Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

I was so in love with the bars I made two weeks ago and couldn’t get them out of my mind. So I made them again.

Chocolate style with Milky Ways instead of peanut butter cups. And I’m in love all over again.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Sometimes I go through dessert phases where all I want is cookies. And for weeks, I make batch after batch of cookies.

Right now I’m in a gooey bar phase. I’m loving this phase.


Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

I just couldn’t get those Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars out of my head.

Soft and squishy centers with chewy edges. Dense, buttery, and full of gooey creaminess from the sweetened condensed milk. Not to mention, mini peanut butter cups in every bite.

Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars

 Rather than remaking the exact same thing, although I was tempted but that doesn’t make for an interesting blog, I made chocolate cookie dough and baked in Milky Ways. If there’s a way to improve on something, adding chocolate is always good start.

Now I have two new favorite bars. I can’t pick which one I like better because they’re both ridiculously good.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Prep and assembly takes 10 minutes, no mixer is needed, and you can stir everything together in one bowl. The less dishes a recipe generates, the better.

Begin by melting one stick of butter. Stir in an egg, sugars, optional splash of coffee, vanilla, flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda. The coffee brings out the chocolate flavor and it’s recommended. It doesn’t make the finished bars taste at all like coffee.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Transfer the thick dough into an aluminum foil-lined and cooking sprayed baking pan and press it down to form the base layer. Reserve about two-thirds cup dough for crumbling on top later.

I urge you to line your pan, leaving overhang, so you can just lift the bars out, and it makes cleanup a breeze. The sweetened condensed milk caramelizes, the Milky Ways melt, and without foil you’ll be cursing as you try to chisel glued-on bars out of the pan.

Sprinkle diced Milky Ways over the dough, or use another favorite candy such as Rolos, Snickers, Three Musketeers, or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. Then lightly crumble the reserved cookie dough in chunks before baking.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Pour just over half of one can of sweetened condensed milk over the top.

Use the other half to make 7-Minute Microwave Caramels or Chocolate-Covered 7-Minute Microwave Caramels. You can make them in the microwave while the bars bake in the oven, and your house will smell like a bakery with caramels in the microwave and chocolate baking in the oven.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

The hardest part of the recipe is that you must let the bars set up for about 3 hours before slicing or you’ll have a hot mess. Let them cool on the counter for an hour, then place the pan in the fridge for at least two hours, or overnight. Lift out with the foil overhang and slice, making clean, pretty squares.

Alternatively, just dig in with spoons as soon as they’re cool enough from the oven if you don’t care about clean and neat squares. Your stomach doesn’t care if the bars were neat or not as you shoveled them down.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

The chocolate cookie portion is brownie-like in texture and taste, especially the centers. Rich, dense and fudgy.

The edges are chewier and denser and more like chewy-cookie edges. The perfect balance of soft and chewy.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

The Milky Ways provide texture and another dimension of chocolate flavor. Between the nougat in them, and the creamy, rich, sweetened condensed milk that thickens while baking, I was in gooey nougat heaven.

I adore sweet milk, especially baking with it in layered bars. It takes on creamy caramel and vanilla tones while baking, accentuating the caramel in the Milky Ways.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Supremely rich, intense, bold, dark, and perfect for impromptu chocolate cravings. So many layers of textures and flavors, all in one bite from chocolate to caramel to vanilla.

Layered bars are where it’s at. Definitely a new favorite.

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars

A new favorite layered bar that’s a chocolate cookie dough base, topped with Milky Way bars, chocolate cookie dough crumbles, and drenched with creamy sweetened condensed milk. The chocolate cookie portion is brownie-like in texture and taste, especially the centers. Rich, dense, soft, and fudgy. The edges are chewier like a cookie, creating a balance of soft and chewy. So many layers of flavors and textures from caramel to vanilla to chocolate in each bite. Less than 10 minutes to make without a mixer.


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted (1 stick)
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons brewed coffee (leftover from the morning brew is fine), optional but highly recommended
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder (I don’t sift)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch salt, optional and to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups diced Milky Way Bars (or substitute with Snickers, Peanut Butter Cups Butterfinger, Heath, Rolos, 3 Musketeers)
  • about 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk (just slightly more than half of one standard 14-ounce can)


