Firecracker Cookies

  • 4th of julydessertslabor daymemorial dayRecipe
  • I love cookies made from cake batter mixes! They are easy and always super delicious. And these ones would be PERFECT for the 4th of July!

    Firecracker Cookies

    Cake batter cookies taste like a cross between wedding cake and sugar cookies.

    If these cookies look familiar it’s because I have done a funfetti version of them before. The only thing I did this time was switch up the cake batter and change up the sprinkles.

    I actually made these for my sister-in-law. She is in the OT program at KU Med. They had the incoming classmates come in for orientation and had cookies for them. In case you hadn’t figured it out, Kansas’ colors are blue and red.

    What else is red and blue? Fourth of July cookies!
    I called these firecracker cookies because I kind of think that’s what they look like, the burst of a firecracker in the sky!

    Firecracker Cookies
       adapted from my funfetti cake batter cookies
       makes 30-32 cookies
    1 box french vanilla cake mix, 18.25 oz*
    1 tsp baking powder
    2 eggs
    1/2 C vegetable oil
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    1/2 C red sprinkles
    1/2 C blue sprinkles

    * Make sure to use the right size of cake mix. I have not tried this with the smaller mixes so I can’t vouch for how they will turn out.
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix and baking powder. In a small bowl, mix together the eggs, oil and vanilla. Add the egg mixture to the cake mixture and stir to combine. Stir in the sprinkles. Drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet or silpat.

    Bake for 10 minutes. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to cooling rack. The cookies will be very soft at first. Cool and enjoy!

    These cookies spread out a lot when they bake so don’t try to use a cookie cutter for just the dough. You can, however, use cookie cutters after they have baked and cooled. For example, these would be super cute for the 4th if you cut out little stars with a cookie cutter.
    These would be really fun to make with kids and also a great cookie to take to 4th of July parties!!
    • Jamie

      I love everything about these cookies! I’m kinda partial to anything Red, White and Blue (since I’m a 4th of July baby) … Can’t wait to try them :) Thanks for sharing!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        What a FUN birthday! No matter what, there is ALWAYS something going on!! :)

    • Cassie/Bake Your Day

      How fun are these?!?! I love cake mix cookies, they are some of the best!

    • Alice

      looks like another great cookie recipe! thanks, stephanie!

    • Carrie Burrill

      These look so fun!! Going to have to do these for Memorial Day or the 4th.

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Oh, they would be fun for Memorial Day too! Good idea!

    • Carolina HeartStrings

      Those cookies are wonderful! Thanks for sharing them.

    • Macaroni and Cheesecake

      These are so fun and festive!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thanks, Steph!! :)

    • Julie Evink

      These look awesome! I can’t wait to make them :)

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thanks so much!! I hope you give them a try!

    • Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust

      I saw these and thought they were so pretty, and then realized they were made with cake mix. Even better!

    • ravienomnoms

      These cookies look so yummy!!


      Yum yum yum! Not only do these cookies look beautifully festive, but they look so soft and delicious too!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thanks, lady!! They are so good!!

    • jadams4th

      Where do you get all of your different colored sprinkles in individual containers?

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Hey there! You might have to go to a specialty baking store to find them. The one I went to is local in Kansas City and it’s not a chain. However, I have seen them before at Micheal’s Crafts store and sometimes you get lucky at Williams Sanoma. Sometimes even places like Bed Bath and Beyond have special containers with assorted colors. I just try to keep my eyes peeled as I’m be-boppin around town so that when I do need something like that, I know where to go. :)
        I hope this helps!!

      • jadams4th

        Micheal’s had some, but of course not the colors I was looking for. I’m making yellow and blue FFA cookies for their state convention! I ended up going to the bakery at the grocery store and asking if I could buy some of their sprinkles. They sell them by the pound and since I only wanted enough to make the recipe (for now…) they gave me the sprinkles for FREE! Totally unexpected! Thank you so much for the idea! I’m excited to make these this morning!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        That is so awesome!!


