Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

Published December 5, 2016. Updated November 16, 2018

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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!

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

Gingerbread Bars, the Perfect Holiday Treat!

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.

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

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.

Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

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.

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4.85 from 32 votes

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!
Servings: 20
Prep25 minutes
Cook15 minutes
Cooling1 hour
Ready in: 1 hour 40 minutes

Ingredients

Frosting

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

Instructions

  • 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.
  • 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 and 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.
  • 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.
  • For the cream cheese frosting: 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*. Spread frosting over cooled bars.
  • Cut into squares. Cover with lid or plastic wrap and store in refrigerator.

Notes

  • *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. 
Nutrition Facts
Gingerbread Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
Amount Per Serving
Calories 314 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Fat 15g23%
Saturated Fat 9g56%
Cholesterol 51mg17%
Sodium 206mg9%
Potassium 97mg3%
Carbohydrates 41g14%
Sugar 29g32%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 520IU10%
Calcium 35mg4%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.

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131 Comments

  • Heidi Sanfilippo

    I made these in an11x14 sheet pan, and they were perfect! I lined it with parchment so I could remove them to cool easier. Still cakey, but bar consistency! I am making a bunch of cookies for family and friends and these are a festive addition-thanks😊🎄

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      I frost in the pan then cut and remove the bars. You can also use parchment (to line the pan, a sheet going each direction) if you’d prefer to be able to lift the whole cookie slab out then frost.

  • Pam Howell

    These were really good! I even got the little gingerbread men from Etsy! Highly recommend.

  • Tiffani

    I have made these about 3 years running and they are one if my favorite holiday recipes. My only regret is that I don’t have access to cute Christmas sprinkles like the ones you have in your photo (posted overseas) so I make due with just a small sprinkling of nutmeg on top. Thanks for a perennial recipe!

      • Amy

        I have made these every year since discovering this recipe. They are a favorite, and I usually make two batches. This year, I am also going to try making one of them a GF batch thanks to a commenter below saying that worked out OK. I need to make them ahead and freeze also. Can I freeze them already frosted, or would it be best to freeze the bars and then frost later?

        • Jaclyn

          Jaclyn Bell

          I would recommend adding the frosting added after freezing. I’m so glad you’ve enjoyed these Amy!

  • Sara

    I did it to the letter
    And mine turned out like cookie dough. Still very good but. They weren’t bars

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Sorry to hear that! Does your oven generally cook low by chance? Add was the flour measured as directed? They maybe just needed a little more flour, or more time to bake.