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, melt the butter, about 1 minute. Allow the butter to cool momentarily so you don’t scramble the egg. Add the egg, sugars, coffee (water may be substituted but coffee is highly recommended to bring out the chocolate flavor; the bars do not taste like coffee at all), vanilla, and stir or whisk vigorously to combine, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, optional salt and stir until just incorporated. Dough will be quite thick and dense.
  4. Reserve about 2/3 cup dough; set aside. Turn remaining dough out into prepared pan, smoothing it lightly with a spatula. Evenly sprinkle the Milky Ways over the dough. Using your fingers, lightly crumble the reserved cookie dough over the top in irregular, marble-sized chunks. Pour sweetened condensed milk over the top (just eyeball slightly over half of the can as you pour slowly).
  5. Bake for about 27 to 30 minutes, or until center is mostly set. The sweetened condensed milk should nearly be set in all places, but possibly a little loose in the very center of the pan is okay. Edges will be firm, raised, and darker than the interior. Bars firm up more in pan as they cool; don’t overbake because you want these to stay soft and gooey, and cocoa powder is prone to turning dry.
  6. Allow bars to cool in pan for at least 3 hours before slicing and serving (use foil overhang to lift out). I recommend cooling for 1 hour on the counter, and at least 2 hours in the refrigerator, or overnight. This ensures clean, pretty cut marks. If you don’t care about that, bars may be consumed as soon as they are cool enough to eat; grab a spoon and dig in. Extra bars will keep airtight at room temperature for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  7. Bars may be kept gluten-free by replacing the flour with your favorite gluten-free baking blend. Take care any ingredients used are suitable for your dietary needs.
Only Eats

Related Recipes:

Peanut Butter Cup Cookie Dough Crumble Bars – A soft and chewy, dense, buttery cookie dough base, topped with peanut butter cups, and creamy, rich, sweetened condensed milk. A new favorite and an absolute must-make

White and Dark Chocolate Cream Cheese Chocolate Cake Bars – All the decadence of cheesecake, minus the work. Ready in less than a half hour

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Cookie Bars – All the taste and texture of cookies, minus the work of making individual cookies. Bar cookies are so much faster and these are soft, chewy, and loaded with chocolate chunks

Coconut Peanut Butter Magic Cake Bars – One of my favorite desserts of 2011, and similar to Seven Layer or Magic Bars, but a cake base is used instead of a graham cracker crust. Soft, dense, rich, chewy, tons of textures and flavors, and so easy

Cookie Butter Brown Sugar Streusel Bars – Soft, chewy and moist from the cookie butter and all brown sugar dough base that’s topped with crunchy streusel bits

Peanut Butter Cocoa Krispies Smores Bars – No need for campfires, make s’mores at home. These smores have three layers, including a cocoa-crispy cereal top layer that’s made with peanut butter

Caramel and Chocolate Gooey Bars (GF with Vegan adaptation) – The hardest part of this recipe is unwrapping the caramels. Easy, loaded with texture from the oats, and dripping with chocolate

Chocolate Peanut Butter Oat Squares (No-Bake, Vegan, GF) – A fast, easy, and texture-filled bar pairing two of my favorites, chocolate and peanut butter

Nanaimo Bars (No-Bake) – A triple layer bar that’s incredibly rich and satisfying. A chocolate-almond base, topped with a gooey middle, and finished with a layer of chocolate

Do you like Milky Way bars? Making pans of bars?

For straight up eating, I don’t generally reach for Milky Ways, but they’re wonderful to bake with because of their soft, malleable, texture compared to harder and crunchier Butterfinger or Heath Bars.

Pans of bars are one of my favorite things to make. Fast, easy, and I can be as creative as I want and not have to worry about something rising too much or not enough or spreading. No dough to chill, roll, knead or worry about. Just slap it in a pan and bake.

Thanks for the entries in the 24 Hours of Peanuts Cookbook and Prize Pack Giveaway and the Bestowed Healthy Care Package Delivery Giveaway

147 comments on “Milky Way Chocolate Cookie Crumble Bars”

  1. Now that’s an awesome way to get gooey chocolate caramel into a baked good. I know someone who would love these. Then again, who wouldn’t?! :D

  2. Pingback: Chocolate Recipes

  3. I’m definitely loving this gooey bar phase of yours too. These look so incredible.

  4. The PB version looked incredible, but holy chocolate these look amazing! The coffee is a great touch. I saw Ina Garten use it chocolate cupcakes for that extra “little something” and did it myself for a while, then somehow forgot about it. I love re-discovering/being reminded of tips like that!

    • I always use coffee in my chocolate. It was to the point in my book, my editors were like Averie, you say this every time about using coffee in any choc recipe. I’m like yes, I know, it’s important that people don’t skip it:)

  5. These sound so delicious! I was so obsessed with Milky Way bars in middle school…you are speaking to my inner 12 year old here! :) The addition of coffee is great- it always makes chocolate somehow taste more like chocolate!

