As you might expect, these bars are insanely sweet. They’re also super easy and delightfully festive. But definitely not for the faint of heart or the pre-diabetic.
The “gooey” of the title stems from the layer of sweetened condensed milk and white chocolate chips that sits between two layers of what I might describe as cake-mix-shortbread. All you do to whip these suckers together is take a stick of softened butter and an egg and cream them into a box of cake mix. Et voila! Sprinkle-filled sugar-splosion.
Because I’m me, and because you only use half a can of sweetened condensed milk per batch, I decided to do a side by side comparison of yellow cake mix and actual Funfetti mix (since the original recipe called for yellow cake mix). The yellow mix is pictured on the left, Funfetti on the right. Not much difference visually, but in case you were dying to know.
Via the experiment, I learned that “Funfetti” is a Pilsbury copyrighted branding of a white cake mix with sprinkles. I also learned that it doesn’t taste that great. The yellow cake mix definitely won out. It has a richer flavor, rather than just straight artificial sweetener to the brain.
Apparently, you can adapt the “gooey bar” formula to pretty much any kind of cake mix, and I’ve got plans for some gingerbread & butterscotch gooey bars closer to the holidays. To repeat the warning, though: they’re real sweet.
I cut a 9×9 pan into probably two dozen squares at least. And some people still couldn’t finish them. But for kids or those amongst you with an indiscriminate affection for sweets, these are an easy hit. (But not a quick one – ’cause you HAVE to let them cool completely before cutting into them. Otherwise: giant, gooey mess).
Funfetti Gooey Bars (from Crazy for Crust)
Grade: B (’cause I can’t hang with this sweet)
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
- 1 egg
- 2/3 cup sprinkles, divided
- 1/2 cup (from a 14 ounce can) sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350° F degrees. Line a 9×9” pan with foil and spray liberally with cooking spray.
Add cake mix, butter, and egg to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix until a thick dough forms (it’ll be real thick and take a little bit to come together – wouldn’t recommend doing this by hand). Fold in 1/3 cup sprinkles and stir by hand until incorporated.
Press about 2/3 of the dough into the bottom of the prepared pan. Sprinkle with white chocolate chips and the remaining 1/3 cup sprinkles. Pour the sweetened condensed milk evenly over the top.
Separate the remaining dough into small balls and flatten them with your hands, then use the patches to cover top of the bars. Press down/together gently to make a top layer.
Bake the bars for about 30 minutes, or until they just begin to brown. Cool completely before slicing, otherwise the mixture will be too gooey to cut.