Celebrate Memorial Day and 4th of July with these fun and festive no flour red, white, & blue cookie bars. Cookie bars with no flour and loaded with peanut butter, oats, chocolate chips, and m&m’s. This holiday dessert recipe will be the hit of the BBQ. Makes an entire cookie sheet so there is plenty to serve a crowd.
4th of July and Memorial Day is my favorite food holiday! I love the bright colors of red, white, and blue and all the ways you can make the food festive. It’s also a BBQ and picnic holiday, which is the best because who doesn’t love a BBQ with all sorts of yummy food and treats?!
I’ve been thinking about red, white, & blue desserts constantly lately…. Yes, I probably need a more exciting life if that is what I think about 🙂 Last year I shared this red, white, & blue Patriotic Jello Pie! It’s no bake and will probably be the most festive food for your celebration. Or these American Flag Sugar Cookie Bars are another favorite. A sheet pan of sugar cookie bars decorated with m&m’s to look like the flag.
During one of my
many few shopping trips to Target I saw the red, white, & blue M&M’s and I knew that I had to make something with them. What better treat to make than one of the most popular recipes on the blog, these no flour monster cookie bars. No flour monster cookie bars are a family favorite and a reader favorite. People love these bars.
I can see why. Loaded with oats, peanut butter, chocolate, and m&m’s. In my world, there is no better combo. I originally created the recipe using both regular whole oats and quick oats. But, this time around I only had quick oats and guess what? I actually preferred the texture with all quick oats. So thick, chewy, so much texture and festive.
For a truly gluten-free dessert be sure and use the gluten-free oats. The quick oats add so much texture to these bars. I love the quick oats because they have a finer, smaller texture compared to the larger old-fashioned oats. If you prefer the two kinds of oats, then follow the original recipe which calls for 3 cups whole oats + 1 1/2 cups quick oats. Either way is delicious.
These bars are also a favorite because the recipe makes an entire cookie sheet. Which means there will plenty to serve to everyone, or plenty for people to have 2 or 3 of these bars. Just ask my son…. I had to hide the leftovers from him 🙂
How to make NO FLOUR RED, WHITE, & BLUE COOKIE BARS
- In a large bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together butter, peanut butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar. Be sure and beat it for 2-3 minutes until it’s fluffy and lighter in color.
- Mix in eggs and vanilla extract.
- Now it’s time to add the good stuff. Quick oats, chocolate chips, and m&m’s. Give it a good mix and then press into a cookie sheet.
TIPS FOR MAKING NO FLOUR RED, WHITE, & BLUE COOKIE BARS
- It’s so important to beat the butter & peanut butter mixture for 2-3 minutes. You want it to be much lighter in color. Two minutes might seem like awhile, but you really want to make sure the mixture is fluffy and pale in color.
- The cook time on these bars is 17-19 minutes. I have never, and I have made these dozens of times, cooked these for longer than 17 minutes. They won’t look completely done but I promise you, as they sit and cool in the pan they will come together and be perfection. Just trust me on this.
- Be sure and allow time for the bars to cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting and serving. Or if you don’t mind a cookie that falls apart but has that gooey warm chocolate, then eat one warm. So yummy!
- I always like to save some extra chocolate chips and m&m’s to sprinkle on top of the bars before they go in the oven.
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter (natural peanut butter does not work well)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 4 1/2 cups quick oats
- 1 cup chooclate chips
- 1 1/2 cups red, white, & blue m&m's
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a cookie sheet (12" x 17") by spraying with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, or bowl of stand mixer with the paddle attachment, combine butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and peanut butter. Mix until fluffy and pale in color. About 2-3 minutes.
Mix in the eggs and vanilla extract.
Add the baking soda, quick oats, chocolate chips, and m&m's. Mix to combine together.
** If wanted, reserve some chocolate chips and m&m's to press on top of the bars before baking.
Dump cookie dough onto the prepared cookie sheet and spread out. The dough is sticky so you may want to spray your hands with cooking spray to make it easier. You can also drop big spoonfuls of the dough all over the cookie sheet and then spread out. This makes it easier instead of doing one big pile in the middle of the cookie sheet.
Gently press the reserved chocolate chips and m&m's on top of the cookie bars.
Cook for 17-19 minutes. The edges should be golden brown and pulling away from the sides of pan, but the middle may still look slightly undercooked. That's ok. Let the bars cool in the pan for at least 30 minutes, and then cut into squares.
To make cutting the bars easy use a pizza cutter.
Some readers have reduced the sugars in this recipe with good results. I have always used the amount called for and we love it.
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