Schoolhouse Cookie Bars

Although my own little grade schooler does not have her first day of second grade for two more weeks, I know many children in the south have already started school.  In their honor, I made these cookie bars today.  (I’m also extremely eager for fall and these treats are often the kickoff for me – never mind that it is still August.)  The recipe is from Gooseberry Patch Taste of Autumn, but I have altered it a bit.

SCHOOLHOUSE COOKIE BARS

1 package yellow cake mix

2 cups quick cooking oats, uncooked

3/4 cup vegetable oil

2 eggs, beaten

1 package caramels ***

2 TBS milk

1/2 to 1 package semi sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350º.

1.  Combine cake mix, oats, oil and eggs.  Press half of mixture into a greased, 9X13 baking pan.

2. On stovetop, melt caramels with milk over medium heat, stirring frequently.

3.  Pour melted caramel over cake mixture.  Sprinkles as many or few chocolate chips as desired.  Crumble remaining cake mixture over the top.  Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until lightly golden.  Prepare to swoon a little bit after your first bite.

*** You can substitute one jar of caramel ice cream topping for the melted caramels & milk.  It’s less work, but it’s a little too sweet, in my opinion, and a little less awesome.

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