Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

I finally got around to making the whoopie pies I've been talking about for a while. I decided on pumpkin instead of zucchini because is October and we were in a midst of a nice rainy day. I was also trying to decide on the appropriate recipe for our church's pumpkin dessert competition in a couple of Sundays and wanted to test this one out.

Whoopie Pies, for those of you not from Amish country or the Northeast, are basically two little cakes held together by icing in the middle. Typically, these are no larger in diameter than a baseball. I grew up eating chocolate whoopie pies, with uncooked egg white icing in the middle. I didn't like the feel of the egg white frosting in my mouth, so I switched to boiled white icing for my chocolate whoopie pies. However, for the pumpkin whoopie pies, I thought cream cheese frosting (with a hint of nutmeg) would work best.

Making these are a little time consuming because of multiple steps. They are totally worth it though. These tend to be wrapped individually in Saran Wrap. I generally freeze my chocolate whoopie pies and pull them out of the freezer to eat when I want some. They last a little longer this way and I don't need to worry about the moist cake spoiling quickly. I used some of my frozen winter squash for these. If you opt for canned pumpkin instead of frozen winter squash, you will need to shorten the baking time considerably. I baked mine for 20 minutes a pan. The original recipe (using canned pumpkin) thought you would only need to bake them for 10 minutes.

Do I need to tell you that everyone in my family loves these? J isn't sure whether to call them a cookie or a cupcake. Technically, they are considered a cookie. They didn't last long and I think I may need to make another batch before too long. I think this recipe makes between 2 and 3 dozen (we ate them too fast to be able to count them) finished whoopie pies.

Pumpkin Whoopies with Cream Cheese Icing
adapted from Mennonite Country-Style Recipes and Martha Stewart

1/2 c vegetable oil
1 c sugar
2 c brown sugar
2 egg yolks
1 t vanilla
4 1/2 c flour
1 t baking powder
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
1 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground cloves
a dash of freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 c pureed pumpkin

8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 c butter, at room temperature
3 c powdered sugar
a dash of freshly grated nutmeg
1 t vanilla

For the cakes: Beat together the well the oil and sugars. Add egg yolks and vanilla, beating until fluffy. In a separate bowl, mix together remaining ingredients, except pumpkin. Add dry ingredients alternately with the pumpkin to the egg mixture, ending with the dry. Drop by teaspoonfuls (to tablespoonfuls---from the cutlery drawer, not measuring spoons) onto greased baking sheets. Bake in preheated 350 degrees oven for 10 - 20 minutes (or until cakes are baked through--test with a toothpick or by eating). Remove from pan to rack. Let cool.

Meanwhile, make the icing. Beat together cream cheese and butter. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add the nutmeg and vanilla and stir to combine.

To Assemble the Whoopie Pies: Once the cakes are cooled, pair them together, looking for two cakes that are similar in size. Top one flat side of the cake with icing. Top with other cookie, flat side down, against the icing.


Anonymous said...

you must be reading my mind...I seriously was thinking about looking for a pumpkin whoppie pie recipe. Can't wait to try these!

Kate G. said...


Jason said...

I had been wondering how these turned out for you. I made Joy the Baker's pumpking cookies with butterscotch chips over the weekend. They're REALLY good. Without the chips and with more spice, they'd be great for pumpkin whoppie pies. Great cake-y consistency. I may give it a try next weekend!

Monica said...

Mel, are you sure your icing recipe is correct? My cookbook says more like 3 c. of butter!!! LOL (Ok, we know everyone in the Hess clan was thinking it - I might as well be the one to put it out there!)

Melani said...

Yea. Definitely not 3 c of butter. I've had THOSE whoopie pies. :)