Pillow Soft Cream Cheese Cookies

Cream cheese cookies are the most heavenly little bites of sweetness! They’re addicting; you’ve been warned!

Pillow Soft Cream Cheese Cookies


If you have never tried cream cheese cookies, you’re in for a TREAT! Something magical happens when you add cream cheese to a cookie! You get this soft, moist, chewy cookie that feels like you’re eating a cloud. They puff right up, and they’re addicting!

I “fussed” quite a bit with this recipe to make it absolutely perfect. First, it was too dry and we can’t have that. Second, it wasn’t fluffy enough. Finally, I found the perfect combination of all of the ingredients! Let me let you in on a little secret, there are THREE secrets in these cookies. Three. Pay close attention.


  • The cream cheese. Naturally. It’s the “key” ingredient that makes these cookies so good! Don’t leave it out! Well, except out on your counter to come to room temperature before baking, of course. ;)
  • Cake Flour. You can find in the regular flour section. I tend to buy Swans Down brand (red box). This is the key to making a soft cookie that feels like a cloud!
  • Baking time! This will vary by a lot of factors for your oven from altitude to what type of pan you use but this trick will help you! Watch for the very edges of these cookies to begin turning a golden brown, then pull them!

Now that we have the two secrets out of the way, let’s get on with more reasons why I love these cream cheese cookies.

These cookies are not an overly sweet cookie so they do lend themselves to being glazed or iced. You can also keep it simple and just dust with powdered sugar. You don’t even have to do that, but if you want an extra touch of sweetness, go for it. You only live once.

My daughter helped me with this shoot, my little apprentice is home all summer. Not only did she help me bake these cream cheese cookies, but she stood over my shoulder to watch behind the camera so I could teach her about lighting and photography. She is also 4, so she was really doing all of this so she could get in on the “eating” action.

After we wrapped up the shoot, I let her frost some with buttercream frosting (and of course, her weight in sprinkles). I noticed that the flavor reminded me of the grocery store “Lofthouse Cookies”, do you know the ones I’m talking about? Heavenly. These cream cheese cookies take just fine on their own, but we enjoyed the frosting!

You’ll notice I used vanilla and almond extracts. This combination is my personal preference, but play around with your favorite extracts. Stick to all vanilla, all almond, add in a little lemon. You can’t go wrong.

Keep in mind that the dough DOES need to be refrigerated for at least an hour, so plan ahead! It’s worth the wait!


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened (1 stick)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 3/4 cup cake flour


  1. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Cream together butter and cream with electric mixer. 
  2. Add sugar and beat for 1 minute. Add egg and beat to combine. Add extracts and beat until combined. Add in baking powder and cake flour (in three sections), mixing to combine. 
  3. Once incorporated, refrigerate dough for at least an hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Dough is sticky so use flour on your hands to roll out 1-2 inch balls. You can use the bottom of a cup/glass dipped in flour to gently flatten the balls. Don't flatten too much or the cookies won't puff up. 
  5. Bake for 9-11 minutes. Important: Pull them out when you see the underside edges turning golden! This might vary for your oven and altitude. Watch these cookies carefully.

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