Dunkaroos Cheesecake

Dunkaroos are all about vanilla wafer cookies and confetti frosting – both of which are spotlighted in this show-stopping Dunkaroos Cheesecake! Your favorite childhood indulgence just got even more legendary!

A piece of Dunkaroos cheesecake on a dessert plate with the remaining cake in the background

Delight Your Inner Child With Dunkaroos Cheesecake

This cheesecake has been a long time coming. I had a request for this recipe when Dunkaroos came back on the market and I just couldn’t resist. I loved these so much as a kid and creating a cheesecake version just sounded so fun. My mom never really bought these, but a family I babysat for did and I always loved when the kids went to sleep so I could grab some Dunakaroos. Well, now I can finally share my Dunkaroo-inspired cheesecake.

I was so thrilled to see the classic rainbow chip frosting when I ripped open the package – it’s seriously my favorite canned frosting of all time! Yes, I know I mainly bake from scratch these days, but I am certainly no hater of canned frosting. Rainbow chip was my first love. Needless to say, this cheesecake has no shortage of it – in the cheesecake and on top.

Instead of adding actual Dunkaroo cookies to the cheesecake filling, I opted for Mini Nilla Wafers. That way, there’s no need to open a bunch of Dunkaroo packages just to have enough cookies for the cake. If you would like to use Dunkaroo cookies, go for it! But I found that the Nilla Wafers worked out wonderfully with the added bonus of practicality.

If the revival of Dunkaroos is news to you, I suggest you celebrate by making this cheesecake. It’s an ultra-tasty blast from the past that’s simultaneously new and exciting!

What Are Dunkaroos?

Imagine a small plastic package that features one compartment full of frosting and another compartment filled with cookies meant to be dipped into that frosting. Sounds like a kid’s dream come true, am I right? This classic Betty Crocker snack was all the rage throughout the 90s and remained popular until it was discontinued in 2012.

Originally, Dunkaroo cookies were of the cinnamon variety, but since the snack reappeared on supermarket shelves in recent years, they’ve been replaced with vanilla wafer cookies. There’s also a version of Dunkaroos with chocolate frosting, but everybody knows that the rainbow chip stuff is the real deal.

A Dunkaroos cheesecake on a large metal serving platter with bowls of sprinkles and Dunkaroo cookies behind it

Recipe Ingredients

This cheesecake may have a fancy appearance and tons of great flavor, but each component uses simple ingredients. Here’s everything you’ll need:

For the Vanilla Wafer Crust

  • Nilla Wafer Crumbs: I find it easiest to grind up the wafers in a food processor.
  • Salted Butter: Melted.
  • Sugar
  • Sprinkles: These add a really nice touch to the crust, but you can leave them out if desired.

For the Dunkaroos Cheesecake Filling

  • Cream Cheese: Brought to room temperature.
  • Sugar
  • All-Purpose Flour: Some flour will be added to the cheesecake filling as usual, and additional flour will be mixed into the rainbow chip frosting. This prevents the frosting from melting and dissolving into the filling while the cheesecake bakes. It also helps keep the frosting from seeping out of the baked cheesecake when cut. It will slowly ooze out a bit, but not too much.
  • Sour Cream
  • Vanilla Extract: A high-quality extract will provide the best flavor.
  • Eggs: At room temperature.
  • Sprinkles: I use quins (confetti sprinkles) because I like the colors, but jimmies will also work. I’d recommend staying away from nonpareils, as they tend to bleed more.
  • Betty Crocker Rainbow Chip Frosting: The best ever. This was also discontinued at one time and was brought back too. If for some reason you can’t find it, here’s a copycat recipe.
  • Mini Nilla Wafers: These tend to move around inside the filling – you may not end up with two even layers, but they should be well distributed.

To Top it All Off

  • Butter: Room temperature.
  • Powdered Sugar: To give the frosting structure and volume.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Cream: Or water.
  • Blue Gel Icing Color: I use this to color my buttercream as a tribute to the Dunkaroos packaging.
  • Betty Crocker Rainbow Chip Frosting: Yes, you’ll need a second can to top off the cheesecake—because duh.
  • Sprinkles
  • Dunkaroo Cookies: You could use more Mini Nilla Wafers here if you’d like, but I decided to break open a few packages of Dunkaroos to complete the look.
A slice of Dunkaroos cheesecake on a plate with one bite on a fork

How to Make Dunkaroos Cheesecake

The only thing about this cheesecake that can be a little finicky is the water bath. Be sure to check out my Water Bath Tips and Tricks to ensure the process goes smoothly.

