Looking for a pumpkin pie without the hassle? It’s time to make this pumpkin pie bars recipe instead! Each buttery bite of the tasty shortbread crust is perfect with the creamy pumpkin. They are just as delicious as pie but without the extra work.
Why This Recipe Works
Every year when Thanksgiving approaches, I promise myself that I’ll attempt a pie. But that never happens. Sometimes I make cheater pies like this Easy Apple Pie, but I have never made a pie completely from scratch. Sad, I know.
But why make pie when you can make bars that are 1. super easy to make, and 2. taste just like pie?!
If you are looking for an easy version of pumpkin pie as we approach the holidays, consider trying this recipe. It is DELICIOUS and no one will judge you for not making pie. This is a great recipe that will be requested year after year.
Pumpkin puree – You can purchase a can of pumpkin puree for this recipe. Or consider making your own pumpkin puree in your Instant Pot.
Spice mixture – If you don’t have Pumpkin Pie spice on hand, a simple substitution if to use 1/2 tsp cinnamon + 1/2 tsp cloves.
Whipped cream – This is for topping your bars. Good news! You can make your own here!
How To Make Pumpkin Pie Bars
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×13 baking pan with parchment paper and set it aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the butter, sugar and egg. Mix until it’s nice and creamy. Add the flour and salt and stir until combined. Using your fingers (flour them, if needed), press the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
In a separate large bowl, combine the eggs and sugar. Mix them well. Add the evaporated milk, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Mix until all the ingredients are combined. Pour the pumpkin pie mix over the crust and bake for an additional 40-45 minutes, or until center is no longer jiggly.
Take the baking dish out of the oven and place on a wire rack. Let the bars cool completely to room temperature. Cut into bars. Serve with a dollop of Whipped Cream on each one (if desired).
What to Make With Pumpkin Puree
Aside from the obvious (pie!), you might be wondering what to make with pumpkin puree so you can use up all of those scrumptious cans! Read on for some delicious pumpkin puree recipes!
Can I Use Homemade Whipped Cream For This Recipe?
Absolutely yes! If desired, replace Homemade Whipped Cream with the whipped topping called for in the recipe card.
How To Freeze Pumpkin Pie Bars
Once the bars are completely cooled, you can wrap the bars in saran wrap tightly so there’s no air trapped inside. Then use a layer of aluminum foil to wrap the bars again and place it in the freezer up to 3 months. When you take them out to enjoy again, let them defrost fully in the fridge about 24 hours.
Substitute For Pumpkin Puree
Equal parts of cooked, mashed sweet potatoes or butternut squash is a great substitution and you might not even be able to tell the difference!
Is Canned Pumpkin and Pumpkin Puree The Same Thing
Canned pumpkin is straight-up pumpkin that has been put into a can. Some pumpkin puree contains other ingredients that flavors it, making it pumpkin-pie ready. Read your labels to see what you’re getting in your next can of pumpkin!
FAQ About Pumpkin Puree
Pumpkin puree can be eaten raw. However, it is not necessarily delicious until you have added the ingredients to a recipe you are including it in.
Pumpkin puree can be frozen. Add the puree to an air tight container and you can safely freeze it for 4-5 months.
Good news! Pumpkin puree is full of healthy vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It’s low calorie and it’s a benefit to your eyes, heart and skin.
Pumpkin puree can go bad after you open it and remove it from the can. If you don’t need to use up the entire batch with baking, then you can put the leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate it for 3-5 days. Alternatively, you can freeze it for 2-3 months in the same container to use it later.
Pumpkin puree is known to be a good addition to a dog’s diet. Fresh pumpkin puree has a lot of water in it so canned pumpkin puree will offer the most fiber, nutrients and vitamins to their diet.
Delicious Thanksgiving Desserts
Thanksgiving Meal Ideas
- Creamy Crockpot Corn – Four ingredients, five minutes of effort and your slow cooker will make this delicious, creamy little side dish for you! Creamy crockpot corn is a great holiday side!
- Mom’s Mashed Potatoes – This is my mom’s delicious mashed potato recipe. It is the BEST and goes great with any main dish, any time of year. You’ll never need another mashed potato recipe again!
- Homemade Cranberry Sauce – This is THE BEST homemade cranberry sauce! It is super easy to make and surpasses the canned version in flavor. Be sure to use whole berries to your sauce to make this a delicious side dish for your Thanksgiving or holiday table!
- Instant Pot Mashed Potatoes – Instant pot mashed potatoes are creamy, smooth, delicious and easy to prepare. No boiling or saucepan/stovetop cleaning required with this side dish. The Instant Pot gets this easy mashed potato recipe done in 30 minutes!
- Classic Sweet Potato Casserole – This classic sweet potato casserole is great on your Thanksgiving table and also a perfect side dish that can be enjoyed any time of the year.
- Crockpot Stuffing with Leeks and Sausage – This delicious stuffing is made easier in the crockpot/slow cooker! The addition of leeks and sausage makes it unique and delicious. Don’t limit this to Thanksgiving fare.
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If you make this recipe and love it, stop back and give it a 5-star rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ and leave a comment. THANK YOU!
Pumpkin Pie Bars Recipe
- 2 sticks butter softened
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 cups flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 12 oz evaporated milk
- 15 oz pumpkin puree You can make your own in your Instant Pot!
- 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice substitute: 1/2 tsp cinnamon + 1/2 tsp cloves
- 1/2 tsp salt
- whipped cream for topping – you can make your own here!
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9×13 baking dish with parchment paper and set aside. In a medium bowl, combine the butter, sugar and egg. Mix until creamy. Add flour and salt and stir until combined. Using your fingers (flour them, if needed), press the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.
- In a separate bowl, combine the eggs and sugar. Mix well. Add the evaporated milk, pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Mix until combined. Pour over the crust and bake for an additional 40-45 minutes, or until center is no longer jiggly.
- Let cool, cut into squares and serve with whipped topping (if desired).
I double this recipe (because it won’t last one night) It is truly one of the BEST dessert recipes EVER!!!
That is high praise! I’m so glad you enjoy them and share them! Thank you for sharing.