowl.
3. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until smooth and creamy. Beat in eggs and pumpkin.
4. On low speed, beat in flour mixture and milk. Mix for 1 minute or until smooth.
5. Stir in walnuts and spread evenly in pan.
6. Bake 20 minutes or until toothpick tests clean. Cool cake in pan 10 minutes, then place on wire rack.
7. For the frosting, beat together cream cheese, butter and vanilla until creamy. Add confectioners' sugar and beat until fluffy. Spread over cake. Garnish with walnuts if desired.
9. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to set.

Note: My family uses soy milk instead of milk and tofu cream cheese for topping — and it tastes great!

This article first appeared in the August 2004 issue of Focus on the Family Clubhouse magazine. Copyright © 2004 by Focus on the Family. Used by permission. Photo © Ron and Karen Nickel.