Strawberry Cookie Bars with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

My daughter loves strawberry desserts and the bars were an instant hit with her.

And anything with cream cheese frosting is automatically a head above the rest in my book.

Strawberry Cookie Bars with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting - Soft, chewy, and bursting with strawberry flavor!! The frosting and sprinkles make these easy, goof-proof bars taste even better! Perfect for parties and holidays!!

The recipe is very similar to my recipe Strawberry Cake Mix Cookies but made in bar form. I made those cookies when she was starting her first day of kindergarten at a new school and now she’s finishing third grade. Four years later and time just has flown by.

The bars are incredibly easy to make because I used strawberry cake mix. Sometimes you need shortcuts and the cake mix gives the bars exactly the consistency I want. Soft, chewy, and ironically not cakey.

MY OTHER RECIPES

Strawberry Cookie Bars with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting - Soft, chewy, and bursting with strawberry flavor!! The frosting and sprinkles make these easy, goof-proof bars taste even better! Perfect for parties and holidays!!

You don’t mix up the cake mix as if you were making a cake. Instead, simply add one stick of butter and an egg before pressing the dough into a pan. It’ll be thick and dense, but the softer the butter is the easier the dough comes together.

The sweet strawberry flavor pairs perfectly with the tangy vanilla cream cheese frosting. I love that the frosting layer is nearly as thick as the bars. The bars are perfect for Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, bridal and baby showers, and put me in the mood for spring and summer.

Strawberry Cookie Bars with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting - Soft, chewy, and bursting with strawberry flavor!! The frosting and sprinkles make these easy, goof-proof bars taste even better! Perfect for parties and holidays!!

Strawberry Cookie Bars with Cream Cheese Frosting

The bars are incredibly easy to make because I used strawberry cake mix and it gives the bars exactly the consistency I want. Soft, chewy, and ironically not cakey. You don’t mix up the cake mix as if you were making a cake. Instead, simply add one stick of butter and an egg before pressing the dough into a pan. It’ll be thick and dense, but the softer the butter is the easier the dough comes together. The sweet strawberry flavor pairs perfectly with the tangy vanilla cream cheese frosting. The bars are perfect for Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, bridal and baby showers, and put me in the mood for spring and summer.

Ingredients:

Bars

  • one 15.25-ounce box strawberry cake mix (try Betty Crocker or Pillsbury, Duncan Hines is larger but likely ok)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, very well softened
  • 1 large egg

Frosting

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened (lite okay)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar (sifted if it’s particularly lumpy)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • sprinkles, optional and to taste

Directions:

  1. Bars – Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×13-inch pan with aluminum foil, spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. To a large bowl (or to the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment), add the cake mix, butter, egg, and stir together by hand or beat with a handheld electric mixer on medium-high speed until all ingredients are combined. (Do not use the ingredients listed on the box or follow those directions because you are not making cake; use the ingredients and directions listed in my recipe.) Dough will be thick.
  3. Turn dough out into prepared pan using your fingertips or a spatula to help press it into corners. Press lightly with a spatula to create an even, flat layer. It’ll be on the thiner side.
  4. Bake for about 12 minutes, or until center is set and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs but no batter. Allow bars to cool in pan on a wire rack for at least one hour. Make sure bars are completely cooled before frosting them or the frosting will melt.
  5. Frosting – To the bowl of a stand mixer using the paddle attachment) add the cream cheese, butter, and beat with an electric mixer on high-speedy until fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  6. Slowly add the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla, and beat until smooth and incorporated, about 2 minutes.
  7. Turn frosting out over bars and spread into a smooth, flat layer using a spatula or knife.
  8. Optionally add sprinkles, to taste.
  9. Bars will keep airtight at room temp for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to 1 week. I’m comfortable storing items with cream cheese frosting at room temp, but if you’re not, store in the fridge noting bars will be more prone to drying out in the fridge.
Only Eats

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24 comments on “Strawberry Cookie Bars with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting”

  1. I cannot believe how EASY this recipe is. And I love the colors. Very nice. I can just imagine the joy of your daughter having tried this. Have a great weekend.

  2. It might be cliche, but they grow crazy fast. My oldest is going to be taller than I am before I can blink. And his little sisters are shooting up, too!
    All three of mine would go wild for these! They look incredible and so super kid friendly!

    • You know that the days can sometimes be long but the years are so fast with kids. It’s like…whoa, all of a sudden they’re nearly as tall as you are! And yes these are super kid-friendly!

  3. These look so easy! I also love that thick layer of cream cheese frosting and anything with sprinkles brings out the kid in me. It’s definitely hard to believe how the time flies….I remember reading about Skylar when she was a toddler!

  4. I love the pretty pink color. My wife will love this. Thanks for the recipe.

  5. 50/50 cake/frosting ratio = WINNING the cake game!!

    I love your bar recipes.  Now, if I didn’t live alone….because if I made a full recipe of these, they would go down in a day.  Easy.  

  6. I’m transitioning to buying clothes in adult size small for my son.  It was more fun shopping when he was in love with dinosaurs.  

    You know I love a good cookie bar recipe!  This would be fun for a school birthday treat, which my daughter is still young enough to need (not for long, though). 

    • That’s great that your daughter can bring treats in. My daughter cannot even bring in ANYTHING that’s food. They can bring in stickers. Or erasers. To distribute on their birthdays…fun. Not.

  7. These are so pretty!! I love all the pink and fun colors, obviously. And I have a strawberry cookie next week too, haha OF COURSE. But it’s different enough. :)

  8. These look absolutely amazing!! As a college student/blogger, I don’t necessarily have the most time to go experimenting around in the kitchen, and this recipe seems easy enough to make without sacrificing flavor or cuteness! *squeals with delight* I will be sure to try making these as a Valentine’s Day gift for someone special! <3

  9. Sprinkles!! :) I love how these look Averie! So pretty!

  10. These are SO pretty… and I completely LOVE how easy they are to whip up!!

  11. These bars not only look soft and delicious, but very pretty too!

  12. The cream cheese frosting ratio is on point. Love them, and they make me want spring/ summer too! Although we’re already back up to 90F on tues here in the OC! 

  13. Yum, another recipe my daughter would love. These would be perfect for V-days!! 

  14. Soft and chewy bars are what I always go for. These are absolutely adorable! And I never say no to cream cheese frosting.

  15. This piece of Heaven is healthy? Wow, great!

  16. so yay! my kids will love this..

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