These guys are cake in cookie form, and pretty much everyone is ecstatic about that. This is my go-to recipe for a 5-ingredient assured crowd pleaser. People tell me that gooey butter cake is a St. Louis thing, and that these are very similar.
You can use any kind of cake mix, but my favorite is plain ole yellow. I originally pulled the recipe from christmascookie.com because that's what popped up first in my Google search for "gooey butter cookie" after I fell in love with the taste from one at Bogie's Deli in Memphis.
Gooey Butter Cookies
1 18.5-oz. package (yellow) cake mix
1 stick butter, softened
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup powdered sugar
Cream together cream cheese and butter. Add the egg and vanilla then the cake mix. Stir until well blended. At this point the dough is really sticky, so I like to refrigerate it for a few hours so that it's easier to work with. Roll the dough into 1-inch balls, and roll the balls in powdered sugar. Place balls 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 13 minutes. It's tricky to tell when these cookies are done because they don't brown on top but do on the bottom, so I like to check the bottoms if I'm unsure. Also, they're supposed to be really soft and, you know, gooey. Remove from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks (or parchment paper).