Pin It!

Sugar Cookie Bars

This post may contain affiliate sales links. Please see my full disclosure policy for details

Soft and chewy sugar cookie bars are quick to make, topped with sweet and creamy vanilla frosting and sprinkles. This is the perfect low-effort recipe with all the flavor of buttery, homemade sugar cookies.

These chewy sugar cookie bars are a quick, party-ready shortcut to my best sugar cookies. Give them a try, too!

Easy Frosted Sugar Cookie Bars

Some of my fondest memories are afternoons spent cutting out and frosting sugar cookies. There’s something so comforting in the process, and it always conjures up thoughts of the holidays! Whenever I have a time-sensitive craving for sugar cookies, however, sugar cookie bars are my favorite.

I love making these sugar cookie bars for a quick, shareable dessert. These bars are thick and buttery, with soft, chewy middles and a sweet coating of buttercream frosting (topped with sprinkles, of course!). 

Why You’ll Love This Cookie Bar Recipe

  • Quick and easy. With cookie bars, there’s no need for chilling, rolling, or cutting the dough into individual sugar cookies. Just mix and bake!
  • Thick and chewy. These sugar cookie bars are dense, chewy, and buttery, like snickerdoodles in dessert bar form. 
  • Perfect for decorating. Birthdays, the holidays, Halloween, Valentine’s Day, Easter? Instantly better with these sweet frosted sugar cookie bars.

Ingredients You’ll Need

Sugar cookie bars are super pantry-friendly. You need just a handful of ingredients, and you most likely have them already! Below, I’ve included some notes on the key ingredients you’ll need. Remember to refer to the recipe card with the full amounts and recipe details.

  • Butter and Sugar – unsalted butter and granulated sugar
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla – Use good-quality real vanilla extract, as opposed to artificial vanilla. You’ll taste the difference!
  • Flour and Baking Soda
  • Cream of Tartar – The secret to chewy snickerdoodles is the same secret to the chewiest, softest sugar cookie bars. Cream of tartar keeps the sugar in the dough from crystallizing, for extra-soft and tender sugar cookies.
  • Frosting – I include the recipe for my creamy vanilla frosting to decorate these cookie bars. Fluffy, simple, yet always a winner! You can frost your bars any way that you’d like, see further on for more ideas.
Three frosted sugar cookie bars stacked on top of one another.

How to Make Sugar Cookie Bars

You’re going to love this low-maintenance sugar cookie recipe! Let’s preheat those ovens to 375ºF and get started:

  • Combine the wet ingredients. First, cream together the butter and sugar, then add the eggs and vanilla. Mix everything together, scraping down the bowl as you go.
  • Add the dry ingredients. Next, combine the dry ingredients separately. Add them slowly to the wet ingredients. Beat until the dough starts to form in the mixing bowl.
  • Fill the pan. Afterward, press the dough into a 9×13 inch pan lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Use a spatula or your hands to press the dough evenly across the top.
  • Bake. Bake the dough at 375ºF for 18-20 minutes. The goal is to take these cookie bars out when they’re still slightly underbaked: set at the edges of the pan, and soft (but not loose) in the center. Let the cookies cool completely before frosting.

Frosting the Bars

You can frost these cookie bars with your choice of store-bought frosting, or you can easily make your own. I highly recommend giving it a shot, and my tutorial on how to make buttercream is packed with helpful tips and details. Homemade buttercream is worth it!  

  • Prepare the frosting. Start with cold butter, beaten with a stand mixer for a few minutes to get it nice and fluffy. Afterward, slowly add powdered sugar a bit at a time, whipping thoroughly as you go. Finish with heavy cream, the last of your powdered sugar, and vanilla, and give the frosting one final whip.
  • Frost the cookies. Use an offset spatula or knife to spread the frosting all over the top of the cooled cookie bars. Top with sprinkles, then slice and enjoy!

Tips and Variations

Below are some pro tips for the best-ever sugar cookie bars, plus some easy variations to try.

    • Take your butter out of the fridge ahead of time. This gives it time to soften. I’ll admit that I sometimes forget to do this! To soften butter quickly, microwave it for 10 seconds and cut it into cubes. You may also need to spend a bit more time creaming the butter and sugar together.

