Deliciously addicting Oreo Dirt Cake preps in minutes for a cool, creamy, family favorite treat perfect for Oreo lovers.
Our family makes this Dirt Cake recipe year round, but especially in the summer because it’s a cool and refreshing no bake dessert. If you like this, you’ll definitely love Oreo No Bake Cheesecake, or Oreo Ice Cream Cake, which are also some summer favorites!
Long time family favorite
I know I’ve shared this before, but I love Oreos. I’m not a fan of eating them by themselves, but they are probably my favorite ingredient to add to dessert recipes. They make everything so yummy!!
They also make today’s recipe a family favorite that we’ve made ever since we were kids – it’s called Dirt Cake.
I’m not sure where we found the original recipe, but it’s one we’ve been making for family get-togethers and one we still make for holidays and special occasions.
Yes, this is called Dirt Cake, but for some reason when we first got the recipe it was called Kansas City Dirt Cake. I was told that’s because Kansas City is made up of a lot of dirt—but no matter the reason, this cake is amazing. Everyone loves it!
How to Make Dirt Cake
From start to finish, this cake only takes about 10 minutes to make. It does need to set up in the fridge for a few hours, but it takes little work and the result is amazing.
PUDDING. Begin by making your creamy pudding mixture in a large bowl. To make this, cream your cream cheese and butter until smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar with a hand mixer and fold in whipped topping. Set this aside.
In another bowl, make pudding by mixing milk, pudding mix and vanilla. Let this set up for a few minutes and then pour into the cream cheese mixture. Use your hand mixer to mix well. Set aside.
OREOS. Then, crush all the Oreos by putting them in a food processor or Ziploc bag and crushing with hands, rolling pin, or the bottom of a cup. Pour about 2/3 of the Oreos into the bottom of a 9×13 pan.
LAYER. Pour the cream cheese/pudding mixture over the Oreos. Then top with remaining cookie crumbs.
CHILL. Place in fridge and let set for a few hours before serving.
How to make it look more like dirt
Whether you use the recipe as written or replace the white chocolate instant pudding mix with classic chocolate pudding, you can make this look and feel a little more like dirt in a couple of ways.
- add some candy bugs and gummy worms
- serve it out of a bucket or flower pot
- divide the dirt cake mixture into plastic cups, then place the plastic cups in mini terra cotta flower pots, to finish it off I stick a mini shovel in each one to use as a spoon
Crushing Oreos: Crush the entire cookie—do not remove the filling. Crush your Oreo cookies in a blender or food processor if you want them to be super fine crumbs. Crushing the Oreos in a Ziploc bag will give you both small and chunky pieces (we prefer it this way!).
Pudding flavors. The recipe calls for white chocolate pudding or vanilla, but I’ve also used cream cheese pudding and instant chocolate pudding and gotten good results. If you’re feeling adventurous you can try using a different flavor.
Soupy dirt cake. This dessert should be able to hold its shape and have a fluffy creamy texture. If yours turned out runny there are few things to check and try:
- Make sure you bought INSTANT pudding. Whisk the pudding and milk until it takes on a creamy pudding consistency. To be extra cautious you can refrigerate it for 5-10 minutes before combining it with the other ingredients.
- Use chilled metal bowls to mix and fold the ingredients in.
- Use whole milk for the creamiest texture.
- FOLD do not Mix: When you add the whip cream to the cream cheese mix and then again when you add the pudding make sure you are gently folding the ingredients together.
- Make sure your butter and cream cheese or softened, but not too soft and definitely not melted.
- Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.
More dirt cake recipes + How to store
This recipe happens to be one of our favorites to change up for seasons and holidays. In fact, with so many OREO varieties, it’s easy to change up with your favorite cookie variations (the Peppermint Oreo is great for Christmas!)
We now have an Easter Dirt Cake and Graveyard Dirt Cake that are holiday favorites. We also like to make parfait versions of this recipe to make fancy single-servings for parties.
Make ahead of time. We almost always make this dessert ahead of time. We typically make this the morning of, but you can also make this up to 24 hours in advance. If possible, we recommend placing the crushed Oreos on top right before serving because those can get a little soft with the moisture of the cake.
STORE. Dirt Cake is best stored when covered tightly with Saran Wrap or foil and placed in the fridge for up to 3 days. We love to have this cake for leftovers, but admit we rarely have them. It’s just so good!
