Cake Batter Sugar Cookies.

Homemade sugar cookies that taste like cake batter. No cake mix needed!

Fact: it’s been ages since I posted a recipe with sprinkles.

Weird, considering I’m known as “Sally Sprinkles” to some of my friends. It’s true– sprinkles and glitter and confetti and sparkles are a handful of my favorite things in life. I’m actually a 5 year old at heart.

When I think of sprinkles, I think of birthday cakes.  Funfetti madness.  Bright colorful dots assorted through soft, buttery confections.  Pinks, blues, greens, and orange flecks of sugary beauty.  No cake batter is complete without a hefty pour of sprinkles, in my opinion.

And I like my sprinkle-filled cake batter just as it is… an unbaked batter.  I believe that the actual batter sort-of-kinda tastes better than the actual baked cake. Kinda like how cookie dough probably-all-of-the-freaking-time tastes better than the cookie? FACT.

I like my cake batter taste in things… other than cake. Like itsy bitsy cinnamon buns.

And today?  Well, I LOVE my cake batter taste in sugar cookies.

These sugary little cake batter dreamies are void of any boxed cake mix and took me THREE failed attempts to get down. I was a cookie maniac this week!  Pure sprinkle madness.

The first batch tasted nothing like cake batter. They were delicious sugar cookies, indeed… but not what I was going for. The second two batches were flat and crispy. Blech. I like my cookies thick, with a little personality, and ultra soft.  My fourth and successful batch are chewy, puffy, and buttery. They remind me a lot of my XXL Buttery Soft Sugar Cookie, but are teeny tiny.

Love love love.

The secret to these cookies… and all of the cake batter flavor… is the butter extract.  Rather than using boxed cake mix to achieve a cake batter taste, I splashed a bit of butter extract into the sugar cookie dough.  Butter extract can be found in the baking aisle next to the vanilla extract.  This is my first recipe using it and I must say… I am hooked.

The smell of the cookie dough alone had me in cake batter heaven. I couldn’t wait to taste one. :)

The secret to the super soft texture is the egg yolk.  Egg yolks give cookies a moist richness, without drying the finished cookie out.  The reason why I didn’t use the egg white is because my first three batches had too much liquid with an entire egg added in – they spread too much and were too thin for my liking.

So instead of cutting down on the butter extract… which is key to the cake batter flavor… I cut the egg white in batch #4.

Oh and did I mention I love sprinkles?  These guys are stuffed with ’em.  All different kinds.  The more, the better. Sprinkles make the world a better place.


Preliminary notes:

*If you can’t find butter extract, try using almond extract.  I actually made a batch of these cookies (my fifth batch, yes) with almond extract.  The resulting cookie doesn’t taste as “cake batter-y” in comparison to the butter extract cookie, but it’s pretty close. 

*I must note that you could use cake flour in place of all-purpose flour in these.  The resulting cookie will be fluffier and more cakey.  If you can’t find cake flour, simply take one cup of all-purpose flour, remove two tablespoons, and then add two tablespoons of corn starch back in and sift together.  This equals 1 cup of cake flour.  I did not take this extra step because I felt as though my cookies were darn delicious and already puffy using all-purpose flour and baking powder. 

*Depending on how I rolled them, I had to gently press down on a couple of the cookies mid-baking.  If you find they aren’t spreading at all, remove them from the oven at the 6 minute mark and very, very slightly press down.

Cake Batter Sugar Cookies

Yield: 24 small cookies

Print Recipe

Homemade sugar cookies that taste like cake batter in the mixing bowl. Everyone will love sneaking a cookie or two from the cookie jar!


  • 4 Tablespoons (60g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 teaspoon butter extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (95g) all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup (80g) sprinkles
  • 1/4 cup (40g) sprinkles, for rolling


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat. Set aside. Pour 1/4 cup sprinkles onto a plate to use for rolling. Set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar together on medium speed using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment. Beat in egg yolk, butter extract, baking powder, and salt. Add flour, and mix until a dough forms. Dough will be thick. Gently mix in sprinkles.

Roll dough in teaspoon size balls. Make sure that the balls are tall, rather than wide. The taller the cookie dough ball, the thicker the cookie will be. Roll the dough balls into the reserved sprinkles and bake for 9-10 minutes. Watch them closely at the 9 minute mark to assure they do not brown.

Allow cookies to cool for 2 minutes on the cookie sheets before transferring to a cookie rack to cool completely. Cookies remain fresh up to 1 week covered at room temperature.

© Sally’s Baking Addiction. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.



Cake Batter Sugar Cookies with no cake mix. Recipe by


Favorite sprinkle recipes:

Cake Batter Cinnamon Rolls (without cake mix)

Cake Batter Cinnamon Rolls (without cake mix)


Classic Yellow Funfetti Cupcakes with Milk Chocolate Frosting


Cake Batter Chocolate Chip Cookies (using cake mix)

Cake Batter Chocolate Chip Cookies


XXL Buttery Soft Sugar Cookie


Fudgy Cookies n Cream Oreo Brownies


Cake Batter Blondies

Cake Batter Blondies




118 Responses to “Cake Batter Sugar Cookies.”

  1. #
    Radhikaposted December 30, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    I always see butter extract and wonder what people do with it, that’s for the answer Sally. I’m really excited to use this butter extract next time.. Have you ever tried it in chocolate cookies?
    Ps these sprinkles melt my heart!


    • Sallyreplied on December 31st, 2013 at 10:47 am

      Butter extract would be fantastic in chocolate cookies, Radhika! I’ve never tried it before, but I have no doubt it would be incredible.


