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Vanilla Bean Sugar Cookie Bars with Strawberry Buttercream

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  • Author: Elizabeth Buuck
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 16 Cookie Bars 1x


Soft melt-in-your-mouth sugar cookie bars topped with super easy and delicious strawberry buttercream.



For Sugar Cookie Bars

  • 3/4 C (1 1/2 sticks) Unsalted Butter at room temperature
  • 3/4 C Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Lg Egg at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Vanilla Bean Paste (you can sub for vanilla extract)
  • 1 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 2 C All Purpose Flour

For Strawberry Buttercream

  • 1 C (2 sticks) Unsalted Butter at room temperature
  • 4 C Powdered Sugar
  • 1 Package of Freeze Dried Strawberries – pulverized in a food processor.
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 23 TBSP Heavy Cream at room temperature


For Sugar Cookie Bars

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and prepare a 9X9 baking dish with parchment paper
  • In a stand mixer, cream butter and sugar for 5 minutes
  • Add egg and vanilla bean paste, mix to combine.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt
  • Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture 1/2 at a time, mixing until just combined
  • Press the dough into an even layer in the pan and bake for 15-17 minutes. Let finish baking on the counter
  • Cool completely

For the Strawberry Buttercream

  • In stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat butter on medium speed for 5 minutes
  • Sift the powdered sugar and set aside
  • When butter is ready, add salt and vanilla and mix to combine
  • Add the powdered sugar in two batches, mixing for 2-3 minutes each time
  • Add the pulverized strawberries.
  • Add cream 1 TBSP at a time until you reach your desired consistency
  • Spread the buttercream on the cooled cookie bars and then slice and serve!


I like to make my buttercream when the butter is still a little bit chilled – not completely squishy. My general rule is to let the butter sit out for about 30 minutes before I make a buttercream.