Christmas Sprinkle Cookie Bars
For this recipe, I initially went with my gut instinct plus some leftover Halloween candy. This recipe, like my White Chocolate Rosemary Cookie Bars, uses Ina’s Chocolate Chunk Blondie recipe as a base. I keep the proportions the same. This, to me, is a great learning lesson for those of us who aren’t savvy bakers. When it comes to pasta or soup, I can wing it from the get-go. I can almost always just look at a recipe on paper once and duplicate it (possibly a photographic memory but only for food?). But this doesn’t translate to baking. I feel like baking is for a more scientific brain, while cooking is for an artistic brain.
I’m always trying to expand my cooking horizons. Christmas Sprinkle Cookie Bars probably doesn’t seem like a huge step for bakers, but coming up with a baking adaptation is a huge step for me. The first time I made these with Hershey Minis, and the second time I used Reese’s Minis. You can tell the difference in the texture too. I slightly underbaked the Hershey ones (about 37-38 minutes), and I love them that way, but Jon likes them a little more done. So for the Reese’s version, I cooked them for 45 minutes.
Of course, you can use any type of sprinkles depending on the time of year. I’m actually making these in November, so I should probably be using my fall sprinkles (did I tell you I love sprinkles? Also stickers.)
Anyway, I can say with 99% certainty that you will love these bars, and you can use any miniature candy you like.
Total Time: 1 hour
Difficulty Level: Easy
Makes: 20 small bars
2 sticks of butter (1 cup)
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks
½ cup seasonal sprinkles
20 Hershey’s Minis or 25 Reese’s Minis (or the same amount your your favorite candy)
- In a large microwave safe bowl, add the butter. Loosely cover it, and microwave until melted (about 1-2 minutes).
- In a separate medium-sized bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
- Once the butter has cooled down, add the white sugar and brown sugar. Using a hand mixer, mix on medium-high until well blended and slightly fluffy.
- Add the vanilla and one egg. Mix on medium. Add the second egg, and mix until everything is combined.
- Working with 1/3 the flour mixture at a time, add to the butter and sugar. Using the hand mixer, combine the flour mixture in thirds until fully mixed.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold in the chocolate chunks and sprinkles.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish with cooking spray.
- Spread the cookie bar mixture evenly into the dish.
- Place the miniature candy in the dish, and press down gently until they’re snug and the same height as the dough.
- Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35-45 minutes. The cooking time depends both on the desired texture and the individual oven.
- Let cool completely before cutting and serving.