      Just made these. YUM! I also tried almond instead of vanilla, delicious!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        That sounds great!!!

    • Mrs. T

      Just made these, and they were fantastic! I also used a Chocolate Fudge cake mix and they were equally as good!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Oooo that sounds fantastic!!

    • Joan

      The cookies taste great but they were crumbly. The recipe probably could use a little more liquid.

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Sorry about that, Joan. Every time I have made them they turn out nice and chewy.

      • Viktorija

        Mine were VERY drive and crumbly, too, Joan.

      • Viktorija

        Second batch worked out great. Thanks for the recipe!

    • urbanmoda

      I really want to give these a try for the 4th of July…but I made need a test run soon, just to make sure :)

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        I think that’s a great idea 😉

    • holly

      We have been making the funfetti ones as birthday gifts! They are so simple & sensational! Love the taste, look & ease. THANKS!!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Awesome! What a fun idea!!

    • Katie

      These look amazing!

    • Nicolle

      just made these cookies and they are AWESOME. thanks so much for the recipe

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Awesome!! So glad you liked them!! 😉

    • Lindy@Itsy Bitsy Paper

      Yummy and festive–can’t beat that! I hope you’ll add this one to my Patriotic Project Parade.

    • Cindy

      Can you make ahead and freeze? I would love to try these for the 4th, but will not have time to do these the day of.

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Sorry Cindy, I’ve never tried to freeze the dough or the cookies. I’m not sure how they would turn out.

      • Syd

        Cindy- I have had a hard time freezing cookies made from cake mixes, they get super soft/messy (kind of fall apart) when thawed. I haven’t tried to freeze this recipe but I have frozen other cake mix cookie recipes.

    • Steph

      I just found these on Pinterest and thought they would be great for my boys’ birthday party next week. They requested a Jayhawk themed party and as soon as I saw these I knew they would be perfect. I love that you made them originally to fit a Jayhawk theme too! I will definitely be posting a link to this on my blog with the party pics! Thanks for the great idea!!


      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Awesome! Please let me know when you post it; Id love to check it out! I love KU and Im actually the manager of a store that sells lots of KU goodies 😉 So fun!

      • Steph

        This comment has been removed by the author.

      • Steph

        Here is the link to my post:
        I ended up using colored sugar sprinkles instead of the ones you used in your recipe. They were very tasty!

    • Printabelle

      I was very inspired by these! Thanks so much for sharing. Your photos are gorgeous, too! I wanted to let you know that you were featured on my Best 4th of July ideas post at:
      If you would like a featured button, I have them here: Thanks!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thank you so much! I checked it out; what a fun post!! 😉

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thank you so much! I checked it out; what a fun post!! 😉

    • JenRae

      These are so delicious! I can say that I used a smaller cake mix (15.25 oz) by accident, and they still turned out just fine! I plan on adding these to my collection of favorite recipes to make time and time again! Thanks for the recipe! :)

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        That’s good to know! 😉 Im so glad you loved them….cause I do too!

    • -G-

      I made these last week, and they were delicious! However, my husband informed me that he doesn’t really like sprinkles! So I made them again today but used semi-sweet chocolate chips instead, and they were even better (in my opinion)! Thanks so much for the recipe; I had never made “cake mix cookies” before, and it was so easy!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        I just started crying…..HE DOESN’T LIKE SPRINKLES? WHHHHHHHHHHAT?
        Just kidding, I think it’s more of a girly and little kid thing. I’ll forgive him! :)
        I bet the bit of chocolate was fantastic!! Did they get really melty or did they hold their shape a little?

    • andrea

      just now made these. Soooo goood!!!!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Yea! Glad you liked ’em! Happy 4th!!

