I’ve heard whispers about “gooey butter” baked goods for a few years. Apparently, they’re a very popular thing in St. Louis. I never made any before now because I found it hard to believe that anything that starts with a box of cake mix could be all that good. Today, I am here to tell you that I was wrong.
I can’t say that I fully understand these bars or how they are so good, even after making them. The whole process is simple, requires very little clean-up, and turns out perfectly. It’s all very suspicious. It’s like we’re in the baking matrix or something. I’m still waiting for the catch.
These bars are a lovely composition of two layers that meld together in a magical, magical way. The bottom layer is like the stable friend that holds everything together, and probably gets no credit for it. The top layer, on the other hand, just threw all fucks to the wind and stopped trying to be contained.
I took these to work, and everyone asked me the same question: “what is this?”
To the first person, I responded “it’s a buttery gooey thing.” To all following people, I didn’t have to respond at all, because those who had already eaten one gave them the same advice that I have for all of you – “don’t ask questions – just eat it.”
- 1 box French vanilla cake mix
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, melted
- 3 eggs
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 lb bag (about 3-3/4 cups) powdered sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tsp almond extract
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Line an 8 x 8 inch baking dish with parchment paper.
- In a bowl, mix together the cake mix, melted butter, 1/2 tsp of the almond extract, and 1 egg until a soft dough forms. Press into the bottom of the baking dish.
- In a stand mixer, combine together the cream cheese, 2 eggs, sugar, 1/2 tsp of almond extract and vanilla extract until smooth. Spread over the cake mix layer.
- Bake bars for 45 minutes, or until edges are golden brown,and the center has set to a soft consistency.
- Cool COMPLETELY before slicing into bars and serving.