FREEZE. If you are looking to freeze this ahead of time to serve on another day, then I would not recommend freezing it because it will not thaw well. However, if you have leftovers that you want to divide and freeze so that you can eat more like ice cream, then you certainly can.
I seriously LOVE this recipe and have loved it since I can remember. Hope you like this Oreo treat just as much as my family. 🙂
For more Oreo desserts, check out:
- Oreo Ice Cream Cake
- Oreo Peanut Butter Delight
- Cookies and Cream Cupcakes
- Oreo Pudding Pie
- Chocolate Oreo Cake
- Oreo Snickers Pie
Dirt Cake Recipe
- 1 (14.3-ounce) package Oreos
- 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese softened
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 (16-ounce) tub whipped topping (or 4 cups whipped cream)
- 2 (3.4-ounce) boxes instant white chocolate or vanilla pudding
- 3 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Crush all the Oreos in a large resealable plastic bag or in the food processor until they are crumbs. Press two-thirds of the crushed cookies into the bottom of a 9×13-inch baking dish and set aside. Reserve the remaining crushed Oreos.
- In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and butter together with a hand mixer until smooth. Mix in powdered sugar. Fold in whipped topping until well combined and set aside.
- In a separate bowl, mix pudding, milk, and vanilla. Let sit until thickened. Fold this mixture into the cream cheese mixture.
- Carefully pour the pudding/cream cheese mixture over the crumb crust in the pan.
- Sprinkle with the reserved crushed Oreos. Refrigerate for 3–4 hours before serving.
so how i do a dirt pudding
I like more of a cream cheese taste, so I added an etra 4 more 0z of cream cheese into the mixture, with a tad more butter. I mixed in only half of the 16oz cool Whip. After spreading, I tOpped IT off with the rest of the cool whip. Its makes it heavier, but the taste of the creaM cheEse mixture is fabulous! Oh, hands done white CHOCOLATE pudding!
Sounds great! Thanks for sharing that!
This was simply amazing! It did not last long with a house full of teenagers! Definitely making again soon!
Getting ready to make this cake but don’t understand why you would put butter in the cream cheese and powder sugar? Nor Vanila
That’s just how I make this specific recipe 🙂 I promise it comes out delicious!
Kids would love this
This recipe inspired me. I’m going to make a Christmas dirt cake, using chocolate pudding and grasshopper thin mint cookies instead. It would look great with some little edible pine trees on top 😉
Perfect!! Glad I could inspire 🙂 Thank you!
A great success at my Grand daughters 9th Birthday party. I laid gummy worms & gummy bugs on top. What a hit ! They loved it & adults too.
Oh yay! These would be so fun to serve at a birthday party. Glad to hear they were a hit for all!
What size pkg of cookies?
Just your basic/regular size of Oreos … I believe it’s about 14 oz. It’s not the family size package.
I make this all the time and eliminate the butter and powdered sugar.
My family loves this cake it’s a regular around my house
Yay!! I’m so happy to hear that!
My family loves this cake it’s a regular around my house
I’ve been making this particular recipe for YEARS! And I keep coming back to it. This is truly a crowd pleaser that never misses. If you haven’t tried it, what are you waiting on?!?
Oh thank you so much for your kind words! This is one of our favorites too!
Thank you! Glad you enjoyed the recipe!
This one is so easy to make gluten free. A couple of years ago the gluten-free Oreos changed my daughter’s lives! Haha swapping out the cookies is the only thing you need to do to make this one gluten-free. Another bonus, they don’t get soggy nearly as quick. Thanks for all your great recipes.
That is so good to know!! Thank you for sharing! So glad she can still enjoy the dessert. 🙂
Can I use regular whipped cream instead of whippd topping?
I always use whipped topping for this recipe… if you try regular whipped cream, I’d suggest not the kind from the can that you spray out. It won’t hold it’s texture. Possibly if you made homemade or something. If you do use regular whipped cream, you’ll have to let us know how it turns out!
I recently made a dirt cake using homemade whipped cream, using instant pudding to stabilize, and it worked. Instant pudding is a great whipped cream stabilizer cause it has modified cornstarch; for every cup of heavy whipping cream, set aside 1 tablespoon of instant pudding to add to the cream before whipping.
Ne’er knew this, appreciate it for letting me know.
I don’t have a hand mixer can I do this by hand?
It’s not cake at all it’s pudding how did it get its name
It is definitely more of a pudding, but got it’s name because it is chilled in a cake pan and cut into slices like you would a cake. 🙂
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