    • Teresa

      These are in the oven right now for a 4th of July party we are attending later. I bought enough to make two batches but only made one at first to see how they do. They are perfect! I used a 1/2 tbsp to drop them onto the cookie sheets and ended up with 56 cookies so I don’t even need to make more. So excited to try them!
      Oh, and I couldn’t find the solid sprinkles but my grocery store had some red, white, and blue ones so I bought two containers for each batch. :)

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Awesome!! I hope everyone liked ’em. These are fun with other colors too. Happy 4th!!

    • Joyce Beilman

      Just made these-yummy!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Yea!! Happy 4th!

    • Valerie

      Just discovered your blog via Pinterest! My kiddos and I made these cookies tonight…!

      BTW…I’m a Kansas Citian too! These would be fun to make next week with only blue jimmies to celebrate the All Star Game and the KC Royals! Ooooh, and red and yellow during football season! I’m hooked!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        FUN!!! I’m getting geared up for All-Stars week too. I’m a manager at a Kansas Sampler/Rally House and we keep getting all these CUTE All-Stars clothes….love it! I LOVE the chiefs idea, those would be really cute!! I’ll have to remember that!!

    • Syd

      Excited to make these for the 4th of July! Off to buy the ingredients! :)

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Fun!! I hope you love them as much as I do! Happy 4th!!

    • Johanna Garcia

      Is it okay to just use sugar cookie mix, instead of cake mix?

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Johanna, of course! They will not have the cake flavor; they will just taste like sugar cookies, which is fine!! Just follow the package directions and then add the sprinkles right before you bake them.

    • thehappiestofdays

      I just got really excited that you’re from KC! Where was the store that you got the sprinkles from?

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        The Sweet Supply Shoppe, in Overland Park. They have tons of baking goodies, and LOTS of sprinkle colors! :)
        Happy 4th!

    • Courtneylaine

      My sweet daughters and I made this today! What an easy and delicious 4th of July treat!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        YEA!! Glad they liked them. You guys have a wonderful 4th of July!!

    • Noelle

      These cookies are delicious and fun, but what’s with the excessive amount of oil? The dough was SO oily it was almost gross. I am about to make them again because they were yummy, but I’m tempted to try with less oil. Is there a reason for the amount?

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Noelle, did you use a large cake mix (18.25 oz) or a regular one? That may have had something to do with it. My cookies did not turn out oily at all.

    • Rebecca

      I made these today to share with my family tomorrow! Thanks for sharing your recipe and idea!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Awesome, I hope they like ’em! Happy 4th, Rebecca!!

    • Perrine

      Just finished making these for tomorrow! Turned out great! I did have to use a slightly smaller box of cake mix (15.5oz) because that was all my store carried and I didn’t have any problems. Thank you for the recipe.

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Fun! Good, I’m glad they still turned out good, thanks for the feedback!! Have a wonderful 4th!

    • crazyabout2nd

      My son and I are baking these right now for the 4th of July! He loves the sprinkles and the cookies look delicious. Thanks for sharing!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        FUN! These are a great recipe to do with kids; not too many steps. Hope you all have a great 4th!

    • Liz Moody

      Hi Steph,

      Just wanted to drop you a quick line to let you know I featured your awesomely delicious cookies on my lifestyle blog, Things That Make Us. Link’s below, and happy fourth!


      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Awesome, what a funny post!! Thanks for letting me know :) I like your blog!!!
        Happy 4th doll!

    • mary

      I bake cookies for a local Ronald McDonald House, and to celebrate the 4th I baked a batch of these: they were a HIT! Thanks for sharing them: they were fun to make, and it was fun to see the reaction of both kids and adults as well. Happy 4th!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Mary, that is so wonderful! Thank you for letting me know! I ran in the Kansas City Color Run last weekend to benefit our local Ronald McDonadl House! 😉

    • Kristyn

      I’m going to be making these tomorrow for the 4th of July Family Reunion I’m attending! I can’t wait! I’ll definitely be posting about them later!

