These soft and chewy Valentine’s Day cookie bars are packed with red, white, and pink M&Ms and loads of chocolate chips for a fun and festive Valentine’s Day dessert.
Valentine’s Day is a few days away and I couldn’t be more excited to share a Valentine-themed version of my favorite chocolate chip cookie bars with you as part of the sixth annual Good Cookies Food Bloggers’ Valentine’s Event. Find more info on this important event below.
That is where these M&M cookie bars come in.
Just a simple 10-minute prep and they are ready to bake. No rolling, no cookie cutters, no scooping, and no chilling required.
They are also terrific for serving a crowd. Depending on how you slice them you will get 2-3 dozen cookies.
Cookies for Kids’ Cancer
As I mentioned earlier, I am sharing this Valentine’s Day cookie recipe as part of the Good Cookies Food Bloggers’ Valentine’s Event.
Cancer is the #1 cause of death of children by disease in the U.S. There are 40,000 U.S. children actively battling cancer right now. Yet the National Cancer Institute’s budget for childhood cancer is less than 4%.
That is why I am so passionate about helping to raise funds and make a difference in the fight against pediatric cancer.
Please join us and make a difference by donating to Cookies for Kids’ Cancer!
Our goal is to raise at least $3000. Because these three companies: OXO, Mediavine and Dixie Crystals have each pledged to match our donations raised through this campaign up to $3000! That means when we raise $1, it turns into $4!
Thank you to so many of you who have already donated. And if you haven’t yet, please help us reach our goal so we can get the full matching donations and help us make an even bigger difference!
This section includes ingredient notes and substitution options. Get all measurements, ingredients, and instructions in the printable recipe card at the end of this post.
- Butter— Unsalted butter, at room temperature. If you only have salted butter you can use that instead but you will want to cut the amount of additional salt in the recipe in half.
- Sugars— A mixture of brown and white sugar will gives the cookie bars a soft and chewy texture.
- Eggs— Take your eggs out of the fridge at the same time as your butter so that they too can come to room temperature.
- Vanilla— I always recommend using 100% pure vanilla extract.
- All-purpose flour— Works as the base of the cookie bars.
- Baking soda— Gives the bars the perfect rise.
- Salt— Helps balance the sweetness while enhancing the flavor.
- Valentine’s Day M&Ms— Gives the bars their festive Valentine’s Day look.
- Chocolate chips— I use semi-sweet chocolate chips as I find they have the perfect amount of sweetness but you can substitue with dark chocolate chips or white chocolate chips if you prefer.
How to Make Valentine’s Day Cookie Bars
This section shows you how to make the recipe with step-by-step photos and instructions. For the full printable recipe, see the recipe card below.
Step 1: Cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla.
Step 2: In a medium bowl, whisk to combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined.
Step 3: Stir in the M&Ms and chocolate chips.
Step 4: Press the dough into the baking dish in an even layer. Press a few more M&Ms and chocolate chips into the top of the dough.
Step 5: Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the edges are light golden brown. Allow the bars to cool completely before slicing and serving.
Store your cookie bars in an airtight container at room temperature. They will keep for 4-5 days before beginning to dry out.
For longer storage, you can freeze the bars for up to 3 months. Thaw on the counter when you get a craving for something sweet.
Expert Tips and Tricks
- For perfectly soft and chewy bars, be sure to remove them from the oven just as the edges begin to turn light brown. The pan is so hot that it will essentially continue to cook the bars even after they are removed from the oven.
- I know that it is difficult but wait until your bars are fully cooled before removing them from the pan and slicing.
- In a hurry to slice up your bars? Allow the pan to cool at room temperature for about 30 minutes then pop it in the fridge to help them cool down quicker.
- Make sure to leave a bit of foiling overhanging the pan so that you can use it to lift your fully cooled cookie bars out and onto a cutting board.
- To up the Valentine’s Day vibe add some festive Valentine’s Day sprinkles to your cookie dough and to the top of the dough before baking.
More Valentine’s Day Dessert Ideas
Valentine’s Day M&M Cookie Bars
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- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup Valentine’s Day M&Ms, plus extra for topping
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, plus extra for topping
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9 x 13 pan with non-stick foil or parchment paper, leaving a bit of overhang for easy removal. Spray the lined pan with a light coat of non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
- Using a stand mixer or hand mixer with a large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk to combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.
- With the mixer on low, gradually add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined.
- Stir in the M&Ms and chocolate chips.
- Press the dough into the baking dish in an even layer. Press a few more M&Ms and chocolate chips into the top of the dough.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the edges are light golden brown. Allow the bars to cool completely before slicing and serving.
The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by a third party and intended to serve as an estimate only. The accuracy of nutritional information is not guaranteed.
For more tasty Valentine’s Day recipes visit the other bloggers participating in the Good Cookie event.Heart Shaped Thumbprint Cookies from Julie of The Little Kitchen
Red Velvet Cheesecake Swirl Brownies from Melissa of Persnickety Plates
Little Debbie Strawberry Shortcake Rolls Ice Cream from Rose of Rose Bakes
Salted Dark Chocolate Pistachio Cookie Bars from Jessica of A Kitchen Addiction
Red Velvet Swirl Cheesecake Brownies from Julie of Back To My Southern Roots
Dark Chocolate Covered Strawberry Latte from Lisa of Taste Cook Sip
Chocolate Valentine’s Day Cake for Two from Faith of An Edible Mosaic
Chocolate Petit Fours from Carlee of Cooking With Carlee
Iced Sugar Cookies from Nina of Crazy for Cookies and More
Valentine’s Fudge from Raquel of Organized Island
Pink Gin Fizz from Caroline of Caroline’s Cooking
Cherry Chocolate Chip Cake from Stefanie of Stef’s Eats and Sweets
Flourless Chunky Peanut Butter Blossoms from Colleen of Faith, Hope, Love, & Luck Survive Despite a Whiskered Accomplice
Valentine’s Day Oatmeal M&M Cookies from Kelly of Kelly Lynn’s Sweets and Treats
Gluten free peanut butter cookies from Holly of A Baker’s House
Gluten Free Vanilla Cake with Pink Buttercream Frosting from Elaine of Small Farm Big Life
Small Batch Chocolate Chip Cookies from Courtney of Courtney’s Sweets
Small Batch Chocolate Cupcakes from Lisa of Blogghetti
Valentine’s Day M&M Cookie Bars from Jaclyn of Crayons & Cravings
Soft Iced Pumpkin Cookies from Laura of Untwisted Vintage
Guava Pink Peppercorn Margaritas from Courtney of Cook Like a Champion
Sugar Cookie Cups from Kelsey of Dance Around the Kitchen
Chewy Buckwheat Chocolate Chunk Cookies with Sea Salt from Lisa of Garlic & zest
Shortbread Hearts of Love from TammyJo of The Chocolate Cult
Valentine Sugar Cookies from Gwynn of Swirls of Flavor
Rhubarb Raspberry Tart from Betsy of The JavaCupcake Blog
Sugar Cookie Cups from Kelsey of Dance Around the Kitchen
Best Stout Beer Tiramisu from Linda of Ketchup with Linda
Creamed Chipped Beef from Rebekah of Kitchen Gidget
Bakery Style Peanut Butter Cookies from Becca of The Salted Cookie
Candy Trains from Sarah of Sarah Cooks the Books
Star Wars Grogu Heart Cookies to Support Cookies for Kids Cancer from Jenn of justJENN recipes
Peanut Butter Buckeyes from Nicole of For the Love of Food
Heart Meringues Recipe from Jennifer of The Rebel Chick
Rye Bourbon Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies from Erin of The Spiffy Cookie