In what feels like a former lifetime, I frequented a ubiquitous coffee shop for after school study sessions and Saturday outings. My favorite snack was a cookie-bar hybrid, filled with chunks of chocolate and toffee. While those bars disappeared from the pastry case long ago (and my coffee tastes have evolved!), my love for chocolate and toffee has not ceased. These chewy toffee blondies dotted with chocolate chips are an improvement on the original bars I fell for – a generous amount of salt brings out the toffee essence, and plenty of vanilla imparts richness.
1 2/3 cups flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup toffee bits
Preheat oven to 350°F and coat a 13 x 9-inch baking dish generously with nonstick spray. Whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl. Beat butter and brown sugar in a large mixer bowl on medium speed until pale and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla until combined. Reduce speed to low and gradually add flour mixture; beat just until incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips and toffee bits.
Scrape batter into prepared baking dish and use a sheet of parchment to press dough evenly across bottom. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until edges are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached. Remove from oven to cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Just before cutting into bars, move pan to the freezer and chill for 15 minutes; cut into squares with a sharp knife. Store in an airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.
Yield – 24 bars (serving size: 1 bar)
Calories – 180
Carbs – 23