I’m trying to hang onto summer, enjoying all the fresh fruit, outdoor activities, and long daylight hours. Last week even felt like fall outside, but I’m not giving in and posting pumpkin recipes yet, even though they are starting to take off on Pinterest. I’m still enjoying my peaches and berries. But start getting your tastebuds ready for fall recipes, because I have started experimenting with a couple of cans of pumpkin. For now though, I’m sticking to a summer picnic recipe: Monster Cookie Bars.
Bars are three times easier and quicker to make than cookies. Cookies can be finicky; they need perfect ratios of flour, sugar and butter or they will spread flat or won’t spread at all. Sometimes in getting the perfectly shaped cookie, it’s hard to retain a great taste and texture. With bars there is a lot more leeway. With sides on a pan, the dough can’t go anywhere, not to mention it save all the time of rolling, and chilling and baking individual cookie sheets of dough. These Monster Cookie Bars are just perfect for an afternoon snack with a cold glass of milk, and, if you are an efficient baker, they can take less than 45 minutes start to finish. One hour max, even if you have to Google how to crack an egg first. What excuse do you have for not making them?
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 and 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 and 3/4 cup quick cooking oats
- 3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup M&Ms
- Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 9 x 13 pan and set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar. Beat in peanut butter, eggs and vanilla.
- In a separate bowl, stir together flour, soda and salt. Add to large bowl and stir until combined. Add oats, chocolate chips and M&Ms.
- Press into greased pan. Add additional M&Ms to the top, if desired, pressing them into the dough slightly.
- Bake for 14 - 16 minutes or until edges are slightly brown or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Do not over bake. Let cool a bit before slicing. Letting them cool completely is best. But its almost impossible to wait that long.