Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with PB Frosting

5 from 1 vote
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Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with PB Frosting turn your favorite chocolate chip cookies into bars topped with an incredibly fluffy peanut butter frosting! Easily made gluten-free, these bars are sure to be a hit with the whole family.

A blue plate of chocolate chip cookie bars.

Delicious Details at a Glance

Cuisine Inspiration: American
Primary Cooking Method: Baking
Dietary Info: Gluten-free
Skill Level: Easy

Think chocolate chip cookies meets sugar cookies, but in bar shape! I love taking chocolate chip cookie bars to school events or parties because this recipe makes 6-7 dozen bars (yes, you read that right!), which means that everyone can have seconds. Here’s why you’ll love this recipe:

  • Easily made gluten-free. If you wish, you can easily make this recipe using a gluten-free 1:1 flour blend. All of the other ingredients you need are already gluten-free.
  • Make them with or without frosting. I love topping these chocolate chip cookie bars with peanut butter frosting! However, if you’re short on time or just want to keep things simple, you can omit the frosting. The cookie bars will still taste amazing.
  • Adaptable. You can make this recipe as written if you like the taste of traditional chocolate chip cookies, or you can try some of my variation suggestions below.
  • Sturdy and packable. Cookie bars are perfect for packing into lunchboxes or taking to the park for an outdoor sweet treat.
Chocolate chip cookie bars are shown on a wooden board.

What You’ll Need

Here’s a rundown of the ingredients in these chocolate chip cookie bars. Don’t forget to scroll to the recipe card at the end of this post for the full ingredient amounts.

For the Cookies

  • All-Purpose or Gluten Free Flour: You can make these gluten-free or not, depending on your needs. I use Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Flour when I bake these cookies.
  • Salt
  • Baking Soda
  • Butter: I prefer to use unsalted butter in my baking recipes.
  • Granulated Sugar
  • Brown Sugar
  • Eggs
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • Peanut Butter Frosting: Or you can make your own choice of frosting. I include the instructions here, but you can check out my peanut butter frosting recipe for all the details.
  • Topping: Sprinkles, mini chocolate chips, or chopped peanut butter cups, for decorating.

For the Frosting

  • Butter
  • Peanut Butter: For the smoothest frosting I use creamy peanut butter.
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Milk
The ingredients for chocolate chip cookie bars are shown portioned out on a white background: butter, flour, brown sugar, white sugar, eggs, vanilla, baking soda, salt.

Here is an overview of how to make these irresistible chocolate chip cookie bars. For detailed instructions, be sure to scroll down to the recipe card.

  • Preheat the oven. Preheat your oven and have a baking sheet ready.
  • Whisk together the dry ingredients. Sift or whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda in a bowl.
  • Cream the butter and sugars. Combine the butter and sugars in a large bowl. Beat in the eggs.
  • Add the flour and chocolate chips. On low, beat in the flour mixture to the wet mixture, then stir in the chocolate chips.
  • Spread the dough. Spread the dough evenly in the prepared pan.
  • Bake. Bake the bars until lightly golden and a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Cool. Cool bars completely before frosting.
  • Make the frosting. Beat together the butter and peanut butter, then add the powdered sugar and as much milk as you need until it’s light and fluffy.
  • Frost and enjoy. Frost the cookie bars and enjoy!

Tips For the Best Chocolate Chip Bars

I love this recipe exactly as it’s written, but it’s also fun to change it up a bit.

Here are some variation suggestions plus tips to help you make these bars:

  • Try different chocolate. You can make chocolate chip cookie bars with milk chocolate or white chocolate, or a combination with semi-sweet chocolate chips.
  • Top with other frosting. I love peanut butter frosting on these cookie bars, but homemade chocolate frosting would also be lovely! Or go simple and use vanilla frosting.
  • Skip the frosting and add salt! If you want a sweet-salty combination, skip the peanut butter frosting and top the cookie bars with a sprinkle of flaky sea salt (like Maldon sea salt).
  • Add other candy. If you wish, add in mini M&Ms or Reeses pieces along with the chocolate chips!
  • Stir in toasted nuts. Toasted, chopped walnuts would add a wonderful bit of crunch to these chocolate chip cookie bars.
  • Brown the butter. If you like, you can brown the butter to add a deeper, more nutty flavor undertone. Place the butter in a pan set over medium heat and cook it until it crackles and starts to brown, about 10 minutes. Cool the butter, then place it in the bowl with the sugar and proceed with the recipe. Note that the butter and sugar won’t become “light and fluffy” because the butter will be liquid when you beat it.

A chocolate chip cookie bar on a wooden board with a bite taken out.

Here’s what to do with any leftover chocolate chip cookie bars:

  • Fridge – Store these cookie bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
  • Freezer – Place the cookie bars in an airtight, freezer-safe container and store them in the fridge for up to 3 months. You can freeze the bars with or without the frosting. Thaw the bars completely in the fridge before eating.
A blue plate of chocolate chip cookie bars.
A close up of a chocolate chip cookie bar with a plate of bars in the background.
5 from 1 vote

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with Peanut Butter Frosting

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with PB Frosting turn your favorite chocolate chip cookies into bars topped with an incredibly fluffy peanut butter frosting! Easily made gluten-free, these bars are sure to be a hit with the whole family.
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 18 minutes
Total: 33 minutes

Ingredients

For the Cookies

  • 5 cups all-purpose or gluten free 1:1 flour , (660 grams) I recommend Bob's Red Mill 1-to-1 Gluten Free Flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Peanut Butter Frosting, see below, or your choice of frosting
  • Optional sprinkles, mini chocolate chips or copped peanut butter cups, for decorating

For the Frosting

  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons milk

Instructions

For the Cookies

  • Preheat your oven to 375°F and grease or line a 13×18 inch baking pan with parchment paper to make them easier to remove.
  • Sift or whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda in a bowl and set aside.
  • Combine the butter and sugars in a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer and cream with stand mixer or hand mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time.
  • Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture to the wet mixture, mixing until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
  • Spread the dough evenly in the prepared pan, using a small offset spatula or a rubbed spatula sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Bake for 12-18 minutes, or until lightly golden and a toothpick comes out clean (it won't look done, so use the toothpick test).
  • Cool completely, then frost and decorate as desired. Cut into small squares.

