I am well aware that the bulk of the Internet community has been forcing pumpkin spiced everything down the throats of innocent bystanders since the first whisper of autumn. I, however, have exhibited restraint. Sure, I’ve bombarded you with apple recipes, but I’ve held off on the pumpkin. Until now. With Halloween staring us down, it was time to break into my pumpkin puree and make something delicious.
The beauty of these bars is their versatility. Served plain or with a light cinnamon drizzle, they are absolutely acceptable for breakfast. Honestly, with only half of a cup of added sugar, they are essentially oatmeal bars. For those who want something a bit more decadent, though, these babies can be topped with cinnamon cream cheese frosting for a perfect fall dessert. And the candy corn? Well, they are just an added bonus!
My taste testers and I couldn’t come to a consensus as to which variety was our favorite. So, I will present to you all three options, and ask you to be our tie breakers. Which variety wins in your mind: naked, vegan cinnamon drizzle, or cream cheese? Let me know, and in the mean time, enjoy this pumpkin spiced treat!
Pumpkin Spice Bars
Makes 16 Bars
- ½ cup gluten free flour, with xanthan gum
- 1 ½ cups oats, divided
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp xanthan gum
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- ¾ cup pumpkin puree
- 1 flax egg (1 tbsp flax seed, dissolved in 3 tbsp warm water)
- 1 ½ tsp vanilla
- ½ cup brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 350, and prepare an 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray.
- Place ½ of your oats in a food processor, and pulse until it forms a flour.
- In a medium bowl, combine pulsed oats with the remaining oats, flour, salt, baking soda, xanthan gum, and spices. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together pumpkin puree and brown sugar.
- Add in flax and vanilla, and mix until everything is incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
- Slowly beat in the dry ingredients until just combined.
- Transfer batter to prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let cool completely before slicing.
- Top with cinnamon cream cheese frosting, vegan cinnamon drizzle, or leave plain!
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
Makes way more than you need for this recipe
- 8 oz cream cheese
- ½ cup butter
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together cream cheese and butter. Reduce speed to low and add in powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Beat until thoroughly combined.
Vegan Cinnamon Drizzle
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- Almond milk
- Whisk together powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Slowly add in almond milk until you reach your desired consistency.