American Flag Cookie Cake
Make this American Flag Cookie Cake for your perfect 4th of July celebration! The sugar cookie base is incredibly soft and fudgy and it is topped with a lemon frosting and fresh blueberries and raspberries. Since this cake is so easy to decorate, it is the perfect activity for kids and adults alike!
Oh, summer! Why are you so wonderful and so fleeting? I could live in your endless days and warm weather forever and ever!
Mr.BB and I just got back from our little romantic summer getaway. It was so needed! We headed up north to a cabin on a small lake in Michigan. It was so relaxing. We spent the few days we were there sitting on the dock, fishing, drinking wine straight out of the bottle, and just enjoying each other’s company.
The weather was absolutely perfect. It was in the 70’s and sunny during the day, but then at night it dropped down into the 50’s and we had a great excuse to build a fire and snuggle up! It was perfectly romantic!
I was a little bummed because we were supposedly in the elk capital of Michigan and I did not get to see one single elk! I have never seen an elk in real life and it was mission to find them when we were there. But unfortunately we did not succeed. We did however, experience the eerie calls of the loon at night while we were there.
Have you ever heard a loon call? If not, you have GOT to check this out. Hearing that howl come from a bird is so confusing! I had no idea they could make a noise that big! It was so cool to hear those haunting calls coming from all directions on the lake at night. And maybe a little creepy too.
I’m going to be traveling for work over the 4th of July, so I guess you could say we had our celebration early. If you’ve followed this blog for some time, then you know that I love to teach baking techniques but I am not one for decorated baked goods. Not because I don’t like them, but because I am a terrible artist! But I wanted to get a little patriotic and create a design even I could make! What could be more easy that straight lines made with berries?
I decided to use my super soft sugar cookie recipe and with a slight hint of lemon in the frosting to compliment the berries. I’m telling you, this cake turns out so darn soft and almost fudgy. And it will feed a crowd! This is perfect to take to a BBQ this weekend and also would be so fun to let kids help you decorate it! Let me show you how easy it is.
You want to use a half sheet pan for the sugar cookie cake so that you get that rectangular shape we are going for. This cookie dough is really sticky, so I find that it is easiest to use some plastic wrap over top of the dough so you can spread it out in the pan evenly. Make sure you get the dough in the corners of the pan. Also use a piece of parchment paper in the pan so you can easily lift it out once you are ready to decorate.
Once the cookie has cooled completely, lift it out of the pan and trim the edges so you have a nice rectangle shape. Plus, as a bonus you get to snack on the trimmings!
To decorate this cake you only need a few things: frosting, raspberries, blueberries, and some type of spatula or knife. I prefer to use an offset spatula like this one for frosting.
Be fairly generous with the frosting so that you have a nice canvas to hold your berries once you start adding them.
Start with your blueberries and line them up in rows in the upper left corner. I tried to pick out berries that were sort of similar in size so the rows would stay fairly straight. I decided to do 8 blueberries down by 11 blueberries across.
After your blueberries are placed, then you can start evenly spacing out your rows of raspberries and line them up side by side.
I ended up with 7 rows of raspberries, but I think if I made it again, I would aim for 6 rows so that one of the rows isn’t right underneath the blueberries. But hey! I’ve already warned you about my inferior decorating skills, so lay off me!
What exciting plans do you have this summer? I don’t think I truly appreciated summer as a kid because it was always so darn hot in Kansas. But here in Chicago, the weather is so much more enjoyable in the summer! I just want to frolic around outside all the time!
I hope you enjoy your 4th of July weekend! And I’m not trying to tell you want to do, but you totally should make this American Flag Cake. I promise it will be a huge hit!
For the Cookie Base
- 2 sticks (1 cup, 8 oz) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp almond extract (optional, but recommended)
- 1 tsp lemon zest (optional, but recommended)
- 5 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
For the Frosting
- 2 sticks (1 cup, 8 oz) unsalted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp lemon zest (optional but recommended)
- large pinch of salt
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 4-6 TBSP milk
- 1 quart blueberries
- 1 quart raspberries
- Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a half sheet pan with parchment paper and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, and mix just until incorporated. Mix in the vanilla and almond extracts and the lemon zest.
- Add the salt and the flour into the mixing bowl and mix just until combined. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl if needed. Make sure not to over-mix.
- Press the dough into the prepared sheet pan. It will be sticky and thick. It is easiest to use plastic wrap over the dough and spread it out evenly into the pan, then discard the plastic wrap.
- Bake at 350F for 14-16 min, until very lightly golden. the center of the cookies will look under baked. But it will continue cooking after removed from the oven.
- Cool completely on a wire cooling rack before frosting.
- For the Frosting
- In a large bowl, beat butter, vanilla, lemon zest and salt until smooth.
- Add powdered sugar (1/2 cup at a time) mixing until combined.
- Add the milk and mix until smooth.
- Trim the edges of the cookie cake so that you have straight edges and a nice rectangle.
- Generously frost the cake, using an offset spatula to smooth the frosting out as evenly as possible.
- Started in the upper left corner, arrange the blueberries in straight lines about 8 berries down by 11 berries across.
- After the blueberries are formed into a rectangle, arrange the raspberries in evenly spaced lines across the cake.
- Frost cooled cookies before cutting into bars. I find they cut more easily if chilled first. I also like the texture of these bars when chilled.
This makes a very large American Flag Cookie Cake. However, you can easily half the recipe and use a quarter sheet pan to make a smaller cake.