Layered Pumpkin Bars With Cream Cheese and Pecans

Pumpkin bars with pecans and cream cheese topping

The Spruce / Diana Rattray

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 50 mins
Total: 70 mins
Servings: 12 to 16 servings

These pumpkin pecan bars are made with three layers: a pecan and oat shortbread crust, a creamy pumpkin custard filling, and a simple sweetened cream cheese frosting. Sprinkle with chopped pecans or place one or two pecan halves on each bar.

If you prefer walnuts, substitute walnuts for the pecans, or use chopped hazelnuts.


  • For the Cookie Crust:
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar (packed)
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • For the Filling:
  • 1 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 2 large eggs (lightly beaten)
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar (packed)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • For the Topping:
  • 1 small package (3 ounces) cream cheese (softened)
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 12 to 16 pecan halves (or about 1/2 cup of chopped pecans)

Steps to Make It

Heat the oven to 350 F/180 C/Gas 4.

  1. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan.

  2. Combine the cookie crust ingredients; press into the prepared baking pan.

  3. Bake crust in the preheated oven for 10 minutes; place on a wire rack to cool completely.

  4. Prepare the filling.

  5. Combine filling ingredients; mix well.

  6. Pour over the cooled cookie base; bake in the preheated oven for about 35 to 40 minutes, or until the filling has set. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

  7. Beat the cream cheese at medium speed until smooth and creamy.

  8. Sift confectioners' sugar over cream cheese; add the 2 teaspoons of vanilla and beat until smooth.

  9. Spread the cream cheese topping over the cooled filling. Cut into 12 to 16 bars and decorate with pecan halves.