    • drycreekmom

      They were a fourth of July hit at our party. They lasted about 5 minutes! You can do this with a 15 oz cake mix. Just cut the oil back to 1/3 cup. We are trying strawberry with chocolate sprinkles now. Should be yummy! I think lemon cake mix would be superb!

    • Debra

      I am going to use them for my sons Avenger party :) great idea thank you!!

    • Dianne Grover

      Even at such an age, I love firecrackers-they don’t bother me at all! Just the same as I love your firecracker cookies…it’s good to know you chose red and blue. Some flags have these combinations such as the Philippine flag and I adore truly adore these two colors. This will surely inspire others who love to bake, even restaurant Fort Lauderdale if they plan to have a themed catering event. I hope you can post more recipes with reds and blues. Thanks for sharing!

    • kittyyy

      I am so thankful to have found this, the possibilities are endless and I am addicted :)
      Ive made regular vanilla with chocolate chips (my husband isnt a fan of sprinkles either). they were fantastic, but then I made orange supreme with white chips, amazing. but THEN I made spice cake with raisin and it blew my mind. Thanks so much :)

    • Carla Stover

      4th of July my favorite holiday to decorate inside and out. And new recipes are always welcomed too.. I have heard cake recipes for cookie are the best so i am excited to find out. Thank you !! :)

    • Laurie Smallwood

      I was looking for a fast cookie for memorial day. I hope they turn out. I have never done a cake mix cookie.

    • BuenaMama

      These are so good! I was craving cookies and decided to bake them last night with my 10 day old newborn. She woke up as soon as I laid my ingredients out but it didn’t stop me. Simple to make even with baby in one arm! I dipped each cookie dough ball into sprinkles and mini choc chips, pressed down a bit and added more topping. They were a big hit with my 3 year old, hubby and my mom who is helping with new baby. Thanks for posting!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Buena Mama, congrats on your new sweet little babe! What a wonderfully exciting time!! So glad your family loved the cookies and I’m glad I could help out with your cookie craving! Hehe

    • Godsnewine

      Back in the 60’s I made cookies with Angel Food Cake Mix and I have been unable to locate it. Does anyone have the recipe?

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        I don’t have a recipe for that. Have you tried the angel food cake mix from a box?

    • Ejm85

      Do you think if I made these on Thursday evening, they’d still taste nice and fresh on Saturday for a party?

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        I’m not sure how long they would stay fresh. I’d say for 2 days you should be good. They sure don’t last very long around here.

    • altar ego

      Coming to this party late. I like the idea of cutting shapes after baking. Have you done these as brownies? I’m thinking that cutting out shapes might be easier from that context. Thanks!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        I have not made these as brownies. They should cut out fairly easily but I understand what you mean. I do have this Funfetti blondie recipe though, and this way the bars will be thicker but since there is no cocoa, you would be able to see the sprinkles easier. Hope that makes since.
        Here’s the recipe:

    • Sarah Byassee

      Thank you for denoting the correct size of cake mix! I tried this same recipe several times that I found from another source and could NOT get it right because I kept buying smaller cake mixes unknowingly. You’d think everyone would use the standard 18.25 but I guess not! Thanks again! Love this recipe.

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thanks for the feed back, Sarah!! I know some people have tried to add extra flour to the mix. I have only made this recipe with the larger box. Glad you like them! :)

    • Megan

      I tried them with a smaller cake mix (16.25 oz), and they turned out just fine!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Thanks, Megan!! Did you add any flour or just make the recipe as is? Thanks!

    • mommabee

      Made these today with my kids and they are yummy and so fun looking! My grocery only had the 15 oz cake mix and they still turned out great. On an impulse, I grabbed a bag of mini M & M’s. I had my 3 and 6 year old sit at the table and sort out all the red and blue ones (many candies were sampled but it kept them busy for 30 minutes – score!!) The added chocolate pushed these over the top for my chocaholic family. I’ll be featuring your page on my website for acts of kindness at — we plan to make these again on Veterans Day for all the veteran families on our street. Thanks so much for sharing this great recipe!!!

