Fresh strawberries, graham cracker crumbs, and a velvety cream cheese filling come together in these Strawberry Cheesecake Cookies for a unique and delicious twist on a traditional dessert. These cookies are the perfect way to let those summer strawberries shine!
Ever since I started baking, I've tried to infuse strawberry flavor into every single dessert I can think of. But now my goals have changed a bit. Now? I want to infuse strawberry cheesecake flavor into any and every dessert I can imagine.
I think that even cheesecake purists can agree that adding strawberries to the traditional dessert is totally allowed. And I'm hoping that cookie purists can agree that making strawberry cheesecake cookies is not only allowed, but it should be a summer requirement.
These cookies are absolutely packed with the flavors of strawberry cheesecake and are sure to be a hit at any summer party. Though I also highly recommend making them for your family to enjoy after a long day at the beach or pool.
❤️ Why you'll love this recipe
Isn't it obvious? If you love strawberry cheesecake, you're going to love these cookies! Not only do they taste like the classic dessert, but they are so fun to look at, too. They're packed with fresh strawberries and have a surprise sweet cream cheese filling in the middle.
Despite how awesome they look, the cookies are super easy to make. I'll show you how with my step-by-step instructions that are easy to follow along with.
Believe it or not, the ingredients for these cookies are quite simple! Here's everything you need (be sure to view the recipe card at the bottom of this post for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions):
- Cream cheese
- Confectioners' sugar
- All-purpose flour
- Graham cracker crumbs
- Baking powder
- Unsalted butter
- Granulated sugar
- Large eggs
- Vanilla extract
- Fresh strawberries
🍓 How to make strawberry cheesecake cookies
And though making the strawberry cheesecake cookies does have an extra step or two compared to the typical cookie recipe, you'll see that they're actually quite easy!
You'll start by making the cream cheese filling mixture as you'll want it to chill for a bit before you roll it into the cookie dough.
Make sure your cream cheese is softened, but not super soft and warm.
In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer or spatula, beat the cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth and well combined.
Now, use your hands to roll it into about 28 little balls, roughly 2 teaspoon sized. Place the balls a large platter or baking sheet and put baking sheet in the freezer, so cream cheese balls can chill while you prepare the cookie dough.
The cream cheese will be a little sticky as you're forming it into balls (OK, more like round-ish clumps), but chilling it will make it easier to work with when you incorporate it into the cookie dough.
Now, whisk together the flour, half of the graham cracker crumbs, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer or spatula (can be the same bowl you mixed the cream cheese in, cleaned out), cream together butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes.
Add the eggs and vanilla extract to the butter mixture and continue to beat until well combined.
Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until just incorporated, taking care not to over-mix.
Fold in the diced strawberries.
Note: If your cookie dough feels too wet, it could be because your strawberries were wet going into the batter. You can always add a little bit more flour (1 Tbsp at a time).
Now you're ready to form your strawberry cheesecake cookies! Put the remaining ½ cup of graham cracker crumbs in a small bowl. You'll use these for coating the cookies.
Take the cream cheese balls out of the freezer. And take about 1 ½ Tablespoons of the cookie dough (I use a #40 cookie scoop) and flatten it a little bit in the palm of your hand.
Place a ball of chilled cream cheese in the center of the flattened dough and fold the cookie dough over it, completely covering the cream cheese and rolling the dough into a ball.
Now, roll cookie dough balls in graham cracker crumbs and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
I do recommend chilling the cookie dough before baking. Since you had the dough in your hand and to cover the cream cheese, it can get a little bit warm.
Put baking sheet in the fridge to chill for about 30 minutes
Right before you're ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Bake cookies for 18-20 minutes, until edges are just turning golden.
Let cookies cool in the pan for a few minutes before moving to cooling rack to cool completely.
And then you're ready to enjoy them! On the surface, they look like tasty graham cracker crumb coated strawberry cookies. Which, to be honest, is wonderful enough.
But then you take a bite and discover a surprise inside. A ridiculously amazing surprise. Sweet cream cheese filling.
These cookies really do have all the elements of a slice of strawberry cheesecake and will make cheesecake lovers so, so happy.
They're perfectly sweet soft cookies and since they're packed with summer strawberries, they're perfect for all sorts of warm weather parties.
And now I suddenly want to hide sweet cream cheese in all my cookies! Speaking of, these cheesecake thumbprint cookies also look incredible!
⏲️ How to store
These strawberry cheesecake cookies really are best when enjoyed fresh and I encourage you to make them right before wherever you're bringing or serving them.
However, if you make them ahead of time, you'll want to be sure to store them in an airtight container in the fridge since there's cream cheese in them.
