From Magnolia Bakery cookbook pg 72. Everything I have made from this cookbook is so moist and delicious!! This is not an exception. I think it would even taste good without the cream cheese icing.
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 ¼ cups canned pumpkin puree
1 ¼ cups sugar
¾ cup vegetable oil (preferably canola)
3 large eggs, at room temperature
½ cup coarsely chopped toasted pecans
Note: To toast the pecans, place on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned and fragrant.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Grease and lightly flour a 13×9 inch baking pan.
To make the bars: In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat together the pumpkin, sugar, oil, and eggs until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. Stir in the pecans. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center of the pan comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before icing the top with the cream cheese icing. Garnish with pecans if desired.
Cream Cheese Icing
½ pound (8 oz package) cream cheese, softened and cut into small pieces
3 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened and cut into small pieces
¾ tsp vanilla extract
2 ½ cups sifted confectioners’ sugar
In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat well. Gradually add the sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating continuously until smooth and creamy. Cover and refrigerate icing for 2 to 3 hours, but no longer, to thicken before using.