Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting


Chewy, perfectly spiced Gingerbread Bars meet sweet, luscious Cream Cheese Frosting and it is a match meant to be! These are one of the best holiday bars and once you try them you’ll want to make them every Christmas season! My list of cookies I need to make every year just keeps getting longer and longer :).

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

These bars are a nice meet in the middle kind of gingerbread. They aren’t overly spiced, more of a mellow yet still deliciously gingery bar. So kids and adults alike will love them. Sometimes when I make gingerbread with a lot of ginger or molasses it can be a little too strong for my kids but these are perfect. It still had enough ginger and molasses in them that I loved them and it wasn’t too much for my kids because they loved them just as much.

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

Another great thing about these is that they are so easy to make. I like bars because you don’t have to bake up individual portions like cookies, instead you just spread it all into one pan. Feel free to add as many festive Christmas sprinkles as you’d like. I couldn’t resist adding some itty bitty little gingerbread men to mine as well. If you really want to get into things you could make some homemade mini gingerbread men like I did here. Then just keep them in the freezer and add them to all your gingerbread treats throughout the month.

Try these gingerbread bars soon, you just can’t go wrong with these during this time of year! Who could resist? They’ll be enjoyed down the the last little crumb.

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking ClassyGingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy


Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Yield: About 20 bars



  • 2 cups + 2 Tbsp (300g) all-purpose flour (scoop and level to measure)
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup (169g) unsalted butter, diced into 1 Tbsp pieces, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1 cup (220g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) unsulphured molasses
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract


  • 1/2 cup butter , nearly at room temperature (I like to use 1/4 c salted butter 1/4 c unsalted)
  • 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, nearly at room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups (325g) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13 by 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray, set aside. In a medium mixing bowl whisk together flour, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, baking soda and salt for 20 seconds, set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, blend together butter, brown sugar and molasses until combined. Mix in egg an vanilla extract. With mixer set on low speed slowly add in flour mixture and mix until combined. Fold batter with a spatula as needed until batter appears to be evenly incorporated.
  3. Pour dough into prepared baking dish and spread and press into an even layer using your hands. Bake in preheated oven until bars have baked through, about 14 - 17 minutes (be careful not to over-bake). Transfer baking dish to a wire rack and let bars cool completely.
  4. For the cream cheese frosting:
  5. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add in powdered sugar and vanilla and mix until light and fluffy. From here I like to freeze the frosting in 3 minute intervals then I mix between intervals using the stand mixer until it's the consistency I like (it usually takes about 9 minutes total). Spread frosting over cooled bars. Cut into squares. Cover with lid or plastic wrap and store in refrigerator.
  6. Recipe source: Cooking Classy


  • Juliana Ramsey: These look great, Jaclyn! Can you send me one in a one-day delivery package? ;) December 5, 2016 at 10:01pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Lol you got it! ;) December 7, 2016 at 12:43pm Reply

  • Asiya: I love ginger bread and the frosting made with cream and cheese looks awesome and nothing could be better than this in this Christmas season… Frosting over the bars looks amazing… December 6, 2016 at 4:29am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Asiya! December 7, 2016 at 12:42pm Reply

  • Sara @ Last Night’s Feast: OMG These look so good! December 6, 2016 at 10:19am Reply

    • Jaclyn: They are! Thanks Sara! December 7, 2016 at 12:41pm Reply

  • Laura | Tutti Dolci: These are so festive and pretty! Gingerbread + cream cheese frosting sounds just perfect to me :) December 6, 2016 at 4:37pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Laura! December 7, 2016 at 12:40pm Reply

  • Hanna @ Filipino Recipes: Looks so delicious, my kids will surely love this — am definitely going to try this one — would be great for the holidays coming up… December 7, 2016 at 11:36am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I hope you love it Hanna! December 7, 2016 at 12:34pm Reply

