Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies square
Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies are the happiest cookies on the planet! These soft and delicious cookies are covered in sprinkles. They are the perfect special treat for a birthday, Valentine's Day or the best for a Christmas Cookie swap!
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Table of Contents
  1. Better than Bakery Sprinkle Cookie Recipe
  2. Ingredients
  3. How to make Sprinkle Cookies
  4. Storage Tips
  5. Frequently Asked Questions
  6. How to Make Gluten Free Sprinkle Cookies?
  7. Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies Recipe

The best Sprinkle Cookies recipe ever! Soft and chewy and covered in rainbow sprinkles. This old-fashioned recipe is better than any bakery cookie you have ever eaten. No chill time and you can change the sprinkles for any occasion! They will melt in your mouth!

sprinkle cookie hero

Our Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies are soft, chewy, and covered in baked-on sprinkles. (The key to making them soft is including cream cheese in the recipe!) This sprinkle cookie recipe has gone crazy viral on Facebook and has been shared millions of times on Pinterest

They are the perfect special treat for a birthday, Valentine’s Day, or the best for a Christmas Cookie Swap! Our version is better than any Italian bakery or Jewish bakery cookie!

The sprinkles are baked into the cookie, no icing to take away from the delicious vanilla with a hint of almond flavor. They kind of remind me of an Italian Cookie, also known as an Italian Wedding Cookie, but they really are pretty different. The main difference is our cookies have no glaze (and a lot more sprinkles!)

Just looking at them makes you smile, but eating them is even better! AND, we even got the gluten-free cookies thumbs-up (see notes on how to change it to make them gluten-free).

sprinkle cookie with a bite

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Unsalted Butter (softened)
  • 1 ¼ Cups Sugar
  • 4 Ounces Cream Cheese (at room temperature)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • ⅓ tsp Almond Extract (use 1 1/3 vanilla if you have a nut allergy or don’t want almond)
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 3 Cups Flour
  • Non-Pareils or Rainbow Sprinkles (or both!!)

These cookies can easily be adapted for pretty much every single holiday! All you need to do is get some holiday-colored sprinkles (i.e. for Christmas Sprinkle Cookies grab some red and green Christmas cookie sprinkles. For Valentine’s Day grab some pink and red and white nonpareils. Same for Halloween, Easter, etc.)

How to make Sprinkle Cookies

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a baking mat
  2. Using either a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (my preference) or a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Mix in cream cheese, egg, vanilla extract, almond extract until combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  5. Slowly add the flour mixture to the other ingredients, on slow to medium speed, mixing until combined and evenly moistened.
  6. Pour the sprinkles or nonpareils in a small bowl. Using a 1.5 – 2 tablespoon cookie scoop roll cookie dough into balls (You can make little cookies or extra large if you prefer!) 
  7. Roll the dough in the sprinkles, leaving the bottom of the ball sprinkle free.
    TIP: Cover the rest with as many sprinkles as possible – the more the better rolling cookie dough in sprinkles
  8. Place the cookie ball on the prepared baking sheet 2 inches apart.
    TIP: The cookies will spread a bit, so leave space!)sprinkle cookie dough on a baking sheet
  9. Using the bottom of a glass, gently press down on the cookie to slightly flatten it.
    TIP: You want them between 1/4 inch and 1/2 inch thick.sprinkle cookies pressed down with glass
  10. Bake in the oven for approximately at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes (every oven cooks differently so watch them, mine took closer to 12 minutes, but you don’t really want them to brown).Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies on cookie sheet
  11. Let cool on pan for a few minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool.sprinkle cookies on a wire rack

Storage Tips

  • To Store: Store your cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 5-7 days.
  • To Freeze: You can freeze your sprinkle cookies for up to 3 months. Just place in a freezer bag and defrost when ready to eat!

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to let the dough chill?

No, you do not need to let the dough chill for this recipe.

Is it better to put the sprinkles on before or after baking cookies

For this recipe, you put the sprinkles on before you bake the cookies. By rolling the uncooked cookie dough ball in the sprinkles, they bake right into the cookies perfectly. Don’t worry, the sprinkles will not burn.

What is the best way to press these cookies down before baking?

We find that by gently flattening the cookies (just a little bit) with either the bottom of the glass or the bottom of a measuring cup, they bake perfectly! You will get a soft and chewy center of the cookie and a just-the-right amount of crispy edges.

What type of sprinkles to use on Sprinkle Cookies?

This is a personal preference. There are two types of basic sprinkles, crunchy nonpareil or the softer rainbow sprinkle (aka jimmies). Typically when I make sprinkle cookies I will make half a batch of each. Either way, these cookies are so incredibly cute.

Can I substitute something for the almond extract?

