Cookies by Bess’ Walnut Bars are filled with all my favorite cookie ingredients! Coconut, walnuts, brown sugar, and vanilla…couple all that with butter and flour and you’ve got a wonderfully tasty bar cookie simply called, Walnut Bars!
Walnut Bars have a thin cookie crust that is actually a bit crumbly as it’s made with just butter and flour. But no fear, the super sticky and sweet topping mixture (coconut, brown sugar, vanilla, eggs) spread on top helps hold everything together. The confectioner’s sugar frosting is the perfect way to top off these bar cookies.
I was a bit worried all the sugars together would make the cookies too sweet…but again, no need to worry. Grandma Bess’ Walnut Bars recipe is perfectly sweet, nutty, and chewy.
I’m rating Walnut Bars 2-stars for cookie baking difficulty. All the steps and layers require a bit more effort, time, and attention.
After pulling all my ingredients together, I got started with the butter and flour.
I wasn’t sure what was going to happen with the flour and butter for the crust. After blending in my Kitchen Aid mixer, I ended up with almost a powder like mixture.
I poured the crust mixture into the greased 9 x 13” pan…
And started patting it to form the crust. There was just enough of the mixture for a thin layer of crust, I tried best I could to spread pat the mixture evenly.
Now, the crust was ready to bake!
While the crust was baking, I began mixing the topping.
After adding the eggs, the topping came together and was ready to spread on top of the crust.
The crust firmed up a bit after baking, but still seemed a bit fragile. I let crust sit for a bit a few minutes before spreading the topping, to make sure it didn’t crumble or pull apart.
But don’t wait too long as the warmth helps to melt the topping mixture a bit which makes it easier to spread. To get started, I dropped a heaping spoonful of the topping mixture on the crust and used a small spatula.
I quickly realized it would be easier to put all the topping in the pan at the same time. Not only was it easier to spread the topping in general, it was easier to spread evenly.
The bars were now ready for the second baking.
While the Walnut Bars were baking, I made the Confectioner’s Sugar Frosting. Grandma Bess uses this frosting with several other recipes in Cookies by Bess (Date and Nut Bars, Banana Bars). It’s a simple glaze type frosting that adds a nice touch of sweetness.
The Walnut Bars baked up nicely. I have to admit, these aren’t the prettiest cookies right out of the oven. Maybe this is why Grandma Bess suggested the frosting?!?!
I let the Walnut Bars cool for about 10 minutes before frosting. I wanted them warm so the frosting glaze would spread easily.
While making the Confectioner’s Sugar Frosting, I was careful to keep it thin so it would pour easily…
And end up looking like a light glaze versus a heavy frosting. I thought this was best as I knew the cookies themselves were going to be very sweet.
Finally, I added some chopped walnuts.
Grandma Bess did it again! What a beautiful bar cookie!
Just look at all that texture and sweetness!
Walnut Bars are a wonderfully sweet, nutty, chewy, bar cookie that will satisfy any one’s sweet tooth! A light crust, the perfect combination of coconut, brown sugar, and nuts; and a just right sweet frosting to pretty the bars up.
I am sure Walnut bars will amaze your family and friends. I hope you try them!
½ cup butter
1 cup sifted flour
½ cup dry coconut
1 ½ cups brown sugar sifted and packed
1 cup chopped walnuts
2 Tbs flour
¼ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 eggs, well beaten
1 ½ tsp vanilla
Blend butter and flour well and pat evenly in a greased pan (9×13 inches). Bake at 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes.
Mix all ingredients well and spread on baked layer. Bake in 350 degree oven…about 25 minutes. Cool. Frost with Confectioner’s Sugar Frosting and sprinkle with ground nuts.
Confectioner’s Sugar Frosting
1 Tbs & 1 tsp butter
¼ cup milk
About 3 to 3 ¼ cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
1 tsp vanilla
Add butter to the milk. Add sugar gradually to make frosting right for spreading. Add extract and mix well. Add food coloring at desired.
Makes about 4 - 5 dozen bar cookies
Cookie Category: Bar