What do you make the birthday person who doesn’t like birthday cake? Birthday Sugar Cookie Bars! Or make the bars to go along with the birthday cake.
Sugar Cookie Bars can be thrown together at the last minute or made the day before. You can frost them with homemade frosting or cover them with your favorite brand of ready-made frosting. Whatever way you top them, they’re a great showcase for sprinkles, and some occasions just call for sprinkles.
I have several different recipes for Sugar Cookie Bars, and this one is particularly good. The recipe calls for melted butter, so you get to skip the step of creaming and can just whisk everything together in the bowl. In addition, there’s no baking soda or baking powder, so the bars have a dense yet light texture.
Another nice thing about this recipe is that it has 3 eggs. What’s so great about 3 eggs? This makes it easy to scale to 1/3 of itself and bake in a 9×5 inch loaf pan. Obviously you don’t need the high sides of a loaf pan, but the length and width of the loaf give you just enough area to hold about 1/3 of a recipe for bar cookies designed for 9×13 inch pans. Until they start making 9×5 inch baking sheets, the loaf pan is a good substitute.
- 2 sticks (8 oz) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1 teaspoon salt (use only 1/4 if using salted butter)
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup rainbow sprinkles
- 1 stick (4 oz) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups confectioners sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 tablespoons half & half
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13 inch metal pan or line with parchment or foil.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together melted butter, salt and sugar. Whisk in eggs and vanilla until blended, then with a heavy duty scraper, stir in the flour and rainbow sprinkles.
- Spread the batter evenly in the pan.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until the edges are set but center is soft.
- Let cool completely, then cover with vanilla frosting.
- To make the frosting, beat the butter with an electric mixer until creamy. Gradually add confectioners' sugar. Beat in vanilla and half & half. Add salt, adjusting to taste.
- Cover bars with frosting, then sprinkle top with more sprinkles.
For the vanilla, you can substitute 2 teaspoons of vanilla plus 1 teaspoon of McCormick Butter & Nut extract if you can find it. This gives the bars more of a birthday cake flavor.