These extra soft and chewy chocolate chip cookie bars are incredibly easy to make. No dough chilling or rolling into balls required! Sprinkle with sea salt for a little something extra.
Taste testers gave these chocolate chip cookie bars a stamp of approval– and I’m so glad because this dough makes my favorite chewy chocolate chip cookies, too. We’re talking the softest, chewiest, thickest chocolate chip cookies to ever come out of my oven.
And if you can believe it, baking chocolate chip cookies as cookie bars transforms them into something even better. Plus, we don’t have to chill the cookie dough and we don’t need to roll the dough into individual cookies. So they’re homemade soft and chewy chocolate chip cookies, only easier to prepare. A lazy gal’s cookie if you will.
Why You’ll Love These Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
- Dense and buttery
- Extra chewy and extra soft
- Just like chocolate chip cookies, but they don’t spread
- 100x easier than making cookies– no individual cookie dough rolling
- No electric mixer needed
- A quick no chill cookie recipe
- Can be easily doubled for a larger pan
- Topped with sea salt for a little something extra
- Still soft and chewy on days 2 and 3 (if they last that long!)
Ingredients For Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
If you’ve tried my beloved chewy chocolate chip cookies, you’re already familiar with the ease of this recipe. We’re using the same cookie recipe, just baking them as bars. Here’s what you need:
- Flour: All-purpose flour is the base of this recipe.
- Baking Soda: Baking soda helps these bars rise as they bake.
- Cornstarch: Cornstarch gives the cookie bars that ultra soft consistency we all know and love. Plus, it helps keep them wonderfully thick.
- Salt: Salt adds flavor.
- Butter: Use melted butter in this recipe for the chewiest cookie bars. Because we use melted butter, there’s no need to get out your mixer.
- Sugar: I like to use a mix of brown sugar and white granulated sugar this recipe. More brown sugar than white granulated sugar promises an extra soft and chewy cookie bar because there’s more moisture in brown sugar.
- Egg & Egg Yolk: 1 egg binds everything together and 1 extra egg yolk adds richness and chewiness.
- Vanilla Extract: Pure vanilla extract adds flavor. If you have any homemade vanilla extract, use that!
- Chocolate Chips: 1 cup of chocolate chips ensures tons of melty chocolate in each bite. Instead of semi-sweet chocolate chips, try using dark, milk, or even white chocolate chips. Or swap half of the chocolate chips for M&Ms like we do in these soft M&M cookie bars.
9 Inch Pan of Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
After you prepare the cookie dough, press it into a baking pan. There’s no risk of cookie spreading with this recipe because the edges of the pan completely contain the cookies from overspreading. I love that.
- By the way, if you’re ever having spreading issues with your regular cookies, here are my top 10 tips for how to prevent cookies from spreading.
One batch of these chocolate chip cookie bars fits perfectly into a 9-inch square pan. I love using this size of pan because it yields a nice, manageable batch– about 16 super thick bars. If you want a larger batch, double the recipe and bake the bars in a 9×13 inch pan. (See recipe note.)
Baker’s Tip: I like to line my baking pans with aluminum foil or parchment paper. This way, you can lift the entire cookie bar mass out then easily cut into squares. Also makes for quick clean up!
How to Freeze Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
Homemade chocolate chip cookie bars freeze beautifully so they’re a great make-ahead dessert option. Follow these instructions and no one will know they aren’t freshly baked the day you serve them:
- Bake and cool the cookie bars.
- Slice the bars into squares. If you lined your baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper, simply pull the slab of bars out of the pan, place onto a cutting board, and cut into squares.
- Layer the bars between sheets of parchment paper in a freezer-friendly container. The parchment paper ensures that the bars don’t stick to each other and that the tops of the cookie bars stay intact.
- Thaw bars overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
Classic Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 35 minutes
- Total Time: 2 hours
- Yield: 16 bars
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
No mixer required and there’s no waiting for cookie dough to chill with these soft & chewy chocolate chip cookie bars!
- 2 and 1/4 cups (281g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup (170g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1 cup (200g) packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (180g) semi-sweet chocolate chips
- optional: sprinkle of sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C). Line the bottom and sides of a 9-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment, leaving an overhang on all sides to easily lift the bars out of the pan when cool. Set aside.
- Whisk the flour, baking soda, cornstarch, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until no brown sugar lumps remain. Whisk in the egg, then the egg yolk. Finally, whisk in the vanilla extract. The mixture will be thick. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together until combined. The dough will be very soft, yet thick. Fold in the chocolate chips. The chips may not stick to the dough because of the melted butter, but do your best to combine them.
- Transfer dough to the prepared baking pan and press/smooth into an even layer. Sprinkle the top with sea salt if desired. Also, I like to press a few more chocolate chips on top of the dough before baking (I do this just for looks!). Bake for 32-35 minutes or until lightly browned on the sides. Use a toothpick to test for doneness; if it comes out clean from the center of the pan, the bars are done.
- Allow the bars to cool in the pan set on a wire rack for at least an hour. Once relatively cool, lift the foil out of the pan using the overhang on the sides and cut into squares. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Allow to come to room temperature and continue with step 4. Baked cookie bars freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw bars overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before serving.
- 9×13 Pan: You can double this recipe to fit into a 9×13 baking pan. The bars will take longer to cook through, about 40 minutes at 350°F (177°C). Use a toothpick to test for doneness.
Keywords: chocolate chip cookie bars
Reader Comments & Reviews
I doubled the recipe, and found the cooking time to have been too long. They were a bit dry, and quite bland. I own all of Sally’s cookbooks, and always turn to those and this website when I need a dessert recipe. This is the first time I was not impressed with the results. The cookie version has a better, more expected texture and flavor.
How smart! I forgot to soften butter, so I went to make my usual chocolate chip cookies, which uses melted butter. Stumbled upon this recipe, which is the same recipe but baked in a pan! So, no chilling time either! It’s also the same recipe as your “one dough three ways” in the cookie addiction cookbook. So many possibilities for a quick cookie batch now! We really like the cinnamon pecan cookies, I will be trying those as a bar for sure! My sons favourite combo is the pretzel, butterscotch chip and dark chocolate chip ones. Wouldn’t those be cute with mini pretzel twists pushed in to the top of each one?
I adore this recipe and have made it several times. It was one of our go-tos during lockdown and it brought us joy during that time but now it’s fun to make them as a special treat. One question: would it absolutely ruin things if I tried making these with whole wheat flour? I’m trying to lean away from white flour where I can and my son (who also LOVES these) hasn’t even noticed when I use it in his favorite banana bread. Thoughts? Thank you for your wonderful recipes!
Hi Amanda! So glad to hear these are a favorite for your family. While you could try using whole wheat flour, the bars will definitely lose some of their soft and chewy texture. They may even taste a bit dry. You could first try swapping half of the flour with whole wheat flour, see how it goes, and then adjust for future batches. Hope this helps!
These are delicious and were so easy to make. Thanks for another fabulous recipe!
This was so easy and I enjoyed making these with my toddler. I used parchment for lining and ended up having to bake for about 37 minutes in a 9″ square pan. They were perfectly chewy with crispier edges from the pan (much like the edge pieces of a good brownie) and were a great addition to our neighbor’s cookie plates for Christmas. This recipe is a keeper!