Monday, September 24, 2012

A Fall Lunch & Pumpkin Bars

So, yes, it was officially fall over the past weekend, but when we stepped out of the house tonight, it smelled like fall. The air was just slightly cool, the first leaves were crunching under our feet, and we had pumpkin bars in the oven. Fall has arrived at home. So, lunch and our daily project had to be about fall today too!

fall leaves pumpkin bento lunch
Grapes, homemade pumpkin bar (recipe below), kale, cranberries, carrots, Annie's Organics All Stars, sharp cheddar cheese. The details on the cheese shapes is made from shaved zucchini.

Pumpkin Bars w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

These pumpkin bars are a recipe we've been making for years. It's essentially a Texas sheet cake, but pumpkin rather than chocolate. After a couple tweaks from one of my grandma's church bulletins, it is perfectly spiced and super moist. Without (or with) the frosting, it makes a delicious breakfast cake too.
pumpkin cream cheese bar
Ingredients - 2c flour, 2c sugar, 2tsp baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp salt, 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice (more if you like), 4 eggs, 1/2c canola oil, 1/2c unsweetened applesauce, 1-15oz can pumpkin puree.

Blend dry ingredients together. Blend wet together. Combine the two. Bake in a lightly greased jelly roll pan at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Frost with cream cheese frosting. The frosting we use is 6oz cream cheese (softened), 6Tbsp butter (softened), 1tsp milk, 1 tsp vanilla, and 3c powdered sugar. If you want the frosting a bit thinner, just reduce the cream cheese to 4oz and use only 2c powdered sugar.

fall project toddler
For our first fall craft, we did a felt project with falling leaves.. wow, that sentence had a lot of f's! Anyways, I glued some white felt to a piece of cardboard for stability, then cut out and glued on a tree shape in brown felt. Then, I cut a bunch of colored leaves out of the felt, which you can stick on anywhere. Once stuck on, you can hold the board out, give a good tap to the bottom and the leaves go flying, FALLing to the ground. Then, kiddo gets to retrieve them all and put them back on the tree, and do it all over again. When you add beginner chopsticks to pick up the leaves, it makes for some great fun (and an occupied kid for a bit so mama can get those bars frosted)! Enjoy!

In this lunch...


  1. yummy!! & love this cute Bento....

  2. The zucchini details is such a great idea!

  3. So cute! Love the happy acorns in the stars! Pumpkin bars look good. Pinned them. Your link to your Pinterest account (orange P) gave me an error.

  4. Thanks Diana .. will check out that Pin right now! And hope you enjoy the bars if you make them! Yum!

  5. Looks delicious! I love the zucchini details in particular.