M&M Christmas Cookie Bars – loaded with festive M&M’s and chocolate chips, these internet famous cookie bars have been a reader favorite since 2016.
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M&M Christmas Cookie Bars
These cookie bars were the most popular Christmas cookies on Pinterest for several years and have been featured on Food Network, Country Living, Oprah Magazine, and Good Morning America. They get rave reviews and are so easy to make!
The texture of the M&M’S with the mini chocolate chips and white chocolate chips is so good. Perfect for a party or holiday gift giving. These make a big 9×13 pan of rich and delicious M&M cookie bars. Depending on how you cut them, they can make 24 bars all the way up to 36 bars. I sprinkle a few white chocolate chips on top just before baking to make them look more festive.
M&M Christmas Cookie Bar Ingredients
- Salted Butter – you can use unsalted butter if that’s what you have on hand. Just increase salt in recipe by 1/4 teaspoon.
- Sugar – white granulated sugar
- Golden Brown Sugar – firmly packed
- Large Eggs – using extra large eggs will result in a slightly softer cookie dough
- Pure Vanilla Extract
- All-Purpose Flour – I always buy Gold-Medal All Purpose Flour for recipe consistency
- Baking Soda – make sure the baking soda is fresh for best results
- Christmas M&M’s – I like to buy these as soon as I see them in the store. Sometimes they are hard to find when the holiday gets closer.
- Mini Chocolate Chips – the Nestle mini chocolate chips are semi sweet and add great texture to the cookie bars
- White Chocolate Chips – the Nestle Premier white morsels don’t brown as quickly as some off the other brands
How to Make M&M Christmas Cookie Bars
- Preheat oven to 350º and line a 9×13 aluminum cake pan with foil. Spray foil with non stick cooking spray.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, or using a large bowl and a hand mixer, beat butter and sugars together.
- Add eggs and vanilla followed by flour, salt and baking soda.
- Stir in mini chocolate chips and M&M’S.
- Transfer cookie dough to foil lined pan and spread evenly.
- Press additional M&M’s and chocolate chips into top and bake.
Recipe Tips and Updates
- When measuring the flour, make sure to use the scoop and level method. Use a spoon to fill the measuring cup, then level with a butter knife. This ensures that there is not too much flour packed into the measuring cup and keeps the dough from having too much flour.
- When I initially published the recipe, I used a 9×13 glass pyrex dish. Over the years, I have found that a 9×13 aluminum cake pan bakes more evenly.
- I don’t reccomend using a disposable baking pan as they don’t cook evenly. When taking them to go, I will bake them in my regular pan and use the foil to transfer them to a disposable pan after they cool.
- Adding too many M&M’s to the cookie dough or to the top of the bars can cause them to bake unevenly and not set in the middle.
- You can use parchment paper instead of foil. I prefer the foil because the cookie dough is thick and the bars are heavy. The foil stays in place better than parchment paper and feels stronger when lifting the bars out for cutting.
- 2 sticks salted butter at room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup golden brown sugar firmly packed
- 3 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups Christmas M&M's plus more for topping
- 1 cup mini chocolate chips plus more for topping
- 1/2 cup white chocolate chips for topping
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Line a 9x13 aluminum pan with foil. Leave some overhang to make removal easier.
Spray foil generously with nonstick cooking spray.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar together until fluffy.
Add in eggs and vanilla extract and continue to beat.
Lower speed of mixer and add flour, baking soda and salt and mix until combined.
Add M&M's and mini chocolate chips and give a final stir, reserving some M&M's, mini chocolate chips and white chocolate chips for topping cookie bars.
Transfer cookie dough to prepared baking dish.
Press additional M&M'S, mini chocolate chips and white chocolate chips into top of cookie dough.
Bake 35 minutes on middle rack of oven, or until cookie bars are light golden brown and just set. Do not over bake. Cookie bars will continue to bake as they cool.
Let cool completely and cut. Store tightly covered.
Please tag me on Instagram if you make these cookie bars. I would love to see them!
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This recipe looks so festive and delicious! I wanted to let you know that I include this in a holiday recipe round-up with a link back. If not acceptable, please let me know.
Can u use parchment paper instead of foil ? Andi
That should be fine, the cookie dough is pretty thick though so I imagine it will be harder to spread on the parchment paper. The foil is stable in the pan, and parent paper would be loose. I’m sure it would work, just a bit trickier.
These cookie bars look so good! If i don’t have a mixer, can I still make it if I mix it by hand?
Sure, but that would be a lot of dough to mix by hand! Maybe a hand mixer would work better for you!
Can these be frozenm
I haven’t tried it yet, but it’s just cookie dough so I don’t see any reason not to!
I’m in Australia and keen to make this for my sons daycare teachers for Christmas. Can you please tell me how much a stick of butter is in weight.
I found this on Nigella’s website. Hope it helps!
1 stick of butter is 113 grams 🙂
Delicious! Making these for the second time right now. Thanks for sharing!
Awesome! Thanks, Megan!
Love these! Found them to have a bit too much chocolate for us but we will just put a bit less next time! the best cookies bars so far.
Can I use the dough to make cookies? Thank you
I haven’t tried, so I’m not sure. The dough is pretty soft so I suspect they would spread too much.
I found that my cookies were getting too brown too fast. So after about 20 minutes of baking I covered the whole pan with foil and finished baking them. That seemed to work out! Very yummy and festive.
These are so cute. I had seen holiday M and Ms but couldn’t think of what to do with them. Great idea.
Will these hold up just like cookies in an air tight container? Was going to slice & store just like my regular cookies.
Yes! Air tight container is perfect!
These are delicious!!!!
Would these hold their shape if i used a cookie cutter on after baking? I want to cut them into heart shapes or is it too crumbly?
