Sunday, July 1, 2012

Sugar Cookie Bars

Yummy note:
Many family gatherings I've taken along some sugar cookies, you know the rolled out and cut into fun shape ones with cute frosting. They have always been hit with everyone of all ages. However, since the kiddos, I've been keeping an eye on recipes that really help cut some time off my preparation or that seem to be easy to do. I had bookmarked this recipe a few years ago and immediately printed it out for future uses. This Sentimental Sunday is about spending time with family and still being able to enjoy a homemade treat without a lot of time devoted to it. Sometimes it is such a pain to have to make the dough, chill and roll sugar cookies out and then not to mention putting the finishing touches on those cookies can take a couple of hours to complete. But with this recipe, it is so easy, yet sooo unbelievably tasty. They stay extremely soft and can even be kept in the freezer for longevity. They are just perfect to share with others, which is my favorite part of baking! This is super nice for a party as it makes about 4 dozen or so bars, perfect ready to share. I don't think there is much more to say about these wonderful cookie bars, other than to just make a batch to enjoy!



Sugar Cookie Bars
recipe found here from My Baking Addiction

Ingredients:

For the cookie bars: 
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
2-3 tsp. vanilla extract
5 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
½ tsp. baking soda

For the frosting: 
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
5 tbsp. milk
Food coloring (optional)

*Note- I have substituted an equal amount of soy margarine and soy milk in this recipe for the dairy ingredients and still achieved great tasting results for dairy-free options. 

Directions:

To make the cookies, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a large baking sheet, about a 13"x18" sized one. Cream softened butter and sugar in a mixer until light and smooth, about 2 minutes. Mix in the eggs one at a time, beating well after each one until incorporated. Next, blend in the vanilla. In a smaller bowl, combine the flour, salt, and baking soda. Then add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. 


Spread the cookie dough into the prepared baking sheet and press into an even layer. Note, I had put a layer of aluminium foil on the bottom of the pan as well to have an easier removal of the cookie bar for cutting later. However, you can put the cookie dough directly into the greased pan. Bake only for about 10-15 minutes, or until a light golden brown color. You can test to see if it is done by sticking a toothpick in the center and see if it comes out clean. Let the bars cool completely before applying the frosting.



To make the frosting, beat the butter on medium-high speed in a mixer until smooth, about 1 minute. Blend in the vanilla, salt, and powdered sugar until smooth. Then mix in the milk and add food coloring to tint.  Spread frosting over the cookie bars in the pan. 



At this point, you can freeze the cookie bars or cut into bars and serve. 




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