Creamy Without Cream

I love making pumpkin bars. It's hard not to love the moist bars and the extra-creamy frosting. However, if you are lactose intolerant, that creamy frosting can spell disaster. Now, what if I told you a plate of dessert that looks like this is safe:

I was recently tickled to discover that the creaminess and slight tartness I have come to expect from cream cheese frosting can be mimicked pretty well when you choose a good dairy-free margarine and plain yogurt to stand in for cream cheese. Now, I love this frosting on pumpkin bars, but it will play nicely on carrot cake or any other treat that needs a creamy, tangy layer of frosting. You could even add some cocoa and make a chocolaty version, if you'd like!

Like cream cheese frosting, treats frosted with this version should be refrigerated if they aren't eaten by the end of the day. Of course, if it's been a while since you've been able to enjoy rich, creamy frosting, you might not have anything left over that requires refrigeration!

Vanilla Yogurt Frosting

  • 3 c. powdered sugar
  • 1/2 stick margarine, softened (I prefer Fleischmann's Unsalted for an allergy-friendly version)
  • 3 ounces plain yogurt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Mix the powdered sugar and margarine. Stir in the yogurt and vanilla until smooth and spreading consistency.

  • Yields: Enough frosting to coat a large baking pan of bars or cake
  • Preparation Time: 5 minutes