Carrot Cake Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting are chewy, dense, moist, and filled with all the flavor of your favorite carrot cake. Then they’re topped with cream cheese frosting and a few chopped walnuts for the best easy dessert recipe!
My Dad’s favorite dessert is carrot cake. As a child, I totally resented the idea of putting vegetables in a cake, but now I absolutely love carrot cake.
I love the moist texture, carrot flavor, and the hint of brown sugar and cinnamon. But sometimes I don’t have the time to make my favorite carrot cake recipe. And sometimes even a classic recipe needs a bit of a changeup. And that’s where these carrot cake bars with cream cheese frosting come in.
You can think of them as your favorite carrot cake in fudgy, chewy blondie form. Plus making carrot cake bars is way easier than making carrot cake because it’s an easy no mixer, one bowl recipe.
To get started we stir together melted butter and brown sugar. Then mix 2 eggs plus 1 extra egg yolk, vanilla, and grated carrots. I like to use brown sugar because it adds a delicious hint caramel and more moisture. Then the melted butter and extra egg yolk make the bars chewier
The flour, cinnamon, and salt are gently folded in – and the bars are ready to bake. They’ll take 27-32 minutes depending on your oven. Baking them longer will lead to cake-ier bars. Whereas a shorter bake time will create denser, moister bars.
Then after the carrot cake bars are baked and cooled, they’re topped with cream cheese frosting. To ensure no lumps in your frosting, make sure the butter and cream cheese are well softened first. Beat them together until it’s a smooth consistency, then slowly beat in the powdered sugar along with a little vanilla extract and salt.
There are no fancy decorating techniques for this recipe. Just slather on the frosting and sprinkle with chopped walnuts or pecans (if you’re into nuts on top).
These carrot cake bars with cream cheese frosting are chewy, moist and have the perfect carrot cake flavor. So if you love carrot cake and are looking for something a little different or a little easier, definitely try these carrot cake bars!
Carrot Cake Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
Carrot Cake Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting are chewy, dense, moist, and filled with all the flavor of your favorite carrot cake. Then they're topped with cream cheese frosting and a few chopped walnuts for the best easy dessert recipe!
Yield 18 bars
Carrot Cake Bars
- 1 cup melted butter
- 1 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 cups grated carrots (about 3 large carrots)
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 6 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 - 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Carrot Cake Bars
- Preheat the oven to 350F degrees. Line a 9x13 inch baking pan with aluminum boil and lightly grease.
- In a large bowl stir together the melted butter and brown sugar.
- Stir in the vanilla, eggs, egg yolk and grated carrots.
- Gently fold in the flour, cinnamon, and salt.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 28-32 minutes or until the top looks set and the edges are just starting to pull away from the pan.
- Allow to cool.
Cream Cheese Frosting
- Beat together the butter and cream cheese in a large bowl.
- Add the vanilla extract and salt, then carefully beat in the powdered sugar until you get to your desired sweetness level.
- Frost the cooled bars and sprinkle with chopped walnuts (optional).
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.
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Fiona blogs over at Just So Tasty where she shares easy, classic recipes for desserts & sweet treats. A peanut butter lover, chocolate connoisseur, and sprinkle addict – she hopes to make your life sweeter, one cookie at a time. She also teaches yoga, because life is all about balance.