Birthday Cake Cookies


This is a recipe for sugar cookies topped with ultra-processed store-bought frosting. They taste like birthday cake. This post is for tired parents who are out of ideas, and for people who need some extra sugar. Also for people who want to eat birthday cake without having to eat an entire birthday cake – cookie dough freezes really well! Make some now, make some later.  Always have birthday cake.

I am going to spare the world another lengthy blog post and get more or less straight to the recipe because who has time for anything anymore. This recipe does assume that you have access to flour. If you’re having trouble finding it in the big supermarkets, be sure to check your local shops. This week we found Polish cake flour at ours.

It is possible to stretch the making of these cookies over three days, which is a very precious thing when you have hour upon hour to fill with a four-year-old. The process was like this:

Day 1: Make the dough

Day 2: Bake half the dough. Decorate.

Day 3: Bake the other half. Decorate some more.

This recipe should be fine with gluten-free flour, or if you want to substitute some ground almonds. If you don’t have cookie cutters, we had fun just cutting out random shapes with a knife. The decoration is EXTREMELY uncomplicated. Slap on frosting. Slap on sprinkles. If you’re feeling fancy, use some food colouring to dye the frosting. My son wanted grey frosting for some reason. They looked kinda Scandi. I dig it.

Birthday Cake Cookies


Note: I’ve used US cup measurements for the dry goods because it is just plain faster and easier and if you’re cooking with kids, sometimes a scale is a hassle even if you’re supposed to be using it to learn math.

Serves: 25ish, depending on size of cut-outs
Time: as long as it takes

170g butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp baking powder
2 ½ cups plain flour
½ tsp salt
icing sugar, for rolling

1 container of prepared frosting
1 sprinkles/unicorn confetti/dragees etc of your choice


  1. Cream the butter and the sugar, add the vanilla, and eggs and mix it all together.
  2. In a separate bowl mix the salt, flour, and baking powder. Gently fold these into the wet stuff.
  3. Now you have a dough. Roll it out now or chill until needed.
  4. If the dough seems sticky at all, roll it out using icing sugar as if it was flour. Ideally it should be about ½ inch thick or a little thicker. Cut out a test cookie if needed and bake this to assess – these are cakey cookies.
  5. When the dough has attained the desired thickness, cut it out with shaped cutters or into whimsical shapes of your own design.
  6. Bake at 180c for about 10 minutes, or until they turn golden brown around the edges. Again test if needed because who doesn’t have a wonky oven.

Decorate with chaotic abandon.


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