halloween whoopie pies

"WHOOPIE!" Don't you just want to holler it when you see that word?

The Amish have a thing for the whoopie pie, as do New Englanders. Maine legend states that a baker had extra cake batter, poured it into molds, slapped some frosting in between, and there was born the whoopie pie.  I like the Amish version of the beginnings, where the Amish women placed these cake treats into school children's lunch pails. Upon opening up their meal, the kids would yell, "Whoopie!"

You should bake up a batch (or maybe pumpkin ones!) and see if kids will exclaim the same.

 This recipe calls for coffee two ways: liquid and powder forms.

 The chocolate disks baked up nicely, 
though I was a little concerned that the batter was on the runny side.

 I chose cream cheese frosting rather than the usual vanilla filling,
because that's what The Picky Discerning Kids prefer.

Yes, you're seeing a non-orange center.
I made two batches...

Here's the second one!

Halloween Whoopie Pie
adapted from Baked Explorations by Matt Lewis and Renato Polifitano

3½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1¼ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
¾ cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder (like Valrhona)
2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
½ cup hot coffee
2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
¾ cup canola oil
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
½ cup buttermilk

Cream Cheese Filling

3 cups confectioners' sugar
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Red and yellow food coloring

Make the Cookie-Cake
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or Silpat.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda, and set aside.
In another large bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder and espresso powder. Add the hot coffee and ½ cup hot milk and whisk until both powders are completely dissolved.

In a medium bowl, stir the brown sugar and oil together. Add this to the cocoa mixture and whisk until combined. Add the egg, vanilla, and buttermilk and whisk until sooth.

Use a rubber spatula to gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Make sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as you fold.

Use a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism to drop heaping tablespoons of the dough onto the prepared baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the cookies are just starting to crack on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cookie comes out clean. Let the cookies cool completely on the pan while you make the frosting.

Make the Filling

Sift the confectioners' sugar into a medium bowl and set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until it is completely smooth, with now visible lumps.  Add the cream cheese and beat until combined.

Add the confectioners' sugar and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add the yellow and red food coloring a few drops at a time to create the desired shade of orange. Be careful not to overbeat the filling, or it will lose structure.  (The filling can be made 1 day ahead.  Cover the bowl tightly and put it in the refrigerator.  Let the filling soften at room temperature before using.)

Assemble the Whoopie Pies
Turn half of the cooled cookies upside down (flat side facing up).

Use a spoon to drop a large dollop of filling onto the flat side of the cookie. Place another cookie, flat side down, on top of the filling. Press down slightly so that the filling spreads to the edges of the cookie. Repeat until all the cookies are used. Put the whoopie pies in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to firm up before serving.

The whoopie pies will keep for up to 3 days, on a parchment-lined baking sheet covered with plastic wrap, in the refrigerator. Bring the whoopies to room temperature before serving.


  1. Last time I have whoopie pies was when my friend (a New Englander!) made them and shared with me! YUM. Saw these on Skip to my Lou.

  2. I like how yours baked up so beautifully without a whoopie pie mold! Makes me think that's one kitchen gadget I can live without! :-)

  3. These look very yummy. I just found your blog and I too love butter. I would much rather have real butter than an over-processed spread made to taste like butter.

  4. These look delicious!!

    New follower :)


  5. I like the Amish version of the legend. These look just fantastic. Thanks for sharing. Come visit. We have an awesone panna cotta recipe.

  6. I really want to make whoopie pies but never have. Thanks for the recipe! :)

  7. (found ya on a link party) these look yummy and easy to make! ive never actually had a whoopie pie. lol. odd i know. thanks for the recipe :)

  8. they look yum!! I grew up around Amish so I'm well aware of whoopie pies! My father used to make them when I was little... he would use a form of marshmallow cream (plus ??) for his filling! Love the orange tint!

  9. This looks SO delicious...I love whoopie pies, I’m book-marking this to make later! I found you via “This Chick Cooks Link Party”. I’m your newest follower and would love a “follow back”!

    Have a great week,

    Jillian @ www.foodfolksandfun.blogspot.com

  10. Ok I am a Mainer......I like both stories. Whoever or wherever we thank them for whoppie pies. Nice post and pictures Happy Baking Andi thewednesdaybaker.blogspot.com

  11. Whoopie! You can't go wrong makin' Whoopie

    Pies that is. he he

    Thanks for sharing

  12. We are having a Halloween Kid Treats party over at Sassy Sites! I would love for you to come by and link this up! XOXO!

  13. What size scoop did you use? I'm trying to determine how many I can yield depending on the scoop size. And is this simlar to the red velvet ones you made last year?

  14. @ Rene, I used a large teaspoon (flatware) to make the dollops. I can't remember how many were made- I'd like to think there were around 36 (18 pies) using the teaspoon. This dough seemed runnier than my other whoopie pie recipes. And you bring up a good point- that I haven't been including serving sizes! I'll need to start adding that to the recipes.


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