These cookie bars are the perfect treat to use up leftover holiday or party candy. Can even be made gluten free and vegan with listed substitutions.
Since trick-or-treating wasn’t canceled in our city, I bought candy to have on hand just in case a few kiddies stopped by our house. We had our masks and gloves on waiting for the doorbell to ring. We waited…and waited, but in two hours we only had 3–4 families stop by, which left A LOT of leftover candy!
I probably shouldn’t have bought the big bag of candy at Costco! 🤦🏻♀️
With so much leftover candy, I wanted to come up with some sort of treat in order to use up some of it. I thought about cookies, but then I landed on cookie bars, which are more chewy and a good way to balance out the crunch of the candy.
These chocolate candy cookie bars are an indulgent treat, but I use less sugar in this recipe than similar recipes do and I also have a gluten free and dairy free/vegan options included in the recipe.
These bars are a delicious way to use up leftover chocolate candy from Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day or any other holiday/party. The flavor will change each time too based upon what candy you use. Use peanut butter cups for peanut butter flavor, caramel chocolates for bites of gooey caramel.
I even added chocolate chips, for some variation, but it’s not necessary. Whatever you use, I hope you enjoy these bars as much as we did!
- ¾ cup melted butter or coconut oil
- ½ cup packed brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk of choice or water
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour or gluten-free measure for measure flour blend
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chopped chocolate candy bars or candy pieces, plus more for decorating the top (use dairy-free, if needed)
- ¼ cup chocolate chips, plus more for top (optional. Use dairy-free if needed)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line an 8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine melted butter, sugars, milk, and vanilla, mixing until smooth. Add flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring just until combined. Stir in candy and chocolate chips.
- Press cookie dough evenly into prepared pan. Bake for 25–30 minutes, or until golden brown. May take more time, depending upon the pan you use and your oven.
- Let cool completely before cutting into bars and serving. Makes 9–12 bars.