Leftover Halloween Candy Cookies (Candy Bar Cookies)

My perfect chocolate chip cookies, studded with chunks of candy bars, M&Ms, and candy galore. A perfect way to get creative with all of your Halloween candy or as a gift for that candy lover in your life! 

These start with a batch of my favorite cookie dough and chop up some candy. I like to use candy with all different kids of textures, from crunchy M&MS and KitKat bars, to smooth peanut butter cups, chewy caramel filled candy bars and sweet chunks of candy corn. 

These cookies have a nice chewy, soft center with perfectly crisp edges, and the bits of candy in every bite add a whole new dimension of flavor. Even add chopped nuts or extra chocolate chips for an added treat. Then, mix it all together.

Spoon balls of dough onto cookie sheet and pop in the fridge for a few hours or over night, allowing the dough to rest. Refrigerating the dough allows the flavors to develop and time for the dough to absorb the moisture for a flavorful, hydrated and firm dough yielding rich, golden brown cookies that bake up thicker and more evenly with a better consistency, and not too much spreading. 

TIP: I like to add a few extra candy chunks on top so they bake up nice and pretty.

 If you do not plan on making all of the cookies at once, you can wrap and freeze dough balls for later use. Cookie dough can be refrigerated for up to 48 hours or frozen to be used in smaller batches. I love freezing the dough so I can pop a few in the toaster oven, for fresh out of the oven, homemade cookies any time. 

Once the dough has chilled, bake until edges just start to turn golden brown and enjoy!

Candy Bar Cookies

Yield: about 4 dozen cookies* (Recipe can easily be cut in half)
*Click here for a small-batch (8 cookie) version

  • 3 3/4 cups (450g) all-purpose flour, weighed or spooned and leveled
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda 
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick/4oz) unsalted butter, melted and browned
  • 3/4 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks/6oz) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 1/3 cup (256g) packed dark brown sugar
  • 1 cup (192g) granulated white sugar 
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature 
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract 
  • 3 cups candy of your choice (chopped candy bar, M&M's. candy corns, Reeses Pieces, chopped nuts, etc.)

Melt one stick (1/2 cup) of butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the butter eventually foams, bubbles and then turns a light brown color, giving off a nutty aroma, about 3-5 minutes. Set aside to cool. Click here for step by step instructions on how to brown butter.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt; set aside. With an electric mixer, beat together the cooled brown butter, softened butter, brown sugar, and white sugar, on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. Scrape down bottom and sides of bowl. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. 

Slowly add the flour mixture, on low speed, just until incorporated.  With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, mix in candy. Scoop dough into balls, 3 tablespoons each, cover, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 3 days. Dough balls may also be frozen for later use. 

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place dough balls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, 2 inches apartBake for about 9-12 minutes, until edges just start to turn golden brown. Do not over bake. Cool on baking sheet for 3-5 minutes, before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve immediately, or store at room temperature in an air tight container. 

Notes for perfect cookies
  • Browning, your melted butter is highly recommended. It adds an incredible caramel flavor to the cookies that makes them extra special.
  • Refrigerating the dough allows the flavors to develop and time for the dough to absorb the moisture for a flavorful, hydrated and firm dough yielding rich, golden brown cookies that bake up thicker with less spreading. 
  • If you do not plan on making all of the cookies at once, the unbaked cookie dough balls can be can be placed in a ziploc bag and refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3-4 months, to be baked in desired quantities. When baking cookie dough balls straight from the freezer, add about 1 minute to the baking time.
  • Baked cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days or frozen for up to a few months.