      • Janice Rourke

        That’s a really cute idea too!! :) I will try that next time!! 😉

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Great idea! I love that you got the kiddos involved :) I’ll have to check out your site! Thanks for sharing!

    • Brandi Barrows

      Getting ready to make these now! I love anything and everything, baking! So excited I found this recipe! I drove all over Tulsa today trying to find red and blue sprinkles! Finally found some red, white, and blue! Score! Thanks for the recipe!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Glad you found some! I hope you liked them.

    • Janice Rourke

      I am getting these ready right now for later today and I am very excited! I was a little concerned since all I have are 15oz boxes of cake mix but I it seems like they should turn out fine :) So excited!! Happy Fourth everyone and thanks for the wonderful idea!!!

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        I hope they turned out for you. Several people have tried it with the smaller box and just added a bit of flour to off set it. I haven’t tried this yet. Hope you had a good 4th!

    • joellemb

      Hi there. I have a couple of questions. I made these cookies, they were very sticky, and baked flat and the sprinkles were embedded in the cookies so you couldn’t see them like your picture. I baked them for 9 minutes , help what went wrong? Thanks, Joelle

      • Cookin’ Cowgirl

        Hmmm, well the dough is very sticky when I make them also. What size of cake mix box did you use? If it was too small that probably has something to do with it. These do spread out quite a bit when they bake and they are a much flatter cookie than tall. I’m really not sure why the sprinkles turned out that way though.

    • Kim

      Going to make these for a boy scout event this week… Excited to try them. Thanks for the recipe.

      • Kim

        I made these tonight for tomorrow’s event… How in the world are they going to make it there???
        I had to try one… okay two… and so did my husband. Good thing the teenager is at a friend’s house tonight. These are DELICIOUS!!!!
        My dough wasn’t really sticky. The cookies spread beautifully. I made them about half dollar size and got about 60 cookies!
        The only change that I made was to use red and blue sugar instead of the sprinkles because I couldn’t find them. I was lectured by the store employee that I should have purchased them at the beginning of July…

        ANYWAY.. I just sprinkled in the sugar until it “looked” nice…

        They are great. Thanks again!!

    • Laura

      I couldn’t wait to make these adorable cookies. I looked at the cake box size when I got home from the store and it was 15.25 oz. Bummer. So I just mixed the wet ingredients, and then removed 1/4 cup and set aside. Then I added the cake mix. This was a little dry, so I added a Tbs. of the remaining wet ingredients. That looked about right. I used only purple sprinkles. They baked up nicely and are tasty too! I ‘m def. going to try other recipes from you! Thanks for sharing.

    • Melinda Grimes

      I used a Duncan Hines Classic White cake mix and they baked nicely but were too sweet. Atleast too sweet for me but everyone else in the house loved them!! Just FYI for everyone is you use the Classic White.

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    • Jen E

      Yum! Just made them this morning for a 4th of July party. They were SUPER easy to make, are very festive, and, most importantly, taste delicious!

    • Krisanne

      Regarding the red and blue sprinkles; my supermarket bakery had plenty of them and the baker was kind enough to sell me the red and blue in a take out box! Perfect, he just charged me the price of a package of sugar cookies. $3.99 and I didn’t have to search all over town! Especially since I am baking them last minute for a July 4 party TODAY! Thank you for the recipe, getting ready to make them now!

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    • Trisha Shively

      The first time I made these I didn’t read the disclaimer about the size of the cake mix and the mix I bought was 15.25 oz. I weighed 3 oz of Bisquick and added it to the cake mix. Everyone loved them. They are my #1 requested item to make. They call them my Crack Cookies because they are so addictive! I also do a mixture of 1/2 cup sprinkles and 1/2 cup of the sugar crystals. The crystals dissolve a little to give the cookies a different color. They also give the cookies a little extra crunch. I have used various color combinations of sprinkles for different holidays, tailgating, birthday’s etc.