Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars #SundaySupper

Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars #SundaySupper

Everyone has problems.  That’s what my seventh grade science teacher once told Mom.  I was pretty smart, a straight A student, but socially, I didn’t fit in.  I pretty much never chatted with my peers.  Instead I minded my own business, moving quickly from class to class, sitting silently, being ignored at lunch and standing alone at recess, contemplating life’s big issues . . . or my weekend plans, unless Mom was there helping out, in which case, I happily talked to her.

It was easy to look at the popular kids and think they led perfect lives, but they didn’t.  I’m not sure why this didn’t dawn on me until that teacher said this.  It was like a revelation.  It didn’t make us all best friends, far from it, but it made me understand that I was not the only one struggling in some way.  I may not have known the issues they dealt with, but they were there.  Whether they couldn’t make the grades, didn’t earn a spot on a sports team, or had issues outside of school, no one was immune.

Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars

The same is true today.  I am constantly guilty of looking at others and assuming their lives must be absolutely fantastic, but everyone has issues.  Maybe I’m wishing I was a fearless traveler like a family friend.  Perhaps I’m admiring the fame, fashion, and friends of my favorite celebrity.  Or even just wanting the career of a fellow food blogger.  But all those people, they have issues too.  We always think the grass is greener on the other side, when in fact that probably isn’t the case.

It’s important to remember that anyone can suffer; anyone can want to curl into a ball and cry the day away; no one’s life is perfect.  Because if you’re anything like me, you’ve looked at other people’s lives and believed them to be perfect, when in reality you’re only seeing the surface.  We need to take time to appreciate the perfect and imperfect parts of our lives and find happiness with what we have and work to change the things we aren’t happy with.

Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars

If anything is perfect, it’s these Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars.  Seriously, I may never eat pumpkin pie again – these are that good.  The bottom shortbread crust is super firm and crunchy with a deep, complex, caramelized flavor.  Then there’s the filling.  It’s just like pumpkin pie filling with tons of warm spices.  The only way I’d improve it is to add a little bourbon because bourbon makes everything better!  And then there’s the crumb topping, crunchy in spots, soft in others.  The individual components are rock stars, but together – OMG!  This is irresistible!  This must be on your Thanksgiving table!

Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars

 Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars

Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars #SundaySupper

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 55 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: 9 bars


Crust and Crumb

1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour

1 ¼ cups quick cooking oats

½ teaspoon kosher salt

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup packed light brown sugar

1 ½ sticks unsalted butter, melted

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


¼ cup granulated sugar

¼ cup packed light brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground ginger

¼ teaspoon ground cloves

1 large egg

1 large egg yolk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 ¼ cups pumpkin puree (I used homemade, but canned will work)

1/3 cup heavy cream


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8 inch square pan.

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, oats, salt, baking soda, and sugars until fully combined. Add butter and vanilla and stir until all ingredients are moistened. Press half of the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes.

While the crust is baking, make the filling. In a medium bowl, whisk together sugars, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, egg, egg yolk, vanilla, pumpkin, and cream until a homogeneous mixture is formed. Pour filling over baked crust and return to the oven to bake for 15 minutes more.

After the filling has baked, remove it from the oven and sprinkle remaining crust mixture over the top, breaking it into crumbs of various sizes. Return to the oven and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes until the crumbs are golden brown and the center is still slightly jiggly. Cool at room temperature for 1 hour and then cool in the refrigerator for at least 1 additional hour before carefully cutting (the bottom crust is tough to cut through) and serving. Bars may be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or frozen, individually wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator for about 2 hours.


Recipe adapted from Cooking Classy


Don’t forget to check out all the other Sunday Supper dishes!

Breakfasts and Breads


Appetizers, Starters, and Condiments


Soups, Sandwiches, and Salads


Main Dishes


Side Dishes



Wine Pairing Recommendations for Squashin’ Winter #SundaySupper from Enofylz Wine Blog

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET.  Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. Check out our #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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  1. You had me at adding bourbon! I agree, it makes everything better. These sound truly amazing Laura! It’s part of life to understand that we all have issues.

  2. Yes, we all have issues and problems. It’s a good thing to realize others go through difficulties too and we are not alone in trying times. Now these bars are simply fabulous. I can see it being what will get me to like pumpkin pie. Shortbread and crumb topping to the rescue!

  3. I like that you used oats in the crust. So good!

  4. Your pumpkin pie bars look so moist and delish! I could probably eat the whole pan!!

  5. Your advice is wise, and your recipe looks fantastic! I want this for dessert tonight!

  6. Excellent photos and a delicious recipe!

  7. so. true. I am super guilty of consistently looking at other people and envying them in some way, and it’s important to remember that everyone’s got their problems. Love the reminder 🙂

    and these bars! I would looove to eat these for Thanksgiving, mmm

  8. I am swooning over these bars!! I want some now!!

  9. I know exactly what you mean, the grass always looks greener…. What helps me is to be grateful. I practice gratitude each day. I make myself, pause, amid each days frenzy and find what I am grateful for at that very moment and on that day. It centers me and brings me back to the current time and place.