Make the Crust

  1. Prep for Baking: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper in the bottom and grease the sides.
  2. Combine Ingredients & Add to Pan: Combine the crust ingredients in a small bowl. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan.
  3. Pre-Bake: Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then set it aside to cool.
  4. Prep for Water Bath: Cover the outsides of the pan with aluminum foil so that water from the water bath cannot get in. Set the prepared pan aside.

Make the Filling

  1. Lower Oven Temperature: Reduce the oven temperature to 300°F.
  2. Beat Cream Cheese, Sugar & Flour: In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and 3 tablespoons of flour on low speed until completely combined and smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to ensure everything is incorporated.
  3. Add Sour Cream & Vanilla: Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix on low speed until well combined.
  4. Add Eggs: Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  5. Add Sprinkles: Add the sprinkles and gently stir to combine. Set the cheesecake filling aside.
  6. Combine Frosting & Flour: Pour the full can of rainbow chip frosting for the cheesecake filling into a medium-sized bowl. Add the remaining 6 tablespoons of flour and stir until well combined.
  7. Spread Onto Crust: Spread the frosting evenly onto the cooled crust.
  8. Add Nilla Wafers: Layer half a cup of mini vanilla wafers over the frosting, placing them so that they form an even layer.
  9. Add Cheesecake Filling: Spoon about half of the cheesecake filling over the vanilla wafers and spread it out in an even layer.
  10. Finish Layering: Add the remaining half cup of mini vanilla wafers in an even layer. Spoon the rest of the filling over the wafers and spread it in an even layer.
  11. Assemble Water Bath: Place the springform pan inside of another larger pan. Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
  12. Bake: Bake the cheesecake for 1 hour 10 minutes. The middle should be set but still jiggly.
  13. Turn Off Oven: Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
  14. Crack Oven Door: Crack the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue cooling slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
  15. Chill: Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate it until it’s firm, for 5-6 hours or overnight. When you’re ready to make the topping, remove the cheesecake from the springform pan and place it onto a serving dish.
Mini Nilla wafers on top of rainbow chip frosting spread over the cheesecake crust

Make the Topping

  1. Beat Butter: Beat the butter in a mixing bowl until it’s nice and smooth.
  2. Start Adding Powdered Sugar: Add half of the powdered sugar and mix until well combined and smooth.
  3. Add Vanilla & Cream: Add the vanilla extract and one tablespoon of cream and mix until smooth.
  4. Finish Adding Powdered Sugar: Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until well combined and smooth. Add additional cream or water as needed to get the right consistency of frosting.
  5. Add Color: Color the frosting with the blue gel icing color. Set the blue frosting aside.
  6. Spread Rainbow Frosting Onto Cake: Spread some of the second can of rainbow chip frosting onto the top of the cheesecake, leaving some space around the outer edge. You can add as much or as little as you’d like. I use most (but not all) of the can.
  7. Add Blue Frosting: Add the blue frosting to a piping bag fitted with a piping tip (I use Ateco 847) and pipe a rim of frosting around the outer edge of the cheesecake.
  8. Decorate: Decorate the cheesecake with additional sprinkles and Dunkaroo cookies.
A Dunkaroo cookie cheesecake topped with rainbow chip frosting and a rim of bright blue buttercream

Tips for Success

There are a few important things to remember when you’re putting this cheesecake together. You’re almost ready to begin!

  • Not Just Any Sprinkles Work in the Filling: You can add any sprinkles of your choice to the top of the cheesecake, but I recommend sticking with quins or jimmies for the crust and the filling. Stay away from anything too big and crunchy and from nonpareils, as they tend to bleed more.
  • Mixing the Frosting With Flour is Key: Don’t mess around with the amount of flour that’s supposed to be combined with the rainbow chip frosting. Less than 6 tablespoons won’t be enough to help the frosting withstand the heat, and overdoing it could give it a chalky texture. The flour is also important to keep the frosting from oozing out of the cheesecake when cut. It will ooze a bit, but not too much.
  • Stick With Low Speed: As with any cheesecake batter, mixing on low speed is the way to go. This prevents excess air from making its way into the filling, which can cause cracks to form in the cheesecake.
  • Use Gel Icing Color: Make sure you’re using gel icing color in the frosting. Liquid food coloring will alter the consistency.
A slice of confetti frosting cheesecake on a plate with a bowl of sprinkles behind it

Storage Instructions

Leftover Dunkaroos cheesecake should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge. It will stay fresh for 4-5 days (if it doesn’t get devoured before then!).

Does This Freeze Well?

Once your cheesecake has fully set, you can wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and freeze it in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Thaw it out in the fridge overnight before adding the toppings and serving it.

Print
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A slice of Dunkaroos cheesecake on a plate with one bite on a fork
Recipe

Dunkaroos Cheesecake

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 14
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Dunkaroos are all about vanilla wafer cookies and confetti frosting – both of which are spotlighted in this show-stopping Dunkaroos Cheesecake! Your favorite childhood indulgence just got even more legendary.