For the Frosting

  • Beat together the butter and peanut butter until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low and gradually add the powdered sugar.
  • Increase mixer speed, and add milk, 1 Tablespoon at a time, to achieve desired consistency. Beat until light and fluffy.

Notes

Sugar Cookie Bars adapted from The Girl Who Ate Everything
Makes 6-7 dozen cookie bars.
Note: You can cut the recipe in half and bake it in a 13×9-inch baking pan for about the same cooking time. Be sure to check for doneness.
Nutrition Facts
Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars with Peanut Butter Frosting
Amount Per Serving (1 cookie bar)
Calories 141 Calories from Fat 63
% Daily Value*
Fat 7g11%
Saturated Fat 3g15%
Trans Fat 0.2g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 19mg6%
Sodium 91mg4%
Potassium 53mg2%
Carbohydrates 18g6%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 10g11%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 133IU3%
Vitamin C 0.001mg0%
Calcium 10mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Disclaimers: Please discuss your individual dietary needs (i.e. gluten free) with a physician. Even when not specified, be sure to verify all ingredients are gluten free, if needed, by reading labels on all packaging and/or confirming with the manufacturer this varies by brand and can change at any time. Nutrition information shown is an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate.

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95 Comments
  1. Margaret

    I love baking plain Gingerbread Cookies in all sorts of Christmas shapes; then I frost them for my son, nieces, and nephews ????????

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  4. […] 3. Sugar Cookie Bars Time to give sugar cookies a revamp with these Sugar Cookie Bars. You’ll be getting the classic taste of sugar cookies without the boring shape to them, and with less likelihood of them drying out. These bars are topped with peanut butter and chocolate chips, so you’re getting plenty of flavors that you don’t normally get with ordinary sugar cookies. Your friends and family won’t believe that these start off with a sugar cookie base, since most of the time sugar cookies are described as being bland and boring. Kick their flavor and appearance up a notch with these fantastically delicious cookie bars. […]

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    […] Mommy want me to remind you about the GINORMOUS #CookieWeek Giveaway.  You can enter HERE, and the main reason you should click on that link is more cute photos of […]

  6. Mary W.

    I have to bake Snickerdoodles every year for Christmas! I will be baking them tomorrow for a pot luck dessert!

  7. Sharon

    My favorite cookie to make for the holidays or anytime is Sugar Cookies! I love that you can use cookie cutters and decorate accordingly for any holiday with Sugar Cookies!

  8. Laurie

    My favorite cookie to make for Christmas is krumkake. That’s a scandinavian cookie you make with a special pan on the stove top. The cookies come out flat and you roll them around a dowel, so they’re cone shaped. I feel connected to my Grandma when I make them!

  9. My oven can be a little bit like that sometimes too, Brianne, so I try to remember to rotate the pan part the way through. “Try” being the operative word. 🙂 Your little helper is so cute! This summer I baked with my little six-year-old nieces and I think more sprinkles went in mouths than on cupcakes or sugar cookies. 🙂

    I love your cookies bars with that peanut butter frosting! Bars are so much quicker to bake too.

  10. tracy

    My favorite cookie to back with the kids is the candy cane sugar cookies with red and white dough twisted in the shape of a cane. The kids love to help!

  11. Those are some precious photos and story, Brianne <3 Makes me miss my great-nephew who is currently in Qatar. Through the changing decades of life and growing up of many nieces and nephews, sprinkles, chocolate and PB do seem to be a constant favorite!

  12. Kristen

    I love the ease of sugar cookie bars. Your peanut butter frosting and chocolate chip additions sound fantastic!

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  14. Nicole Palmer

    I like to bake chocolate ginger bread men/women – the kids like them and I found a really easy and yummy recipe for them.

  15. Jennifer D.

    I love to make date skillet cookies. My grandma used to make them and no one ever brings them so here are no duplicates.

      1. Jennifer D.

        Here you go! No idea where she got the recipe but this is how I find it on my computer 🙂
        Enjoy!
        Jeanne Bruffy Gerber’s Date Skillet Cookies

        1 C butter or margarine
        1 C. brown sugar
        1 ½ C. pitted, chopped dates
        1 tbsp. vanilla
        1 egg, well beaten and at room temp
        3 C. crispy rice cereal
        About 3 C. shredded coconut

        Cook butter, sugar, salt, and dates over low heat until pasty, about 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat, let cool or you will cook the egg. then add vanilla, egg. Mix well. Return to low heat and cook for 2 minutes. Cool a little, then add cereal. After mixture has cooled so you can handle it with your hands, form into 1 inch balls and roll in coconut. Store in
        air-tight container.

  16. I’d have that big grin on my face too if I was staring at that big pan of cookie bars like the bug! Wow these just look insanely good. I’ll take a dozen. 🙂

5 from 1 vote

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