I haven’t tried using a cookie cutter. Please let me know if you try it!
Made these and they are delicious, but are you sure you only used a 9×13 pan? Mine came out 2 & 1/2 inch thick! Had to re-bake the middle. Will definitely make again!
I used a standard sized 9×13 glass Pyrex dish.Thank you!
These are so delicious! I couldn’t find the holiday M&Ms so I just used the holiday chocolate chips instead, and they still came out great. My students couldn’t get enough of them!
I baked 6 batches of these and NONE of them came out right. I followed the recipe EXACTLY each time, aside from having to bake them for 65+ minutes instead of 35 minutes and the middles still came out raw. I have. O idea what I’m doing wrong.
What kind of pan are you using? Another reader was using a disposable pan and was having issues with it baking unevenly. I recommend a glass 9×13 baking dish for best results. Hope that helps!
I am having the same problem- with a brand new oven. Frustrating!
Maybe your oven isn’t calibrated correctly. Things we’re baking right for me cause my oven was 50° hotter than the setting I wanted. I bought a thermometer to hang in the oven now I have no issues.
Do you use unsalted or salted butter?
I generally use salted because that’s what I have on hand, but I’ve used both kinds of butter in this recipe and they both worked fine.
I can’t wait to make them!! I wanted to know if they would still taste as great if I made them ahead of time and seal them up?
They can be stored just like freshly baked cookies!
Some butter sticks are only a half a cup while others are a full cup. I was wondering for this recipe do I use 2-1 cup sticks or 2- 1/2 cup sticks? Thank you.
Two 1/2 cup sticks. A total of one cup of softened butter.
I tried baking these twice in a corningware dish and it came out like chocolate soup both times… I doubled the cooking time and still no luck. Disappointed
I’m sorry you are having trouble. Are you making any substitutions? If not, I would double check the ingredients. Is your cookie dough before baking thick like the one pictured?
Do you have to use aluminum foil in the baking dish? Could you use nothing at all or parchment paper?
When I make these I never line my pan and they come out just fine.
These look so yummy!! I am thinking of shipping these to my family for Christmas. Just curious if you thought these would ship well? I plan on making them on a Sunday and shipping them Monday.
Has anyone tried these gluten free yet? If so, how did it turn out?
Can you make the dough ahead of time and let sit to room temp before baking? I have to do things in steps to optimize my time.
For sure! That’s a great time saver!
I made these with a Thanksgiving twist using Reese’s Pieces and they turned out delicious! I always love the recipes this blog releases!
Sounds so good! Thank you, Shanna!
These are so delish!!!
I made the 4th of July ones, and they were a hit. I plan on making these for Christmas too!!
Will these get stale if they are baked a week ahead of serving them? I’m not sure if they keep more like a cookie or more like a brownie. Thanks!
Can you just grease the pan instead of lining it with foil and cut them out like you would a brownie?
Yes that’s what I did. Cut just fine
I’m not sure why so many people are having issues. This is just your basic cookie dough recipe with a bit more flour and eggs…maybe chec your oven temperature with a thermometer.lb I have found that’s usually the issue.
I’m traveling over the holidays and want to freeze these after baking. Has anyone tried this?
Is the dough supposed to be sticky. It was hard to spread and stuck to the wooden spoon.
I make these bars every year for the holidays! Everyone loves them!
We make these often..my kids love them!! Love the combination of m&m’s & chocolate chips!
Katerina @ diethood .com
Oh my, these look SO GOOD!! I would love one!
Oh my goodness, how yummy do these look! The most perfect dessert for Christmas!
My kids are going to go crazy for these! Love how festive they are!
Made these twice and both times without the white chocolate chips( yuck)….. my family really likes these bars. This time i made them in a longer pan so they came out like bars instead of bready, cakey bars. Awesome… i add pecans with the M&M’s only and they are great!!! Thank you for the recipe.
Hi! I just made these and they are so yummy! Question though… Instead of using a 9×13 pan, I would like to get a baking sheet out that measures 17 x 12.5. I was going to spread it out in the pan so I know they will turn out thinner. What would you suggest for the cooking time in the oven?
Awesome! Cooking time would be hard to say, I would start checking at 20 minutes.
Such a really amazing treat for the holidays!
Delicious! I love these! My whole family loves these! Have you ever used the mint Christmas m&m’s for this? I bet that would also be fantastic!!
I tried making these and my son loved them. They turned out delicious!!!
Hello! Thank you for your recipe. I am making these for 40 people and I was trying to save some money by using mini marshmellow vs white chocolate chips but I have a question. Should I pit the marshmellow in a little before the cookies are done or in with the dough. Thank you!
I think I would just skip the white chocolate chips and marshmallows all together.
Hi! The recipe says 2 sticks of butter which in a previous comment you clarified it was 2 1/2 sticks which is 1 while stuck. I’m a little confused as the video shows 3 1/2 sticks being used. Please advise.
I’m sorry, I’m not sure where the confusion came from. It is 2 sticks of butter, the video shows two sticks of butter as well.
I made these recently for my work Xmas lunch, they went down a treat.
I had to find conversions for US to UK though.
I used normal M&M’s as couldn’t get Christmas ones in the UK.
These look amazing! If I am to use a 8×8 pan in two batches, how long will I need to bake them for?
I’m sorry, I haven’t tried baking them like that so I can’t say for sure. I would start checking at 20 minutes.
Thanks for the advice!
This is literally the best way to make cookies for a large group, and they just taste so amazing! thank you so much for sharing this recipe
These bars are just perfect for the holidays. They taste so good, everybody loved them, and are easy to make.
When I have to bring a dessert somewhere, I bring these!! They are always a hit & so chewy & delicious!!