Pumpkin Bars, 5 points+

by DanicasDaily on October 18, 2012

This is a “secret” recipe that I received from my best friend in college. These pumpkin bars are so moist they practically melt in your mouth.  You really can taste each layer of flavor from the moist spice cake to the vanilla cream cheese frosting to the roasted walnuts.  The best part is that they are easy to make and perfect when you need to take a “treat” somewhere this holiday season.

I honestly believe that you should eat healthy 80% of the time for the 20% of the time you come across treats like this.  I guarantee everyone (even non pumpkin lovers) will LOVE this recipe. I have yet to find anyone who doesn’t.

Since I want to preserve her cool way of writing recipes, I am going to post this in her format – she always writes her recipes simple like this and I LOVE it!


Pumpkin Bars Recipe


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare a 12” x 18” or a Jelly Roll Pan (15” x 10”) pan with nonstick spray.  Bake for 25-30 minutes until golden and the cake springs back when touched.


  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups sugar


  • 15 oz can pumpkin (2 cups)


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp cinnamon


Cool completely before frosting (about 1 hour).


  • 3 oz Cream Cheese
  • 6 Tbsp Butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cup Powder Sugar


with 1 cup Roasted, Chopped Walnuts ~ Roast at 400 for 7 minutes, cool, chop and sprinkle.

Cream Cheese Pumpkin Bars with Nuts

Do you really want to know the nutritionals??  See, not as bad as you think :D  It honestly makes a huge platter of bars ~ depending on the size you cut them ~ 36 squares.


ONLY 5 points+ a BAR based on 36 bars!

Pumpkin Bars with Walnuts

This is one of my all time FAVORITE recipes that I make EVERY year.  You can actually make it year round, just make sure to freeze 15 oz of pumpkin to unthaw whenever you have a craving to bake up some of these moist, creamy, nutty, decadent pumpkin bars.

If you make one recipe this Fall, make this one….for Halloween, for Thanksgiving….just because you can. 

Tomorrow is going to be such a busy, but, fun day starting with Starbuck’s with The Husband, lunch in the city with my Sis and the Foodbuzz Festival is starting with the cocktail party and dining around town!!  I will be Facebooking, Tweeting, Insta-Gramming and most likely Pinning all the festivities of the weekend.  I will see you all tomorrow or Saturday with a festival recap.

For now….I am going to bed to hopefully make this cold go away.

Night all!

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Juanita Wade October 7, 2011 at 6:28 am

Do you think instead of using sugar you could use granulated splenda and it would be the same taste?……I wonder…..hmmmmmm


DanicasDaily October 8, 2011 at 6:20 pm

Hi Juanita,

I would imagine you could substitute splenda for granulated splenda and it would turn out good. Just make sure you adjust the ratios according to what is recommended on the splenda bag.




Toni October 7, 2011 at 7:34 am

Do you use self-rising OR plain flour for this recipe? Looks so-oooo good!


DanicasDaily October 8, 2011 at 6:20 pm

Hi Toni,

I just used All Purpose Flour when I made this recipe. The Baking Soda and Baking Powder are what help it to rise I believe.




Maris October 7, 2011 at 9:28 am

I love all things pumpkin! SO glad to have a recipe w/ points, too. The ones on the WW site are just so/so.


Jeannie October 7, 2011 at 10:51 am

How do you use agave–have seen you mention it and have seen it in stores but am intimidated. Thanks


DanicasDaily October 8, 2011 at 6:36 pm

Hi Jeannie,

I absolutely LOVE Agave! I use it as a plain Greek Yogurt Topper, on top of my oatmeal, in my iced coffee at times, smoothies and often when I bake. You can use it in place of the sugar in any recipe, reducing the Agave to 2/3 of the amount of sugar.

I will be doing a few XAgave recipes soon, so I will make sure to cover it then too.

Hope that helps a bit.



momyshaver October 7, 2011 at 11:25 am

I have been itching to bake something pumpkiny and this looks a bit better than the plain jane pumpkin bread I was going to make. I have them in the oven right now and my kitchen smells soooo good! Thanks for sharing!


Ann October 7, 2011 at 12:35 pm

These look delicious. I always like anything with pumpkin. Thank you for sharing the recipe and have a great weekend.


