Classic Whoopie Pies

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Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

“Whoooopie!” Oh, so sorry! I thought I was alone. Much like the Amish farmers rumored to be the recipients of the original whoopie pies, I just can’t conceal my delight when I’m offered one of these treats. This recipe makes the quintessential whoopie pie. The cake is moist, chocolate-y, and dense. The filling is creamy, fluffy, and decadently sweet. If our friend D. Bunnyhunter hadn’t stopped by and taken it when he did, The Angry Chef and I may have come to blows over the last one. (Phew! Thanks, man!)

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Whoopie Pies: Here, there, and everywhere

Just like the ubiquitous cupcake, whoopie pies have been popping up all over the place lately—in all sorts of flavors. I’ve seen the cream-filled saucers piped full with everything from chocolate to maple buttercream.


Case in point: A quick Google search of “gourmet whoopie pie” this morning gave me more than 12,000 hits. The first page of results includes a mouthwatering parade of boutique bakeries who happily turn out the treats in dozens of flavors.

While they all have a certain drool-worthy note to them (hello, Espresso Chocolate Chip!), call me a purist: I prefer old-fashioned whoopie pies. Chocolate cake. Fluffy white filling with a hint of vanilla. Period.

And that’s just what this recipe will give you.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Like the Old-Fashioned Butterscotch Cookies I made recently, this recipe comes from my friend Joyce’s grandmother.

Let me tell you, that lady knew her way around the kitchen. They’re just amazing.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Monster pies vs. mini pies

This recipe makes 6 absolutely monstrous whoopie pies. You need two hands to eat one and you’ll feel at least moderately guilty if you finish one in a sitting. Each cake is about 2 heaping tablespoons of batter.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

For a daintier treat, use 1 tablespoon of batter (or less) for each cake. The baking time will be slightly shorter, so keep an eye on them when they’re in the oven.

Fluffy whoopie filling

Like I said, I’ve seen all manners of whoopie pie fillings lately. Joyce’s grandmother used a combination of good ole Marshmallow Fluff, margarine, powdered sugar, and vanilla. (I swapped butter in for the margarine.)

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

If you’re inclined to have some good, sticky fun with sugar, you can always make your own fluff (click here for my step-by-step marshmallow tutorial…it’s easier than you think!).

Homemade marshmallow

Making homemade marshmallow fluff

Alrighty, then. Let’s make some whoopie! (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

Classic Whoopie Pies

For the cake
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup olive oil
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup milk

For the filling (double the recipe if you want a super-thick filling)
1/2 cup butter (that’s one stick)
1 cup powdered sugar
3 heaping Tbls. marshmallow fluff
1 tsp. vanilla

Yields 6 monster-sized whoopie pies, or 12 smaller ones

For monster-sized whoopie pies: Use 2 Tbls. batter per cake

For medium-sized whoopie pies: Use 1 Tbls. batter per cake

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.

Make the cake batter for the whoopie pies

Put the flour, baking soda, salt, cocoa, and sugar in the bowl of your mixer (or a large mixing bowl, if you’re using a handheld electric mixer).

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat quickly to combine the ingredients.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Add the egg, olive oil, vanilla, and milk.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat on high to combine. You want to mix it until the batter just comes together uniformly—then stop. (Beating it too long will encourage gluten to develop in the batter, which will ultimately lead to a cake that’s less tender.)

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

It should look about like this:

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

It will be fairly thick.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Bake the whoopie pie cakes

Grab your prepared pans. Drop 2 tablespoons of batter in a puddle on the pan. (If you’re making smaller whoopie pies, only use 1 Tbls. of batter.)

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Give it a sec. It will flatten out a little, like this:

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Repeat with more batter until both your sheet pans are full. Leave an inch or two in between each cake to give them room to poof up.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Pop the cakes into your preheated oven. Bake at 350 degrees for about 12 minutes.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

How can you tell when the cakes are done?

Good question. They should look firm and be an even brown color.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

When you press lightly in the center of one, the indent your finger makes should spring back and disappear. (If the indent remains, pop them back in the oven for another minute.)

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

You could even do a toothpick test, if you like.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Let the cakes cool for 5 minutes on the pan, then transfer them to a rack to finish cooling.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

The bottoms should be soft—not crisp—and look cake-y, like this:

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Repeat with the rest of your batter until you’ve used all your batter. While your cakes are cooling, make the filling.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Make the whoopie pie filling

Put the butter and powdered sugar in the bowl of your mixer (or a large mixing bowl, if you’re using a handheld mixer).

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Toss in the vanilla.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

And the marshmallow fluff. The fluff measurement is approximate. It’s incredibly sticky stuff to try to measure precisely. If you add a little more or less, that’s just fine.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat on high for a few minutes. At first, the mixture will be really powdery and clumpy. After a minute or two, the butter and the fluff will loosen the whole thing up and you’ll see it start to smooth out.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat it until the mixture is smooth, fluffy, and uniform, like this:

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

It will be really thick, and should stand up in relatively stiff peaks, like this:

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Assemble your whoopie pies!

This is my favorite part. It’s important to wait until the cakes are completely cool (or else they’ll start to melt your frosting, and you’ll wind up with a mess.)

Grab 2 cakes that look like they’re about the same size.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Stick them together quickly to be sure one isn’t a lot larger than the other.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Set the cakes bottom up on the counter. Put a few large dollops of filling on one cake.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Spread it around so it’s relatively flat. Don’t spread the filling quite to the edge of the cake.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Set the other cake on top of the filling.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Gently press down on the cake to smoosh it together a little.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

This should force the filling to the edges.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Repeat with the rest of the cakes, until you’ve assembled all your whoopie pies.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Store them at room temp, in between pieces of wax paper, for about 3 days. If your kitchen is on the hot side, keep them in the fridge. Let them come up to room temp before serving.

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

Enjoy!

Whoopie Pies at The Hungry Mouse

 

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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie serves as an Associate Creative Director at PARTNERS+simons, a boutique ad agency in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.

14 COMMENTS

  1. These are easier to make than I thought they’d be. They’re like Moon Pies. I’m out of powdered sugar, otherwise I’d give these a try today..i’m sure my boys would love ’em!

  2. Oh my! I have been looking for a recipe for these with nice, soft cake-like cookies. Every one I’ve seen has these hard cookies and though they do taste rather good, I’m not looking to remake the oreo. 😉 But these . . . these look absolutely delicious!

    Another one for my “must try soon” pile.

    ~ Annie

  3. Just finished making two batches of these. First batch turned out AMAZING. The second batch, I am not sure if I measured something wrong but the batter was not wet enough. It kept climbing up my mixer, I added more milk but I guess I should have added the oil instead… haha. They came out looking like the piles of batter that went in. But they taste good so that’s all the matters. Thanks for this! Putting it into my recipe box.

  4. This is the perfect recipe! I was scared to make them, but I went ahead and did it. I am so glad I did because it was really easy. I lined one of my pans with parchment paper, since I only had one Silpad and do not have the patience to wait. The only thing different I did was added more marshmallow fluff to the creme mixture. I think it was about 6 heaping tablespoons or so. They are a huge hit in my house. I may have to whip up another batch tomorrow. Thanks for posting and showing so many photo’s. It’s very helpful.

  5. First part of recipe calls for salad oil and then below it list it as olive oil….will any oil be ok? I usually use canola, is this good?

  6. Made this filling to avoid shortening and WOW!. I used a bit more fluff (I eat it buy the spoonful). These are great frozen and I have added a small amount of cream cheese to add to consistency, but not enough to taste it (cream cheese frosting is my least favorite).

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