How To Make A Letter Cookie Cake or Number Cookie Cake

July 04, 2020 8 min read 10 Comments

Today I'm going to run you through the process of making a decorated cookie cake letter or cookie cake number.  Some people call these cakes cream tarts or cream biscuits, depending on where you are from.  I'm going to stick with the term cookie cake because it is some really big cookies, layered together to look like a cake!  Cookie cakes are a great alternative to a traditional cake as (shock horror) some people aren't cake lovers and also sometimes it is just nice to have something different.

Letters and numbers are by far the most popular cookie cake template shapes we sell in our store.  They are perfect for celebrating birthdays and anniversaries.  This guide is filled with tips and tricks to help you create your very own cookie cake.

A cookie cake can easily be made in a couple of hours if you need it in a hurry.  If you have some more time though I like to make my large cookies and cookie toppers on one day and then decorate and serve the next day.

We have our cookie cake instructions and recipes as a free downloadable eBook.  Click the link below to get yours emailed to you.




It's important to choose a cookie recipe that does not spread when baked.  A sugar cookie, shortbread or any other dough without rising agents in it are all good choices. 

I have added links at the bottom for my preferred chocolate cookie dough or vanilla cookie dough recipes or you can download my free ebook of cookie cake recipes.

Roll your dough out onto silicone baking mats or parchment (baking) paper to approximately 1/4 inch (6mm) thick.

TIP!  Chilling your dough really does make cutting out that extra large cookie shape a LOT easier.  So roll out that dough and pop in in the fridge while you choose your shape.


Rolled out cookie dough ready for cutting into cookie cake shape


Ok, so you probably already know what shape you are going to make your cookies in.  Now is time to grab your cookie template (while your dough is chilling out) to help you cut out those large cookie shapes.  We offer both print-at-home templates and reusable templates.  Sooo much easier and quicker than trying to hand-draw a template. 

The print at home templates are designed so that you can just print them on your regular printer with your regular paper and you don't need any fancy program or printer.  Once paid for, you can log back into your account and download your print at home templates again at any time you need them in the future too.

Our reusable plastic templates come in sets and are washable, and reusable again and again.




All of the reusable letter and number templates are 11" tall and designed so that your large cookie will fit on a standard cookie sheet when baked.  The print at home templates come in either 11" or 8" sizes.  If you use more than one letter or number together they will match.  The most popular product is my Ultimate Bundle Cookie Cake Deal which includes ALL of the reusuable templates in one space-savvy binder.  Our second best selling product are our print at home number baking stencils.  They are super convenient when you need a baking template to use right away and take up zero precous storage space in your kitchen.

 Letter A Templates In Use


Take your rolled out dough out of the fridge and place your cookie template on top.  If your cookie shape doesn't quite fit onto the rolled out dough you can move some of the rolled out dough and place it where you need to make the shape and roll it again.  It doesn't matter if there are small creases or join marks on your dough because these will be covered when the cookie cake is assembled and decorated.

Carefully cut around your cookie cake template.  Keep your cookie cake cutting tool or knife as upright as possible to keep a nice straight edge to the cookie.  If you make a mistake you just need to re-roll your dough and try again.  It gets easier the more times you do it and remember that imperfections are OK!

Leave your large cookie shape on the silicone mat or parchment paper and carefully remove the dough from around it.  Moving a cookie shape this large is really difficult without breaking it so we're not going to attempt it.  Trust me!

 At this point, you might like to use your leftover cookie dough to make little cookies use as cake toppers in whatever shapes you like.  Below I have made some small number 7 cookies, hearts and butterflies.

Making cookie cake toppers with leftover cookie dough


These cookies are larger than usual so we need to bake them in the oven at a lower temperature and for longer than usual.  I bake mine at 160°C (320°F) for 18 - 20 minutes.  All ovens cook differently though so please check your cookies regularly.  They should be just lightly golden on the edges.  The cookies might still feel slightly soft however they will crisp up when cooled.  

