Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars


Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars dessert recipe, also known as “Chess Squares” or “Chess Cake Bars” are easy, rich, and truly addictive!  Butter makes everything better!

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars dessert recipe, also known as "Chess Squares" or "Chess Cake Bars" are easy, rich, and truly addictive! Butter makes everything better!

Before I get to sharing about these Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars I have the coolest story ever.  I told you last week how I went to NYC to see a friend’s concert at BB King Jazz Club.  He is a big Broadway star and we met him a few years ago at stage door after one of his shows – Les Miserables.  He happens to be friends with the New York Yankees’ lawyer and we also befriended him last summer.  Nicest guy ever and he has the sweetest family.  Anyone who knows me knows I have been a lifelong Yankees fan which all started with my dad passing his love for the team down to my brothers and I.  To meet my favorite Broadway star of all time and subsequently meet someone who works for my favorite baseball team of all time is just beyond my wildest imagination.

I’m so glad you’re here! Follow along on Pinterest for more inspiration! 

Chess Bars or Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars recipe are simple dessert to make for a potluck - rich, and truly addictive! Butter makes everything better!

Private Tour of Yankee Stadium. My photo in the Yankee dugout.

If I told you all of the details it would be a ten page blog post, but long story short, after the BB King show last week I was asked by the Yankees’ lawyer if I wanted to take a tour of Yankee stadium the next morning before I returned home from my trip.  After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I managed to speak a resounding “YES!!!”  Mr. Wishes and I got a private tour of the stadium, clubhouse, a true behind-the-scenes experience that I would never have done otherwise.  I got emotional as I sat in the dugout thinking of the legends that sat in that same exact spot, also how my dad would have loved to hear about this experience, and tears starting rolling down my cheek.  Luckily nobody noticed because it was also 97 degrees outside so I passed it off as sweat 🙂  It was an incredible perspective looking out at the field from the dugout!  I also sat out in the bullpen and remembered my favorite pitcher of all time who sat there just a couple years back – Mariano Rivera. What an amazing once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Chess Bars or Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars dessert recipe are simple to make, rich, and truly addictive! Butter makes everything better!

Our friend from Broadway, Ramin Karimloo, backstage at BB King

Myself and our friend, Ramin Karimloo, backstage at BB King

These Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars, guys.  I don’t even know what to say about them because I feel like the pictures speak for themselves.  They are extremely rich and have the best flavor.  The simplicity of this recipe is unreal and the yellow cake mix doesn’t even taste the same once it gets perfectly doctored up!  These bars are not exactly LIGHT as you can tell just by reading the title….and the ingredients list.  They are a dessert I only allow myself to make when I’m bringing them somewhere to share with others.  If Mr. Wishes and I ate a whole pan of these babies we probably wouldn’t live to tell about it.  I first heard of this recipe from another woman at a potluck picnic several years ago and finally got around to making them myself!  Call them “Chess Bars” or “Ooey Gooey Cake Bars”….just make time to whip these up and see how quickly they disappear.  They are almost too easy to make for my own good!

Chess Bars or Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars dessert recipe are easy to make, rich, buttery and addictive! Butter makes everything better!

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Southern
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 18
Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars, also known as "Chess Squares" or "Chess Cake Bars" are easy, rich, and truly addictive!
  • 1 package/box yellow cake mix
  • 3 eggs
  • 16 tablespoons butter, melted, divided
  • 1 (8 oz) package full-fat cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 16 oz powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Combine the cake mix, 1 egg and 8 tablespoons butter and mix well with an electric mixer. Pat the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased 13 by 9-inch baking pan.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Beat the remaining two eggs. Add the remaining 2 eggs, vanilla and remaining 8 tablespoons butter and beat together.
  4. Next, add the powdered sugar and mix well until all is incorporated.
  5. Spread this over cake batter and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Make sure not to over bake as the center should be a little bit gooey, but not so gooey that they completely fall apart. Dust with a little extra powdered sugar before serving. Let cool completely before cutting into. Enjoy!

Recipe source:  slightly adapted from PaulaDeen.com

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These are a few of my favorite things: cooking, baking, Broadway musicals, cruises, Disney World, Christmas, thunderstorms, 80's and country music, and my favorite pastime has ALWAYS been baseball. Go Yankees!

