3 DIY Cookie Bars

Sophia F. and Brianna B.

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Do you like cookies and cream? Reese’s? Sugar Cookies? S’mores? Cheesecake?  These flavors may be tasty on their own, but even better as a cookie bar! These three DIY cookie bars are delicious, and perfect for a rainy day!

 

Cookies and Cream Cheesecake Bars:  

Ingredients:

  • 1 (1 pound) package Oreo cookies
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

FILLING:

  • 3 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature 
  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 3/4 cup sour cream, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a 9 x 13-inch pan with foil, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides

Crust

  1. Place 28 Oreos in a food processor and process until finely ground. Pour in a large bowl, add the melted butter, and stir with a flexible spatula until all crumbs are moistened. Place the cookie-crumb mixture in the lined pan and, using your fingers, press the mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom. Bake 10 minutes, then remove to a wire cooling rack (leave the oven on) while you make the filling. Snap the remaining Oreos in half, put them in the food processor, and turn on and off quickly a few times, just until the cookies are roughly chopped.

Filling

  1. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the cream cheese and sugar until well blended, about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl with a flexible spatula and beat again until uniform. Beat in sour cream, vanilla and salt. Scrape down the bowl and mix again. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. After beating in the last egg, scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl and beat one more time, to make sure the mixture is fully combined. Stir in chopped Oreos with the same spatula.
  2. Pour the cream cheese mixture over the baked cookie crust, smooth the top with the spatula, and bake for 40 minutes, until the filling is set around the edges but still slightly wobbly in the center when you gently shake the pan. Remove the pan to a wire rack to cool to room temperature, about 1 hour. When cool, cover it with foil and refrigerate until well chilled, at least 3 hours.
  3. To cut, use the foil overhang to lift the cheesecake out of the pan and place on a large cutting board. Use a sharp chef’s knife to cut the cheesecake into bars, rinsing off the knife with hot water and wiping it dry between each cut. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

Sugar Cookie Bars 

Ingredients:

1 cup unsalted butter

2 cups granulated sugar

4 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

4 ¾ cups all purpose flour

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

 

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each egg. Mix in vanilla.
  2. In a separate bowl whisk together flour, salt and baking soda. Add to wet mixture and mix just until combined. Spread on a greased, rimmed baking sheet (use a 13 x 18 x 1″ pan/cookie sheet).  The dough will be just like cookie dough- heavy and sticky- so it’s best to spray your hands with a little nonstick spray and use them to help mold the dough into the pan.
  3. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 – 12 min, until light golden brown or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting.

 

Frosting (optional)

You can buy canned frosting if you want, but if you’d like to DIY it, here’s how!

1/2 cup (1 stick) margarine or butter, softened

3 tablespoons milk

2 tsp vanilla

4 cups powdered sugar

A couple of drops of food coloring

 

Reese’s S’mores Cookie Bars   

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 16 peanut butter cups, regular size
  • 1 1/2 cups marshmallow fluff

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Line an 8×8 baking dishing with parchment paper; coat lightly with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl of the bowl of stand mixer, beat butter and sugars until fluffy.  Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Scrape down the sides. With the mixer on low, stir in the flour, baking powder, salt, and graham cracker crumbs until mixed.
  3. Spread 2/3 of the dough on the bottom of the prepared baking dish.  Lightly press the peanut butter cups into the dough, then spread marshmallow fluff on top.  Press the remaining dough on a non-stick surface into the shape of an 8×8 square. Place the square on top of the fluff and press down lightly.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes or until the edges just begin to brown.  Allow to cool for at least two hours to give the bars a chance to set, then remove from the pan and cut into squares with a large, sharp knife.
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