  2. #
    Aliceposted January 16, 2014 at 10:00 am

    Thank you for such an awesome recipe! These cookies were so easy and super scrummy!!! I used a gluten-free flour mix and added 1/2 teaspoon of xantham gum and it worked a treat. The first batch I rolled tall and had to pull them out and pat them down, so the second batch I made into discs and they spread perfectly! Love, love, LOVE these cookies!


    • Sallyreplied on January 16th, 2014 at 10:33 am

      Hi Alice! Thanks so much for reporting back about these cookies and how you adapted them to be gluten free! That’s so helpful for my gluten intolerant readers. Thank you!


  3. #
    Maryposted January 18, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Just made these for a coworker’s birthday. They are really tasty! The dough is crumbly – they came out more like shortbread cookies, which I was totally fine with! I squashed them down with the back of a wooden spoon before I even put them in the oven and they came out great. Thanks for the recipe!


    • Sallyreplied on January 19th, 2014 at 11:36 am

      Hey Mary! I’m happy you made them. They’re a perfect birthday cookie that’s for sure. Thanks for reporting back!


  4. #
    Juliannaposted February 13, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    These are so cute! But do you need to chill them first before baking?


    • Sallyreplied on February 13th, 2014 at 6:17 pm

      No dough chilling!


  5. #
    Juliannaposted February 13, 2014 at 6:36 pm



  6. #
    Theresaposted March 12, 2014 at 9:57 am

    These look delish! about to go make them as we speak for the my little neighbors that I watch. Although i dont have butter extract on hand, i hope using a little vanilla extract instead will be okay and still give them that cake batter taste! Will post later to let you know how they turn out (: (:


  7. #
    Theresaposted March 12, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    So made them freshly out of the oven for the kids and they loved them! The batter was very crumbly, but it formed well when making dough balls, the cookies came out nice and soft. Since no butter extract on hand, i subbed for almond extract, although it didnt have much of a cake batter taste to it, it was still delicious, will deff have to pick up some butter extract and try it out once more!


    • Sallyreplied on March 12th, 2014 at 2:50 pm

      Happy they were a hit!


  8. #
    Annmarieposted April 10, 2014 at 7:17 pm

    Is the paddle attachment absolutely necessary? What’s the difference between that and a regular beater???


    • Sallyreplied on April 10th, 2014 at 8:41 pm

      A paddle is a beater attachment. I’m not sure what you mean by regular beater. A hand mixer? You could use that instead, yes.


  9. #
    Danielaposted October 12, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    These cookies are adorable! I want them for my son’s birhday :) … I have never used butter extract, and I wonder if I can find it here where I live now. Any substitute in case I dont find it? Thanks!


    • Sallyreplied on October 12th, 2014 at 4:57 pm

      Hi Daniela! I hope your son likes his birthday cookies. I add the butter extract only to give these cookies a slight “cake batter/butter cake” flavor. You may certainly leave it out all together. In fact, sometimes I make these cookies without the extract because I don’t have any on hand.


  10. #
    Soniaposted October 23, 2014 at 2:49 pm

    These came out exactly how I was hoping – soft, chewy, cake-battery. I used the almond extract substitute for the butter extract and it tasted great. I am at a high altitude – over 5,500 ft – so I increased the oven temp to 375 F and baked them for 7 minutes and they came out perfect. Thanks for the recipe!


  11. #
    Reneeposted December 4, 2014 at 10:54 am

    I’ve been raring to make your cookies for a while, sadly I do not have a mixer. Is it possible to make this and your cranberry white chocolate cookies without one? Your blog is lovely, and thanks for explaining in detail the effects various ingredients have on your recipes!


    • Aleshareplied on January 20th, 2015 at 5:11 pm

      I made these cookies by hand without a mixer and they came out great with one exception…I use 1/8 tspn of salt instead of the suggested 1/4! Once I made the change everything was well blended. It also takes a bit of time to cream butter and sugar by hand. I suggest letting the butter soften first and mashing the sugar and butter with a wooden spoon before attempting to “mix.” Good luck!


  12. #
    Sydposted January 15, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    Can u not use sprinkles in it because my family does not like sprinkles will it effect the cake batter taste? Plz reply fast


    • melaniereplied on March 23rd, 2015 at 10:29 pm

      It looks like Sally didn’t see this comment but I’ll give you the answer: no. No, the taste will not be affected by the lack of sprinkles. The butter extract is what makes the cookie have a cake taste. The sprinkles play a big part in the cuteness though!


  13. #
    Aleshaposted January 20, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    What brand of butter extract do you use I this recipe? I baked these cookies using mccormicks butter extract and they were good but they did not taste like cake batter. Instead they tasted like an updated version of the classic butter cookie.


  14. #
    Kristiposted June 16, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    If I double the recipe, can I use a whole egg instead of 2 yolks? I’m actually planning to quadruple the recipe to take to work and because I have 4 sons and 4 leftover whites seems silly if it can be avoided?


    • Sallyreplied on June 17th, 2015 at 8:01 am

      Yep, that should be just fine.


  15. #
    Stephanieposted December 7, 2015 at 8:25 am

    Hey Sally,

    I use your blog ALL the time. I’ve never had any issues with the 100’s of recipes that I have tried, until this cookie :( 

    Once I baked the cookies, they came out of the oven with the centers sunken in. Maybe the baking powder wasn’t any good? What went wrong because I am craving a sugar cookie. 



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