Monday, August 20, 2012

Banana bars w/ cream cheese frosting

I had some bananas on my counter that were so ripe they were black and starting to shrivel a little bit so I thought it'd be a good time to try to a new banana bar recipe.  I found a couple online and this is the recipe I came up with. Enjoy!

1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 cup plain low fat yogurt
1 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup flaxseed meal (totally optional but a great way to get some fiber in there!)
3 REALLY ripe bananas, smooshed

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  In your mixing bowl, combine butter and sugar and mix until completely incorporated.  Next you're going to add your eggs one at a time, making sure the first one is mixed well before adding the second one. Now you're going to add your yogurt and vanilla.  Mix well, then add the dry ingredients slowly as the mixer continues to mix.  Lastly, add your ripe (I'm talking RIPE!) smooshed and smashed bananas to the mix.  Let the batter mix together for about a couple minutes to make sure it's all combined.  Spray your pan with cooking spray before pouring in batter. When I make these I use my jelly roll pan that is 17x12 but you could use a 9x13 pan if you don't have a jelly roll pan.  Pour the batter into the pan and then place in oven.  If you're using a jelly roll pan 25 minutes should be plenty of time, but start checking it with a toothpick at about 20 minutes in case your oven cooks fast.  For a 9x13 pan you're probably going to need at least 30 minutes.  When the toothpick come out clean the bars are done! Remove from oven then place on a cooling rack away from the oven (don't want them to keep cooking!) and let cool completely before topping with frosting.

Cream cheese frosting:
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix together cream cheese and butter.  Add the vanilla and when it's completely incorporated then add the powdered sugar a 1/2 cup at a time.  Mix completely until frosting is smooth.  When bars are completely cooled, spoon frosting on top of bars and level out and smooth with a spatula or knife.  I would definitely recommend refrigerating the bars otherwise the cream cheese just gets really gooey. Cut into squares and serve!

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