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Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake (Dairy-Free)

The crowd has spoken. And spoken quite clearly, might I add. A chocolate chip cookie cake has been highly requested and I’m here to please. Four fluffy dairy-free chocolate chip cookie cake layers packed full of brown sugar and mini chocolate chips and all wrapped in the most wonderful whipped cookie dough-inspired buttercream frosting. Oh, and did I mention I added a ridiculously delicious amount of chocolate chips to the frosting too?!

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A close up shot of a cake top with chocolate chip cookies and buttercream swirls on top

Dairy-Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

This cake flavor has been on my to-do list for quite some time now and I’m in the mood to start checking things off. First, on that list, is a chocolate chip cookie-inspired cake packed full of that yummy cookie dough flavor that we love and adore.

The cake batter alone is good enough to eat straight from the spatula with its bold brown sugar cookie taste. And the buttercream, oh my good heavens! It was sweet, warm, and so totally decadent with the mini chocolate chips.

A chocolate chip cookie cake topped with buttercream swirls and chocolate chip cookies. A child's hand is reaching in going to pick a cookie off the top of the cake.

What Makes A Good Chocolate Chip Cookie

My go-to chocolate chip cookie recipe (which if you haven’t baked stop what you’re doing and go bake it right now) is loaded with brown sugar and mini chocolate chips. The chip-to-bite ratio is maximized in each chewy chocolate chip cookie bite with hints of coarse sea salt to elevate its flavor palette.

How Do I Make A Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

Knowing what makes a delicious chocolate chip cookie, I implemented those very same elements into these cake layers. It’s my basic vanilla cake recipe but with brown sugar instead of white and a healthy dose of mini chocolate chips tossed right into the batter.

A slice of cake full of chocolate chips and white frosting. a fork is taking a bite out of it.

Why Do Chocolate Chips Sink In A Cake?

Have you ever tried baking chocolate chips in a cake only to have them all sink to the bottom? Bummer, right?! This problem has a super simple solution though.

First, grab a small mixing bowl and measure in the chocolate chips. Second, add 1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour. Third, give this combination a good mixture to make sure all the chocolate chips are coated in flour.

When the cake batter is mixed and ready for the chocolate chips, simply add in the entire mixture of chocolate chips and flour. Gently mix the batter with a spatula until just combined. Be careful not the overmix. Divide the batter between the cake pans and there you go. Problem solved!

A picture of the top of a cake with chocolate chip cookies on it and frosting swirls between each cookie.

How Do I Make Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting?

The trick to the most glorious delicious chocolate chip buttercream frosting is creaming together the butter, cream cheese, and brown sugar first. If you add the brown sugar at the same time as the icing sugar, you will end up with yummy but grainy frosting.

First, with the paddle attachment, let the butter, cream cheese, and brown sugar cream together on high speed for approximately 10 minutes before adding the remaining ingredients.

I think you’re ready to start now. You’ve got the cookie and cake basics down and the next step is to combine them into one seriously scrumptious dairy-free Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake. Top this decadent dessert off with a chocolate ganache drip and some chocolate chip cookies, and you’ll have a crowd-pleasing cookie cake!

If you give this recipe a shot, make sure to let me know what you think!

A close up shot of a cake topped with chocolate chip cookies and fluffy white buttercream swirls between each cookie. A large slice is being taken out of it.

Got You Craving Cookies Now?

Here are a few cookie recipes to give a go:

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A chocolate chip cookie cake topped with cookiea and swirls on top and a large slice taken out of it.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake (Dairy-Free)

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 21 reviews

  • Author: Katie Stymiest
  • Total Time: 1 Hour 23 Minutes
  • Yield: 10 Slices 1x


The perfect dairy-free chocolate chip cookie cake for the cookie-lover in your life. Packed full of brown sugar, mini chocolate chips, and the most delicious whipped chocolate chip buttercream frosting.



Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

  • ¾ cup dairy-free milk, room temperature
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¾ cup cake flour, sifted *can sub gluten-free flour 1:1 baking blend
  • 1 ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅔ cup dairy-free salted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup dairy-free mini chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour *can sub gluten-free flour 1:1 baking blend

Chocolate Chip Buttercream

  • 1 ½ cup dairy-free salted butter, room temperature
  • 1 pkg. (8 oz.) dairy-free cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 6 cups icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup dairy-free mini chocolate chips
  • optional: chocolate chip cookies for decor

Chocolate Ganache Drip

  • ⅓ cup dairy-free chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon dairy-free milk


Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF degrees and prepare four 6-inch round cake pans with non-stick baking spray and parchment paper.
  2. In a small mixing bowl combine the mini chocolate chips and all-purpose flour and set them aside.
  3. In a small mixing bowl whisk together the milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla extract. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer and with the flat beater attachment, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and give it a quick mix together for approximately 1 minute.
  5. In small pieces, slowly add the butter to the dry ingredients and mix on low until it looks like coarse sand.
  6. Slowly pour in approximately half of the liquid mixture and mix on medium for 2 minutes.
  7. Pour the remaining liquid mixture in and mix on medium for another 2 minutes. Scrap the sides of the bowl when necessary.
  8. Add in the mini chocolate chip and flour mixture and mix until just combined with a spatula.
  9. Divide the cake batter into the four prepared cake pans and bake for approximately 17-23 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs.
  10. Allow the cake layers to cool for 10 minutes and then invert them on a cooling rack to fully cool.

