Every good cookie recipe should start with caramels! Well, this one does. Mr. H and I partnered with Heinen’s to bring you a cookie recipe to make for the holidays. This ooey, gooey cookie bar was decadent and totally holiday indulgent-worthy. Give these cookie bars a try and be a hit at your next holiday gathering!
Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Pretzel Cookie Bars
Time: 45 minutes
- 1 cup unsalted softened butter
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
- 8 oz. soft caramels (unwrapped)
- 1 cup crushed pretzels
- 1 teaspoon flaked sea salt
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9″ x 13″ baking dish with foil and liberally coat with nonstick cooking spray.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the softened butter with both sugars until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the eggs, vanilla, salt, and baking soda. Mix well, then scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula.
- Turn the speed to low and add the flour. Beat to combine, then mix in the chocolate chips.
- Press half of the cookie dough into the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
- Layer the crushed pretzels on top of the cookie dough base.
- In a medium sauce pot, add the sweetened condensed milk and unwrapped caramels. Set over medium-low heat and stir until the caramels melt, making a smooth caramel filling.
- Pour the filling over the base.
- Drop the remaining cookie dough over the caramel filling in small 1- inch clumps.
- Bake the bars for 25-32 minutes (we pulled them out at 28 minutes once the top was a nice golden brown, but the first layer of cookie dough was not entirely cooked through), until the center is just set. I suggest checking them every couple of minutes towards the end.
- Sprinkle with sea salt flakes and allow the bars to cool completely. Then lift the bars out of the pan by the edges of the foil and cut (we used a biscuit cutter to make round cookie bars). Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or you can freeze the bars to make them last longer.
Note: I did adjust the recipe above slightly from the one we followed, since our bottom layer of cookie dough was slightly under-cooked and I felt there was too much caramel at the original 10 oz. included.