Cinnamon rolls are some of my favorite treats in the whole world, but they are a bit time consuming and to make on a whim and I had a major craving for cinnamon rolls.
Enter these bars with a bold pop of cinnamon flavor and tangy cream cheese frosting.
They deliver the flavors of cinnamon rolls in an easy bar form. That’s my kind of dessert.
For these very soft, dense, slightly chewy, buttery bars, I called upon my trusty blondie base. When I want an easy, fuss-free, one-bowl, no-mixer recipe that I know everyone will love, it’s my go-to. With 30+ versions, it’s a keeper.
It’s an easy recipe to memorize because everything is ‘one’. In the 1 bowl used, melt 1 stick of butter, stir in 1 egg, 1 cup of brown sugar, 1 tablespoon vanilla, 1 cup flour, and 1 tablespoon cinnamon. I used 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons) of cinnamon for a bold burst of cinnamon flavor, but if you’re more sensitive to cinnamon reduce to taste.
You may have extra frosting leftover if you don’t love a thick, decadent layer of frosting like I do. It keeps for weeks in the fridge. A time-saving shortcut is to use storebought canned whipped cream cheese frosting. No shame. I could eat that, and any frosting, indiscriminately by the spoonful.
Pin This Recipe
Cinnamon Roll Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
The bars deliver the flavors of cinnamon rolls in an easy bar form. It’s an easy, fuss-free, one-bowl, no-mixer recipe that everyone will love. I used 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons) of cinnamon for a bold burst of cinnamon flavor, but if you’re more sensitive to cinnamon reduce to taste. You may have extra frosting leftover if you don’t love a thick, decadent layer and it keeps for weeks in the fridge. A time-saving shortcut is to use storebought canned whipped cream cheese frosting.
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), melted
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 to 3 teaspoons cinnamon (I use 3 but reduce to taste if you’re sensitive to cinnamon)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 6 ounces cream cheese, softened (lite okay)
- 1/4 cup (half of 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- cinnamon, for garnishing
- Blondies – Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
- To a large, microwave-safe bowl add the butter and heat to melt, about 1 minute on high power.
- Wait momentarily before adding the egg so you don’t scramble it. Add the egg, brown sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and whisk until smooth.
- Add the flour, salt, and stir until just combined, don’t overmix.
- Turn batter out into prepared pan, smoothing the top lightly with a spatula as necessary. Bake for about 20 to 24 minutes, or until top is set in center and done; don’t overbake. Blondies firm up as they cool. A toothpick should come out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter. Place pan on a wire rack to cool for at least 90 minutes before frosting.
- Frosting – To a large bowl (or to the bowl of a stand mixer) add the cream cheese, butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, salt, and beat with an electric mixer (or use the paddle attachment of a stand mixer) until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes.
- Turn frosting out over blondies and spread into a smooth, even, flat layer using a spatula or knife. Note – You may have a small amount of frosting left over if you don’t like an overly thick amount of frosting. Extra will keep airtight in the fridge for at least 2 weeks.
- Evenly sprinkle with cinnamon for garnishing, slice, and serve. Blondies will keep airtight at room temp for up to 4 days or in the fridge for up to 1 week. I’m comfortable storing cream cheese frosting at room temp, but if you’re not store in the fridge noting blondies. will be more prone to drying out in the fridge.
Frosting from here
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 374Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 68mgSodium: 313mgCarbohydrates: 51gFiber: 1gSugar: 39gProtein: 3g
White Chocolate-Topped Cinnamon Chip Cinnamon Bars – Easy bars bursting with tons of bold cinnamon flavor!
Oatmeal Creme Pie Cookie Bars (Little Debbie Copycat) -The flavor of the classic cookies turned into fast, easy, chewy bars and the frosting is beyond amazing! They’re even better than original Oatmeal Creme Pies!
Cinnamon-Sugar Crust Cinnamon-Ribbon Bread – Even picky eaters who want the crust cut off will go nuts for this sweet, slightly crunchy crust. The interior is so soft and fluffy!
Overnight Buttermilk Soft and Fluffy Cinnamon Rolls – For soft, fluffy, pillowy, perfect cinnamon rolls when you need a larger batch, it’s my go-to! A reader and personal favorite!
One-Hour Homemade Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting – Make soft, light, fluffy cinnamon rolls from scratch in 1 hour!
The Best Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls – Super soft, fluffy, and topped with a cream cheese glaze! Move over Cinnabon, these are better!
Hi have you ever froze these bars once cooked? How did they turn out?
No I have not. I would say if you try it, do so unfrosted and then frost them upon being thawed.
I was thinking the same thing! :)
Thanks very much!
Just wondering–why do you line the pan with foil?
So I don’t have to scrub the pan. Why do extra stuck-on baking dishes if you don’t have to!
does it matter if the pan is glass or a dark pan?
I bake in a shiny metal pan but if you’re using glass perhaps bake a bit longer, just my guess.
I brought these in for my co-workers this morning and everyone loved them! People were going back for seconds. I’ll definitely make these again :)
*I cut the frosting recipe in half + added 2 tsp of cinnamon instead of 3*
That’s wonderful to hear – thanks for letting me know they were a hit!
I messed up! Two nights ago, I made this with an unfortunate mistake — instead of 1 stick of butter for the blondies, I used two sticks. Hahaha! I read the recipe wrong and read “1 cup” rather than “1 stick.” Silly me! So, I made them again yesterday, and HOLY COW. These are INCREDIBLE. My whole family loved them, including myself!! We want to try the blondies when they are right out of the oven, all warm and gooey, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. This is amazing!! Thanks for the recipe!
Glad that with the 1 stick they came out incredible for you and that you’re loving them! :)
Hey girl these look amazing! yummy!
These look so good and love that frosting.
One million times yes – you KNOW I love these!!
Brilliant! Looking forward to trying these–but I confess, I will probably buy the pre-made frosting. :)
No shame. Enjoy it! :)
These look so AMAZING!!! I will definitely be saving this recipe for later.
Your blondie base is extremely versatile (and fun to tweak). A dense bar with cream cheese frosting….yum! I know I wouldn’t have any leftover frosting…..I could only hope most of it would make it onto the bars!
I never have any leftover either :)