My favorite part of Thanksgiving is pumpkin pie. Anyone else?! Want to know what is even better than pumpkin pie?! A pumpkin bar recipe that is perfectly portioned and made with super clean ingredients, yet tastes just as good as the original pie granny has been making for years.
I’ve been on a serious kick of making pumpkin goodies, so naturally pumpkin bars were on my list of healthy treats to make as well. The key to the perfect pumpkin pie or pumpkin bar is a balance of a delectable crust AND a pumpkin filling that is well spiced with the right texture. There is lots to consider here. But good news for you, though I make that sound like a lot of work, it isn’t. This pumpkin bar recipe is super simple to make!
FAQs About Pumpkin Bars
Are pumpkin bars healthy?
This pumpkin bar recipe is super healthy and packed with clean ingredients. Made with gluten-free and dairy-free ingredients, along with no refined sugar, these bars are perfect for a healthy dessert option. Though they may be healthy, they taste just as good as classic pumpkin pie!
Are pumpkin bars gluten free?
Not all pumpkin bar recipes are gluten free, but this one is! The crust is where you may find gluten in the form of wheat flour, in other recipes. This recipe uses almond flour for a delicious crust that is free of gluten. The fact that this recipe is gluten-free makes it a great option for holiday gatherings where there may be people with all sorts of dietary restrictions at the table.
How long will pumpkin bars keep?
These pumpkin bars will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week! These are not smothered with a sugary cream cheese frosting, so they last a little longer than some other recipes. But do make sure to store them in the refrigerator after making them!
Health Benefits of Pumpkin
This pumpkin bar recipe calls for a whole can of pure pumpkin puree, which happens to be packed with health benefits! Like any plant, pumpkins are dense in micronutrients. Quick nutrition lesson… MICROnutrients are the vitamins and minerals in your food and MACROnutrients are the fat, carbs and protein that give you energy (in the form of calories) from your food. Pumpkin is full of vitamins and minerals that help you support a healthy body!
Pumpkin is particularly high in Vitamin A. This antioxidant vitamin benefits your body in many ways, including: supporting a healthy immune system, supporting your body in avoiding various chronic diseases and protecting your eyes from age-related decline. So gobble up that pumpkin!
How to Make the Perfect Crust For This Pumpkin Bar Recipe
Here are the few clean ingredients you’ll need to make the perfect crust:
- Almond flour – I suggest using a superfine almond flour, just like this one from Blue Diamond.
- Coconut oil – Since you are only using a couple tablespoons of coconut oil I would suggest using unrefined coconut oil. It is less processed and though it has a slightly stronger flavor of coconut the couple tablespoons won’t affect the flavor of your bars. Look for an unrefined coconut oil like this one!
- Maple syrup – Make sure you are choosing real maple syrup, not imitation syrup 😉 Go for something like this.
- Vanilla extract – If you’ve read any of my recipes in the last year, you likely already know what my absolute favorite vanilla extract is, but just in case you aren’t aware… Rodelle pure vanilla extract is my jam!
The crust is the first part of this recipe that you will craft. Essentially you’ll dump all of the crust ingredients into a bowl and mix until a doughy ball forms.
Once you have your dough ball, line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper and plop the dough ball in the middle. With a greased spatula (I find it easiest to spray with cooking spray), press the dough evenly across the bottom of the pan.
When the crust is evenly pressed into the bottom of the pan, you’ll bake it at 350 degrees for 10 minutes. While it is baking you will make the pumpkin filling.
How to Make the Perfect Filling For This Pumpkin Bar Recipe
Here are the few clean ingredients you’ll need to make the perfect pumpkin filling:
- Pumpkin puree – Make sure this a pure pumpkin puree rather than a pumpkin pie mix that is sweetened. You want the good ol’ straight up stuff… just pumpkin.
- Maple syrup
- Vanilla extract
- Pumpkin pie spice – This is the quick and easy way of getting that perfect pumpkin pie flavor without combining your own cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves. If you do not have pumpkin pie spice, but do have the mentioned components you can substitute 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 3/4 tsp ginger, 1/2 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 tsp cloves for the 1 Tbsp of pumpkin pie spice.
To make the pumpkin bar filling you will simply mix the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until thoroughly combined.
Once the pumpkin filling is thoroughly combined and the crust has finished baking for 10 minutes, you will spread the pumpkin filling evenly across the crust.
When your bars are ready to be baked, put them back in your 350 degree oven for 45-50 minutes. Then you’ll end up with this 🙂
These healthy pumpkin bars are perfect for your fall celebrations! Made with gluten-free and dairy-free ingredients, no refined sugar, yet packed with that perfect pumpkin pie taste, these simple bars will be a hit with any crowd.
- 2 cups almond flour
- 1 egg
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 3 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp salt
- PUMPKIN FILLING
- 1 can (15oz) pumpkin puree
- 3 eggs
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Combine all ingredients for the crust, mixing until a big dough ball forms.
Line an 8×8 baking pan with parchment paper, then press the crust dough evenly across the bottom of the pan. (Pro tip: spray a spatula with cooking spray and use it to press the dough evenly across the bottom of the pan)
Bake the crust for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.
While the crust is baking, make the pumpkin filling by combining all ingredients in a bowl and mixing.
When the crust is done, pour the filling on top, spreading evenly.
Bake for another 45-50 min at 350 degrees.
Let cool for at least 2 hours on the counter, cut and enjoy!
Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.
PER SERVING (9 servings per pan)
274 cals ~ 18g fat ~ 21g carb ~ 7g protein ~ 4g fiber ~ 13g sugar
Are You in Love with Healthy Pumpkin Treats?
Are you fully embracing this pumpkin season? Perfect. I’ve got even more healthy and delicious recipes for you! Check out this Pumpkin Spice Latte Overnight Oats recipe.
And if your oven is already warm and you have an extra can of pumpkin, check out this recipe for Pumpkin Banana Bread!