If you like brownies and cinnamon rolls, then my Cinnamon Roll Bars are for you!
These bars combine the fudgy texture of brownies with the warm spice of a cinnamon rolls.
The Secret Ingredient
The secret ingredient that makes these bars so irrestistable is Crisco.
I’m not usually one to bake with Crisco or vegetable shortening—unless it’s pie crust we’re talking about—but in my efforts to conserve ingredients like butter, I’ve been experimenting with other pantry staples I don’t use quite as frequently.
I actually did try making these bars with butter, and though still delicious, the texture is just not the same. With butter, these Cinnamon Roll Bars are more like a cookie bar. But with Crisco, they transform into cinnamon brownies.
Remember that scene in The Help (2011) when Minnie tells Celia that Crisco is a miracle product for just about anything imaginable?
Well, I’m not going to tell you to go rub some Crisco on your face, but when it comes to these bars, it’s definitely Crisco all the way!
My Recommended Tool
I highly recommend using an offset spatula to spread this batter into your baking dish. It’s a really thick, creamy batter, and an offset spatula will help you spread it evenly and quickly, something you just can’t do as precisely with any other tool.
Here’s my favorite offset spatula on Amazon [aff. link]. I’m telling you, invest in this inexpensive tool, and you’ll be amazed at how often you use it!
Cinnamon Roll Bars: A Treat to Look Forward To
Make these bars as a delicious dessert to look forward to, or enjoy them as a sweet mid-day pick-me-up during these long days at home.
And if you’re like me, you may even find yourself sneaking a bar or two for breakfast before your four-year-old wakes up and gets you in trouble… 😆❣️😋
Cinnamon Roll Bars
For the wet ingredients:
- ¾ cup Crisco or vegetable shortening, room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- ¾ cup canola oil
- 2 tsp vanilla
For the dry ingredients:
- 2 cups flour
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking soda
- 3 tsp cinnamon
For the icing
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 Tbsp almond milk
- ¼ tsp vanilla
- dash of salt
Mix the wet ingredients
- To a large mixing bowl, add the Crisco/vegetable shortening, sugar, and brown sugar. With a hand held or stand mixer (or your hands and a good silicone spatula), beat until the sugars incorporate and the mixture is light and fluffy, about a minute.
- Now add the eggs, vanilla extract, and canola oil. Beat until these incorporate into the sugar/vegetable shortening mixture, and the batter gets thick, smooth, and creamy, about two minutes.
Add the dry ingredients
- Now add the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon to the bowl. Mix the dry ingredients into the wet until completely incorporated, but be careful not to over mix!
- Grease a 9x13 inch pan, and use an offset spatula to spread the batter evenly into the pan.
Bake the bars
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Bake the Cinnamon Roll Bars for 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out mostly clean, and the top is mostly firm with a slight give.
Make the icing
- While the Cinnamon Roll Bars cool, make the icing.
- In a medium sized bowl, add the powdered sugar, vanilla, almond milk, and salt. Whisk together with a fork until the icing is completely smooth. The consistency should be thick but pourable.
- If the icing seems too thick, add just a touch (a little goes a long way!) more milk. If the icing seems too thin, add a bit more powdered sugar.
Ice the bars
- Let the Cinnamon Roll Bars cool for ten minutes, then ice them as desired. I’ve iced the top of the bars completely before and it’s delicious!
- But these bars are absolutely gorgeous if you do a light drizzle of icing over the top. I just dip a butter knife in the icing and move the butter knife in a zig zag pattern over the bars so the icing falls in a zig zag drizzle on the bars.
Serve and enjoy!
- Let the bars cool for at least 15 minutes, then cut in squares and serve!