I am not a fan of homemade sugar cookies. I don’t really like the slice and bake kind either. I mean, if I am looking for something to break my tooth, then both are viable options. Store bought sugar cookies, however, are something else altogether. How they manage to be flaky, chewy, creamy, not-too-sugary, and fresh all the time is a mystery (ok….it’s obviously because they are processed into oblivion, but who cares?)
Therefore, I set out to re-imagine the homemade sugar cookie as inspired by the grocery store processed awesomeness. The result was shockingly incredible. In fact, I doubled my workout for the day as a result of the number of “tastes” I had.
These cookiecake bars are extremely quick to make and easy to dress up into a fancy-looking treat. I mean, anything with food coloring and sprinkles looks better. In the future, I am going to experiment with adding cocoa or almond extract. I foresee turning them into a crust layer for pecan bars, lemon/lime curd treats, or cheesecake bites.
Take these to the neighborhood bbq, your next potluck, take them to the neighbors, give them to your trainer, leave them in the office for your less self-controlled coworkers, give them to your boss if you need something….whatever you do, don’t leave them in the house or you will eat them all. It isn’t a question; it’s a fact. They are that good.
Sugar Cookiecake Bars:
The bars part of this recipe is inspired from this site.
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened (laughably, I used 1/3 fat cream cheese to “cut the calories”)
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (or almond or whatever extract you would like….rum?)
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) of unsalted butter, softened
- 3-4 cups of powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon-ish of vanilla
- a tablespoon or so of milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with nonstick foil.
- In your mixer, cream butter, cream cheese and sugar together. Add in the egg and vanilla and mix until just incorporated.
- With mixer on low, add in the flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
- Mix until just combined.
- Press dough evenly into your prepared pan. (The dough will be very sticky…I found that a butter knife worked well.)
- Bake for 20 minutes until edges begin to turn golden. DO NOT OVERBAKE!
- Cool completely before frosting.
- Whip the butter into oblivion so that it is nice and fluffy. This should take a couple minutes.
- A few tablespoons at a time, add the powdered sugar. Continue to add until the frosting is the lightness of your liking.
- Add the milk and the vanilla and continue to whip. (Add food coloring if using.)
- Whip until it meets your preferred consistency and fluffiness.
- Frost the bars and try not to lick the bowl clean.
- Don’t share your secrets.