I hope you had a wonderful Fourth of July weekend! I love this time of year, despite the oppressive heat wave we have been having, our days have been filled with lots of swimming, day trip adventures, family birthdays, and BBQs with friends. K and I always take the first week of July off from work and some years we go on vacation but other years, like this one, we spend our time hanging out around home. This past week, we had lots of parties to attend, which meant that I was busy in the kitchen trying out new recipes to share with everyone. This also meant that in the middle of 90+ degree days with 99% humidity, in our A/C-less house, I had the oven running to bake cakes or pots boiling away on the stove top to make potato salad. These whoopie pies were well worth the hot kitchen though! The cookies are soft, almost cake like and, wow, was the frosting delicious! The marshmallow fluff gives the frosting a great texture and adds a different twist to a standard buttercream. Before I get into the recipe, I want to share a few pictures from the holiday weekend.
Ok back to the recipe. Whoopie pies are always a crowd pleaser with both kids and adults so I whipped these red, white, and blue cookies up for a family barbeque at the lake.
You can certainly make these any color combination that you would like, or just leave the food coloring out and make good old vanilla whoopie pies. To get started, cream together the softened butter and sugar for several minutes until light and fluffy. I used my hand held electric mixer because I was too lazy to get the stand mixer out, but these are so simple, you can even throw them together with just a whisk and a spatula if you want.
Mix in the egg, egg white and vanilla until the batter is smooth and well combined.
In a separate bowl, whisk (or sift, if you are into that kind of thing) the flour, baking powder, and salt all together.
Add half of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and beat on low speed to combine. Repeat this process with the milk and then the other half of the dry ingredients. Make sure to just mix the batter until incorporated because we don’t want to over mix and end up with tough cookies. I stopped using the mixer when the flour was almost incorporated and finished up with a spatula.
If coloring, divide the batter into separate bowls and add enough food coloring to get the color you like. I like to use the gel food coloring because it doesn’t add any more liquid and won’t change the texture of the batter. I buy this at Michael’s but you should be able to find it at any craft store or store that carries baking accessories. Spoon the batter into piping bags or Ziploc bags. A handy tip for doing this by yourself is to get a large drinking glass, place the tip side down in the glass and fold the edges of the bag over the glass, so you can spoon the batter or frosting down into the bag without having to hold the bag at the same time.
Make a small cut on the corner of the bag and pipe into 1 ½ inch circles onto parchment or silicone mat lined baking sheets. The cookies shouldn’t really spread while baking, so just leave 1 to 2 inches between each one on the tray. After I piped the cookies, I smoothed them out a little using the back of a spoon. You could probably skip the whole piping process if you aren’t concerned with perfect circles and use two spoons to scoop the batter into cookies.
Bake in a 350°F oven for 7-8 minutes until the cookies are set. Let the cookies cool on the tray for about 10 minutes and then move to a wire rack to finish cooling.
While the cookies are cooling, make the frosting by beating together the butter and powdered sugar until combined and then adding the fluff and vanilla and beat again until a smooth thick consistency. Add a tbsp of milk if you think it is necessary to thin the filling. To assemble, find two similar sized cookies of each color and pipe or spoon the frosting onto the bottom side of one cookie.
Place the second cookie on top and press lightly to smoosh the frosting to the edges of the cookie. If desired, sprinkle or roll the frosting with sprinkles or other candy of your choosing. These are best served the same day, but can be individually wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in an air tight container for several days at room temperature.
Vanilla Whoopie Pies
½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
¾ cup white sugar
1 whole egg plus 1 egg white
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt (omit if using salted butter)
½ cup milk
Food coloring, optional
Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar for 2-3 minutes, with an electric mixer, until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg, egg white, and vanilla until well combined. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Pour half of the dry ingredients into the butter/sugar mixture and beat with the mixer until combined. Add the milk, beat to combine and then repeat with the remaining flour. At this point, separate into bowls and color with food coloring, if desired. Place the batter into piping or ziploc bags, cut off the tip of the bag, and pipe into 1 ½ inch circles onto baking trays lined with parchment paper or silicone mats. Bake for 7-8 minutes until the cookies are just set. Let cool on the baking tray for about 10 minutes and then remove to a wire rack to finish cooling completely.
½ cup butter, room temperature
1 ½ cup powdered sugar
½ cup of marshmallow fluff
1 tsp vanilla extract
Combine the butter and powdered sugar in a medium bowl and mix on medium speed for several minutes until well combined. Add in the marshmallow fluff and vanilla and continue to beat everything together. The frosting should be a fairly thick consistency.
To assemble the whoopie pies, try to find two similar sized cookies and pipe or spoon the filling onto the bottom side of one cookie, place the second cookie on top and press lightly to smooth the frosting in place. Roll or sprinkle the frosting with sprinkles or other candies. Best served the same day, but can be individually wrapped in plastic wrap and stored in an air tight container for several days at room temperature.