Crazy for Crust

Creme Brulee Cookie Bars

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Creme Brûlée Cookie Bars have it all: they’re soft, chewy and fudgy, super vanilla-y, and they’ve got a crunchy sugary top, just like creme brulee!

These bars are so gooey and perfect – everyone raves about them!

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Creme Brulee Cookie Bars - this easy cookie bar is full of vanilla creme brulee flavor! Toffee bits on the top gives them that trademark crunch.

Do you like creme brulee? I absolutely adore it. I feel like I can’t get enough of it, but when I was thinking about the last time I had creme brulee I realized it was over 10 years ago. So I feel like I can’t say, “Oh, I’m so addicted to creme brulee!” because that would make me feel like a poser.

Seriously, guys, why has it been 10 years since I’ve eaten it? I was going back in my head over the nice dinners I’ve had and they kind of all run together since Jordan was born. I mean, all of my memories are kind of squished and compacted together and pieces of some fall into pieces of others. Like, I was remembering eating creme brulee on our anniversary while I was pregnant but I know that isn’t true, because in my mind I’m wearing a long sleeved black dress, but in July 2004 we lived in Arizona and there was no way I wore long sleeves in Arizona in July.

Can I blame my horrible memory on mommy brain 10 years later? Or maybe we need to invent something called “bloggers brain” because I think I have it.

Anyway, Creme Brulee Cookie Bars.

Easy Creme Brulee Cookie Bars Recipe

I do remember eating creme brulee in Arizona, in December, when I was pregnant. It was at a fancy steakhouse and I remember being all “Woo hoo, an upscale steakhouse when I’m pregnant, filet and a glass of water, how fancy!” But the dessert made up for it – the crack of the sugar as I dug my spoon into the top. Because that’s the best part of creme brulee, the sugary crunchy top, right?

These Creme Brulee Cookie Bars have that sugary crunchy top, but it’s kind of a cheater version. I used toffee bits instead of browning sugar. Why? Because when you brown sugar on top of creme brulee it doesn’t last long: it’s meant to be eaten right then. But when you’re making cookie bars, especially at the holidays for parties and gift giving, you want the treats to last. Enter: toffee bits.

Also, when I made Creme Brulee Cheesecake Bars with toffee bits, no one complained, so…there you go.

The crunchy top isn’t just why I called them “creme brulee” instead of toffee cookie bars. The bar itself is soft and chewy but also super fudgy and very, very vanilla-y, just like the real thing!

Creme Brûlée Cookie Bars is the perfect creme brûlée recipe for when you’re craving a cookie bar!

Back in 2012, I made a version of this same recipe. I called them Very Vanilla Bars and I made them for a Mom’s Night Out book party, for a rather…popular…book at the time. Do you remember those? Since then I’ve been craving those bars again but never made them, even though it’s been on my list FOREVER.

The special thing about those bars was that they were made like vanilla brownies, using melted butter and white chocolate chips. The result: a thick and fudgy cookie bar that totally showcased my favorite flavor: vanilla. I decided to remake them with a crunchy sugary top, because the fudginess of the bar almost makes it like creme brulee married a cookie bar.

The recipe couldn’t be easier: you melt the butter and white chocolate chips together in a sauce pan, then stir that mixture into the rest of the ingredients. You don’t even need to worry about what order you mix things in, which makes this a totally foolproof recipe. I used McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract to amp up the vanilla flavor of these bars. Always use the best extracts in your baking because you want the best flavor. McCormick is (and always has been) my favorite!

Once you’ve baked the bars until they’re almost done, you top them with the toffee bits and then finish them off for a few more minutes. This allows the toffee bits to melt together and form that extra crunchy sugary top you’d expect from a good creme brulee.

Creme Brulee Cookie Bars - this easy cookie bar recipe tastes like creme brulee in a bar cookie!

How to make sure these Creme Brûlée Cookie Bars come out perfect:

  • People report the mixture is liquid. Once it bakes it will be VERY gooey. Let it cool completely before slicing.
  • When in doubt, bake it longer.

The creme brulee cookie bars were a huge hit at both of my holiday gatherings this year. I had to make a second batch just to have enough for the second party! Between the richness of the vanilla and the fudginess of the bar, these make the perfect holiday (or anytime) treat. They’d also be pretty for a New Year’s Eve party (with champagne, of course).

Enjoy!

See how easy creme brulee cookie bars are to make. Watch this quick video tutorial!

