Sunday, August 3, 2014

Chocolate chip cookie bars

You ever have one of those days where you want to eat a chocolate chip cookie but are too tired/lazy/etc. to bake up a batch? I definitely have those days. I was craving chocolate chip cookies one day and did not want to dirty my stand mixer and bake several sheet pans of cookies. I love cookies, but sometimes they just take too long to make. Instant gratification, people.

I happened to be flipping through my latest Penzey's spice catalog and saw that there was a recipe listed for chocolate chip cookie bars. The cookie dough was baked in a 9"x13" pan, and I would not have to use my stand mixer. Sounded perfect for my lazy self.

Unfortunately, I was a bit disappointed with this recipe. I'm not sure if I overbaked them or if the batter itself was too dry. To combat the dryness, you can decrease the bake time, add some salted caramel in the middle (spread half of the batter onto the bottom of the pan, then add a layer of salted caramel sauce, and then top with the remaining cookie dough), add frosting to the cooled bars, or serve with your favorite vanilla or chocolate ice cream.

My husband agreed that these weren't the best chocolate chip cookie bars, but the tradeoff was worth it. I didn't have to use my stand mixer or cookie pans, and I still got to satisfy my chocolate chip cookie craving.


Chocolate chip cookie bars
  • 10 TBSP butter (1 stick plus 2 TBSP)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 12 ounces (1 package) semi-sweet chocolate chips
Directions
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Generously grease a 9"x13" baking pan and set aside.

In a large, microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter. Allow it to cool slightly.

In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt.

Add the light brown sugar and eggs to the melted butter and mix well.

Transfer the dry ingredients into the large bowl with the brown sugar mixture. Use a wooden or rubber spatula and using as few strokes as possible, mix the ingredients together. You do not want to over mix this. When there are a few flour streaks remaining, fold in the chocolate chips.

Evenly distribute the batter into your prepared baking pan.

Bake in your preheated oven for 22-28 minutes or until the top is golden brown. I baked for 22 minutes and my bars came out dry. I recommend that you check around the 18-20 minute mark to see if your bars are done.

Allow the bars to fully cool before slicing and serving.

Chocolate chip bars can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature and will keep for several days.

If desired, you can always add nuts or other chips (butterscotch, white chocolate, etc) to the bars before baking. You can even top the cooled bars with your favorite frosting.

Yield: One 9"x13" pan, about 24 servings

Source: Sara Lynn Cwayna, via the Summer of Love 2014 Penzey's mail catalog

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