Yes, you can use 1 1/3 teaspoons of vanilla if you don’t want to use the almond extract. However, the almond extract gives these cookies a delicious richness to them, so if you can, use it!

Can these sprinkle cookies be made gluten-free?

Yes, they can be made gluten-free. One of my readers adapted the recipe to be a gluten-free sprinkle cookie. See the instructions below.

Can I freeze the cookie dough?

You can freeze the cookie dough for up to 3 months. Store in a freezer bag or airtight container.

How to Make Gluten Free Sprinkle Cookies?

Follow the recipe as is, just substitute the flour for Gluten Free Flour. My friend, Lisa, who tested them out recommends Gluten Free Flour by Jules. She says it is THE ONLY gluten-free flour she will use!

Lisa also put the dough in the refrigerator and chilled it for about 10 minutes before rolling it in the sprinkle! She said they were one of the best Gluten Free Cookies she has ever tasted!

We love cookies and some just make us extra happy! Just like our Sugar Cookies with Sprinkles, our Sugar Cookie Bars and our Sugar Cookie Spoons make everyone smile!

Are you a cookie fan? Have you ever heard of the Secret Copycat Neiman Marcus Chocolate Chip Cookie story? You must check it out and try to make these better than you have ever tasted chocolate chip cookies!

We have some of THE BEST COOKIE RECIPES ever! Be sure to take a few minutes and check them all out! 

More Great Rainbow Desserts

4.75 from 56 votes
Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies square

Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies

Serves — 24
Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies are the happiest cookies on the planet! These soft and delicious cookies are covered in sprinkles. They are the perfect special treat for a birthday, Valentine’s Day or the best for a Christmas Cookie swap!
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Total Time 27 mins

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Cup Unsalted Butter softened
  • 1 ¼ Cups Sugar
  • 4 Ounces Cream Cheese
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • tsp Almond Extract (use 1 1/3 vanilla if you have a nut allergy or don’t want almond)
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 3 Cups Flour
  • Non-Pareils or Rainbow Sprinkles (or both!!)

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. Add in cream cheese, egg, vanilla extract, almond extract. Mix together until combined.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Mix into the large bowl on slow to medium speed, adding in a little at a time, until evenly moistened.
  • Place sprinkles or nonpareils in a small bowl. Using a cookie scoop or a tablespoon, roll cookie dough into balls (about 1 1/2 – 2 tablespoons of dough or to preference. You can make little cookies or extra large!) 
  • Roll the dough in the sprinkles, leaving the bottom of the ball sprinkles (no sprinkles on the bottom section). BUT, cover the rest with as many sprinkles as possible – the more the better – and place on the cookie sheet about 2 inches or so apart. (the cookies will spread a bit, so leave space!)
  • Use the bottom of a glass and gently press down on the cookie to slightly flatten it. You want them between 1/4 inch and 1/2 inch thick.
  • Bake in the oven for approximately 10-12 minutes (every oven cooks differently so watch them, mine took closer to 12 minutes, but you don’t really want them to brown).
  • Let cool on pan for a few minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Jenn’s Notes

Storage:
  • Store your cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 5-7 days.
  • To Freeze: You can freeze your sprinkle cookies for up to 3 months. Just place in a freezer bag and defrost when ready to eat!
Want to make these Rainbow Sprinkle Cookies Gluten-Free?
Follow the recipe as is, just substitute the flour for Gluten Free Flour. My friend, Lisa, who tested them out recommends Gluten Free Flour by Jules. She says it is THE ONLY gluten-free flour she will use! Lisa also put the dough in the refrigerator and chilled for about 10 minutes before rolling in the sprinkle!
Recipe adapted from King Arthur’s Flour Sugar Cookie Recipe

Video

Nutrition Info

Calories: 184kcal | Carbohydrates: 22g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 33mg | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 310IU | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 0.8mg
Jennifer Fishkind

About Jenn

Jenn is a mom to three beautiful boys, wife to an amazing husband, social influencer and blogger. I love all things easy recipes, easy crafts, all things hacks, traveling EVERYWHERE and feeding my Pinterest addiction!

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Comments

  1. Hola, me encantan tus recetas, te pregunto tu medida de taza en las recetas, a cuantos gramos refiere? Gracias!!!

  2. Can you please tell me if King Arthur’s Flour has xanthan gum in it or not? In New Zealand we do not have that brand, and I will have to find a substitute. Many thanks

  3. 5 stars
    I’m not one to rate or leave notes to a recipe or post but these cookies are absolutely delicious. Even my picky husband loved them. I’m bringing to my grandsons birthday party. I’m positive they’ll be a big hit. I used a 2 tablespoon scoop and it made 36 cookies.
    Thanks you for this yummy recipe.