Pumpkin Streusel Bars

Homemade pumpkin streusel bars are a fun and delicious alternative to pumpkin pie. With a gingersnap crust, creamy pumpkin filling, and brown sugar streusel topping, these are simply irresistible!

pumpkin streusel bars with vanilla icing

With the start of fall we welcome cooler temperatures, changing leaves, and warm autumn spices. To celebrate the season and all of its spiced glory, let’s make pumpkin streusel bars. They’ve got big pumpkin flavor and 3 decadent layers– like pumpkin pie bars or pumpkin bars all dressed up.

You’ll love the crunchy gingersnap crust, creamy pumpkin/cream cheese filling, and brown sugar cinnamon streusel topping. Don’t forget the vanilla icing!

pumpkin streusel bars with vanilla icing

These Pumpkin Streusel Bars Are

  • The epitome of dessert bars
  • Perfectly pumpkin spiced
  • A texture lover’s dream
  • Drizzled with vanilla icing
  • Simple to make and serve
  • Easier than baking an entire pie or cheesecake

pumpkin streusel bars with vanilla icing

Overview: How to Make Pumpkin Streusel Bars

Here’s a quick overview of the process– scroll down for the full recipe.

  1. Make the gingersnap crust. It’s a pretty thick layer so be sure to pre-bake it before adding the filling. I also love using a gingersnap cookie crust in my pumpkin swirl cheesecake. For an alternative, try the graham cracker crust included in my lemon blueberry cheesecake bars recipe– it yields the perfect amount of crust for today’s bars.
  2. Make the pumpkin filling. Spiced pumpkin pie meets creamy, thick cheesecake. I like to add cream cheese to this layer not only to get that cheesecake taste, but to give the center some structure. You’ll appreciate how creamy the filling is– the perfect contrast to the crunchy crust and crumbly streusel topping.
  3. Pour the filling into the pre-baked crust.
  4. Make the streusel topping. It’s actually the same topping we use for apple pie bars! Sprinkle this evenly over the filling.
  5. Bake. The bars are done when the edges are lightly browned and the center is set.
  6. Chill the bars.
  7. Cut into squares. Drizzle with vanilla icing or top with whipped cream.
  8. Enjoy!

pumpkin streusel bar with vanilla icing on a white plate with a fork

Optional Icing

A drizzle of sweet vanilla icing is totally optional and definitely encouraged. 🙂 I like to prepare the icing just before cutting the bars into squares, then drizzle onto each before serving. You can also use whipped cream instead.

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pumpkin streusel bars with vanilla icing

Pumpkin Streusel Bars

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 4 hours, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 hours, 15 minutes
  • Yield: 12-16 bars
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


Instead of pumpkin pie this season, try my pumpkin streusel bars. With a gingersnap crust and brown sugar streusel topping, everyone will want seconds.


Gingersnap Crust*

  • 1 and 1/4 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs (use crunchy gingersnap cookies and grind in processor – I prefer Nabisco or Trader Joe’s brand)
  • 2 Tablespoons (23g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter, melted

Pumpkin Filling

  • 8 ounces (225g) full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/4 cups (285g) pumpkin puree (fresh or canned)
  • 1/3 cup (80g) plain Greek yogurt, regular yogurt, or sour cream*
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon EACH ground clovesground nutmeg, ground ginger*


  • 1/2 cup (40g) old-fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup (70g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup (30g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
  • optional: vanilla icing or whipped cream for topping


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F (163°C). Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch or 9-inch baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving enough overhang on all sides. Set aside.
  2. Make the crust: Mix the cookie crumbs, sugar, and butter together in a medium bowl until combined. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan. The crust will be thick. Bake the crust for 10 minutes as you prepare the filling.
  3. Turn oven up to 350°F (177°C).
  4. Make the filling: Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and sugar together in a large bowl on high speed until creamy and smooth, about 1 minute. On low speed, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. On medium speed, beat the vanilla, pumpkin, yogurt, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and ginger in. Continue beating until everything is combined and creamy. Pour the filing into the warm crust. Set aside.
  5. Make the streusel: Whisk the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour together in a medium bowl. Cut in the chilled butter with a pastry blender or two forks (or even with your hands) until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle evenly over filling.
  6. Bake for about 45 minutes, making sure to loosely cover the bars with aluminum foil around the 30 minute mark. The foil prevents the top from getting too brown. The bars are done when the edges are lightly browned and the center is set– this could be slightly before or after the 40 minute mark. Allow to cool in the pan set on a wire rack at room temperature for 1 hour. Transfer to the refrigerator to chill for 3 additional hours – or overnight. Lift the foil or parchment out of the pan using the overhang on the sides and cut into bars. I usually cut them into 16 smaller bars, but you can cut them into 12 larger bars.  Drizzle bars with icing or top with whipped cream if desired.


