These thick, soft and chewy sugar cookie bars are perfect as a pan cookie, cut into squares. These bar cookies are bursting cheerful with sprinkles, then topped with a generous layer of buttercream. Perfect for those who have your own sweet tooth - or know some little sugarbugs who need a treat.
This is the first of our "Follower Friday" posts. We could think of no baker better than our longest and most constant cheerleader, Tasia of Two Sugarbugs. Check out her blog and Instagram accounts for some great recipes and beautiful photography.
We made a half recipe in a 8-inch round pan, then cut into small circles and topped with piped buttercream frosting. Next time we'll make the full batch.
Recipe makes about 20 servings and can be kept in a sealed container at room temperature for a couple of days - if they last that long!
To make the bars:
1. Heat oven to 350°F.
2. Line 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil, leaving a little extra overhang on the sides.
3. In a medium size bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
4. Using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment (add a SideSwipe for best results), cream butter and cream cheese on medium speed for 1-2 minutes, until nice and creamy. Add the granulated and powdered sugars and mix until pale and fluffy, approximately 3-5 minutes. Add the egg, vanilla and almond extracts and beat until well combined, scraping down the sides as needed.
5. With the mixer on low, add the flour mixture and blend until just combined. Fold in the sprinkles with a spatula, if using. Be sure to use the “jimmies” for your sprinkles as the nonpareil type can bleed and turn your batter an unappetizing color.
6. Press dough into prepared pan using a spatula or lightly moistened fingers. The dough will be thick and somewhat sticky.
7. Bake for 12-16 minutes or until edges are barely browned and they will look a little underdone. You do not want to over bake these bars or they will be more like a cake and less like a soft sugar cookie.
8. Allow to cool completely in the pan placed on a wire rack.
To make the frosting:
1. Using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment (SideSwipe!) beat the butter on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl (not needed with SideSwipe) and add the powdered sugar, vanilla and almond extracts and heavy cream (or half and half). Mix on low speed until incorporated. Increase speed to medium-high and whip until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes, scraping sides of the bowl as needed. Add a pinch of salt if the frosting is too sweet. (We did this) You can also add food coloring, if desired. (We did not).
2. Once cool, remove the bars from the pan using the parchment paper or aluminum foil "handles" and frost, adding additional sprinkles, if desired. Use a sharp knife to cut to your desired size. If you want nice, clean cuts, wipe your knife with a towel between cuts. (We used a 1-1/2inch round cookie cutter for two-bite servings)
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