Sugar Cookie Bars

By 5/28/2010 ,

As part of my dinner party for six I made these. Read about the dinner party here in: Dinner Party - Ethan and Family


These turned out great, plus they are soooo much less of a pain than real sugar cookies, but are still pretty.



I don’t have a true jelly roll pan yet, just some cheapy baker’s secret cookie sheets, so I made these in a sheet cake pan and my 8x8 brownie pan. Which actually worked out since I was able to frost the sheet cake pan and leave the 8x8 plain for the best of both worlds.

Gotta use softened butter (make it happen faster by cutting it up on a plate)
Mexican Vanilla, my Little Sister Amanda brought back for me, my secret ingredient. (Ok we ALL know I stink at secrets...)
The dough was easy enough to make. Since I was using a deeper pan I was sure to baker’s joy them real well (If you don’t have this in your cupboard and bake, you must get some!)

Patted in the pans, not so pretty but that's what frosting is for
Since I was using smaller pans the cookies came out pretty thick, which made them a little harder to eat as a cookie vs. as a cake, Next time I’ll try and get them thinner. Mine took about 20 min to bake.

This recipe has made its rounds in the blogosphere in a few different incarnations. I went with Love & Olive Oil’s frosting recipe which I thought was perfect for these cookies. They are great unfrosted as well, but since the top is just patted they aren’t as pretty without frosting. (Colored with a combo of green gel and blue food coloring)


Pretty.
I topped the frosting with a medley of sparkly sanding sugars: yellow, orange, blue, green. Which added some nice polish.

Where the cake pan got me was when it came to cutting them it was pretty hard with those high sides, but I made it work.

Recipe from Love & Olive Oil:
Sugar Cookie Bars - Makes 32 bars.
Ingredients
  • Cookies:
    • 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
    • 2 cups granulated sugar
    • 4 large eggs
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 5 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • Frosting:
    • 1 cup butter; at room temperature
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • pinch of salt
    • 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
    • 5 tablespoons milk
    • food coloring, if desired
 Directions
In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in vanilla.
In a separate bowl sift together flour, salt, and baking soda. Slowly add to butter mixture and mix just until combined. Grease a large rimmed baking sheet (a 13×18 or 10×15 jelly roll pan) or line with parchment paper. Gently and evenly spread out batter onto sheet.

Bake at 375 degrees F for 10-15 minutes (mine took more like 20-25 minutes), until light golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

To prepare frosting, in a large bowl, beat butter until fluffy. Mix in vanilla and salt. Add powdered sugar (1 cup at a time) until combined, then add milk & mix until smooth and spreadable. Add a few drops of color, if desired. Spread over cooled cookie, then cut into bars

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