These birthday cake sugar cookies are the softest, chewiest, most delicious gluten free cookies you will ever make. They're loaded with birthday sprinkles and taste like Funfetti cake batter. If you love birthday cake, these cookies are for you!
Looking to celebrate your birthday without making a whole birthday cake? This recipe is for you!
These birthday cake sugar cookies taste just like birthday cake because they are made with only white cane sugar, no brown sugar. They are flavored with vanilla extract and almond extract for a sweet flavor. These cookies bake into large, soft and chewy bakery-style cookies. And they're gluten free for those with allergies!
Why You Will Love This
- Large, chewy cookies- These cookies are thick, soft, and have a chewy center.
- Rainbow sprinkles- These cookies are filled with colorful rainbow sprinkles.
- Easy to make- They don't require any chill time and come together within 20 minutes.
- Perfect for birthdays- They are perfect for a birthday celebration, especially for kids with allergies!
- Gluten free- These cookies are great for adults and kids who can't consume gluten. However, be sure to check all the ingredients for cross-contamination before serving them to people with serious gluten allergies.
Here are some notes about the ingredients used. For the full recipe list, see the recipe card below! FYI- these cookies get their flavor from butter, sugar, vanilla, and almond instead of boxed birthday cake mix.
- Unsalted butter- Pull this out of the fridge 2 hours or so before baking.
- Cane sugar- Only pure cane sugar is used to sweeten these cookies so they have a more birthday cake taste.
- Egg + Egg yolk- Take your eggs out of the fridge 2 hours before baking. The extra egg yolk makes these cookies extra soft and chewy and keeps them from spreading too much.
- Gluten free flour blend- My favorite is King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour. Make sure to use a flour blend that contains xanthan gum.
- Almond extract- This gives the cookies a beautiful, sweet flavor.
- Rainbow sprinkles- Use gluten free rainbow Jimmies. Other kinds of rainbow sprinkles will bleed or melt into the batter while baking. These are my favorite, naturally dyed sprinkles.
Step by Step Instructions
Here are the steps to make these gluten free birthday cake sugar cookies. This recipe requires a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. A hand mixer or electric mixer will work as well.
STEP 1: Mix the dry ingredients. Sift the gluten free flour into a large mixing bowl. Sifting the flour will prevent any lumps from getting into the batter. Then, mix in the baking powder and salt.
STEP 2: Cream the butter and sugar. Beat the room-temperature butter and sugar together on high speed until the mixture is light and fluffy. This will take about 2-5 minutes. Make sure to scrape the sides of the bowl to make sure all the butter gets mixed in.
STEP 3: Add in the wet ingredients. Mix the egg, egg yolk, vanilla extract, and almond extract into the beaten butter and sugar. Then, beat on high speed for about 1 minute. Scrape the sides of the bowl.
STEP 4: Add in the dry ingredients. Mix the flour and other dry ingredients into the wet ingredients on low speed. It will be a thick but slightly sticky dough.
STEP 5: Add in the sprinkles. Fold the rainbow sprinkles into the cookie dough with a rubber spatula.
STEP 6: Scoop the dough. Use a large cookie dough scoop to scoop the dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Place the dough balls about ½ inch apart on the baking sheet. Press down on each cookie dough ball with your fingers to spread them slightly.
STEP 7: Bake the cookies. Next, bake the cookies for about 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Top the baked cookies with extra rainbow sprinkles. Let the cookies sit on the hot pan for a few minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack.
Expert Baking Tips
- Make sure the flour is spooned and leveled (properly measured). Compacted flour will result in a dry cookies that don't spread.
- Make sure your baking powder is fresh so the cookies rise properly. Baking powder should be replaced ever 6-12 months.
- To prevent your cookies from spreading too much, use parchment paper and properly measure your flour.
- Use room temperature butter and eggs. This helps create a smooth, uniform batter.
- When adding the wet ingredients, make sure to beat on high to incorporate more air into the cookie dough. This will give them a chewier texture. Because this recipe is gluten free, you don't have to worry as much about over-mixing after the flour is added.
- Don't overcrowd the baking sheet. Leave about ½-1 inch between each cookie dough ball so they have room to spread.
- Coconut sugar can be substituted for the cane or table sugar. However, this will change the taste and color of the cookies.
- You can mix up what color Jimmies you use depending on the holiday that you're celebrating: red and green for Christmas, red and pink for Valentine's Day, different shades of green for St. Patrick's Day, and more!
- About ¼ cup of white chocolate chips can be added to the batter for extra sweetness. You could also add a white chocolate drizzle on top.
- These cookies would be perfect served with ice cream! Even better, you can turn them into ice cream sandwiches.
- You can add a swirl of buttercream on top for an extra festive, Crumbl inspired cookie.
Frequently Asked Questions
Right when the cookies come out of the oven, place an upside down glass or round cookie cutter around the cookie and give it a quick spin. This will help to smooth out any uneven edges.
You may have not added enough flour or your baking powder could be expired.
You may have added too much flour to the batter! Make sure to properly spoon and level your flour to prevent this. Other reasons are that your batter was too cold or that the butter and eggs were too cold.
No, you unfortunately can't make these cookies vegan. If you feel like experimenting, you could possibly try using vegan butter and 2 flax eggs, but I can't guarantee any success!
Absolutely, although the cookies won't be as chewy. You can use a smaller, 1 oz cookie dough scoop and bake the cookies for about 7-10 minutes.
Storage and Freezing
Store these gluten free birthday cake sugar cookies in an airtight container on the counter for up to 5 days.
Freeze the baked cookies in an airtight container for up to 30 days. Make sure they are fully cooled before putting them in the freezer. When you're ready to eat, thaw for 1 hour or heat in the microwave.
To freeze the raw cookie dough balls, wrap in plastic wrap or store in an airtight, freezer-safe bag for up to 30 days.
The frozen cookie dough balls can be baked straight out of the freezer. Just add a few extra minutes onto the total bake time.
Gluten Free Recipes to Try
Gluten Free Birthday Cake Sugar Cookies
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Prepare 2 cookie sheets lined with parchment paper.
- Sift the gluten free flour into a large mixing bowl. Then, mix in the baking powder and salt.1 ½ cup gluten free flour blend, ½ teaspoon baking powder, ¼ teaspoon salt
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together. Beat the room-temperature butter and sugar on high speed until the mixture is light and fluffy. This will take about 2-5 minutes. Add the egg, egg yolk, vanilla, and almond extract and beat on high for 1 minute.½ cup unsalted butter, ½ cup cane sugar, 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract, ½ teaspoon almond extract, 1 egg yolk, 1 egg
- Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients on low speed. The dough will be thick and slightly sticky.
- Fold the rainbow sprinkles into the cookie dough with a rubber spatula.¼ cup rainbow Jimmies sprinkles
- Use a large cookie scoop to scoop large cookie dough balls. Place 6-8 balls on each cookie sheet and press down on each firmly.
- Bake 1 cookie sheet at a time for 10-12 minutes each. Bake until the edges are slightly golden and the cookies seem set.
- Top the cookies with extra sprinkles when they finish baking. Let the cookies sit on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.