  6. Snickers are another great chocolate bar infusion in these! Droolworthy.

  7. I haven’t tasted them but I’m in love with these too! I can tell just by the pictures that these bars were meant for me! I’m sure the peanut butter bars are fantastic, but these MilKy Way bars are pretty spectacular!

  8. I love how you take an awesome base recipe and tweak it into something equally amazing! With a name like milky way chocolate cookie crumble bars, how could they not be incredible?! :)

  9. I know what you mean about the baking phases. I’m recovering from a muffin baking craze, and jumping into cookies. Looks like you’re doing awesome with your bar baking streak! These look incredible. And I love that you add brewed coffee to the cookie dough, it does so much to intensify the flavor of chocolate baked goods. Well done!

  10. Averie, we’re all loving this bar phase you’re in too ;) Melty, chocolaty, count me in! I think its high time I made a cookie bar, and an easy one at that. I like your recipes because they only take under 30 mins- a total plus for me. I created a new lemon custard bar yesterday and it tastes great, but it was so darn fussy I’m not sure if its going on the blog. I know as a reader I’m happiest to see easy recipes- can always count on you for that. Thanks!

  11. OMG…these bars sound so, so, so good! I wish I could have one right now…lol!

  12. Oh yes, baking phases are wonderful for the baker, but not for the family;) Not in this case! I have an unhealthy obsession with peanut butter and those previous bars looked incredible and now you’ve added chocolate – I’m convinced there couldn’t be a better bar anywhere. I love bars (one batch and in the oven, unlike cookies) and this looks like the ultimate combo if chocolate, caramel, and gooey. My family would love it with Snickers. Averie, you rock!

  13. I don’t bake bars and cookies because I don’t think I’m good at it. Your blog offers so many variants and great cookie recipes…makes everything look relatively easy and beautiful. OK, I’ve just have to pick one to start from… this one, with a lovely hint of coffee, is definitely one of my favorite!

    • they’re the easiest things ever – you just start layering stuff in a pan and it pretty much will work out…unlike cakes, brownies, or cookies that are soooo much fussier; bars are the most forgiving of all! :)

  14. I’m all for a gooey bar phase :) Sounds like a good one! These bars look great. It’s so fun to work things like candy inti baked goods.

  15. I shouldn’t have read this so early in the morning. It’s barely 8:30 and now I’m craving one of these bars! Definitely pinning this one to make soon, Averie!

  16. Gooey bars. that’s a phase I want to be a part of. These look and sound incredible!!!

  17. These are gorgeous! I think I could live on ooey-gooey bars like this. And the Milky Ways? FAB!

  18. Your gooey bar phase is making me one very happy women.. :)

  19. Your gooey bar phase is making me one very happy woman.

  20. These bars look incredibly chewy, gooey, and delicious!

  21. This gooey bar phase that you’re in – delicious (and inspired!). I’m seriously craving several of these bars right now, please!! :D

  22. Love these! One can never have enough chocolate recipes! Pinning!

  23. I need one of these right now with my umpteenth cup of coffee! They look delicious, Averie!

  24. I’m not lying, when I first saw this recipe I gasped a little bit. It looks divine. I need some in my life right now!

  25. I LOVE the Mlky Way version. I love that milky way dark, I bet that would be fantastic in this.

    • If I had those, I would have used them! I refuse to buy candy JUST to bake with though. I use what I’ve collected on various candy-holidays, V-Day, Halloween, old Easter candy, etc to try to thin out my stash! lol

  26. I can totally see why this is your latest kick!!

  27. I am loving this gooey bar phase you are going through. And you’ve made SO many amazing chocolate recipes lately – the hot fudge, those Nutella PB Cookies, these gooey bars. Holy mackerol it’s like a chocolate/sugar dream around these parts lately. Well, it always is but recently I am just loving EVERYTHING Averie! The goo factor in these is making my head spin. And milky ways are, and always will be, one of my favorite candy bars! Guess what? I made a recipe yesterday using SNICKERS! Another favorite of mine. I bet these would be amazing with Snickers too. :) Oh! And the coffee in these? I’m dying. Perfect touch. I haven’t been drinking coffee as much after the fast but I will surely EAT it. ;) PINNING!

    • Thanks for the Pin! And I have quit coffee the past month since my cleanse! Have had 2 cups in a month!! I am doing so much better overall without the crash/burn/jittery/repeat. I love the taste but it’s not the best call for me. Sigh.