  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: The bars stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. You can freeze the bars for up to 3 months. Then, thaw overnight in the refrigerator before serving and glazing.
  2. Crust: A graham cracker crust would be just as tasty as the gingersnap. Use the graham cracker crust from my lemon blueberry cheesecake bars (it makes the perfect amount of crust!).
  3. Yogurt: For the yogurt/sour cream– I always use low fat for these bars; full fat would be just fine. Try to avoid fat free– you can taste the difference.
  4. Spices: Instead of these spices, you can use 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice.
  5. Double Batch: You can easily double this recipe to feed a crowd! Double the ingredients, pre-bake the crust for 10 minutes in a 9×13 pan, and bake the bars at 325°F (163°C) for roughly 55 minutes, give or take. Keep your eye on them after 45 minutes.
  6. Adapted from Sally’s Baking Addiction Cookbook Spiced Pumpkin Bars.

Keywords: pumpkin streusel bars


  1. Chineka @ Savor The Baking says:

    The ginger snap crust sounds tasty with the cheesecake and pumpkin combination. Great dessert.

    1. Laura @ Raise Your Garden says:

      Agreed. These look quite heavenly. I too am in love with gingersnap but confess I have never used it as a crust before. Unlike you, I’m more of a vanilla glaze fan than a gingersnap fan. And that vanilla glaze looks so versatile, I see myself using on on other desserts as well.

      And the creme cheese layer, thanks for talking about how it didn’t work and was “loose” without it. I’d be tempted to skip the creme cheese layer to be honest because I’m not a huge creme cheese fan but now I won’t as to hold it all together. I don’t want soupy bars for Thanksgiving! All great tips Sally =)

  2. These look seriously delicious Sally!!

  3. Kristin Threlkeld says:

    LOVE!!!! Oh how I’d love to be at your Thanksgiving table! 😉

  4. Oh Sally, why didn’t you marry me? 😛 I love pumpkin and I’m a real sucker for streusel hehe.. This looks seriously divine ♥

  5. These bars are dangerously delicious!!! Yumm!

  6. Averie @ Averie Cooks says:

    The gingersnap crust and brown sugar streusel topping and the fact that the filling is cheesecake + pie in one…there’s seriously a little bit of everything in these! Love all the flavors and textures! And sounds like you’ve been baking up a pumpkin storm! 🙂 pinned

  7. Pumpkin pie always struck me as something that would be fabulous with a graham-cracker or gingersnap crust, but it’s always made with that gross, cardboard-y pastry! These bars are the best take on pumpkin pie EVER! I love streusel, and cheesecake, and finally pumpkin gets the treatment it deserves 😉

  8. These pictures are so tempting, Sally. I mean, you have streusel. And pretty drizzle. And a cheesecake-y layer. And those awesome candy pumpkins that I eat when nobody is looking!
    Love the gingersnap crust. It goes with pumpkin so much better than just graham cracker!

  9. A gingersnap crust sounds delicious! Just wondering, are those cute mini pumpkins in some of the pictures?

    1. Yep! Mallow creme pumpkin candies. http://www.amazon.com/Mallow-Creme-Pumpkins-Halloween-Candy/dp/B0095IYJYQ

  10. Everybody will want seconds?! Sally -I’m talking thirds and fourths here!! These look incredible. The gingersnap crust sounds divine. Such a warming little treat! Pinned x

  11. Gayle @ Pumpkin N Spice says:

    Sally, these bars look incredible! I’m a huge fan of anything with pumpkin, but throw some streusel on top, and it’s the best dessert ever! Pinned!

  12. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says:

    Love that we’re both doing the pumpkin streusel thing today 🙂 These look amazing!

  13. Yum yum Sally! This recipe warms my little fall-loving heart! Great flavor combo and textures! Can’t wait to give this one a whirl 🙂

  14. Alexa @ simpleeatsfood.com says:

    So I can totally see these as the perfect ending to Thanksgiving dinner! Also, Cool Whip is the bomb. I sometimes buy it just to eat it out of the tub…tastes like ice cream 😉

  15. Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust says:

    Gingersnap + pumpkin is the BEST!! I love that you drizzled them on top too, so pretty!

