Christmas Sprinkle Cookie Bars

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.

good22

Total Time:  1 hour

Difficulty Level:  Easy

Makes: 20 small bars

Ingredients

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

2 eggs

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)

  1. In a large microwave safe bowl, add the butter.  Loosely cover it, and microwave until melted (about 1-2 minutes).
  2. In a separate medium-sized bowl, sift together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
  3. 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.
  4. Add the vanilla and one egg. Mix on medium.  Add the second egg, and mix until everything is combined.
  5. 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.
  6. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the chocolate chunks and sprinkles.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  8. Grease an 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish with cooking spray.
  9. Spread the cookie bar mixture evenly into the dish.
  10. Place the miniature candy in the dish, and press down gently until they’re snug and the same height as the dough.
  11. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 35-45 minutes. The cooking time depends both on the desired texture and the individual oven.
  12. Let cool completely before cutting and serving.

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