Perfectly Pumpkin Vanilla Bars

Some people mark Halloween as the end to all things pumpkin. Of course, Hobby Lobby starts discounting Christmas in, like, July, so really, our holiday schedule is thrown way out of whack.

I think that post-Halloween pumpkin is the best kind of pumpkin. There’s no reason to pass on all things pumpkin until after at least Thanksgiving! You might remember that I’m a huge fan of pumpkin. As evidenced by my Better Than Pumpkin Pie dessert that was a huge hit last Thanksgiving. Or my Pumpkin Butter recipe that has been a huge reader favorite this season. Or maybe even my Pumpkin Spice Krispie treats from last year.

No doubt about it, I love Pumpkin. So, even though we’re well into November, I still have just a few more pumpkin recipes left in me. My hope is that you’ll find something yummy to take to an upcoming Thanksgiving feast, or at the very least, enjoy while you cry over the Christmas music that started just after Halloween on some stations.

These Perfectly Pumpkin Vanilla Bars are so easy and tasty that you might want to consider making a double batch. Yum.

You’ll want to start with the Pumpkin Creme cake mix from Pillsbury. It comes with the vanilla mix that they use as a filling in the cake. I’m going to use it in a slightly different way in these bars, however.

In addition to the mix, you’ll need some milk, oil, eggs, and sprinkles, though the sprinkles are optional.

Set the vanilla filling packet aside and just pour the pumpkin cake mix into a large mixing bowl. Add in your egg, 1/4 cup of milk, and 1/4 cup of oil.

It will be an incredibly thick batter, and it will smell really, really awesome. So… try not to eat too much of it before pressing it into a greased 9×9 pan.

Just like that.

For the vanilla topping, you’ll want to mix together the filling packet, plus 2 tablespoons of oil and 2 tablespoons of water.

Spread this as evenly as you can on top of the pumpkin batter.

You’re going to bake these for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

It’ll have a fun layered effect when it’s finished.

While the bars are still slightly warm, gently press your fall sprinkles into the top. Then, the hard part… waiting! You have to wait a full hour for these to cool. Don’t try cutting them sooner– they’ll fall apart!

Voila! Worth the hour wait… and so delicious. They’re a bit ooey-gooey and packed with fall flavor. The vanilla offsets the pumpkin perfectly for a delicious finish.

I got ten thin bars out of my 9×9 pan. You can also cut them into squares, triangles, or any other delicious desired shape you’d like.

Maybe eating something pumpkin will help counteract the Christmas special you’re watching on TV before Thanksgiving has even come and gone.

Are you a die-hard holiday separationist, waiting for one to end before the next begins, or do you blend your holidays in the last half of the year? When do you feel pumpkin is “out”? Sound off in the comments section below!



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