  16. Oh, I’m looking forward to making these on Sunday for a meal at church. Can’t wait for everyone to ask me for the recipe (they always do when I make ANYTHING from S.B.A.). 🙂 But I have a HUGE decision to make…whipped cream on top or vanilla glaze. Ahhh… that’s too hard of a decision! I’ll have to ask my dessert-loving hubby for the answer. Thanks for another winner Sally!

    1. Thanks Stacey! I feel glaze might be easier to travel with than the whipped cream! Hope everyone enjoys them.

  17. I LOVE pumpkin! And I LOVE fall! These look very good and I can not wait to try them!

  18. Geez Sally…..I’m at the point now where I feel like tossing out all my other dessert recipe magazines and books. Who needs ’em with you around?! I’ve been in a baking frenzy lately making a number of your recipes and all have come out fabulously. In my rather limited baking experience, I have worked with a gingersnap crust before (for a very nice pumpkin swirl cheesecake I made last year). And it was great. I love this recipe not only for the gingersnap crust and the combination of pumpkin and cream cheese, but for the streusel as well! I love a streusel topping, so this is a win, win, win for me! Excuse the novice question here…I assume you mean I should use an 8 or 9 inch square (not round) baking pan and that you can expand it to a 9 x 13?.

    1. Hi Barbara! So glad you enjoy baking my recipes. I would love to make a pumpkin cheesecake soon – with a gingersnap crust. Yum. And yes, I’m referring to a 8 or 9 inch square baking pan.

  19. P.S.- I forgot… Happy 1 Monthiversary!

    1. thank you! 🙂

  20. This is pumpkin pie on steroids. The older brother if you prefer. Haha! You can never, ever go wrong with streusel.

    And I am definitely a whipped cream person. If it’s just me eating a piece of pumpkin pie, I bring the can with me and every forkful gets its own squirt of whipped cream. If it was socially acceptable, I would do this at holiday parties, but others might get jealous. Haha!

    1. every forkful gets whipped cream – YES. I couldn’t agree with this statement more. The more, the better. Laur, I’m going to be at William’s Sonoma in the KoP mall this Saturday 12-4pm signing cookbooks if you are around!

  21. Liz @ Tip Top Shape says:

    I am such a cheesecake fan so I love that there’s some of that in these bars! They look great!!

  22. Beth @ bethcakes says:

    I have yet to make anything pumpkin flavored so far this season, but these pumpkin streusel bars are where it’s at! I love making crusts with gingersnaps. It just adds so much flavor! And I love that the filling for these bars is a combination of pie and cheesecake. These would be perfect with a cup of coffee in the afternoon. 🙂

  23. Eve @ Baking the Day says:

    These look amazing, just like all of your recipes. Seriously loving the snappy gingery base. Gingersnaps, for me, are the essence of Autumn. Great idea with the cream cheese in the filling. I thought I had hear about adding it before and then I remembered that it was in your cookbook! Pinned x 😀

    1. It really puts these bars over the top. I love cream cheese and pumpkin together.

  24. I am sure I can’t be the first person to admit this but “my name is Dayna and I have a Sally’s Baking Addiction addiction”. So I love a dessert display and when you suggested also baking the Salted Caramel Apple Pie version I thought the perfect third addition to the display would be a cranberry orange bar. I looked through your bar recipes and thought maybe I could make the lemon blueberry recipe but with cranberry orange. I know the cranberries won’t work the same so how about it Sally? would you create a cranberry orange cream cheese streusel bar that would be equally as beautiful as the pumpkin and apple version? image how gorgeous on my maple leaf shaped dessert plates. Autumn get together heaven on a plate.

    1. Dayna! I love your thinking. That’s the ultimate trio of fall flavors. I don’t think I’ll be making those this fall, but you can absolutely try it. How about making the lemon blueberry cheesecake bar – orange for lemon and cranberries for blueberries (maybe a few less cranberries because they have an overpowering flavor). Then top with this streusel. Then bake. Delicious!

  25. jenna @ just j.faye says:

    These look ridicuous – so, so, so amazing!

  26. Those look delicious. I LOVE anything pumpkin and wouldn’t mind a month or week dedicated to anything pumpkin.

  27. Seriously?? Goodness these look wonderful and they are definitely in my near future, the VERY near future. Thank you!

  28. Rachael | Spache the Spatula says:

    These look uh-mazing!
    I’m not the biggest pumpkin pie fan (weird, I know), but these would make an unbelievable substitute!

  29. Wow! These look DIVINE! I am crazy about all things pumpkin right now. Thank you for all your wonderful recipes. They work out every single time!

  30. Alisha @ Real Girl Running says:

    They look amazing! I love the American love of all things pumpkin. I’m on a one-woman mission to bring it to Australia, and I think these bars will be an awesome start!

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