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Creme Brulee Cookie Bars
3.43 from 40 votes
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Servings: 24 bars

Creme Brulee Cookie Bars

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
45 mins
These Creme Brulee Cookie Bars are filled with rich vanilla creme brulee flavor. An easy bar cookie recipe, these bars are soft and chewy with a crunchy top, just like creme brulee.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup 113g unsalted butter
  • 12 ounces about 2 cups or 350g white chocolate chips
  • 1 1/4 cups 155g all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup 149g granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon 15ml Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup toffee bits

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line a 9x9 pan with foil and spray with cooking spray. Alternately, you can use parchment paper that’s been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray or greased with butter or shortening.
  2. Place butter and white chocolate chips in a medium saucepan over low heat. Melt the two together, stirring almost constantly, just until melted. The mixture may appear curdled or be the consistency of Cream of Wheat. Remove from heat and cool while mixing other ingredients.
  3. Stir together flour, sugar, extract, salt, and eggs in a large bowl. Add white chocolate mixture and stir until smooth. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes, then remove pan from oven and sprinkle toffee bits evenly over the top. Return to oven and bake another 8-12 minutes until the edges are golden brown. A toothpick in the center will still come out with batter on the toothpick, but it will be cleaner along the edges. Be careful not to over bake; it will brown more on the sides and bottom than on the top.
  5. Cool completely before slicing into bars. They will firm up as they set. If they seem to not firm up, chill them before slicing.

Nutrition Information

Amount per serving (1 bar) — Calories: 216, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 37mg, Sodium: 470mg, Carbohydrates: 26g, Sugar: 22g, Protein: 1g

Easy Milky Way Blondies

Caramel Milky Way Blondies (4 of 6)

Creme Brulee Cheesecake Bars

creme-brulee-cheesecake-bars (3 of 6)w

Funfetti Gooey Bars

funfetti gooey bars (1 of 5)w

 

This post has been sponsored by McCormick. All opinions are 100% my own, as always! 

**Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!**

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64 comments

  1. You have GOT to get to a restaurant and order some creme brulee! Ten years is way too long a dry spell. Take Jordan with you and introduce her to one of the best desserts ever! I had a milk chocolate and espresso-flavored one recently that was…there are no words.
    These are so creative! And they are much more stress-free to make than actual creme brulee, since the whole blowtorch thingie can make people anxious. These look great!

  2. Creme brulee is my favorite dessert! I haven’t had it in a while though either, maybe a year or two ago. But these bars are genius, Dorothy! I absolutely love them. Can’t wait to try this out!

  3. My favourite dessert is creme brulee and it looks even better in the form of cookies!

  4. What a really cool idea! I too adore creme brûlée but cannot remember the last time I ate it. These cookie bars will go down a treat in our home. Thanks for a great recipe. Sammie.

  5. I can’t remember the last time I ate creme brulee either. Love that you turned this classic dessert into a bar!

  6. The crunchy, toffee topping looks particularly delicious!

  7. These look amazing! Can’t wait to try them out!

  8. Ohh yes! I love bar desserts, they are so good! But this twist on a classic is awesome! 

  9. I adore crème brulee but seriously what a fuss! I love the idea of a crème brulee BAR, because seriously how much easier is that?! 🙂

  10. Creme brûlée is my very favorite dessert. I order it out whenever it’s on the menu. Wow, 10 years is far too long. Love these gorgeous bars. Pinned.

  11. I also LOVE creme brûlée! I never though to make bars though, these look amazing! And they topping?  I am making these ASAP!

  12. I imagine these bars taste really great!

  13. Creme brulee cookie bars!? You took the best of both things and combined them into one!

  14. I have a confession– I haven’t tried creme brulee!!  I know, it’s shameful!  I have always wanted too and I honestly don’t know why I haven’t.  These bars look divine and also mommy brain is sooooo real!!!! 🙂

  15. I love your storytelling! And yes mommy brain, it’s real. The last 8-10 years, I swear, it all just kind of mushes together. I think the next time I see you, it’s a must that we find some creme brulee to make up for lost time!

    These bars…the texture looks incredible! I have a couple recipes that start out with melted butter and white chocolate (one incorporates bananas and the other lemon) but that dense, rich texture is unbeatable! And with the toffee bits, these were outrageous I’m sure!

  16. Those toffee bits look amazing 🙂

  17. These look AMAZING Dorothy!  And I agree, McCormick is the best!!

  18. These look amazing, I love creme brulee! 
    http://purrfectlyinspired.com 

  19. Oh, yes please!!! I guess you don’t have any of these left sitting around waiting for me?? xoxo

  20. These bars sound amazing!!! I’m not sure what I love more, the chewy vanilla base, or the crunchy toffee topping??? 

  21. I love how fudgy these look! Yumm

  22. I love creme brulee too, but I can’t remember the last time I had it either!  These bars look so delicious, Dorothy.  I love that you melted the butter and white chocolate together!  I can only imagine how good these are!

  23. hellllooooooooooo creme brulee cookie bars! McCormick really is the best! I just bought a giant bottle of vanilla extract at Sam’s Club! 

  24. Okay, so I’m absolutely in love with the flavors in these bars. I’ve only actually had creme brulee once, but I remember loving it. My mom made it from scratch. She said it was too much work after making it, and sadly, it disappeared from my life. Now, I can enjoy it once more in bar form. 🙂 

  25. Creme brûlée is my husband’s fave but I never make it – these cookie bars, on the other hand, I am so excited to make!  He’s in for his favorite treat!

