Ok, I cannot tell a lie: I get a little bit jealous of kids when Halloween comes around. Yes, it is somewhat acceptable for adults to dress up for the holiday; however, gorging on copious amounts of candy is not. To address this problem, I set out to make one of my favorite treats (whoopie pies), but with a Halloween twist. Whoopie pies are fantastic because they combine the soft chewiness of a cookie with frosting all in a compact little treat that’s perfect for parties (or just for yourself!)
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
Makes about 18 cookies for 9 pies.
1.5 cups all-purpose flour
0.5 teaspoon baking powder
0.5 teaspoon baking soda
0.5 teaspoon salt
0.5 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
0.5 tablespoon ground ginger
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted & cooled
1.5 cups pumpkin puree, chilled
1 large egg
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or baking mat. Combine the first seven dry ingredients into a bowl and whisk to combine.In a separate bowl, whisk the butter and sugar together until well mixed. Add pumpkin puree and whisk again until well combined. Add the egg and vanilla and whisk again. Finally, slowly whisk in the flour mixture until well combined. Drop large tablespoons onto the baking sheet, keeping cookies about 1 inch apart. (A small ice cream scoop is a great tool for this step!). Smooth the tops of the cookies down with a finger. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the tops crack a bit. Transfer immediately to a wire rack to cool.
Filling options are endless! Cream cheese is a traditional favorite (Recipe), although chocolate is divine too (Recipe).
Chocolate Whoopie Pies
Makes about 20 cookies for 10 pies.
1.5 cups all purpose flour
½ cup unsweetened cocao powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 cup unsweetened applesauce (helps cut down on sugar!)
Preheat oven to 375. In a bowl, whisk together the first 5 dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, beat the butter and brown sugar together with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat again until smooth. With the mixer going, alternate adding small amounts of the flour mixture and then adding the applesauce, ending with the flour mixture. Mix everything until smooth, but not overly mixed. Drop large tablespoons onto a parchment lined baking sheet, keeping cookies about 2 inches apart. Bake until tops begin to crack, about 12 minutes. Transfer immediate to a wire rack to cool.
These are great with cream cheese filling or vanilla filling (recipe). Add orange food coloring or orange sprinkles for that Halloween twist.
And stay tuned for next week’s blog for a few delicious Halloween cocktails to go with these scrumptious treats!