You'll love these spice cake mix cookies with brown butter glaze and pumpkin pie spice. Soft, gooey, and oozing with the vibrant spices of fall.
If this is your first time making a cake mix cookie recipe, you are in for a sweet treat. Spice cake mix cookies are soft, gooey, and full of spices that remind you of your favorite fall flavors.
Each thick fall cookie has a brown butter glaze with a dusting of pumpkin pie spice. Although there is no pumpkin in the cookies, they have a pumpkin spice flavor.
It's the perfect cookie for a cookie exchange, potluck, or party.
Ready for your new favorite fall treats? Let's get spicy!
- 3 Reasons to Make Spiced Cake Mix Cookies This Fall Season (or Anytime)
- Spice Cookie Ingredients
- Brown Butter Glaze
- Prep Work
- Bake Cookies
- Make the Brown Butter Glaze
- Decorate the Cookies
- Tasty Tips
- How to Store
- How to Freeze
- Frequently Asked Questions
- What to Serve with Spice Cake Mix Cookies
- Craving More Cake Mix Cookies?
3 Reasons to Make Spiced Cake Mix Cookies This Fall Season (or Anytime)
- It's a great way to celebrate fall flavors. Cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg are all around during pumpkin season.
This cake mix recipe highlights those potent spices. You won't find boring cookies. No! These cookies are alive with the taste of autumn.
- It's one of the easiest desserts you'll make. Throw cake mix plus a few extra ingredients into a large mixing bowl and stir.
You don't even need a hand mixer. A wooden spoon does the trick. The prep time is quick, and the dirty dishes are minimal.
- It's a really great recipe to freeze. The next time you make cake mix cookies, freeze at least half. Then they are ready any time you get the craving.
Spice Cookie Ingredients
These simple ingredients produce delicious cookies that are perfect for the holiday season.
- Box of spice cake mix. Betty Crocker makes the best-flavored spice cake mix.
- Instant vanilla pudding mix. This is the secret ingredient that upgrades this easy recipe. If you try it without the pudding mix, you'll notice.
Dry pudding needs to be mixed into the box of cake mix cookie dough for better cookie flavor.
- Unsalted butter. Butter tastes amazing in spiced cake mix cookies. But you can use a bit of canned pumpkin if you want a lighter cookie.
- Large eggs. Use the eggs at room temperature.
Brown Butter Glaze
The brown butter glaze really sets these pumpkin spice cookies apart from others.
- Unsalted butter
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Heavy cream
- Pumpkin pie spice
- Mix in white chocolate chips or toasted pecans.
- Frost the spice cookies with cream cheese frosting.
- Make chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies using pumpkin instead of butter and stirring in a cup of chocolate chips.
- Instead of a brown butter glaze, make a sweet glaze with powdered sugar and cream. Skip the butter, but still sprinkle the cookies with pumpkin pie spice.
- Swap out the spice mix and replace it with yellow cake mix plus a teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice.
- Open a can of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) and replace the butter with pumpkin puree. This will give you easy pumpkin cookies that are lighter in calories.
Prep, bake, glaze. Easy spice cake mix cookies coming right up!
- Preheat the oven and line a baking sheet with parchment paper so the cookies don't stick.
- Melt the butter in the microwave for about 45 seconds. Stir until it's all melty, then cool it for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Pour the dry cake mix, vanilla pudding, melted butter, and eggs into a large bowl. Mix with a wooden spoon until the dough is combined.
Use a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl to make sure all the dry ingredients are combined into the cookie dough. Don't worry if it's a little sticky.
- Wait 10 minutes before scooping the dough. This gives the dry ingredients time to absorb all the wet ingredients.
- Scoop the cookie dough with a medium cookie scoop. Roll the dough smoothly with your hands. Then flatten slightly with your palms.
- Space the cookies about two inches apart so they don't touch when they spread during baking.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 11 to 13 minutes or until the edges are done. The middles may not look completely done, but they will finish baking with the residual heat when out of the oven.
- Take the cookie sheet out of the oven.
- Optional: Shape the cookies with a large cookie cutter. Circle the warm cookie with the cutter and spin the ring around the cookie for 5 seconds.
The cookie sides will pull in making the cookies more uniformly shaped.
- Place the cookie sheet on a wire rack and cool for 5 minutes.
- Transfer the cookies from the pan to the cooling rack.
Make the Brown Butter Glaze
- Cut the butter into 4 pieces so it melts uniformly.
- Heat a saucepan over medium heat.
- Add the butter pieces to the pan.
- Stir the butter continuously using a heat-resistant spatula as it melts to ensure even cooking.
- Watch for color change. The butter will first foam, then turn clear, and tiny golden-brown specks will eventually appear at the bottom.
The butter will develop a nutty aroma. Browned butter can burn quickly, so watch it closely.
- Remove the butter from the heat once it reaches a deep golden brown color. Transfer it to a medium bowl.
- Whisk the powdered sugar into the butter until it is a smooth, slightly thick consistency. Stir in the vanilla extract. Whisk in the heavy cream gradually until it reaches the right consistency.
Decorate the Cookies
- Transfer the cookies to a sheet of parchment paper before decorating.
