Sugar Cookie Bars With Buttercream Frosting

12 servings
40 min

Sugar Cookie Bars with Buttercream Frosting taste just like classic cutouts but are ready in a fraction of the time. Soft, chewy and topped with fluffy frosting, these simple bars let you bypass the rolling pin for a spatula. Decorate them with sprinkles and enjoy the delicious combination of sugar cookies and bars.


Christmas songs are all the same. If I hear one more slow-paced tune about a brooding man missing pumpkin pie and their better halves, I’m gonna lose it. Want a window into the soul of the male species? Listen to a holiday record. In three seconds you’ll find out that men only care about two things: food and women who can make them food.


Even Nat King Cole, a crooner with one of the most extraordinary voices in history, recorded a song about chestnuts. I’m supposed to believe there wasn’t anything better for a hall of famer to sing about than an overpriced nut you can’t even peel open unless it’s on a flaming fire for 15 minutes?


There’s been 74 years of musical hype about roasting chestnuts on an open fire yet I had no freaking clue what the fuss was for. Nostalgia was my guess, but the answer was actually a near-death experience. I’m satisfied with that outcome; my sister, not so much.


Long (yet seemingly hilarious) story short, I finally tried my hand at roasting chestnuts. Evidently my hand did something wrong because chestnuts started exploding in a frenzy then one flew across the room like a missile-guided rocket and hit its intended target: my sister’s neck.


On the positive side, she had enough Captain Morgan in her system to offset the pain of a 500 degree nut searing her skin. Plus I had the foresight to get her a new turtleneck for Christmas. Basically, it’s like the nutty incident never even happened. My sister doesn’t agree with my logic so, to smooth over her blistering burns, I’m making her a batch of sugar cookie bars.


All things considered, buttercream frosted sugar cookie bars are a great peace offering. They’re soft, chewy and the fastest way to make amends with my sailor-cussing sis. For the taste of sugar cookie cutouts with only a fraction of the work, this yummy recipe is a tried-and-true favorite of chestnut-maimed siblings.


Sugar Cookie Bars With Buttercream Frosting

Recipe details

  • 12  servings
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 20 Minutes Total time: 40 min
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Ingredients

Sugar Cookie Bars

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 4 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla pure
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour unbleached
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt fine

Buttercream Frosting

  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 drops pink gel food coloring
  • decorative sprinkles

Instructions

Sugar Cookie Bars

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8 x 8 metal baking pan with parchment paper then set aside.
Beat butter and cream cheese with an electric mixer until creamy, approximately 1 minute.
Beat in sugar until combined, scraping down sides of bowl with a spatula as needed.
Add egg and vanilla, beat until well mixed. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Reduce mixer speed to low then gradually add dry ingredients to wet until a soft dough forms. Take care to avoid overmixing.
Spread dough in prepared baking pan and smooth with a spatula. Note: dough will be thick.
Bake cookie bars for 20 minutes or until center is set and the edges just begin to turn golden brown. Do not overbake.
Place pan on a wire baking rack and cool bars completely before frosting.

Buttercream Frosting

Cream butter, powdered sugar, cream and vanilla together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
Mix in 2 drops of food coloring gel until color is evenly distributed.
Frost bars with buttercream and top with decorative sprinkles.
Place pan in the refrigerator and chill for 1 hour before slicing and serving.
Store cookie bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days.

Tips

  • I recommend gel dye for the frosting because gel is more vibrant and less diluting than liquid dye.
  • This recipe calls for heavy cream for the buttercream frosting. Whole milk passes as a substitute but may result in less fluffy frosting.
  • For best results be sure egg, butter and cream cheese are at room temperature before beginning.

Whisking Wolf
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