  26. I am obsessed with these bars! What could be better than a vanilla brownie with a crackly crust on top???

  27. YES! Creme brulee is the best, I can’t wait to make these. We make a lot of creme brulee at home, but bar form sounds fabulous too.

  28. Oh my goodness….there is just so much yum going on here I can barely stand it! Can’t wait to make these. 

  29. I haven’t had creme brulee in a while either, but I love that sound when you crack the top with a spoon.  So satisfying.  OK, I’m a nerd.  🙂  These look devilishly good.  They would definitely satisfy my creme brulee craving!

  30. Oh great, now I think I might be addicted to creme brûlée! These look awesome!

  31. I love your bars, so creative and tasty.

  32. Can’t wait to try these, they look simply delish! Where do you get the toffee bits?  I have checked at 3 different grocery stores and can’t seem to find them anywhere.  Have everything to make these up with but the toffee bits. 

  33. Just in time! I needed a new, non chocolate goodie to add to teachers bags. They are in the oven as I type! I really like how you describe how certain things should look. I most likely would have thrown out the butter/chip mixture thinking something was wrong. Have you ever made your own vanilla? I think it is even better than McCormick. Plus you can use vodka, bourbon etc. to suit your recipe. Thanks for yet another super recipe.

  34. I made the creme brulee bars  last night and cut into them this am…AMAZING!  I am also making the Peanut Butter Cake Roll today!

    Thanks for sharing!

  35. I recently enjoyed a creme brulee so delicious it made me cry. I will def be making these squares for our New Year’s Day dinner. I just happen to have some toffee bits left over from my Christmas baking!

  36. So I made the creme Brulee bars this morning. I want to know if there is supposed to be a layer of butter seperated from the batter as it bakes?

    • Hm, that didn’t happen for me. I made these twice, and both times the batter stayed together. Did it mix together okay and look like a regular batter (brownie batter consistency) going into the pan?

  37. I had the same issue where the butter kept pooling at the top too. At first I tried tilting the pan to pour out the butter, but the whole thing shifted. So I just kept dabbing at it over and over and baked it longer. Not sure if that worked or not…lol.

  38. Made these for a St. Patrick’s Day celebration with my girlfriends a couple of weeks ago. In our circle, once the cocktails flow everything else (like food) becomes secondary…ok, tertiary. Especially dessert, though I always make something as a gesture. Well, these bars were a HUGE hit! They disappeared in what seemed like a flash, and I got raves the week after, which never happens with these broads (who are usually too busy rehashing the evening’s shenanigans to compliment baked goods).
    The recipe was super easy, and I had no issues with butter pooling. They baked up perfectly. I have a new ‘go to’, so thank you!!!

  39. I’ve never had creme brulee but these were amazing. I couldn’t find regular toffee bits, my store only had milk chocolate toffee. So, I made these with half milk chocolate chips and half white chocolate chips and tossed in a couple of espresso beans. Super yummy! Even better with vanilla ice cream!

  40. Regarding the pooling butter, I have two suggestions.  First, I had a little trouble when I used part baking bar and white chocolate morsels.  Second, when you heat, just barely finish melting the chocolate and stir to finish if there are any tiny bits of morsels left.  Then, make sure you cool it.  It seems to start setting up.  Then when it is all mixed in with the white chocolate, the butter shouldn’t pool.

  41. Hi – Do you think these would freeze well? I would like to make a big batch a few weeks ahead of time but I wasn’t sure if the toffee would be too difficult to freeze/thaw. What do you think?

  42. Can I do one and a half of this recipe for a 9 x13 pan?

  43. Made these nd I was so surprised that indeed it does taste like Creme Brule.

    The only tweeks I made was to use gluten free flour and reduced the sugar by a 1/4. Next time I will cut the sugar down further by another 1/4 as its plenty sweet.

    Thanks, this recipe is a keeper.

  44. I , we, they, all love them!!! Have made them before and decided to have them at this years Christmas Eve gathering with the family. Have a wonderful and Blessed Christmas ’16.

  45. I made the Creme Brulee bars this evening and they are SO SO good! I will definitely make these again. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

  46. I was so excited to make these. Followed directions exactly and they turned out to be a gooey, awful mess. I had to dump them in the garbage! I was so mad after all that work and expense. Everything was freshly bought so I used nothing old. Baked them like it said and it was just a complete disaster. Make at your owN risk. I’m not happy at all!!!!!!

    • I just had the same issue. So disappointed. Wonder why? Most everyone else’s turned out fine. I’m a big baker and usually never have issues. Hmmmm?!

    • Mine are an ooey gooey mess as well. And i bake and followed recipe. I hsbe put back in the oven as i am hoping it cooks up a little more! I made these to bring to a wedding. I am so glad i thought to cut one out first! Hers look ok…but not mine. Nothing like a cookie texture.

  47. I have made these bars several times for co-workers and each time I do, I get rave reviews and requests to make them again.

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