19 Responses to “Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Bars”

  1. August 2, 2016 at 10:49 AM #

    JEALOUS! Wow – how amazing is it that you got to meet Mariano and tour Yankees stadium? Sadly, I’ve only been to the old Yankees Stadium and not the ‘new’ one (even though it’s not new anymore). Your butter cake bars look fantastic. Maybe you can bring a batch to the Yankees the next time you are there? 😉

  2. August 2, 2016 at 11:24 AM #

    Your trip to NYC sounds like it was amazing, and touring the ballpark of your favorite team had to be such a great experience! I haven’t ever toured a ballpark yet but I really want to! These bars look deliciously ooey gooey too — yum!

  3. August 2, 2016 at 4:32 PM #

    These cake bars look amazing! I loved seeing all of your NY pictures, especially those at Yankee stadium! What a dream come true!

  4. August 3, 2016 at 10:09 AM #

    Wow, what fun to visit Yankee’s stadium! Lucky you! And lucky us for this recipe — totally love Gooey Butter Cake, whether in cake, cookie, or bar form. Good stuff — thanks.

  5. August 3, 2016 at 4:55 PM #

    That is just so so cool! What an amazing experience! And um, I’ll take a few of these squares please!

  6. August 3, 2016 at 9:31 PM #

    I’ve never had gooey butter cake (yet) and I think I’ll just jump straight to these bars. What a great treat and they sure do look moist and ooey-gooey. That is the best description and the ideal texture for most cakes! : )

  7. August 5, 2016 at 10:24 PM #

    Look at you all hanging out at Yankee Stadium! These ooey gooey bars are fabulous looking!

  8. August 9, 2016 at 12:08 PM #

    haha YES! Butter does make everything better! I need to make these asap!

  9. August 9, 2016 at 4:45 PM #

    What an amazing experience! These bars look super delicious!

    • August 10, 2016 at 12:24 PM #

      Thank you so much, Laura!

  10. August 10, 2016 at 6:22 PM #

    I used to make these for the kids all the time!!! I’m definitely overdue to treat the family! Sounds like you had an amazing time in NYC 🙂

  11. August 11, 2016 at 9:24 AM #

    omigosh what an amazing experience!!! and these bars look so so soooo irresistible!

  12. KateT
    October 12, 2016 at 4:35 PM #

    Just curious about any high-altitude adaptations for this recipe. Since the cake isn’t really mixed up like a regular cake, does it rise and have a “cake-like” texture? Would the cream cheese part need tweaking? Thoughts?

    • October 12, 2016 at 5:31 PM #

      These don’t rise much – just a little bit. I would bake them at a higher temperature (whatever you normally do to adapt a regular cake recipe) but for less time and just check them. Again, these aren’t “fluffy” cake texture – they are very dense and gooey, so it could be tricky! Sorry I’m not more help as I’m not all that familiar with high altitude adaptations.

  13. Barbara A. Murphy
    November 1, 2016 at 4:34 PM #

    I made these and they are easy. I questioned the 16 ounces of powdered sugar and checked the recipe and 16 ounces it was.

    They were much to sweet. Almost unedable. Did i do something wrong? Any suggestions?

    • November 1, 2016 at 4:36 PM #

      Hi Barbara! The amounts are correct and yes they are supposed to be a very sweet dessert! Anything with “butter bars” in the name haha. But everyone I know loves them and gobbles them up so I’m wondering if somewhere along the line something got messed up?

  14. November 15, 2016 at 8:09 AM #

    So cool!! I live in the Bronx and am ashamed to say I have never been to Yankee stadium. So embarrassing. Glad you it was such a great experience. And these bars look fantastic!!

  15. ruby vice
    November 28, 2016 at 8:04 PM #

    Just finished sampling my recipe that I switched a lemon cake mix for instead of yellow. I don’t think it could be any better with plain yellow mix.
    Now I’m trying to think of another flavor that could be used in this same recipe, such as a chocolate cake mix for crust part, then perhaps peanut butter (maybe crunchy) mixed with the cream cheese and powdered sugar mix on top, maybe less butter in the top…call it “Brownie Peanut Butter Bars”.
    Or what about a spice cake mix for bottom and mix pumpkin with cream cheese & powdered sugar mix for top, with cinnamon and nutmeg ? Call it “Pumpkin-Cream Cheese Bars”

    • November 28, 2016 at 11:18 PM #

      I love all of these ideas!

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