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Sugar Cookie Bars

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close up shot of Sugar Cookie Bars stacked on top of each other
Amazingly soft bars topped with a bright and colorful frosting will make these sugar cookie bars a much-requested treat.
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Table of Contents
  1. Sugar Cookie Bars Ingredients
  2. How To Make This Sugar Cookie Bars Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

Delightfully chewy and topped with fluffy pink frosting, these sugar cookie bars are so fun to look at and delicious to eat. Top your tasty bars with a rainbow of sprinkles, and they will disappear as fast as you can make them.

Add these easy sugar cookie bars to a mix and match plate of yummy dessert bars such as our cookie dough bars and magic cookie bars, and you will have very happy people on your hands.

close up shot of Sugar Cookie Bars stacked on top of each other
Sugar Cookie Bars raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

For the Bars

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt

For the Frosting

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼-½ teaspoon liquid red food coloring
  • Rainbow sprinkles for garnish

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

CHOCOLATE CHIPS: Add your favorite flavor of chocolate chips such as semi-sweet, milk chocolate, or white chocolate for little bursts of sweetness in the bars.

LEMON EXTRACT: Does your family go crazy for the taste of lemon? Add a few drops of lemon extract to the batter for a fresh lemon flavor.

FROSTING COLOR: Change up the frosting color depending on the time of year. Green or red at Christmas or orange at Halloween would make these bars extra fun.

FOOD COLORING: I used a liquid red food coloring for my frosting but a gel food coloring would work just as well. However, you will want to start with just a drop or two first to see if you get your desired shade of pink before adding more. Remember that gel food coloring is more concentrated than the liquid so you will not need as much in your frosting.

SPRINKLES: Depending on the time of year, you can customize your sprinkle colors and even shapes. At Christmas time, use red, white and green, or even little Christmas trees. For Valentine’s Day, try red, pink and white or heart sprinkles.

For the Bars

STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with a piece of parchment paper with enough to overhang the sides. This allows you to easily remove the sugar cookie bars from the pan once baked.

STEP TWO: In a large mixing bowl, beat the unsalted butter and granulated sugar, on medium speed with a hand mixer, for 2 minutes or until smooth and fluffy.

butter and sugar blended together in a bowl

STEP THREE: To the butter mixture, add the whole egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. Continue to beat the mixture for another minute or until all the ingredients are combined.

egg, egg yolk, and vanilla whisked together in a bowl

STEP FOUR: In a small bowl, add the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

Don’t skip the cornstarch, it’s the secret ingredient that makes the bars extra soft.

flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt whisked together in a bowl

STEP FIVE: Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and beat for 1 to 2 minutes or until your dough is thoroughly combined. It will be a thick dough.

dry ingredients folded into the wet ingredients in a bowl

STEP SIX: Press your sugar cookie bar dough into the bottom of the prepared pan. You may need to lightly wet your fingertips with cool water to help push the dough into an even layer.

PRO TIP:

The water helps keep the dough from sticking to your fingers as you press it into the pan.

cookie bar dough pressed at the bottom of the pan

STEP SEVEN: Bake the sugar cookie bars for 25 to 30 minutes or until the edges are lightly golden.

PRO TIP:

You want to slightly underbake them to get that chewy center and your edges don’t become too crispy or brown.

sugar cookie bars after being baked in a baking dish

STEP EIGHT: Allow your sugar cookie bars to cool completely in the pan, on the counter, before lifting the cookie bar out and frosting them.

For the Frosting

STEP ONE: While the sugar cookie bars are cooling, you can make the frosting by adding the unsalted butter to a medium bowl and beating it on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes with a handheld mixer.

butter whisked in a bowl

STEP TWO: To the butter, add 1 cup powdered sugar and beat to combine then add 1 tablespoon heavy cream and continue beating, on medium speed, until smooth.

powdered sugar and heavy cream blended into the butter in a bowl

STEP THREE: Add the remaining 1 cup of powdered sugar, beat again to combine, then add the remaining 1 tablespoon heavy cream, vanilla extract, salt, and liquid red food coloring. Beat for an additional 1 to 2 minutes or until the frosting is light and fluffy and all the food coloring has been completely incorporated.

ingredients blended into the cream cheese mixture in a bowl

STEP FOUR: Top the cooled sugar cookie bar with the frosting and spread it into an even layer using an offset spatula. You can garnish your sugar cookie bars with rainbow sprinkles before slicing and serving.

cookie bars frosted and sprinkled with sprinkles

How To Serve

These frosted sugar cookie bars won’t last long. Surprise the family with a batch of these for a snack alongside a cold glass of milk or a copycat Wendy’s frosty. These would be a fun treat to make for a class potluck or kids’ birthday party.