      And chocolate. Well, after a year of cooking with PB, and now all kinds of other cooking that I’m doing, having a totally DIFFERENT flavor to work with, i.e. chocolate, has just sort of happened. But I realize, my blog has been highly chocolate-dominated lately. Oh well :)

  28. Dand girl! You are killing me! I dido what Sally said!
    The first time you made these bars I went crazy and now I am going crazy all over again!! LOVE.

  29. OMG! I am in love with these! They look so yummy and I love the added coffee in them too! Perfect to wake up to!

  30. I love bars and I love Milky Ways!! Too bad were not neighbors :(

  31. You had me at ‘diced Milky Way bars’. I guess my ultimate weakness must be bar cookies/squares because just scrolling down this post had me making all sorts of inappropriate noises.

  32. Goooodness gracious, this is easily one of my favorite recipes I’ve seen from you! Aren’t layered bars the best? I feel like I have been in this phase for months and never want to leave, haha. It’s just so perfect, experiencing all those amazing flavors harmonized into one ultra gooey bar. I’m adoring this Milky Way adaptation!

  33. Such a great a versatile bar recipe. Love it :)

  34. Yum, these look so good! I love ooey gooey bars also! Thanks for sharing!

  35. Loving these! They look so great and love the addition of condensed milk as well, definitely be making these with some of my leftover candy bars!

  36. I think the only way to choose which bar I like best is to do a taste-off!

  37. I was never a huge Milky Way fan. I loved candy bars with nuts, caramel, and/or toffee. Oh heck, combine all 3 if you will!!

    • For regular eating, they’re just meh to me. But for baking, they are so squishy and so nice (unlike a Heath Bar, which I love on it’s own) but for baking, I could chip a tooth chomping down into baked-in chopped Heath

  38. I can see why you’re in love with these bars. I am in love with them and I want to marry them and have lots and lots of Milky Way babies with them. AMAZEBALLS.

  39. I get the same way when I realllllly love something–I have to try all sorts of different varieties. These look just as amazing as the peanut butter ones! Maybe a white chocolate variety in the future?? :)

  40. Averie – I just found your blog and everything looks so yummy! I can’t wait to start baking some of your goodies, but I am addicted to my kitchen scale. What weight measurement do you use for flour? I just want to get the same results! BTW, I love yoga too ;-)

    • I use King Arthur all-purpose flour (red bag) and honestly I don’t weigh it for 99% of my recipes. I maybe should, but I don’t. So I don’t know what to tell you. One cup, piled in semi-loosely, not SMOOSHED down, measuring flour how you’re supposed to with the scoop in method.

      These cookie bars though, not going to matter if you’re off by 1/4 cup. HIGHLY forgiving :)

  41. The more chocolate the better! These look amazing! I go through phases too…but mine never seem to be healthy phases. ;)
    Must find an occasion to make the gorgeous cookie bars.

  42. This gooey bar phase is my favorite. I totally want to dive face first into this pan of milky way heaven.

  43. It’s looking at recipes like this that make me wish I had no food allergies, that bars like this were calorie free and better for my health than zucchini pasta (which I do love, actually, but you get my drift) and that eating the whole pan might aid my digestion! LOL! At least I can drool over the pretty photos! :-D

    • Oh Michele, I know, there is way too much in here that if you have food allergies you can even work around. In 80% + of my recipes, there are substitutions one can make to keep it vegan or GF or even allergen-free based on certain allergies…but not these. Just too much going on!

  44. Sweetened condensed milk makes everything better, and these bars have just made the top of my “to-make” list. They look incredible! Pinned

  45. These look awesome and I can’t wait to try them but I’m a little confused on the amount of condensed milk. It says 1/2 cup, a little more than half a 14oz can. Should it be 1 cup? I think that is 8oz

    • Just go with slightly over half of one can. It’s more than 1/2 cup, probably in between 1/2 c and 3/4 cup. Sweetened cond milk is so sticky and thick that unless I absolutely have to measure it out, I don’t. I just eyeball. It’s quite a forgiving recipe so just go with slightly more than half a can and you’ll be just fine!

  46. Averie, you’ve so done it again! Who can resist the milky ways… this is so delish! Seriously, putting this one on my list…weekend baking list!

  47. I want to live with you just so I can learn how to make all these delicious bars. Girl, you have fantastic taste and baking skills :)

  48. Averie, you offer so many different goodies that it’s hard to choose. Which one is your favorite?

    • I can’t choose a favorite but these Milky Way Bars are excellent as are the Mini PB Cup version from 2 weeks ago. I have so many that I adore. Layered bars are my fave things in the whole world I think!

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