Do I know why these are called Congo Bars? I do not. But what I do know is that they’re an utterly irresistible thick and chewy bar loaded with two kinds of chocolate and plenty of brown sugar and butter flavor. Imagine if a blondie and a chocolate chip cookie had a baby and then you upped the chocolate a bit for good measure – you’d have these. They’re soft, they’re just gooey enough, and they’re an absolute classic.
These bars have staying power but they’re actually a vintage recipe. Congo Bars were common in church cookbooks and grandmas’ kitchens for decades and they taste every bit as good today. That’s generally a good sign that they’re perfect for things like bake sales and potlucks and parties, but I certainly don’t mind just having a tray sitting out on my own kitchen counter as an afternoon pick-me-up. (No one else in my family has complained about that either.)
Other pros? They’re easy to make. It’s a one-bowl batter where you simply cream together some butter and brown sugar before adding in eggs, vanilla, flour, etc, and then both milk chocolate chips and semi-sweet chocolate chunks. The two kinds of chocolate melt a bit differently and help ensure that you get a good hit of chocolate in every single bite but that it’s not just sweet, sweet, sweet.
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