Chocolate chip cookie bars
I didn't understand the appeal of a cookie in bar form, especially a chocolate chip cookie, until now. These bars are incredibly chewy and gooey and have chocolate in every bite. Imagine if you could have a square of cookie that consisted of only the center part of a chocolate chip cookie and this is it.
You still get the crisp and soft edges like you would in a chocolate chip cookie, but the middle texture is really the star here. You'll add an extra egg yolk for a bit of extra richness and just the right amount of flour so that your cookie bars don't get a cakey texture.
They will still taste great the next day but know that there is NOTHING that will compare to eating one of these soon after they've been baked. The next day they'll have that same chewy texture but the edges will soften a bit which still tastes incredible.
I've dabbled before with cookie bars, and my favorite until now were my Reese's cookie bars (which I still highly recommend if you're a peanut butter cup lover like I am). The big difference in this recipe in the dough is the combination of brown and granulated sugar. This gives that classic chocolate chip cookie taste that just can't be beat. You'll load them up of course too with your favorite chocolate chips - when I'm going classic, my favorites are the semisweet chocolate chips from Guittard. In a chocolate chip cookie I usually go for chopped chocolate or larger chunks, but for the bars I wanted the classic chip look and it really worked perfectly.
For this recipe, I opted to use a stand mixer and to chill the dough so that we could mimic the texture and taste of a chocolate chip cookie as closely as possible. You certainly can make this recipe without a stand mixer by using a hand mixer or the old fashioned way with a bowl and spatula and similarly you can skip the chill period but just know you'll get the best result by using a mixer (stand or hand) and chilling. If you do choose to make this dough by hand, ensure that your butter is truly softened at room temperature and that you spend enough time at the start creaming your sugar and butter together. Making sure your eggs are at room temperature will also help with this process.
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup, 12 tablespoons) unsalted butter at room temperature
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
8 oz (1 1/3 cup) semisweet chocolate chips of choice
Total time: About three hours
Prep time: 10-15 minutes
Chill time: 1-2 hours
Bake time: 25-28 minutes
Servings: 16 cookie bars
9x9in square pan (or an 8x8 and increase the cook time a bit)
Stand mixer with paddle attachment
Place your butter and both sugars into your stand mixer with the paddle attachment secured. Note: your butter should be soft to the touch at room temperature, but if it's not you can either place it first into the microwave for 5-10 seconds, or mix your stand mixer at a low speed for 30-60 seconds until your butter is softened before adding your sugars.
Bring your stand mixer slowly from a low to high speed and allow it to combine the butter and sugars for 2 minutes. Pause your mixer and use a spatula to scrape down the sides of your butter and sugar mixture as well as your paddle attachment to ensure that no pockets of butter and sugar go unmixed.
Add in your egg, extra yolk, and vanilla extract to your butter and sugar. Slowly bring your stand mixer back to a high speed and allow it to combine your mixture for another 2 to 3 minutes. Pause your mixer and scrape down the sides of your bowl and paddle again.
Add in your dry ingredients, flour, baking soda, and salt and start your mixer at a low speed mixing until your dry ingredients are about half incorporated.
Pause your mixer and add in about a cup of your chocolate chips, reserving 1/3 cup (or 2 ounces) of your chocolate for later. Turn your mixer back on for about 15 to 30 seconds to disperse your chips and to finish forming your dough. You can also finish mixing by hand with your spatula to ensure you don't overmix your dough but that your chocolate is evenly dispersed.
Line a 9x9 inch square pan and press your cookie dough down evenly into your pan. Take your reserved chips and sprinkle them across the top of your dough. Gently press down your chips to make sure they are secured.
Place your pan into the fridge for one to two hours to chill.
Once your dough has chilled, preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Bake your chocolate chip cookie bars for 25-28 minutes until lightly golden on the top but still soft.
Allow your bars to cool before slicing (about an hour) and enjoy!
They taste best shortly after baking and the day of, but will stay fresh in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge for a few days. You can always pop them into the microwave for 5-10 seconds to rewarm. You can also wrap the baked bars in plastic wrap and freeze to enjoy later.
Carb and serving info:
Servings: 16 cookie bars
Carbs per serving: 29
Carbs for full recipe: 465
Carbs from chocolate: 115 (adjust this if you use a different type of chocolate!)
Note: Carb information is calculated based on the specific ingredients I used to cook with to help guide my own insulin to carb ratio when dosing before I eat my home cooked recipes.