Toll House’s best kept secret: Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

By Victoria Piccione ’16

When it comes to baked goods, there are two kinds of people in this world: cookie people and cake people. I’ve always been infuriated when people ask me what camp I fall into because I don’t discriminate against any baked goods. And they’re so completely different that I don’t think it’s a fair question anyway. Cakes are for celebrations; cookies are for everyday consumption. But when asked if I’m a cookie or cookie bar person, I can confidently state that I fall into the latter camp.

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For your sake, I really hope that you’ve consumed a chocolate chip cookie bar at least once in your lifetime. If you haven’t, you need to put down the computer, print out this recipe, and go whip up a batch right now because they are (1) so easy and (2) absolutely delicious. They pack the chewy interior and slightly crunchy exterior of a regular cookie, along with the buttery, vanilla-y, slightly salty goodness that we all love about a Toll House cookie, but then they do it better. They’re thicker, kind of like blondies, but chock full of chocolate and the consistency is more like a cookie.

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This recipe is an old standby in my house, and for many reasons. It’s versatile: you can throw in M&Ms, coconut, toasted hazelnuts, or swirl in some peanut butter, Nutella, or salted caramel. They’re also the perfect base for a scoop of ice cream and a drizzle of hot fudge. It’s too easy: rather than spending as much time rolling out balls of cookie dough as you spent mixing up the dough itself, this dough you just spread in a pan and throw in the oven. I’m all about immediate gratification. And there’s just something about biting into a thick bar that’s intensely satisfying.

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Chocolate chip cookies have done a good job of keeping their younger, more attractive sister hidden, but I think it’s time that she finally make her debut!

Ingredients:

2 ¼ cups unsifted flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. salt

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

¾ cup sugar

¾ cup packed brown sugar

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 eggs

1 12-oz package (2 cups) semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F, and grease a 15” x 10” x 1” baking pan.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl fitted for an electric mixer, combine butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract; beat until creamy. Beat in eggs one at a time.
  4. Gradually add flour mixture, scraping down the bowl between additions. Mix until completely incorporated.
  5. Stir in chocolate chips, then spread into greased baking pan.
  6. Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown on top.
  7. Let cool, then cut into 2” squares.

Recipe adapted from Toll House

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