  • Martha in KS: I want to make these today but I have a couple of questions. What do you mean by freezing the icing at 3 min. intervals? Also, can the finished bars be frozen? Thanks December 8, 2016 at 8:13am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I just place the mixing bowl with the frosting in the freezer to help firm it up a bit since cream cheese frosting can have a tendency to be runny. So I just freeze it in the mixing bowl 3 minutes then return to the stand mixer and mix it again then freeze for 3 minutes more and so on. I probably wouldn’t freeze them after frosting but they’d probably be okay to freeze before you add the frosting. Cream cheese doesn’t hold up well in the freezer (other than those short bursts of course :)). I hope you love them! December 14, 2016 at 1:01pm Reply

  • Susie: Do you think I could substitute cup 4 cup gf flour for these with the same results? Also, where did you get those little gingerbread men decorations? December 10, 2016 at 9:10pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I haven’t tested with gluten free flower so I can’t say for sure sorry! The gingerbread men are just Wilton sugar cake decorations. They have them at Walmart, target and Michaels. December 23, 2016 at 10:31am Reply

  • Megan: Cannot wait to make these!! They look delicious and adorable. Is it still possible to use regular molasses? December 12, 2016 at 9:56am Reply

    • Jaclyn: If you are referring to backstrap molasses it has a stronger slightly bitter flavor, it’s more concentrated and not as sweet so I wouldn’t recommend using it. You may already have the regular unsulphured molasses sometimes it’s hard to tell from the label – it’s usually just in small print somewhere on there. December 12, 2016 at 1:57pm Reply

  • Brook: I was disappointed these were super dry and lacked flavor. The batter had the gingerbread taste, but was just bland once baked. I kept a close eye on them and checked them with a toothpick several times so I don’t think they were overcooked. December 12, 2016 at 10:37pm Reply

  • Melissa: Just made these and they are absolutely amazing!! December 14, 2016 at 9:48am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so glad you liked them Melissa! Thanks for your review! December 14, 2016 at 12:53pm Reply

  • Sarah: I just made these they turned out amazing ! Thanks for the recipe :) December 16, 2016 at 4:12pm Reply

  • Dianne: These look perfect for Christmas eve but I was wondering if anyone has tried making them with Gluten Free all purpose flour. December 17, 2016 at 8:25pm Reply

  • Tanya: First of all I’d like to say I’ve tried many of your recipes and have loved them all! I started off making your strawberry lemonade cheesecake cupcakes which are a hit to all who I’ve made them for. Now I check in every once in a while to see what new treats you have for me to try! I made these gingerbread bars and they were delicious! They have a mild taste that I love! I’d like to know if this recipe can be used to make soft baked gingerbread cookies with the kids? December 21, 2016 at 11:02am Reply

  • Brenda: Is it possible to substitute the molasses for something else and what would it be? December 22, 2016 at 3:15pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: For the classic gingerbread flavor there aren’t really any good substitutes sorry! December 23, 2016 at 10:30am Reply

      • Brenda: That is fine thank you either way December 23, 2016 at 9:21pm Reply

  • kelly: These had an overpowering Molasses taste, unfortunately. December 24, 2016 at 8:09pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Did you use blackstrap molasses by chance? 1/4 cup regular molasses really isn’t much for a gingerbread recipe (from what I’ve seen anyway). Sorry you didn’t love them though! December 25, 2016 at 9:27pm Reply

  • Susie: I just served the last batch of these gingerbread bars of another tea I had…they are the BEST…so pretty…and so tasty. The recipe is a keeper for me. Thank you. December 30, 2016 at 5:08pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks for the great review Susie! January 3, 2017 at 11:11am Reply

  • Danila: These look amazing. Can these be made a couple days in advance and stored in the fridge? January 5, 2017 at 8:45am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Yes that would be fine. I hope you love them! January 6, 2017 at 12:28am Reply

  • sara: I would like love to make these since they look awesome, but my poor English might be a barrier because I don’t know what molasses is. Would you be kind to tell me what is it? and if I can substitute it with something else?
    Thanks in advance. February 20, 2017 at 5:04am Reply

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