These Chocolate Chip cookie bars are packed with chocolate chips and white chocolate chips. They are ideal for holiday trays and cookie trays, as well as for starting your holiday baking.
There is nothing I love more than a cookie that doesn’t require a lot of effort but can be made for a crowd and everyone will rave about it. All you need to do is press everything into a 9×13 pan; it requires no rolling or chilling of the dough. What’s not to love about that? In the end, you will end up with a super soft, chewy cookie loaded with white chocolate, and semi-sweet chocolate chips.
Ingredients for making chocolate cookie bars
- Unsalted Butter I like to use unsalted butter and then add salt to the recipe if you are using salted butter omit the salt.
- Sugar white granulated sugar
- Brown Sugar uses golden brown sugar firmly packed
- Eggs I like to use farm-fresh eggs, but any eggs will do; if you use extra-large eggs, they will give you a slightly softer cookie dough.
- Pure Vanilla You can use any vanilla extract, or if you have pure vanilla, that will give you the best flavor.
- I always use all-purpose flour; if you have a favorite brand, then use that.
- Baking Soda Make sure the baking soda you are using is fresh for the best results.
- Salt I like to use sea salt or kosher salt.
- Mini Chocolate Chips I find that in cookie bars, the mini chocolate chips work best when you are cutting the bars into slices later.
- White Chocolate Chips I like to use Nestle white chocolate chips because I find other brands sometimes burn a little quicker than others.
How to make chocolate cookie bars
- Wet ingredients In a large bowl, cream together butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar for 1 minute until fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs and combine.
- Dry Ingredients In a separate bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking soda and stir.
- Assemble Add in chocolate chips, and add dough to line a 9 x 13 pan. Place a few extra chocolate chips on top. (And, of course, some for testing; you know you want some.)
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is barely golden brown, then cool completely before cutting into slices.
Baking Tips and suggestions
- Line the pan Make sure to line your baking pan with foil or parchment paper; this will help your bars cook more evenly and will make cleanup a breeze.
- Thinner Bars If you bake them in a 15 x 10 pan, you can have a thinner bar, which is how I like them, but for a thicker bar, you can use a 9 x 13 pan. It really comes down to personal preference.
- Extra chocolate chips on top To make the top of your cookie bars look really nice, you can add a few before cooking or you can add them right out of the oven. Both are great options.
- Underbaked or overbaked you want to remove the bars from the oven when the top becomes just barely golden; they will look like they are underdone, but as they cool down, they will continue to bake. You don’t want to overcook them, or you won’t achieve a nice chewy center.
If you’re looking for something different, try the holiday-colored M&M’s or something that you can make year-round.
- Glaze a powdered sugar glaze simply drizzle over the bars once they have cooled.
- Chocolate Chips Milk chocolate, semisweet chocolate, butterscotch chocolate, or white chocolate chips can all be used.
- Season You can make these bars any time of the year, and the nice thing is you can find colors of M&M’s for almost every holiday or occasion.
Frequently asked questions
Can I double this cookie bar recipe?
Yes, I have successfully doubled this recipe; simply bake it for 20-25 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown, in a 2- 9 x 13 baking pan or a Swiss roll pan.
Do cookie bars harden as they cool?
Yes, these cookies become firm as they cool; when they are fresh from the oven, they are soft, but they harden as they come to room temperature.
What are bar cookies?
A cookie bar is simply a baked cookie in the shape of a bar. You can take all of your favorite cookies and turn them into bar cookies.
The Best M&M Cookie Bar
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tsp pure vanilla
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp kosher salt
- ½ cup chocolate chips plus more for tops if desired
- ½ cup white chocolate chips plus more for tops if desired
- 1 cup M&M's plus more for tops if desired
- Preheat the oven to 325°F. In a large bowl using a mixer, cream together the butter and sugars for 1 minute. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix until combined.
- Add the flour, baking soda and salt and stir mixture just until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips and M&M’s (saving about 1/4 cup for the top).
- Spray with non-stick spray. Scoop cookie dough into the pan and press down evenly. Then place extra M&M’s and chocolate chips on the top.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the top is barely golden brown. Allow to cool completely, then remove and slice.