Handed down from my grandma, these Congo Squares or chocolate chip blondies are a mixture of butter, brown sugar, eggs, flour, chocolate chips and nuts. They are perfect for a party.
Merry Christmas! I know I've mentioned this multiple times this year, but man has time flown. I can't believe it's already Christmas day. Since Lauren and I started dating and eventually got married, we've never actually spend Christmas together with my side of the family. With the cost of travel and timing it just never worked out. But this year we're down in good old Orlando celebrating Christmas! So why am I sharing a simple Congo Squares recipe on Christmas Day? For me, it's actually the recipe I most associate with the holidays.
For those that don't know, my mom is a part-time cookie baker. And when I say part-time I mean she has a full-time job at Scholastic and then a full-time job baking cookies. Her company, HeartSong Cookies, sells cookies at a variety of restaurants throughout Orlando and at the Winter Park Farmer's Market on Saturdays and Maitland Farmer's Market on Sundays. Oh and you can order on her site as well. And I know everyone says this about their mom's cookies but hers really are the best. Try them if you don't believe me!
But funny enough, her love of baking all started with Congo Squares. It's actually a recipe that was passed down from my grandmother. So why do I associated Congo Squares with the holidays? Well when I was young my mom would make batches upon batches of these for her clients and even her office. I recall going to her office as a kid once, and multiple people were asking about when she was going to bring more Congo Squares in. For those that have never heard of Congo Squares they are a simple mixture of butter, brown sugar, eggs, flour, chocolate chips and nuts. They are really just another name for chocolate chip blondies or sheet pan cookies. You can call them whatever you want, but we call them Congo Squares. Either way these are the best blondies recipe out there. They're best served slightly warm and maybe with some vanilla ice cream on top, but you choose how you want to eat them!
PS you noticed I said simple earlier? Well if you're in a pinch, you might already have all of these ingredients and be able to make them today.
What Ingredients are in this Congo Squares Recipe?
- Light brown sugar
- Vanilla extract
- All-purpose flour
- Baking powder
- Semi-sweet chocolate chips
How to Make Congo Squares
- In a medium bowl, whisk the dry ingredients and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat together the melted butter and brown sugar. Let it cool slightly before beating in the eggs, one at a time. Add the in vanilla extract and beat until combined.
- Fold in the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.
- Grease and flour a 10x15 or 9x13 baking pan. If using 10x15 pan, bake at 350°F for 25-30 minutes. If using a 9x13 pan, bake for 35-40 minutes. When cool cut into 24 squares.
Can I Change the Ingredients?
Certain ones you can. I would keep the base the same, but if you like dark chocolate or white chocolate or M&M's, be my guest in adding them. Just try to keep the same ratio of chocolate. Also you can go without nuts or add a different nut if you prefer.
Other Dessert Recipes:
- Peanut Butter Cup Cookies
- Chocolate Sugar Cookies
- Apple Crumb Pie
- Ginger Cookies
- Chocolate Peppermint Blossoms
- ⅔ cup unsalted butter, melted (11 tbsp)
- 2 ¼ cups packed light brown sugar
- 3 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a 9x13 or 10x15 pan. Set aside. In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
- In large mixing bowl, combine melted butter and brown sugar. Cool slightly. Beat in eggs, one at a time and add vanilla extract. Add dry mixture and mix well. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.
- Pour into prepared pan and spread evenly. If using 10x15 pan, bake for 25-30 minutes or until tester comes out clean. If using 9x13 pan, bake 5-10 minutes longer. If edges are browning more quickly than the middle, cover with aluminum foil. When cool, cut into 24 squares.