Note that you can also freeze the cookies after baking and cooling them. I recommend freezing them on a cookie sheet first and then putting them into a ziplock freezer bag to prevent freezer burn and to keep the cookies from sticking to each other.
You can also wrap them individually in plastic wrap to keep them even fresher.
☀️ How to prep ahead
If you really want to serve these fresh out of the oven, but don't have time to go through all the steps, you make the cookie dough ahead of time and can freeze the cookie dough balls stuffed with cream cheese. Just don't roll them in the graham cracker crumbs yet. Let the balls of dough chill in the fridge for about an hour before putting in a large Ziplock bag and freezing.
I recommend thawing the cookie dough balls overnight in the fridge and then when you're ready to bake them, let them sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes, roll them in the graham cracker crumbs, and bake as directed.
They should keep in freezer for 2-3 months.
🧊 Can I use frozen strawberries?
Fresh strawberries are really best for these cookies, but if you can't get any, frozen can work, too.
You'll want to make sure to thaw frozen strawberries completely and to drain any excess liquid from them before incorporating them into the cookie dough. Otherwise, the dough may have too much moisture in it.
You can even use freeze-dried strawberries if you want!
🎉 Alterations to recipe
I've already declared that strawberry cheesecake is the best kind of cheesecake and the only cookie flavor you'll really need. But once you get the basic technique of these cookies down, there are so many different ways you can make them! Here are some fun ideas:
- If you don't like strawberry, try cherry, blueberry, or raspberry.
- If you love chocolate cheesecake, make the cookie dough chocolate (it will be like a chocolate-covered strawberry cheesecake!).
- Try filling the cookies with a chocolate cream cheese filling.
- If you don't want a chocolate cookie dough or filling, but love the idea of a little extra richness, you can add chocolate chips instead. White chocolate chips would also be delicious.
- Try mixing some strawberry jam into the cream cheese filling for extra fruity flavor!
- Try adding nuts for a little extra crunch.
- Add sprinkles for some more fun colors.
- A little lemon juice and/or lemon zest adds a nice flavor.
🍪 More summer cookie recipes
Any of these cookies can be enjoyed at any time of year, but they're especially appropriate and fun for summer! Here are some of my favorite recipes:
- Raspberry Shortbread Cookies
- Key Lime Cookies
- Soft Lemon Cookies
- Margarita Shortbread Cookies
- Strawberry Shortcake Cookies
- Lavender Lemon Cookies
- Strawberry Lemonade Shortbread Cookies
- Blueberry Lemon and White Chocolate Cookies
- Watermelon Sugar Cookies (from Sugar Spun Run)
I hope you decide to celebrate strawberry season with these delicious strawberry cheesecake cookies! I know I'll be baking them over and over again and trying to decide how I can incorporate them into fall, the holiday season, and beyond!
What's your favorite flavor of cheesecake?
Strawberry Cheesecake Cookies
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- ⅓ cup confectioners' sugar
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup graham cracker crumbs (about 8 full sheets), divided
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup diced fresh strawberries
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer or spatula, beat the softened cream cheese and confectioners' sugar until smooth and well combined.
- Use your hands to roll the cream cheese mixture into about 28 little balls, roughly 2 teaspoon sized, and place on a large platter or baking sheet. Cream cheese will likely be sticky, so they don't have to be perfect balls. Put baking sheet in the freezer so cream cheese balls can chill while you prepare the cookie dough.
- In a separate medium bowl, whisk together flour, half of the graham cracker crumbs, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a large bowl with a hand mixer or spatula (can be the same bowl you mixed the cream cheese in, cleaned out), cream together butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add the eggs and vanilla extract to the butter mixture and continue to beat until well combined.
- Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until just incorporated, taking care not to over-mix. Fold in the chopped strawberries.
- Put remaining graham cracker crumbs in a small bowl.
- Remove cream cheese balls from freezer. Take about 1 ½ Tablespoons of the cookie dough (I use a #40 cookie scoop) and flatten it in the palm of your hand. Place a ball of chilled cream cheese in the center of the flattened dough and fold the cookie dough over it, completely covering the cream cheese and rolling the dough into a ball. Now, roll cookie dough balls in graham cracker crumbs and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Put baking sheet in the fridge to chill for about 30 minutes.
- Right before you're ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Bake cookies for 18-20 minutes, until edges are just turning golden.
- Let cookies cool in the pan for a few minutes before moving to a wire rack to cool completely.
- These cookies taste best fresh, but if you have leftovers, be sure to store them in an airtight container in the fridge as they have cream cheese filling.
- See body of post for notes on storing, freezing, and making dough ahead.