Ingredients

For the Crust

  • 2 1/4 cups (302g) vanilla wafer crumbs
  • 1/2 cup (112g) salted butter, melted
  • 3 tbsp (39g) sugar
  • 3 tbsp sprinkles

For the Cheesecake

  • 24 ounces (678g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup (207g) sugar
  • 9 tbsp (72g) all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 cup (230g) sour cream
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 5 tbsp sprinkles
  • 16 oz can Betty Crocker Rainbow Chip Frosting
  • 1 cup mini nilla wafers, divided

For the Topping

  • 1/2 cup (112g) butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups (230g) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 12 tbsp cream or water
  • Blue gel icing color
  • 16 oz can Betty Crocker Rainbow Chip Frosting
  • Sprinkles
  • Dunkaroo cookies (2-3 packages)

Instructions

Make the Crust

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Line a 9-inch (23cm) springform pan with parchment paper in the bottom and grease the sides.
  2. Combine the crust ingredients in a small bowl. Press the mixture into the bottom and up the sides of the springform pan.
  3. Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then set aside to cool.
  4. Cover the outsides of the pan with aluminum foil so that water from the water bath cannot get in (see how I prepare my pan for a water bath). Set prepared pan aside.

Make the Cheesecake

  1. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F (148°C).
  2. In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, sugar and 3 tablespoons (24g) of flour on low speed until well completely combined and smooth. Be sure to use low speed to reduce the amount of air added to the batter, which can cause cracks. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  3. Add the sour cream and vanilla extract and mix on low speed until well combined.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing slowly to combine after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
  5. Add the sprinkles and gently stir to combine. Set aside.
  6. Pour the full can of rainbow chip frosting for the cheesecake filling into a medium sized bowl. Add the remaining 6 tablespoons (48g) of flour and stir until well combined. The flour keeps the frosting from dissolving into the cheesecake while it bakes.
  7. Spread the frosting evenly onto the bottom of the cooled crust.
  8. Layer half a cup of mini vanilla wafers over the frosting, placing them so that they form an even layer.
  9. Spoon about half of the cheesecake filling over the vanilla wafers and spread into an even layer.
  10. Add the remaining half a cup of mini vanilla wafers in an even layer.
  11. Spoon the rest of the filling over the vanilla wafers and spread into an even layer.
  12. Place the springform pan inside another larger pan. Fill the outside pan with enough warm water to go about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. The water should not go above the top edge of the aluminum foil on the springform pan.
  13. Bake for 1 hour 10 minutes. The center should be set, but still jiggly.
  14. Turn off the oven and leave the door closed for 30 minutes. The cheesecake will continue to cook, but slowly begin to cool as well.
  15. Crack the door of the oven for 30 minutes to allow the cheesecake to continue to cool slowly. This process helps prevent cracking.
  16. Remove the cheesecake from the oven and water bath wrapping and refrigerate until firm, 5-6 hours or overnight.
  17. Remove the cheesecake from the springform pan and place on a serving dish.

Make the Topping

  1. To make the blue buttercream, add the butter to a mixer bowl and beat until smooth.
  2. Add half of the powdered sugar and mix until well combined and smooth.
  3. Add the vanilla extract and one tablespoon of cream or water and mix until well combined and smooth.
  4. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until well combined and smooth. Add additional cream or water, as needed, to get the right consistency of frosting.
  5. Color the frosting blue with the blue gel icing color. Set aside.
  6. Spread some of the second can of rainbow chip frosting onto the top of the cheesecake, leaving some space around the outer edge. You can add as much as you like. I used most, but not all, of the can.
  7. Add the blue frosting to a piping bag with a piping tip (I used Ateco 847) and pipe around the outer edge of the cheesecake.
  8. Decorate cheesecake with additional sprinkles and some of the cookies from a Dunkaroo package.

Notes

  • Makes 12-14 servings.
  • To Store: Store leftover cheesecake in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days.
  • To Freeze: Once cheesecake has set, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and freeze in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before adding toppings and serving.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 851
  • Sugar: 86.6 g
  • Sodium: 410.9 mg
  • Fat: 48.8 g
  • Carbohydrates: 104.2 g
  • Protein: 7.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 145.7 mg

Keywords: vanilla wafer crust, funfetti cheesecake, rainbow dessert, dunkaroo cookies

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Recipe rating

2 Comments
  1. Maria

    This looks so good, im gonna make it with homade rainbow chip frosting..not liking the can stuff. I suppose you could color white chocolate and break it to pieces 😉 I bet your kiddos loved this!!

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

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“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12