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After Halloween Cookie Bars, made with leftover Halloween candies.

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After Halloween Cookie Bars

Halloween is a holiday we all seem to enjoy! The stores display their Halloween merchandise, and all the ghosts, goblins and superheroes costumes make their appearance. Your little monster, princess, dragon, ghost, zombie or any other kind of ghoul chosen for the night, will soon be wending his or her way through your neighborhood doing the traditional calls of “Trick-or-Treat” at each door. A load of candy bars are given out, chocolate, white chocolate, chocolate with nuts, crunchy, crispy, it all goes in the bag. Most parents these days only allow their kids to trick-or-treat where the people are well known to them. That’s a good thing, but even then they get an awful lot of candy, and it’s all coming into YOUR home in those trick or treat bags.

Trick or treat bags, when filled to the brim, are more candy than one child can eat at once.

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You’re a good parent, so you’re not letting them eat it all in one night

Some kids, if not well supervised, get a sick tummy from all the sugar and end up having a bag of candy that makes them sick just looking at it. Which means the parent is doing double-duty in the bathroom with the child. Which means almost every household has leftover Halloween candy after trick-or-treat is done. I also know some households have NONE left, but that’s another story we won’t talk about, huh parents? (tsk, tsk!)

Mama always said never to throw away food, even candy!

So what can you do to use up that leftover candy in a recipe that the whole family will love? Here’s an idea, make After Halloween Cookie Bars! They’re simple to do because they begin with a plain yellow cake mix to which you add some other things like eggs, brown sugar, butter and chopped up candy bars. A treat that’s not tricky, just simple, easy and yummy! And don’t feel you have to limit these bars to one type of candy, you can use several different ones in the same batch.

My family loves these, almost more than the original candy (well, not quite!) and look forward to them each year. I hope you’ll find this recipe handy and that you’ll enjoy these cookies too. Another great advantage to making these cookie bars is that they freeze well, and later on when their tummies have calmed down, they’re more appreciated as the treat they are!

Candy Bar Suggestions

These candy bars have always worked well for me, but you may have other preferences. By all means try your own choices in these cookies.

  • Snickers
  • Milky Way
  • Almond Joy
  • Mounds
  • 5th Avenue
  • Clark Bar
  • Hershey (with or without almonds)
  • Payday
  • Butterfinger
  • Chunky

Choose Your Candy Wisely

You might also want to toss in some raisins or chopped dates for extra nutrition, but do keep it candy bar oriented. After all, that’s what this page is all about, using up that leftover Halloween candy. Below is a photo of some of the candies your child may bring home on Halloween. Choose wisely, not all candies do well in these cookie bars.

A mixture of what your child may bring home.

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Storable and Freezable – Great Convenience

As I mentioned before, these bar cookies store well and they’re freezable. Make them really convenient and wrap each bar separately and slip them in the freezer for later use. When you want a snack, just take them out about 30 minutes before eating. It’s Halloween all over again, even next spring, if they last that long! They go well in school or work lunchboxes too.

After Halloween Cookie Bars

Cook Time
Prep time: 4 min
Cook time:  40 min
Ready in:  Approximately 1 hour, 44 min
Yields: 24 bars


  • 1 Pkg Plain Yellow Cake Mix
  • 1 stick or 8 Tablespoons Butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Large Eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup Chopped Candy Bars, with or without nuts
  • 1/2 cup Raisins or Chopped Dates (optional)
  • Nonstick baking spray


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spray nonstick baking spray on a 9X13 baking dish.
  3. Put cake mix, brown sugar, melted butter and eggs in a large mixing bowl and blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute.
  4. Stop the mixer. Scrape down the sides of bowl, and resume blending for 1 more minute.
  5. With a spatula, fold in the candy bar pieces until well distributed through the batter.
  6. Pour the batter into the baking dish and smooth the top, being careful the batter reaches all sides and corners of the pan.
  7. Bake the mixture until it’s golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center, comes out clean. Approximately 40-45 minutes.
  8. Remove the dish and place on a wire rack to cool completely, about 1 hour.
  9. Cut into 24 bars. You can then wrap these bars separately, for use in lunch boxes, as a snack, or just because they’re good! These bars store and freeze very well. If you freeze them, allow to thaw for at least 30 minutes before eating for the best flavor.

They smell so good, I can hardly wait.

Well, there’s a slight problem with that! You have to wait for them to cool completely, for good reason. Once they’re finished, you must not cut them for at least one hour, allowing them to cool completely in the dish, upon a wire rack if possible, to allow air circulation all around the baking dish.This will prevent any soggy section. If you’ve done the baking and smelled that tantalizing aroma the entire time, you’ll be wanting to cut them right away, but don’t do it. You’ll be rewarded for your patience with a great cookie bar.

I use a Kitchen Aid mixer like this one.

I don’t know how many hand mixers I burned up on cookie dough before I figured out I needed a stronger, more durable stand mixer. I finally found one that didn’t cost an outrageous amount, but would perform through that tough cookie dough project without burning up.

KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red

“Fess Up Now! Leave me a comment telling me:

What do you do with your child’s leftover Halloween candy bars?”

    • I put it in the freezer and allow the kids to have it on special occasions.
    • I put it in the freezer and sneak it when the kids aren’t around.
    • I’d use it for something if I knew what! (How about this recipe? grin!)
    • Leftover Halloween Candy? What’s that?
    • We don’t do trick-or-treating at all.
    • None of the above.

This is the kind of baking dish I use for these cookies.

It measures 9X13, big enough to hold this recipe and produce a great After Halloween Cookie Bar. You may already have one of these on hand, and if so that will do just fine. If not, you know where to find it, right here!

Pyrex Bakeware 4.8 Quart Oblong Baking Dish, Clear

Allergy Cautions

Some folks for allergic or dietary reasons, should not eat these cookies. If you have diabetes, a nut allergy, a gluten intolerance or any other conditions that would prevent you or anyone who might be eating and enjoying these cookies safely, please do not make them.