I don’t know what it is about the crisp Fall air that makes me want to be in the kitchen baking, every hour of every day. It doesn’t even have to be a recipe packed with fresh local apples or pumpkin, all though that is mainly what my heart longs for. It can be something simple and sweet, like these Raspberry Almond Bars.
Usually, I have to wait until naptime for the twins rolls around before I can even think about baking something. It’s not pretty when I am working on a recipe that needs a lot of attention and then a meltdown occurs. Of course my children are priority which means I may leave my mixer mixing with batter that was supposed to be “just combined”, oh well. Today I was able to bake these bars up in no time while the kids played. When I say no time I mean they do actually take time to bake but the prep work is quick and easy.
I’m not trying to brag or anything but my vegetable garden this year is amazing! We have planted gardens in the past but to be honest I wasn’t that into it, it was more for my husband. Alex has always loved having a garden but gets too busy with work to give it the TLC it needs. It always begins with good intentions but in the end…..weeds, lots and lots of weeds. I don’t know what happened to change my heart but this year I was extremely excited to plant and be the main care taker of our garden. I am usually not a good plant mother. All plants in my care die, but not this year. This year I have watered and fertilized and picked vegetables at the peek of their ripeness. It has been so rewarding. The twins also love the garden. It has become part of our daily routine: wake up, eat breakfast, change clothes, and go tend the garden. I just love it!
We were a little over zealous when choosing what we wanted to plant and how many. We have 3 zucchini plants and that has produced more than enough. I have frozen some, given some away to good homes, and of course baked it into just about anything. I love zucchini bread so very much and it holds a special place in my heart but I wanted to try something different. I came across these Carrot and Zucchini Bars and knew they would be worthy of my homegrown squash.
Let me show you how to make these simple and delicious Carrot and Zucchini Bars with Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting. First, you shred the carrots and zucchini into a bowl. Next, whisk together the eggs, brown sugar, oil, honey, and vanilla. Fold the shredded carrot and zucchini into the wet mixture and set aside. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, ginger, and cinnamon. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and stir until they are just combined.
Spread the batter evenly into a 9×13 inch pan (the original recipe calls for an ungreased pan but who wants to take a chance like that? I lined my pan with foil and sprayed it with non stick baking spray. You can never be too careful). Bake at 350 for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
Now it’s time to make the frosting! In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, lemon peel, and lemon juice until fluffy. Spread over the cooled bars and serve!
These Carrot and Zucchini Bars with Cream Cheese Lemon Frosting are a great summertime dessert using beautiful and seasonal produce. The bars themselves aren’t very sweet but that’s because the frosting brings the sweetness to this party. I will definitely be making these again in the near future since the first batch didn’t last long at all!
Source: Tastes Better From Scratch
- For the Bars:
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1/2 cup canola oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 1/4 cups grated carrot
- 1 cup grated zucchini
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
- 1/2 tsp. ginger
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- For the Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 1 (8oz) package of cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp. grated lemon peel
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- To make the bars:
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Line a 9x13in pan with aluminum foil and spray lightly with nonstick baking spray.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, brown sugar, honey, oil, and vanilla. Fold in the grated carrot and zucchini.
- In another bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, and cinnamon. Add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and stir until just combined.
- Spread the batter evenly into the prepare pan and bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.
- To make the frosting:
- In a mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, lemon peel, and lemon juice. The end result should be nice and fluffy. Spread on the cooled bars.
Wow summer has arrived! I am so glad those two weeks of straight rain are behind us and we can move on to sunshine and summertime. My days have been full of playing outside with my twins (and I mean chasing them in two different directions), gardening, and of course cooking and baking. One of the ways I love to satisfy my sweet tooth during these hot summer months is with citrus. A light and refreshing citrus dessert is just the ticket after a hot day spent playing out in the yard. These Creamy Lemon Crumb Bars are perfect! A little different than your traditional lemon bar but they are everything I want and need: a crispy crust, creamy lemony filling, and a buttery oatmeal crumble topping.
I always make sure I have everything on hand to make these delicious bars. It really doesn’t take much to throw them together. The worst part is letting them cool and then chill in the fridge. As I have told you before I am just not patient enough for that, but these are worth the wait. If I make them the night before I may sneak one in for breakfast the next morning. A healthy breakfast choice? Well no…but they go so well with coffee! I mean I can’t help myself.