Healthy Zucchini Cookie Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting
Yields: 16 cookie bars
These cookie bars are soft and chewy with lots of zucchini and warm spice flavor. The sweet cream cheese frosting adds a luscious flavor and texture that’s absolutely irresistible! The cookie bars are best if eaten the same day they’re frosted, but they’ll keep for at least 3 days if stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F, and coat an 8”-square pan with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. To prepare the cookie bars, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together butter, egg white, and vanilla extract. Stir in the honey and vanilla stevia. Add in the flour mixture, stirring just until incorporated. Fold in the zucchini.
  3. Using a spatula, gently press the cookie dough into the prepared pan in a thin, even layer. Bake at 325°F for 9-12 minutes or until the center feels firm to the touch. Cool completely to room temperature in the pan.
  4. While the cookie bars bake, prepare the frosting. Beat the Greek yogurt, cream cheese, instant pudding mix, cinnamon, and vanilla stevia together using an electric hand mixer or stand mixer for 2 minutes. Cover the bowl with foil, and chill for at least 2 hours.
  5. Once the cookie bars are completely cool, spread the frosting across the top. (I highly recommend an offset spatula like this to do so!) Slice them into 16 square bars.
Notes: For the gluten-free option, use store-bought gluten-free flour blends (like this one!) and measure them like this.

Whole wheat pastry flour, regular whole wheat flour, or all-purpose flour may be substituted for the white whole wheat flour.

Be very careful when measuring the flour! Use this method or a kitchen scale. (← That’s the one I own and love!) Too much flour will make your cookie bars turn out dry or cakey, rather than soft and chewy.

This is the vanilla stevia that I use. I buy it online here, and you'll use it in all of these recipes of mine, too! You cannot substitute additional honey for the vanilla stevia because the cookies require a precise balance of wet and dry ingredients. However, you may substitute ¾ cup (144g) coconut sugar (or brown sugar or granulated sugar, if you aren’t concerned about keeping these cookies clean eating friendly) for both the honey and stevia, but the cookies will appear “speckled” if using coconut sugar because it doesn’t dissolve as well.

Pure maple syrup or agave may be substituted for the honey.

Measure the zucchini before patting it dry. You must pat it dry to remove the excess moisture because that excess moisture will cause the muffins to collapse while cooling. To pat the zucchini dry, lay a double-thick layer of paper towels onto a cutting board, and arrange the freshly shredded zucchini on top. Place another double-thick layer of paper towels on the zucchini, and firmly press down until the top towel turns completely wet.

If you prefer not to use the vanilla stevia in the frosting, then substitute 1 teaspoon of this powdered stevia OR 2-3 tablespoons of Truvia or granulated sugar.

This is the instant pudding mix that I use. You just need the dry instant pudding mix—don’t prepare it according to the package directions! You may omit it, but you’ll need to increase the vanilla stevia (and just mix the ingredients together until incorporated—not for 2 full minutes!). Without the instant pudding mix, the frosting will be a bit runny and may slightly drip down the sides of your cookie bars. You can also use this cream cheese frosting recipe of mine instead (no pudding mix required!).

{gluten-free, clean eating, low fat, lower sugar}
Recipe by Amy's Healthy Baking at