Red, White & Blue M&M’s Cookie Bars

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If you’re looking for a patriotic dessert, look no further than these red, white & blue M&M’s Cookie bars for 4th of July!

They are made super easy thanks to a box of cake mix, chocolate chips, and M&Ms (red, white, and blue ones of course!). So knock out a batch of these for your celebrations – why not enjoy them while watching the fireworks?

A blue plate with red, white & blue cookie bars

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Cookie Bars for 4th of July

If you’ve not made cookie bars before, you are missing out! They are so simple because they are baked in one pan which you then cut into bars – no scooping of cookie dough, or worrying if you’ve placed them too close on the cookie sheet and that they fuse together while cooking!

Special Ingredients

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For my UK readers: This recipe calls for a box of yellow cake mix which is simply a plain, vanilla mix – it gets its yellow colour from the use of butter and eggs. You can use any vanilla cake mix in this recipe. It also uses a box of vanilla instant pudding – which actually isn’t very different from Bird’s Custard Powder. I’ve read online it could be used as a substitute! Or you could try making your own mix with this recipe I found online.

Oh, and these cookie bars might be for the 4th of July, but our flag is red, white, and blue too… so break this recipe out when you want to celebrate all things British!

This recipe uses American cup measurements. Since I use this type of measurement often, I find it handy to have a set of these cups in the kitchen.

A wooden board with cookie bars ingredients, including a box of yellow cake mix, a box of vanilla pudding mix, chocolate chips, candy, eggs, and cooking utensils.

While there are lots of awesome flavour combinations that you could use for this recipe, cookie bars for the 4th of July most certainly need to be red, white, and blue! In this recipe, they come in the form of M&M’s, and the chocolatey flavour is amped up with chocolate chips too. If you don’t want to use M&Ms, you could use star-shaped sprinkles for patriotic flair. Or you could use both – I won’t tell anyone!

Patriotic Sprinkles!

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How To Make M&M’s Cookie Bars

These cookie bars are baked in a 9″ x 9″ pan – you can use a regular, metal pan, or a silicone one. Whichever you use, make sure that you grease them. And in the case of a metal pan, I would advise layering with parchment paper with some overhang which will enable you to lift the cooked cookie out of the pan.

With that out of the way, let’s make these patriotic cookie bars!

Place the cake mix and vanilla pudding mix into a large bowl, and then add eggs, water, and oil (the recipe, which you can print off down below gives quantities). Mix everything together well – it will come to a thick consistency, and that’s just right!

Cake mix in a bowl
Cake mix with eggs added
Cookie bar dough
Cookie bars with red, white and blue candy

Next it’s time to add the chocolate chips, and the red, white, and blue M&M’s. Mix everything together well to distribute the candy.

White chocolate chips would work well, and I bet peanut butter chips would taste awesome too! You could easily switch the colours in these cookie bars to suit other seasonal holidays – orange and green for Halloween, pink and yellow for Easter, and red and green for Christmas.

Cookie dough in a bowl with chocolate chips
Cookie dough in a bowl with chocolate chips and m&m's
Cookie dough in a bowl with chocolate chips and m&m's

Transfer the cookie dough to the prepared baking pan and spread into an even layer. Pop into the oven for 20 minutes until golden and cooked through. You can test this by inserting a skewer and when cooked, it should come out clean.

Leave to cool in the pan, and then remove and cut into pieces.

All that’s left to do is eat and enjoy!

Baked cookie dough in pan
Cut cookie bars on wooden board
A blue plate with cookie bars stacked on them.

Related reading: 7 Awesome 4th of July Party Ideas

Red, White & Blue Cookie Bars

Red, White, and Blue Cookie Bars Recipe

Yield: 16
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

These patriotic cookie bars are perfect for 4th of July, and so easy to make!


  • 1 box yellow cake mix (15.25oz/423g)
  • 1 box instant vanilla pudding (3.4oz/9.6g)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup chocolate chips.
  • 1 cup red white & blue M&M’s


  1. Preheat oven to 350F/180C/Gas4.
  2. Grease a 9" x 9" baking pan (see notes).
  3. Combine cake mix, pudding, water, vegetable oil and eggs in large bowl. Mix well.
  4. Stir in the chocolate chips and M&M's
  5. The batter will be thick - don't panic! Pour this into the prepared baking pan. and place in oven.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and cooked through.
  7. Remove from oven and cool in the pan for 10 minutes.
  8. Lift the cookie from the pan and cut into squares.
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Use a silicone baking dish in this recipe as it works wonders when it is time to remove when cooled! If using a regular baking pan, line it with parchment paper and leave some overlap which will enable you to lift the cooled cookie from the pan easily.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 324Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 25mgSodium: 223mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 1gSugar: 27gProtein: 3g

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Two stacked images - one is a bowl of cookie dough, and the other is a stack of cookie bars on a blue plate

Make It a Meal!

Need some mealtime inspiration to go with this dessert? I’ve got you covered!

A stack of M&M's cookie bars on a blue plate.

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