Soft, chewy, and delicious sugar cookie bars. These sweet and flavorful treats are topped with vanilla buttercream frosting and decorated with sprinkles.
No cookie cutter required! These sugar cookie bars are easy to make and so easy to customize for any occasion or holiday. Simply change the food coloring and add your desired type of sprinkles.
Easy Sugar Cookie Recipe
A 13×9 baking dish is needed to make these sugar cookie bars. To make this recipe even easier, use parchment paper to line the baking dish to easily lift the baked cookie out of the baking dish.
Cookie dough can be quite thick and there’s no exception with this recipe. To easily spread the cookie dough to the edges of the dish, place parchment paper on top of the dough and use a glass to roll it out from the center to the edges.
This will make it easy to spread and make an even layer of cookie dough for even baking.
This recipe creates tender and soft baked sugar cookie bars. If you prefer more “crunch” to your sugar cookie bars, simply bake for additional few minutes at a time until the desired doneness is reached.
Once the edges are a golden brown and the center is cooked, the sugar cookie bars are done.
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Ingredients in Sugar Cookie Bars
- Unsalted Butter – room temperature is best
- Cream Cheese – gives the sugar cookie bars a tender texture.
- Granulated Sugar
- Vanilla extract
- All-purpose flour – spooned & leveled
- Confectioner’s sugar – for the buttercream frosting
- Lemon Juice – for the buttercream frosting
- Milk – used to make frosting creamy
- Food coloring – I used green for these cookie bars. It’s a great color for spring and for celebrating St. Patrick’s Day. A darker green makes these bars festive for Christmas!
How to Make Cookie Bars
The first step in making these sugar cookie bars is to prepare the ingredients by laying the unsalted butter out and allow it to reach room temperature. This will make the other ingredients bind together well and become well incorporated.
I recommend lightly spraying a baking dish with cooking spray and then laying a cutting parchment paper to fit inside of the baking sheet and allowing some to hang over on two sides. This will make it easy to remove after baking.
Once the dish is prepared, the wet ingredients are combined until light and fluffy. The dry ingredients are added last and beat until soft dough forms. Depending on your mixer, this may happen quickly or may begin as a crumbly dough and turn into the soft dough that is desired.
The dough is then added into the baking dish and spread out. This part can be fussy and some may find it quite frustrating. The trick to making this quick and easy is to lay a piece of parchment on top of the dough and use a glass to roll the dough from the center. Once the dough is spread out to the edges, roll the dough until it is evenly spread inside of the dish.
The dough is baked until the edges are lightly browned and the center is set. For cookie bars that are more firm and not as soft-baked, bake for a few more minutes at a time until your doneness is reached.
Sugar Cookie Frosting
It only takes a few simple ingredients to make vanilla buttercream frosting for these sugar cookie bars. This American buttercream is perfect for these cookie bars because once the frosting sets, it hardens and makes stacking and storing the bars easier.
Before the frosting hardens, sprinkles or sugar confetti can be added for extra decorations or can be skipped altogether.
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- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
Sugar Cookie Frosting
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
- 2 cups confectioner's sugar
- 1 tbsp milk
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt
- food coloring
- Preheat the oven to 350°
- Grease and line a 13x9 baking dish with parchment paper. Leave two sides hanging over for easy removal.
- Combine the unsalted butter and cream cheese together in a mixing bowl.
- Beat in 1 egg and the vanilla extract.
- Beat in the salt and all-purpose flour until soft dough forms.
- If needed, knead with hands to combine the dough well.
- Place the cookie dough inside the baking dish and spread evenly across the dish. (To make this easier, place parchment paper on top of the dough and use a glass to spread the dough from the center of the dish to the edges.
- Make sure that the dough is evenly spread inside the dish before baking.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes. The edges should be lightly browned and the center set. If desired, bake for a few minutes extra at a time if you want firmer sugar cookie bars.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 1 hour before frosting.
Sugar Cookie Frosting
- Beat the unsalted butter until creamy.
- Add in the lemon juice, milk, vanilla extract, and salt.
- Slowly beat in the confectioner's sugar.
- Add the desired amount of food coloring if using and blend well.
- Using an icing spatula, evenly spread the frosting and decorate with sprinkles if desired.
- Allow the frosting to harden before cutting into bars.
- Store in an airtight container.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 321Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 54mgSodium: 129mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 0gSugar: 26gProtein: 3g
Nutrition calculation is a rough estimate and can vary depending on the cooking technique and the exact ingredients used. For informational purposes only.