Gooey Butter Cake Squares

Gooey butter cakes are the result of a happy accident, or so we're told. The origin story says the first cake came about in the 1930s when a rookie baker in St. Louis, Missouri, mixed up the amounts of butter and sugar in a cake recipe. The result was too good to throw out and an addictively sweet confection was born.

Gooey Butter Cake Squares in box with parchment paper
Photo: Brie Passano
Prep Time:
20 mins
Bake Time:
30 mins
Chill Time:
1 day
Total Time:
1 day 50 mins
36 bars


  • ¾ cup butter, softened

  • ½ cup granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 3 egg

  • 3 teaspoon vanilla

  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 8 ounce pkg. cream cheese, softened

  • 2 ½ cup powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 13x9-inch baking pan.

  2. For crust, in a medium bowl beat 1/2 cup of the butter with a mixer on medium 30 seconds. Add granulated sugar, baking powder, and 1/4 tsp. of the salt. Beat on medium, scraping bowl as needed. Beat in 1 of the eggs, 2 tsp. of the vanilla, and the almond extract. Beat in flour just until combined. Spread in the prepared pan.

  3. For filling, in a medium bowl beat cream cheese and the remaining 1/4 cup butter with a mixer on medium 30 seconds. Beat in powdered sugar and the remaining 1 tsp. vanilla and 1/4 tsp. salt. Beat in the remaining 2 eggs, one at a time, until combined. Pour batter over crust.

  4. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until golden. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Cover and chill overnight. Dust with additional powdered sugar. Cut into bars.


These bars are best served the day after baking

To Store

Layer bars in airtight container between sheets of wax paper; cover. Store in the refrigerator up to 5 days or freeze up to 3 months.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

122 Calories
6g Fat
15g Carbs
1g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 36
Calories 122
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 6g 8%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 32mg 11%
Sodium 102mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 15g 5%
Total Sugars 11g
Protein 1g
Calcium 18mg 1%
Iron 0.3mg 2%
Potassium 21mg 0%
Folate, total 10.6mcg
Vitamin B-12 0.1mcg

*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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