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Halloween Sugar Cookies Bars are frighteningly quick and easy with a thick, soft sugar cookie base covered with a sweet creamy frosting. Decorate with spooky sprinkles and slice into bars for a simple Halloween treat that will delight all your little goblins!
If you enjoy Halloween as much as I do, then you’ll no doubt love these other great Halloween recipes Poison Candied Apples and Chocolate Blossom Sprinkle Cookies. Both are Spooktacular in their own merit and definitely get thumbs up and smiles from the
Easy Sugar Cookie Bars
We LOVE sugar cookies at our house, but I don’t always have the time for chilling the dough, rolling out the cookies, carefully decorating each of them, and cleaning up the mess involved. Enter these easy sugar cookies bars that can be made in around 20 minutes (plus cooling time between baking and frosting) and are super holiday and kid friendly.
As the name implies, these cookies are baked in a large pan to make several bars at once. One of my favorite ways to make cookies is making bar cookies like this one and my Carmelitas because it means I don’t have to chill dough, roll balls, or deal with trying to get every cookie to be the exact same size.
Bar cookies are a fantastic no hassle approach to getting soft and delicious cookies without all of the stress! They also have the added bonus of being just a little bit thicker than my standard cut-out sugar cookies, which I’m not complaining about!
Frost them with a colored vanilla buttercream (orange? purple? green? it’s so hard to decide!) and your favorite festive Halloween sprinkle assortment and some googly eye sprinkles to create a festive and boo-tiful appearance. See what I did there? 😉
Ingredients in Sugar Cookie Bars
For the cookie dough we will need:
- Salted butter: Softened salted butter makes for a rich cookie that’s soft and flavorful.
- Sugar: Granulated sugar makes these sugar cookies sweet, obviously, but also contributes to the texture of the bars.
- Eggs: Eggs are a great binder for baking, add flavor, richness, and moisture. One whole egg PLUS an extra egg yolk makes an excellent dough so that the cookies won’t fall apart.
- Vanilla: This ingredient adds classic flavor to the cookies. Since the flavors in sugar cookies are simple, I recommend using the best quality vanilla extract you have access to in this recipe.
- Flour: All-purpose flour is an integral part of most cookie recipes. I haven’t tried these with a gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour substitute, but I have had good luck with many of those in the past.
- Baking powder: Since we aren’t cutting out shapes and worrying about spreading with these bars, a little leavening is a good addition to the dough because it make these cookies just a bit softer than normal.
- Salt: A bit of salt will enhance the flavors in this dough and make these cookies taste great!
For the frosting we will need:
- Powdered sugar: This is a classic american buttercream and it uses powdered sugar for sweetness and structure.
- Salted butter: I always use softened salted butter in my buttercream frosting.
- Vanilla: This makes a classic flavored frosting. You could also consider adding other extract, but start with a very small amount if using extract like coconut or almond, which are more potent than vanilla.
- Heavy cream: This makes the frosting creamy and spreadable. You can use regular milk if you don’t have milk on hand.
- Food coloring: This is my favorite food coloring that is concentrated and perfect for coloring buttercream. I used mostly orange with a few drops of yellow to achieve the color I used for these bars.
- Sprinkles: Use your favorite Halloween sprinkles to add colorful decoration to these cookie bars.
How to Make Sugar Cookie Bars
- Prep the oven and pan: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F and prepare a baking dish by spraying it with nonstick cooking spray or lining it with a parchment paper sling, which will make it easier to remove the cookies after they’ve baked.
- Cream the sugar and butter: Beat the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment until it’s light and creamy. This should take about 2 minutes.
- Add eggs and vanilla: Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and beat again until well incorporated, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
- Add the dry ingredients: Add the flour, baking powder, and salt to the cookie dough, mixing until combined. Press the dough into the prepared baking dish using your hands or the back of a rubber spatula.
- Bake and cool: Bake the cookie bars in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the edges are just starting to turn to a light golden brown color. Do not overbake the cookies or they will dry out and not stay as soft. They may even look slightly underbaked but they will finish off baking as they cool in the pan. Cool the cookies completely before frosting.
- Prepare the frosting: In a large bowl, using an electric mixer beat the softened butter until creamy and smooth. Add in the powdered sugar and then beat again.
- Add the wet ingredients: Add in the cream and the vanilla, beating again until creamy and spreadable. Add in food coloring and mix until you get a color that you like and the color has been fully mixed in.
- Spread and decorate: Spread the frosting over the top of the cookies and then decorate with your Halloween sprinkles. Cut the cookie into 18 bars and enjoy.
The frosted bars can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature on the counter for 4-5 days.
Where do I find Halloween Sprinkles?
Most every grocery store and craft store has festive Halloween sprinkles in their baking or seasonal aisle around this time of year. I scored the fun sprinkles I used on these bars at Target.
How long are frosted sugar cookies good for?
If properly stored in an airtight container at room temperature, for up to a week for best tasting results.
Can I freeze decorated sugar cookies?
Yes! After the cookies have cooled completely and have been frosted and decorated, let the frosting sit for a few hours until it’s not so soft and messy to the touch. Once they’ve done that, you can freeze them for up to 3 months.
A good way to do this is to flash freeze individually cut cookie bars arranged on a baking sheet until solid (about an hour) and then place them in neatly arranged rows inside an airtight container. If you have to layer them then add a piece of wax paper or parchment paper between each layer to prevent sticking.
More Easy Halloween Recipes
- Homemade Caramel Apples
- Halloween Chocolate Cherry Hand Pies
- Twix Carmel Popcorn and Halloween Poppers
- Halloween Chex Mix
- Dark Chocolate Halloween Chip Cookies
- Marshmallow Popcorn Balls
- Day of the Dead Black Buttercream Cake
- Chocolate Cut Out Sugar Cookies
- 1 1/4 cups salted butter, softened
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup salted butter, softened
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2-3 tablespoons heavy cream or milk
- Food coloring
- Halloween sprinkles
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with a parchment paper sling or spray with cooking spray.
- In a large bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until creamy and light, about 2 minutes.
- Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and beat again, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Add the flour, baking powder and salt, mixing until combined. Press into the prepared pan.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until the edges are just starting to turn a light golden brown. Do not overbake. Cool completely before frosting.
- Beat the softened butter in a large bowl with an electric mixer until creamy and smooth. Add the powdered sugar and beat again. Add the cream and vanilla, then beat until creamy and spreadable. Add food coloring and mix until you get a color you like.
- Spread the frosting over the cookies, then decorate with sprinkles. Cut into 18 bars. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.
- Store in an airtight container on the counter for up to 5 days. Or freeze the bars wrapped in plastic wrap for up to 3 months and thaw overnight in the fridge, then let come to room temperature before serving.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 397Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 241mgCarbohydrates: 52gFiber: 1gSugar: 35gProtein: 3g
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.
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