IMPORTANT TIP:   Do not attempt to move your cookies off your tray until they are cooled completely.  I prefer to allow mine to cool overnight just so they aren't so delicate when moving them to decorate.  If you do happen to break one you can just use that one on the base of your cookie cake (and no one will notice - yep, done that!)

 Number 8 Cookie Cake Baked


Buttercream is a popular choice for the icing to assemble the layers and pipe on top of the cookie cake.  It sets to a nice firm consistency fairly quickly which allows you to decorate your cookie cake really soon after assembling it.  I love a cheesecake filling for the taste, it just takes a bit longer to set in the fridge before you can decorate it easily.

At the bottom of this post are the links to some of our favourite icing or filling recipes including vanilla buttercream, chocolate buttercream, lemon curd buttercream and white chocolate cheesecake.  



Fit an icing bag with the nozzle of your choice.  I usually use a round tip with a 1/2 inch(13mm) opening.  You can also experiment using different shaped nozzles for different effects with the icing.  I like the look of a fine star nozzle with a similar sized opening also. 

Move your first cookie onto a serving platter or cake board making sure that will fit into your fridge.  Put a couple of dollops of icing underneath your large cookie to stick it to the serving plate.  Put your filling into the piping bag and then carefully pipe the icing onto your first layer of cookie at a 90 degree angle or straight up and down.  Move your first cookie into the fridge for the icing to set for 15 minutes so that it isn't too soft when you add the next layer of cookie to it. 

Take it out of the fridge and put your next layer of cookie carefully on top and pipe icing on chill again.  Repeat the process if you are doing more than 2 layers.  After piping the top layer of icing you need to leave it to sit in the fridge for about half an hour for buttercream or a couple of hours for a softer filling like cheesecake to allow the icing to set enough to add your decorations.

Vanilla Buttercream Piped Onto Cookie CakeVanilla Buttercream Piped Onto Cookie Cake

Lemon Curd Buttercream Piped Onto CookieLemon Curd Buttercream Piped Onto Cookie Cake Letter


The best bit, in my opinion, other than eating it!  There are endless ways you can decorate your cookie cake and things you can put on top. 

Number Cookie Cake Ready for Decorating

Letter Cookie Cake Ready For Decorating

Here are some ideas:

  • Cookies either plain or decorated
Cookie Cake Topper Cookies
  • Fondant toppers - these look really good if stamped with personalized messages
Fondant Cookie Cake Toppers
  • Sprinkles
  • Macarons
  • Meringues 
Meringue Kisses
  • Fruit
  • Fresh Flowers (cover the stem in foil or similar so it's food safe)
  • Chocolates including mini blocks
  • Candy or lollies - avoid round hard candy as these will go rock hard in fridge and could be choking hazards
  • Marshmallows
  • Herbs
  • Mini bottles of alcohol (popular for a 21st, 30th, 40th)
  • Tea bags (in their gorgeous wrapper) for a tea lover
  • Customised acryclic cake toppers


After decorating your cookie cake it is best to leave it to set in the fridge for a couple of hours or overnight.  This will make it easier for you to cut and serve.  The recipient of the cookie cake will be thrilled with their very own personalized dessert to help celebrate their special occasion. 

 Number Cookie Cake RecipeLetter Cookie Cake Recipe



If you need any help at all creating your cookie cake please reach out to me and I'd be happy to help in any way I can.

The cookie stencils are also perfect for cutting cakes into letter and number shapes.  Here is one of my recipes for creating a letter cake with my baking stencils.

Happy baking!




Chocolate Cookie Dough

Vanilla Cookie Dough

Gingerbread Cookie Dough



Vanilla Buttercream

Chocolate Buttercream

Lemon Curd Buttercream

White Chocolate Cheesecake Filling

Cream Cheese Buttercream Filling

Biscoff Swiss Meringue Buttercream



We can't talk about making decorated cookie cakes without a nod to the original creator of the cookie cake, Adi Klinghofer, a very talented pastry chef, recipe and blog writer.  You can get inspired by Adi's work on her Instagram page here.  Be prepared to lose some hours trawling through those amazing images 😉

 Letter E Cookie Cake Up Close!