- Spoon 1 tablespoon of glaze on the top of the cookies. Spread with an offset spatula if necessary.
- Sprinkle pumpkin pie spice on the cookie tops when the glaze is still wet.
- Rest the cookies until the glaze dries.
RELATED: If you want chewy pumpkin cookies, try pumpkin snickerdoodles rolled in a spiced-up version of cinnamon sugar coating.
- Shaping the warm cookies with a cookie ring makes them look more uniform and professional. Since it is easy, I recommend shaping all the drop cookies you bake.
It's easier to shape them if each dough ball is the same size and you roll them into a smooth ball before baking them.
- Vanilla pudding mix makes a huge difference in cookie flavor. Although I find Betty Crocker's spice cake mix to be one of the tastiest cake mixes on its own, adding pudding still makes a huge difference.
You can skip it. But why would you?
- Brown butter glaze adds a unique flavor to the cookie. Watch it closely when you brown the butter because it can burn quickly.
How to Store
Store any leftover cookies in an airtight container at room temperature. The cookies will stay fresh for 3 or 4 days. To preserve them longer, freeze them. They are easy to freeze.
How to Freeze
Want an expert tip? Flash-freeze the cookies before their final freeze. It's the perfect way to keep the cookies from sticking together, allowing you to pull them out one at a time.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Lay the spice cookies in a single layer on the paper.
- Freeze for 1 hour.
- Remove the cookies from the freezer and transfer them to a freezer container or bag.
- Label the cookies and freeze them for 6+ months. Now you can pull out a delicious fluffy cookie whenever the craving hits.
Frequently Asked Questions
Betty Crocker is the most well-known company that makes spice cake mix.
Great Value also produces a spice cake mix, but it is often only available during the holiday season. Betty Crocker's spice cake mix is on the shelves year-round.
Baking companies rarely disclose their particular blend of spices. The spices most common in spice cakes are cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, and ginger.
Spice Cake Mix Cookies with Brown Butter Glaze & Pumpkin Spice
- ½ cup of unsalted butter
- 1 (13.25 ounce) box of spice cake mix
- 1 (3.4 ounce) box of instant vanilla pudding mix
- 2 large eggs
Brown Butter Glaze
- ½ cup of unsalted butter
- 1¼ cups of powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 2 to 4 tablespoons of heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
- PREHEAT the oven to 350°F (175°C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. (See note #1.)
- MELT the butter in the microwave in a microwave-safe container. Heat for about 45 seconds. Cool for 2 to 3 minutes.
- POUR the dry cake mix and vanilla pudding mix into a large bowl. Add the melted butter and eggs. Mix with a wooden spoon until the dough is combined. Use a spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl to make sure all the dry ingredients are combined into the cookie dough.
- REST the cookie dough for 10 minutes. The moisture will absorb into the dry ingredients, and the dough will have a scoopable texture.
- SCOOP the cookie dough balls with a large scoop (2 tablespoons size is ideal). Roll the dough ball in your hands to make it smooth. Then flatten the cookie slightly with your palms.
- PLACE the cookie dough about two inches apart on the lined baking sheet.
- BAKE in the oven for 11 to 13 minutes or until the edges are done. The middles may not look completely done, but they will finish baking with the residual heat when they are out of the oven.
- REMOVE the cookie sheet from the oven.
- SHAPE the cookies with a large cookie cutter. Encircle the cookie with the cookie ring. Rotate the ring around the cookie for about 5 seconds. As you rotate, the sides of the cookie will pull in as the cookie gets rounder and more uniform in shape. The warmth of the cookie will help it conform to the ring. By the end of the rotation, the cookie should have taken on a perfectly round shape. Repeat this technique with all the cookies.
- PLACE the cookie sheet on a wire rack and cool for 5 minutes.
- TRANSFER the cookies from the cookie sheet to the cooling rack. Cool them completely.
Brown Butter Glaze
- CUT the butter into 4 pieces so it melts uniformly.
- HEAT a sauce pan over medium heat.
- ADD the butter pieces to the pan.
- STIR the butter continuously using a heat-resistant spatula as it melts to ensure even cooking.
- WATCH for color change. The butter will first foam, then turn clear, and eventually, small golden-brown specks will appear at the bottom. The butter will develop a nutty aroma. Browned butter can burn easily, so it's essential to watch it closely during the process.
- REMOVE the butter from the heat once it reaches a deep golden brown color. Transfer it to a medium bowl.
- WHISK the powdered sugar into the butter until it is a smooth, slightly thick consistency. Stir in the vanilla extract.
- ADD the heavy cream slowly, whisking until you get the consistency of glaze. (See note #2.)
- TRANSFER the cookies to a sheet of parchment paper before decorating.
- SPOON 1 tablespoon of glaze on the top of the cookies. Spread with an offset spatula if necessary.
- SPRINKLE pumpkin pie spice on the cookie tops when the glaze is still wet.
- REST the cookies until the glaze dries.
- Grease the cookie sheet if you aren't lining it with parchment paper. Otherwise, these cookies will stick to the pan.
- Add enough cream to the glaze to get a smooth, drizzling consistency. You can add more than 4 tablespoons if needed. If the glaze is too thin, add more powdered sugar.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days. Or freeze in a freezer-safe container for 6 months.