Chocolate Chip Buttercream

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter, cream cheese, and brown sugar on high speed with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy, approximately 10 minutes.

  2. Add the icing sugar, salt, and vanilla extract and mix on low until combined.

  3. Turn the mixer up to high and let mix for 5 minutes until smooth and creamy. Scrape the sides of the bowl when necessary.

  4. Remove two cups of buttercream and set aside. This will be used in the final decor for the swirls. *
  5. Add in the mini chocolate chips and mix until just combined.

Chocolate Ganache Drip

  1. In a microwave-safe bowl heat the chocolate chips and milk in 30-second intervals until fully melted and smooth. Stir between each interval.

  2. Depending on the kind of milk, the drip may require a touch more milk to thin or a bit more chocolate chips to thicken. **

Cake Assembly

  1. Place one leveled layer of chocolate chip cookie cake on a cake board, plate, and/or cake turntable. Top with approximately 1 ½ cups of chocolate chip buttercream.

  2. Repeat with the remaining layers and apply a thin coat of chocolate chip buttercream all over the cake. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.

  3. Cover the cake with a final layer of chocolate chip buttercream and smooth the sides using the Wilton Cake Smoother. Refrigerate while the chocolate ganache drip is prepared.

  4. On a well-chilled cake, with a spoon or a piping bag, drip the warm chocolate ganache over the edges of the chilled cake and put it back in the refrigerator to set.

  5. Decorate as you please. I topped the cake with mini chocolate chip cookies and cookie crumbs and piped some simple Wilton 1M buttercream swirls between each cookie (using that buttercream that was set aside before the chocolate chips were added in.) Enjoy!


* skip this step if you will not be decorating the cake with swirls on top

** I always test my ganache drips over the edge of the kitchen sink before applying to a cake to check the consistency.

  • Prep Time: 1 Hour
  • Cook Time: 23 Minutes
  • Category: Cakes
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 1 Slice
  • Calories: 1134
  • Sugar: 127 Grams
  • Sodium: 1028 Miligrams
  • Fat: 59 Grams
  • Saturated Fat: 31 Grams
  • Unsaturated Fat: 22 Grams
  • Trans Fat: 3 Grams
  • Carbohydrates: 150 Grams
  • Fiber: 1 Gram
  • Protein: 6 Grams
  • Cholesterol: 129 Miligrams

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    1. Good question. I didn’t measure it so as a rough estimation, with the cookies and swirls on top, I would say approximately 9 inches high.

        1. Yes, you can. The layers will be fairly thin though. I’d personally go with 2-8 inch pans.

        2. In your “How do I make the brown sugar icing?” Portion, you mention “Demerara” sugar as part of the icing recipe. Being new to baking, and reading this description, I assume Demerara was another name for “icing sugar” and, in fact, it is not even close. We destroyed the whole batch!

      1. Katie,
        I love your website and Instagram page. Is it possible to use the dairy option in place of the non-dairy options? If so, would I need to change any of the amounts?

        1. Yep, I did. With the right sugar, it’s PERFECT! My daughter added a little too much salt and I wasn’t even remotely disappointed with it! So yummy!

      2. Te sigo hace tiempo en Instagram, soy intolerante a la lactosa, pero nunca había hecho una receta tuya, te aseguro que no será la última, esta tarta la haré más veces y haré alguna más de otros sabores ?.
        Ayer hice esta tarta para mi cumpleaños y es absolutamente deliciosa ???. También hice las galletas de chispas de chocolate que también son deliciosas ?.
        Gracias por compartir tus recetas!!! ??

  1. Made this over the weekend! It was seriously epic, and your instructions were super easy to follow! Thanks for sharing!!

    1. I used this frosting recipe (all butter, no shortening) and it is AMAZING! Super fluffy texture and the cream cheese adds a perfect amount of zippiness. Thanks for sharing with us, Katie!

      1. I am so thrilled you loved the frosting Beth. Thanks for giving it a go and sharing it with me!

  2. Loved this cake recipe! Seriously so delicious!! I made it into cupcakes and it worked perfectly! I didn’t have all the ingredients to try the frosting, but honestly, the cake is so yummy it works great even on its own!!

  3. Super easy and fail-Proof recipe that looks incredibly professional! I used half the sugar except for the icing sugar and it turned out amazing!

    1. That’s so awesome to hear Vanessa. Your cake looked unbelievably delicious! Thanks for baking this one up.

    1. Hi Charlie, I believe you can substitute that with Trex, Flora White, or Cookeen if you have access to those. If not, I would use more butter.

  4. All I can say is holy delicious. Not for someone who’s watching their calories, but then again, cake should be indulgent!