Number 8 Cookie Cake Close Up







1. How do you cut a cookie cake without the cookies cracking and breaking?

I've made cookie cakes many times now and I find that as long as I cut it when the cookie and fillings are chilled there is minimal cracking of the cookies.  The chilled filling helps to support the cookies while they are cut and really minimises cracking.  The cookies will lose a little of their crunch once filled and refrigerated which also prevents cracking.


2. Can I make the dough for my cookie cake ahead of time?

Yes!  This is something I have done numerous times.  You can make the dough and refrigerate it for up to 2 days or you can freeze it until you are ready to make your large cookies.


3. Can I make a cookie cake the day before I need it?

For your own sanity, I recommend it.  You certainly can make a cookie cake and serve it on the same day if you have the time.  I tend to make the cookies one day and decorate the next.  You can then refrigerate it (covered) and serve on that same day or even the next day.  Making the cookies the day before allows them to completely cool which also makes them easier to move without breaking.


4. Would gluten free flour work OK in your cookie cake recipes?

You can use gluten free flour blends in place of the plain flour in the DoughCuts recipes.  My tips for this would be to roll the dough a little thicker and be extra careful when moving the cookies as they will be more delicate.  If they break do not worry though as you can put them back together fairly easily and the breaks can be covered with your delicious cookie cake filling.




10 Responses

Elizabeth Calise
Elizabeth Calise

July 02, 2023

I like the idea of a cookie number cake. My concern is when slicing and serving. Will the cookie crack while slicing. Please respond. Thank you
DoughCuts replied:
I’ve made quite a few cookie cakes and sometimes you can get a little cracking when cutting them but nothing too bad. The buttercream holds everything together really well when cutting.  -——- Original message -——-


September 07, 2022

Every time I make these, my cookies break when moving them. Any additional suggestions besides letting them cool overnight? Thank you!
DoughCuts replied:
Thanks Stephanie for your question. I’m sorry to hear your cookies are breaking. Some tips I have that might help is to roll the cookie dough a little thicker than you normally would and cook for a little longer. Once they are cool you can move them with a spatula however this shouldn’t be necessary. I have had a couple break too despite my best efforts and the good thing is that they can be put back together and it is not noticeable once the cookie cake is decorated.


May 02, 2022

Hi! Can this dough be made in advance? If so, how long will the dough be good for?
DoughCuts replied:
Yes you can make this dough in advance. Up to 2 days in the fridge or you can freeze it until the day you need it also.Happy baking! -——- Original message -——-


December 18, 2021

Is the recipe for the cookie dough, enough for just 1 letter? So I would need to double the dough recipe to have enough to make 2 letters to stick on one another?
DoughCuts replied:
The recipe will make enough for the 2 large cookies.  Happy baking!Sent from my Galaxy -——- Original message -——-


July 17, 2021

Hi Dima
If you are making 2 numbers (and each are 2 layers of cookie) then I would 1.5x the cheesecake frosting recipe. Good luck! The cheesecake filling is extra delicious :)


July 17, 2021

Hi Ashleigh
If you assemble the cookie cake the day before serving it the buttercream (or other filling) will slightly soften the cookies so it won’t crack on you when you cut it with a sharp knife. Good luck and I’d love to see photos :)

Ashleigh M
Ashleigh M

July 17, 2021

Hi, lovely cake and instructions, can’t wait to try! Just wondering, feedback on cutting and serving, is it very firm to cut or does it crack as soon as the recipient will try to cut and serve it? I want to do one for a bridal shower but am wondering how it will cut and don’t want serving to be a hassle.


July 17, 2021

Hello,if i want to make number 30 (25cm) each number and i want to use cheescake frosting could u tell me plz how much do i need frosting? And
Thank u

Evangeline Cruz
Evangeline Cruz

December 31, 2020

I’ve been searching/looking for these templates. Thank you very much. It will help me a lot

Adrienne Montague
Adrienne Montague

September 10, 2020

You truly are a blessing, I been going crazy for months trying to figure out how I could make a number cake or cookie cake..Thank you!!

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