BEST Sugar Cookie Bars

5 from 4 votes
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These are the BEST Sugar Cookie Bars recipe! They’re soft and tender and chewy and covered with the best buttercream sugar cookie frosting EVER. This recipe is easy and fast and who doesn’t love a sugar cookie bar??

If I could pick only one cookie to eat for the rest of my life, it would be sugar cookies. Whether they’re drop sugar cookies or cutout sugar cookies, I love them, with or without frosting.

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stack of frosted sugar cookie bars

I decided to share these sugar cookie bars for for a few reasons:

  1. Sugar cookie bars, duh. Who doesn’t love them?
  2. SPRINKLES!!
  3. The first thing I read on Lindsay’s blog several years ago was a sugar cookie cake. She’s the queen of them!

Sugar cookie bars are one of my favorite desserts – ever. They’re easier to make than regular sugar cookies and have a thick layer of frosting on top and sprinkles, which are required in my world. What’s better than that??

NOTHING.

stack of sugar cookie bars with bite taken out

I think I could make sugar cookie bars for every occasion: birthdays, Christmas, Halloween, Valentine’s Day…the options are endless.

Butter: I always use unsalted butter that’s been softened, but if you need to substitute salted butter just reduce the salt in the recipe to ¼ teaspoon.

Sugar: Granulated Sugar only in sugar cookies!

Flour: All Purpose is the best – be sure to measure it correctly.

Egg: One large egg is all you need.

Baking Soda: For leavening

Cream of Tartar: The SECRET ingredient that keeps the bars SOFT!

collage of photos showing how to make sugar cookie bars

This recipe starts with my perfect sugar cookie recipe.

  1. Cream the butter and granulated sugar until fluffy.
  2. Mix in the egg, vanilla, salt, baking soda and cream of tartar.
  3. Add the flour, then mix until smooth.
  4. Instead of dropping them, I pressed the dough into a 9×13-inch pan.
stack of Valentine's Day frosted sugar cookie bars

Once the bars are baked and cooled you top them with an incredible frosting. I love my frosting recipe because of a secret ingredient: heavy whipping cream. It makes the frosting so smooth and delicious.

Of course, you can tint the frosting any color you want using food coloring, but I love the look of sprinkles. Nowadays you’re not limited to just nonpareils or jimmies; sprinkles come in all sorts of combinations now! In the past they were only online, but I’ve even seen them at JoAnn’s and Michaels lately.

Regardless of how you decorate them, they are perfect and pretty for any party…especially a baby shower!

overhead shot of sugar cookie bar
  • When baking, these are done just before they look done; that is, slightly golden around the edges but not golden in the center. They finish cooking as they cool.
  • Make sure to start with room temperature butter when making the frosting. It’s easier and you’ll get a smoother spread.
  • You can use milk in the frosting, but the heavy whipping cream makes a silky and delicious frosting recipe!

Have you made this recipe?

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These are the BEST EVER Sugar Cookie Bars recipe! They're soft and tender and chewy and covered with the best buttercream sugar cookie frosting EVER. This recipe is easy and fast and who doesn't love a sugar cookie bar??
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Yield 24 bars
Serving Size 1 bar

Ingredients

Cookies:

  • ¾ cup (170g) unsalted butter softened
  • ¾ cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract optional
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (248g) all purpose flour

Frosting:

  • ½ cup (113g) unsalted butter softened
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups (226g) powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-3 tablespoons (5-15ml) milk or heavy whipping cream
  • Sprinkles and/or food coloring if desired

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a 9×13-inch pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Cream butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat in egg and both extracts. (Almond extract is optional, but adds amazing flavor!) Mix in baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt. Slowly mix in flour.
  • Press dough into prepared pan.
  • Bake for 14-19 minutes The sides will just be getting golden and the center will look a little under done. Cool completely before frosting.
  • Make the frosting: Beat butter until creamy with a hand or a stand mixer. Mix in salt. Slowly add in powdered sugar until mixture is crumbly. (It will be very crumbly if using a hand mixer, more smooth if using a stand mixer.) Add vanilla and 1 tablespoon milk or cream. Mix until the frosting comes together and becomes smooth, adding additional teaspoons of milk as needed for consistency. If you want your frosting to be a color, tint it now.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1bar | Calories: 154kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 35mg | Sodium: 1272mg | Sugar: 15g

Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cookie bar, frosting, sugar cookie

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The BEST Sugar Cookie Recipe

Last Updated on September 20, 2021

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18 CommentsLeave a comment or review

    1. Yes to keep them soft – you can sub 1 tsp lemon juice if you don’t have cream of tartar (it won’t make them lemony)

  1. These sugar cookie bars won a landslide vote from my family. I made half with frosting and half with just sprinkles. They said the frosting was the best ever and the bars were soft and delicious. The whole pan was gone in no time. We will be making these often and using different tints in the frosting and different sprinkles for holidays. They are so much easier than cookies.

  2. I just finished making this recipe for dessert tonight. It looks so yummy. I had a chance to taste the left over icing in the mixing dish after I finished icing the cookie bar. Yummy ! I can hardly wait till tonight to have a piece. Well, maybe an afternoon pick me up. 😄. I’m sure I wouldn’t be able to wait that long! I would post a picture but I don’t see a place to do that so just take my word for it. It’s so easy to make !!! I also sprinkled it with multi color sprinkles on it. So festive !!