  5. Made this cake for Father’s Day and it was a HIT! I don’t know how it’s possible that Katie came up with a cake that literally tastes like a big cookie, but she did. My whole family said it was the best cake I’ve made yet! Thank you, Katie!

    1. That literally makes my heart burst Jillian! Hearing that a cake was enjoyed by everyone makes all the hard work worth it! Thank you so very much for baking this one up and sharing it.

  6. Thank you Katie, that was a great cake. If you don’t have a piping rig, just make the full recipe of frosting and add to the chips. It works great. I used palm shortening and it also worked great. This cake is very moist and as such, I would put it in the refrigerator prior to icing and putting it together. With the chips, the icing is very hard to spread without destroying the cake.

    1. Hmmm, good question. My concerns are that it’s afairly soft frosting with the brown sugar and cream cheese and the chocolate chips don’t lend to a super smooth frosting finish. They might appear lumpy under fondant.

    1. Hi Katie, I need to bake 2x 12 inch cakes and assemble. Can you help me work out quantities in grams (I’m UK) and how long do you think I need to bake for? Thanks so much x

  7. I made this cake for the adults at my daughter’s 1st Birthday and it was the highlight of the party! So tasty and the perfect texture.

    I will be making this again for sure!!

    1. Oooooo such a good choice Darbi! And I’m tickled pink to hear everyone enjoyed it. Thanks for baking this cake up and sharing it!

  8. I am looking into making this cake and super excited to see how it turns out. Are the mini chocolate chip cookies your chocolate chip cookie recipes just baked smaller?

      1. I’ve made this cookie cake 2yrs in a row for my sons birthday and it’s always a hit!
        I also skip the chocolate chips and use the brown sugar frosting in place of vanilla for regular cupcakes. Everyone loves the slight play off vanilla ?

          1. Just use the same amount of butter and milk if using dairy based? My dad loves chocolate chip cookies and I want to do this for his birthday December 21. I want to make sure to get it right! Would buttermilk be better or whole milk you think?

          2. Yes, use the same amount (cup for cup) with regular milk and butter. I say use what you have on hand to make it easiest although regular whole milk will work best for the chocolate ganache drip. I hope he loves it!

  9. What type and brand of the dairy free milk and dairy free butter do you use? I want to try to make the cake today for my husbands birthday. Thank you!!

    1. I use plant-based becel butter and unsweetened almond milk. Any dairy-free milk will work though. I hope he loves it!

  10. I made this cake and it was amazing! I made it for a going away party for a coworker. I had a Dr. ask me to make it for her birthday party! Everyone loved it! Tastes just like a chocolate chip cookie. I made the chocolate chip cookie recipe to and it’s amazing as well!

  11. The chocolate chip buttercream is out of this world!!! Such a decadent cake ? it goes perfect with a cold glass of milk ?

  12. This is an incredibly delicious recipe! I’m so happy I tried this recipe because it lived up to all expectations! Every bite was amazing! Absolutely drool worthy! And Katie’s instructions are so well written, it was easy to follow and get such an amazing cake! Everyone who tried it, loved it! I will be making this cake for next birthdays!

    1. Any suggestions on how to make this a banana chocolate chip cake? Or to incorporate banana into it somehow? I’ve been given this odd request and this is the most bomb chocolate chip cake I’ve had!

      1. Hmmmm…I would either go with a banana pudding filling or even attempt adding two mashed bananas to the cake batter after it’s been mixed.

  13. This looks amazing. I know it says 10 slices, but wondering how many it serves? Looks huge so 10 seemed like a low number. Thanks!

    1. That truly depends on how big of a slice you cut. If you cut wedding servings, I could easily feed 20 out of this cake.

  14. What kind of DF cream cheese do you use? Most of the ones I’ve tried have a very garlic/onion powder flavor. Even the plain ones. So I was curious what you use. Thank you!

    1. I love using Violife or President’s Choice plant-based cream cheese. No garlic or onion taste at all.

  15. Loved making this cake! Easy to follow directions! The cake is so moist and taste like actual cookie dough!! The icing is light and creamy. The mini chips add great texture to the cake as well. It served 7 slices and still had plenty left over. The cake is tall and very rich so a small slice goes a long way. Would 100% make again!

    1. I am so very excited you made this cake and enjoyed it. It’s one of my personal favorites! Thanks, Mackenzie!

  16. All the chocolate chips sank to the bottom when I made this. I followed the instructions, but somehow they still sank to the bottom. Do you know why this could’ve happened?

    1. That is so odd. I wonder if they were bigger chocolate chips and therefore heavier. Next time, give them a quick mix with a tbsp of flour before adding them into the dough and that will fix any sinking issues.

  17. I’m planning to make this cake for my husband’s birthday this week. He loves semi-sweet chocolate chips, and I’m thinking about subbing them for the regular chocolate chips and topping it with your semi-sweet chocolate ganache. Would those substitutions work with the flavor profile of this cake? TIA!

  18. Looking to use this recipe to make cupcakes for my nieces graduation party…how many standard size cupcakes do you think it will make?

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