During the holiday season it is so easy to let the stress of it all take away from truly enjoying it. This year I am focused on simplifying my approach to the holidays from our decorations, to the gifts and everything in between. One way I am simplifying my gifting is by only baking one recipe that I can give out to most everyone. My chocolate chip and M&M cookie bars are the perfect option because you can individually wrap them and they are incredibly delicious!
This past weekend my husband helped me prepare a pan of these cookie bars and we packaged them up to give out as gifts. I love about having him in the kitchen with me because it is always way more fun! Flour ends up all over the place, and the end result always tastes better knowing how much fun we had preparing it. In this case, he started by sifting all of the dry ingredients while I handled the other ingredients.
I like to use equal parts of three different kinds of chocolate in these bars: milk chocolate chips, bittersweet chocolate chips and of course, M&M's. You could also substitute nuts in but if I am making these for a crowd I like to stick with chocolate to avoid any nut allergies.
Once the cookie bars have cooled completely (I like to cool mine overnight), I cut them into individual servings to package them up.
We made our gifting list and got out our favorite packaging supplies. I love to use these gift pouches, baking twine, gift tags, and a little sprig of greenery. You could also use these bags. If you use cotton bags, be sure to individually wrap the cookie bars in plastic wrap first so they stay fresh.
We hope you enjoy a holiday season filled with laughter, joy and these amazing chocolate chip and M&M cookie bars :)
Chocolate Chip and M&M Cookie Bar Recipe
2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 Tsp. baking soda
1/2 Tsp. salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, brought to room temperature
3/4 cups granulated sugar
3/4 cups light brown sugar
2 Tsp. vanilla extract
2 eggs, brought to room temperature
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
1 cup M&M's
* Can also substitute 2 cups of chopped walnuts or pecans for the milk chocolate chips and M&M's
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease and flour a 9x 13 in. pan.
Sift together the flour, baking soda and salt.
Beat the butter and sugars together with the vanilla extract. Beat in the eggs. Stir the flour mixture, and chocolate into the mixture until combined.
Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake 25 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven and let them cool completely.