Tami October 7, 2011 at 3:45 pm

What a great Fall dessert to make to serve a large crowd! Thanks for sharing this recipe with us.


Lucia October 7, 2011 at 4:58 pm

This looks delish, planning on making it to bring to work


sarah@spinach and spice October 7, 2011 at 5:10 pm

Anything with pumpkin and cream cheese has my heart! These look incredible!


Ericka October 8, 2011 at 11:34 am

Making it for a dinner party tomorrow. Thank you! Yummy <3


Rae October 11, 2011 at 11:02 am

Can I replace the oil with applesauce? I usually do in ALOT of recipes and never really notice a change.


DanicasDaily October 30, 2011 at 10:25 pm

Hi Rae,

I have never tried making this particular recipe using applesauce for the oil, but, you could try. I imagine it would just make them denser versus light/fluffy but they would still be delicious. You could always start by replacing 1/2 cup of the oil with applesauce and still using a 1/4 cup of oil.

I would love to know if you try it using applesauce and how it turns out.



Buffy Alten October 11, 2011 at 1:45 pm

This is so good! I made it a lot last Fall when I first saw your recipe. Thanks so much, everyone loves this!


Libby October 19, 2012 at 2:36 am

I have made these for years! Although we call it ‘Pumpkin Cake” I have never met anyone who doesnt love it! I probably make 4 or 5 through the holiday season. It is my families favorite. It is SO worth the points but I am happy that it never lasts too long around here!


mary October 19, 2012 at 9:17 am

Sounds a lot like my pumpkin roll recipe without the rolling/cooling step. Enjoyed the pics while sipping Stash’s Pumpkin Spice tea. thanks.


Shannon October 19, 2012 at 9:52 am

Rae – I make these often, and I always replace ALL of the oil with applesauce. They turn out amazing – moist and delicious! I can’t justify the oil when I know the applesauce works so well. :-) These are amazing! I agree that everyone loves them!


Nancy October 19, 2012 at 4:37 pm

I made these this morning for a bake sale tomorrow at church. They are amazing! and so easy! I just hope there are some left for the sale.


Emily October 20, 2012 at 8:07 am

These sound really good and although I love pumpkin, I am not a big fan of cream cheese frosting. Do you think the points value would be 4 if it was frosting and nut free?


DanicasDaily October 25, 2012 at 2:53 pm

Hi Emily,

Even better! Without the frosting or nuts on top, the pumpkin bars are only 3 points+ based on 36 servings.




Julie October 21, 2012 at 6:19 am

This is hands down my favorite fall dessert recipe! Everyone that I share it with asks for the recipe!


Leann K October 24, 2012 at 7:57 pm

Would it be ok to use a 13 x 8 pan??? Can’t wait to bake them for Halloween! Thanks. Leiann


DanicasDaily October 25, 2012 at 2:50 pm

Hi Leann,

I have never tried it in that pan size, but, I bet it would work out just fine…maybe a little thicker.



Randi October 30, 2012 at 8:06 am

I pinned this a few days ago, came back to look at it compared to my favorite recipe from Sunmaid raisins( pumpkin raisin party cupcakes). Its the same recipe, LOL. No nuts in the sunmaid raisin recipe and of course lots of raisins. I’m making these for my partner to take to work and for us to take to a party so I think I’ll bake them in cupcakes.


Jen November 23, 2012 at 11:42 am

This was a hit at Thanksgiving this year!!! Much better than grocery store pumpkin pie. I was worried there would not be enough frosting but it was just the right amount. Great recipe!!!


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Danicasdaily.com is not meant to be a substitute for any professional advice, guidance, or counseling. Any information contained on this site reflect Danica's experience and is not intended to take the place of medical advice from a physician. Weight Watchers® and PointsPlus® are registered trademarks of Weight Watchers International, Inc. The number of Points+ provided for food on this site was calculated by Danica based on published Weight Watchers information. This site does not imply sponsorship or endorsement by Weight Watchers International, Inc. Danica does not guarantee the Points+ information is correct. I am not associated with Weight Watchers and they have not endorsed this site. I highly recommend joining WW and attending regular meetings as a way to successfully lose weight.

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