Monday, February 20, 2012

Sugar Cookie Bars

I have had these bars bookmarked for I don't know how long.  However, every time I've gotten the urge to bake something it's always been something in the form of cake, cookies or involving chocolate.  Although I love sugar cookies, when I bake I'm usually looking for recipes that are somewhat challenging and a little more involved.  Well, the perfect opportunity to make these bars finally presented itself!  I wanted to make some festive treats for Tucker's class for their Valentine's party and these bars instantly popped into my head.  They seemed simple enough, looked like they would be very tasty and it would be super easy to make them festive by tinting the frosting a fun shade of hot pink.

I'm so glad I finally had the opportunity to make these tasty treats.  They taste just like those delicious chewy frosted sugar cookies, but with even less work!  They are moist, soft and chewy, just like a cookie but in a bar form.  This is definitely a cookie bar for the frosting lovers out there, you get even more frosting on these babies than you get on any type of cookie.  The frosting is smooth, buttery and oh so sweet.  Top these delicious, sweet buttery bars with sprinkles to help set tone for any holiday or event.  I promise you can't go wrong serving these for any occasion.  Bottom line.  Get up, get in the kitchen and make these now!  They are super easy.  They are delicious! So what are you waiting for?!?   

Sugar Cookie Bars
Ingredients:

For the cookies-
1 Cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 Cups granulated sugar
4 Large eggs
2 Tsp vanilla
5 Cups flour
1 Tsp salt
1/2 Tsp baking soda

For the frosting-
1 Cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 Tsp vanilla
Pinch sea salt
4 Cups powdered sugar
5 Tbsps milk
Food coloring, as desired, optional
Sprinkles, for garnish, optional

Directions:

For the cookie bars-
Preheat oven to 350.  Line a rimmed 10x15 (or 9x13) pan with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium bowl sift together the flour, baking soda and salt and set aside.

Place the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and mix on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Reduce the mixer speed to medium and add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after the addition of each.  Add the vanilla and mix to combine. Reduce the mixing speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture.  Mix until thoroughly combined.

Pour the batter on the prepared pan.  Using a spatula, spread the mixture evenly over the pan.  Place in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.  The bars should be a light golden brown.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.

For the frosting-
Place the butter in the bowl of a mixer and mix on high until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.  Add the vanilla and salt, mixing well.  Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar, one cup at a time.  Add the milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is smooth.  Add food coloring, if desired, and mix until incorporated.

Remove the bars from the pan.  Spread the frosting evenly over the cooled bars and top with sprinkles, if desired.   

Recipe source: Love and Olive Oil via The Curvy Carrot

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