Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Sugar Cookie Bars

Sugar cookies are one of my very favorite treats and for me, a must have on Valentine's Day. I was unable to make regular sugar cookies this year, but I came across this recipe on Our Best Bites and knew I had to try it. I love the easy, no refrigeration, no roll out method of making these. But I think my very favorite part was the flavor of the cookies. These cookies taste like yummy shortbread cookies with yummy frosting. They are well worth the few minutes that it takes to put them together! For our family, I halved the recipe and simply baked it in my 9 x 13 metal pan. Next time I'll make the full batch in the cookie sheet and share with neighbors. 

Sugar Cookie Bars
as seen on Our Best Bites

For the cookie bars
2 cups butter (4 sticks), softened
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 tablespoon almond extract
6 cups flour (make sure to spoon lightly into measuring cup)
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a cookie sheet with baking spray.

In your stand mixer cream together the softened butter and sugar until light and fluffy (between 2 to 5 minutes). Add eggs, vanilla and almond extract and mix well. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined.

Place the lump of dough into the prepared cookie sheet and spread out with your hands as evenly as possible. I have a hand-held rolling pin with two smallish rollers that I used to smooth out the dough so there were no fingerprints.

Bake cookie bars for 20 to 30 minutes. Mine were done at 22 minutes. You want them to be a golden color across the top. Allow to cool completely before frosting.

For the frosting:
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon almond extract
2-3 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla 

Cream together the softened butter and powdered sugar. Add the vanilla and the almond extract. Slowly, add the milk. I usually do this by tablespoons and only add enough to make your frosting spreadable. I find this works best in my stand mixer, using my paddle/scraper attachment. 

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