    • Take the cookie bars out when they’re slightly underbaked. This is the key to soft, chewy cookies and cookie bars. Keep an eye on the bars towards the end of the baking time, and make sure that you don’t overbake them.

    • Trim away the edges. These cookie bars bake faster at the edges, so you might notice that the slab dips or sinks in the middle as it cools. For level bars, trim off the edges.

    • Mix in sprinkles. Stir rainbow jimmies into your cookie dough for fun sprinkle-filled sugar cookie bars.

    • Add flavoring. Change up the flavors of your cookie bars with extracts like almond, orange, or peppermint, or make lemon sugar cookie bars with lemon extract.

    • Add-ins. Mix in chocolate chips, crushed candy canes, mini marshmallows, dried fruit, crushed nuts, or your favorite add-ins for texture and flavor.

More Ways to Decorate Sugar Cookie Bars

I’ll never run out of ideas for decorating homemade sugar cookie bars. They’re the ultimate dessert for holidays, parties, potlucks, and basically any given day of the week (I mean, they’re so easy to make, why not?). 

If you’d like to frost these cookie bars with a flavor other than vanilla, try chocolate fudge frosting or this creamy strawberry frosting. Or, try another one of my must-have frosting recipes

At Christmastime, I love to make peppermint sugar cookie bars for a yuletide twist. Get creative with frosting and piping! Check out my tutorial on how to decorate sugar cookies for inspiration. All those techniques translate to Christmas sugar cookie bars, too.

Three frosted sugar cookie bars stacked on top of one another, with a bite missing from the top cookie bar.

How to Store

  • Storing. These frosted bars will be at their freshest for up to 3 days at room temperature. Store cookie bars airtight or covered tightly in plastic wrap.
  • Freezer. Unfrosted sugar cookie bars can be stored airtight and frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw the cookie bars in the fridge overnight before frosting and slicing.

More Cookie Bar Recipes

Three frosted sugar cookie bars stacked on top of one another.

Sugar Cookie Bars

  • Author: Julianne Dell
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 minutes
  • Total Time: 38 minutes
  • Yield: 15 bars


Thick and chewy sugar cookie bars are so easy to make, topped with creamy vanilla buttercream frosting (and plenty of sprinkles!). Enjoy all the flavor of homemade sugar cookies without chilling, rolling, or cutting out the dough.


For the cookie bars:

  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups (380g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) vanilla extract
  • 3 ½ cups (420g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cream of tartar

For the frosting:

  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter
  • 3 ½ cups (455g) powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon (15ml) vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract


For the cookies:

  1. Preheat oven to 375° F
  2. Combine butter with sugar and beat on medium speed until well creamed together. Add the eggs and vanilla extract. Mix into the butter and sugar until the eggs are well beaten.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Slowly add it into the batter and beat on medium-low speed until well combined and dough forms.
  4. Press the cookie dough into a 9-inch by 13-inch pan lined with parchment paper.
  5. Bake at 375°F 18-20 minutes. Allow the cookie bars to cool completely.

For the frosting:

  1. Cut butter into pieces. Using the paddle attachment, whip butter for 5-7 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally. Beat until the butter looks light in color.
  2. Add 2 cups powdered sugar and mix on low speed until incorporated into the butter. Next, add the heavy whipping cream and mix to combine. Finally add the remaining powdered sugar, and vanilla bean paste and whip it on high for at least 2 minutes until it’s light and fluffy.
  3. Spread over cooled cookie bars, slice, and enjoy.


    • Storing. These frosted bars will be at their freshest for up to 3 days at room temperature. Store cookie bars airtight or covered tightly in plastic wrap.

    • Freezer. Unfrosted sugar cookie bars can be stored airtight and frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw the cookie bars in the fridge overnight before frosting and slicing.

Nutrition Information:
1 bar
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: sugar cookie bars, sugar cookie bar recipe, cookie bars

Subscribe to my newsletter and get my fav tips to take your cakes & cupcakes to the next level.