Storage

IN THE FRIDGE: Store bars in a single layer in an airtight container in the fridge for 4 to 5 days.

IN THE FREEZER: You could make and freeze the base for one month, wrapped well. Then thaw and frost when you are ready to serve them. 

MAKE AHEAD: These bars can be made up to 1 day ahead of time. You will want to keep the baked and cooled bars separate from the frosting until you are ready to slice and serve them. You may need to whip your frosting for a minute or so if it is too stiff to spread. You will want to tightly wrap your cooled bars with plastic wrap and cover your bowl of frosting with plastic wrap also. They should be stored in the refrigerator. 

overhead shot of Sugar Cookie Bars on a parchment lined wooden board

The rich texture of the bars and colorful decorations make these simple sugar cookie bars a winning choice for a treat. Much quicker to make than classic sugar cookies but just as yummy. Perfect for any occasion!

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How do you store frosted sugar cookie bars?

Store the sugar cookie bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

How long do you bake sugar cookie bars?

Sugar cookie bars are baked in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes at 350°F.

How do I freeze sugar cookie bars?

You can make and freeze the sugar cookie bar base for up to one month, wrapped well. Then thaw and frost when you are ready to serve them.

What holidays can I make these sugar cookie bars for?

You can make these cookie bars for any holiday and change the sprinkles and icing color to match the occasion. Red and blue for the Fourth of July, orange and black for Halloween, red and green for Christmas, and pink and red for Valentine’s Day.

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close up shot of Sugar Cookie Bars stacked on top of each other
5 from 1 vote
Amazingly soft bars topped with a bright and colorful frosting will make these sugar cookie bars a much-requested treat.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 9

Ingredients
  

Bars

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Frosting

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon liquid red food coloring
  • rainbow sprinkles, for garnish

Instructions
 

Bars

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with a piece of parchment paper with enough to overhang the sides. This allows you to easily remove the sugar cookie bars from the pan once baked.
  • In a large mixing bowl, beat the unsalted butter and granulated sugar, on medium speed with a hand mixer, for 2 minutes or until smooth and fluffy.
  • To the butter mixture add the whole egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. Continue to beat the mixture for another minute or until all the ingredients are combined.
  • In a small bowl add the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and beat for 1-2 minutes or until your dough is thoroughly combined. It will be a thick dough.
  • Press your sugar cookie bar dough into the bottom of the prepared pan. You may need to lightly wet your fingertips with cool water to help push the dough into an even layer.
  • Bake the sugar cookie bars for 25 to 30 minutes or until the edges are lightly golden. You will want to slightly underbake these cookie bars to get that chewy center.
  • Allow your sugar cookie bars to cool completely in the pan, on the counter,  before lifting the cookie bar out and frosting them.

Frosting

  • While the sugar cookie bars are cooling you can make the frosting by adding the unsalted butter to a medium bowl and beating it on medium speed for 1 to 2 minutes with a handheld mixer.
  • To the butter, add 1 cup powdered sugar and beat to combine then add 1 tablespoon heavy cream and continue beating, on medium speed, until smooth.
  • Add the remaining 1 cup of powdered sugar, beat again to combine then add the remaining 1 tablespoon heavy cream, vanilla extract, salt, and liquid red food coloring. Beat for an additional 1 to 2 minutes or until the frosting is light and fluffy and all the food coloring has been completely incorporated.
  • Top the cooled sugar cookie bar with the frosting and spread it into an even layer using an offset spatula. You can garnish your sugar cookie bars with rainbow sprinkles before slicing and serving.

Notes

  • Don’t skip the cornstarch, it’s the secret ingredient that makes the bars extra soft.
  • The water helps keep the dough from sticking to your fingers as you press it into the pan.
  • You want to slightly underbake them to get that chewy center and your edges don’t become too crispy or brown.

Nutrition

Sodium: 209mg | Calcium: 29mg | Vitamin C: 1mg | Vitamin A: 894IU | Sugar: 49g | Fiber: 1g | Potassium: 69mg | Cholesterol: 113mg | Calories: 523kcal | Trans Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Fat: 28g | Protein: 4g | Carbohydrates: 66g | Iron: 1mg
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  1. Gloria says

    5 stars
    These are so yummy. You can also change the color of the frosting and switch up the sprinkles to make them perfect for any holiday or party.

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