The Buttery Soft Confetti Cookie Recipe I’ve Baked 20+ Times

published Jan 14, 2021
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(Image credit: Meghan Splawn)

At our sister site, Kitchn, our editors develop and debut brand-new recipes on the site every single week. But at home, we also have our own tried-and-true dishes that we make over and over again—because quite simply? We love them. And we decided to start sharing some of our absolute favorites with you. Here’s a peek into what we’re cooking and eating in our own kitchens.

Homemade cookies are a regular occurrence at my house. Not just because I want to get my kids in the kitchen as much as possible, but also because I find most store-bought cookies overpriced or lacking in flavor (save for the occasional Oreo or obligatory Girl Scout cookie). But one particular cookie eluded me for a very long time: the sprinkle-covered, tender and buttery cookie that our local Publix handed out for free from the bakery counter.

A couple of years ago, though, I discovered a recipe for just those cookies that was fairly fuss-free (read: it didn’t require me to plan for softened butter ahead of time) and tasted just like the ones I loved at the store. Since finding this recipe, my at-home cookie baking has basically doubled.

(Image credit: Meghan Splawn)

A Love Letter to Confetti Cookies

There’s something just plain delightful about the appearance of sprinkle-coated cookies anywhere—in the cookie jar, at the deli, or even your local PTA bake sale. But the best versions of these cookies are intensely vanilla-scented, buttery, and borderline creamy in their softness.

If you think that any ol’ sugar cookie dough can be rolled in sprinkles and baked to the same effect, you’re absolutely wrong. A very specific combination of sugar, vanilla, butter, and cream cheese is required to produce these nostalgia-inducing cookies that will make your whole house smell like birthday cake.

The cream cheese, just a measly 2 ounces, is just enough to make these cookies balanced (not too sweet) and stay soft for days or in spite of occasionally over-baking them (these things happen when you bake with two small children). There always seems, at least in my kitchen, exactly this amount of cream cheese—leftover from weekend bagels or other recipes—lingering in the fridge, just waiting for me to bake these cookies on any given week.

(Image credit: Meghan Splawn)

No Need for Softened Butter or a Mixer

Here’s the best bit about this particular recipe: You don’t have to soften the butter or the cream cheese for creaming these cookies with a stand mixer because the whole mixing process happens in a food processor instead! The mixing takes just a few minutes and maybe one or two swipes of the spatula inside the processor bowl between pulses to mix the dough.

Once mixed, my children and I work assembly line-style: I scoop the dough, my first-grader rolls the scoops and coats them in the sprinkles, and my 4-year-old has the immense pleasure of flattening each cookie with the heel of a cup. Which makes me wonder if the joy of these cookies is less in their sprinkle-coated brightness and more about the actual pleasure of baking them.

Either way, the cookies bake up tender-crisp; crispy, buttery edges gives way to a chewy then soft, creamy interior. Sure, confetti cookies have a cute and charming visual appeal, but their flavor and texture are absolutely their best feature.

(Image credit: Meghan Splawn)

More Soft & Buttery Sugar Cookie Recipes from Kitchn:

This post originally ran on Kitchn. See it there: The Buttery Soft Confetti Cookie Recipe I’ve Baked 20+ Times