    I am looking for a dessert for our Sunday Supper and the seasonal Pumpkin Pie Crumb Bars may be on the menu! Fab flavor in a bar!

    • Practicing gratitude everyday is a great idea. I will have to try that. You need to make these – they are so yummy!

  10. Okay, I’m totally willing to make the switch from pumpkin pie to these gorgeous bars! And you are so right, thank you for the reminder, we can never really know what’s going on in somebody else’s life. It’s good to stand back and take stock. 🙂

  11. Wow. I want to dive right in. These look fantastic. I love the oats!

  12. Here’s my heart, take it, I’m in love with these crumb bars!

  13. Totally agree about the bourbon! These look amazing – definitely something we should try. Thanks so much for these.

  14. they look yummy!

  15. My kind of bars! They Look delicious!

  16. Wow, those look scrumptious, couldn’t stop at just one!!

  17. All I can say is…I think I found my Thanksgiving dinner dessert! These look like a great twist on pumpkin pie!

  18. Debbie Eccard says:

    Words of wisdom by a very smart, beautiful niece. The pumpkin bars look great. I think I will ask Heather to bring these for Thanksgiving instead of Pumpkin Pie.

  19. I love using oats in the crust–much better texture!
    These look good!

  20. love the looks of these

  21. Yup, I believe you that these are perfect! So perfect that I want a stack of these bars right in front of me!!!

  22. Yummy! look delicious.

  23. You are wise beyond your years, Laura. I have a friend who was envious of another friend’s posts on Facebook, always traveling and eating out and looking like she was living the high life. Turns out, just a couple of months after the “envy” conversation, her marriage broke up. First friend is not so envious now. It is good to remember that the face folks show us, especially on social media, is not always the true face of reality behind closed doors. Your pumpkin bars, on the other hand, look wonderful and I am going to take their deliciousness at face value! Yum!

  24. These look to die for!

  25. OMG I would love to get a bite into these gorgeous bars. So healthy, flavorfull and filling ! Lovely pics!!

  26. Your lead-in story is so true. We all need to stop comparing our lives to others, thinking people are perfect…it isn’t possible to be perfect, and perfection can be boring anyway! But these do not look boring at all…I really want one, like right this instant.

  27. Perfection! They look delicious!! 🙂
    New Blog Post: Tips To Find Inspiration When Picking an Outfit

  28. Oh I love crumb bars and of course pumpkin pie, too! What a delicious treat!

  29. I completely agree with you – it’s so easy to think that someone else has a perfect life when in reality we all have something going on. I am constantly working to just appreciate what I have and work harder to change what I don’t like about my own life. But it’s hard!!

    And these bars … they look pretty darn awesome. I am loving that crumb topping! Everything is better with a crumb topping right??

  30. I was just trying to explain this exact thing to both my cousin and my mother this weekend, both of whom were just not having a good weekend and were feeling sorry for themselves. It’s hard to remember that when you’re in the midst of a bad period in life, that you’re not alone in your anguish, but it’s true!

    These pumpkin pie crumb bars are LUSCIOUSLY BEAUTIFUL. I kind of want a whole tray.

  31. You know what? I think I would love this even more then pumpkin pie.

  32. Such true words. I too find it all to easy to get sucked into the trap of assuming other people have it better, when what I should be doing is appreciating the awesome things in my own life.

    And these bars…holy moly. YUM??? I must have them.

  33. No more pumpkin pie for me! You are right. I don’t think there is such a thing as normal unless normal is everyone and all their imperfections.

  34. You ‘re right.Everyone has their own problems and I am a firm believer that there’s always some kind of balance of ups and downs in every individual’s life.Your bars are making me hungry and I can imagine the deliciousness of a pie in every bite.So yum!

  35. How did I miss this?! These pumpkin pie crumb bars look amazing!

  36. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. It’s so easy to compare ourselves to others and think they are better off.

  37. Why doesn’t anyone post reviews on these bars and any other food on the web.
    That is what I look for when I look for recipes. Try not to post what is happening in other peoples life’s or even your own

    • Well, Cecilia, I can assure you that these bars are excellent. I love them and have made them several times. I hope this helps 🙂

  38. I couldn’t resist commenting. Perfectly written!

  39. I made this for our Australian Thanksgiving dessert this year and wow! Delicious! What a hit. Thanks so much xx


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