Homemade whoopie pies are an iconic dessert made with two soft, cake-like cookies sandwiching a creamy marshmallowy filling. You can easily switch up the flavors of these whoopie pies for different seasons but there really isn’t much that can beat the classic- chocolate and marshmallow fluff! These easy-to-make whoopie pies are perfect for afternoon snacks or birthday treats.
Growing up, my mom would sometimes get whoopie pies as a treat from the grocery store, and at most birthday parties, someone’s mom inevitably showed up with a plate of them. They were just one of those things that were always around as a kid, and now as an adult, I realized that I totally took them for granted. Lucky for us, my mom had given me a copy of her recipe, which she received from her friend Karen umpteen years ago, and here it is!
I love how incredibly easy these are to make, not to mention how fast they bake! You can certainly make them larger or smaller if you’d like; I experimented with a few different sizes and found these to be perfect in terms of my personal preference. They’re large enough that you don’t feel like you need to eat more than one to get your fill, and not so big that you feel as though you totally gorged when you’re done eating one.
What are Whoopie Pies?
Whoopie pies are quite simply two chocolate cake-like cookies that sandwich a fluffy white filling. Sometimes considered cookies, pies, sandwiches, or even cakes these delightful treats are truly one-of-a-kind.
While many New England states try to stake their claim on creating the original whoopie pie, Maine has gone out of its way to honor this baked good. Not only is it the state treat but Maine also holds the record for the largest whoopie pie, weighing in at a whopping 1,062 lb!
How to Make Them
Ingredients for the Cookies
Flour + Cocoa Powder: Provides structure to the whoopie pie while also giving it a chocolaty flavor!
Baking Soda + Salt: Acts as a leavening agent and gives a little flavor to the cookie.
Shortening: Used to help the whoopie pie rise during the baking process, as well as keep its shape.
Sugar: Sweetens these cookies up a bit.
Egg + Yolk: Binds the batter together.
Vanilla: Gives a little splash of flavor to the cookies.
Water + Buttermilk: Softens the cookies and the acid from the buttermilk gives a slight tang.
Once you have your ingredients, you are ready to begin!
Prepare for baking: Preheat the oven to 450°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
Mix dry ingredients: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
Cream shortening + sugar: Using an electric mixer, cream together the shortening and sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and beat until just combined.
Alternate flour and liquid: Reduce the mixer speed to low and add one-third of the flour mixture. Beat until just combined. Add the buttermilk and mix again, followed by another third of the flour mixture, the hot water, and the remaining flour mixture.
Fold together: Give the batter a few quick folds with a rubber spatula to ensure all of the ingredients are incorporated.
Scoop + bake: Using a medium-sized cookie scoop, drop the dough onto the parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 5 to 6 minutes. They should look puffy and completely set.
Cool the cookies: Allow to cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Marshmallow Fluff Filling
Marshmallow Fluff: A spreadable marshmallow that makes a gooey, fluffy filling.
Butter: I used unsalted butter to give the filling a smooth finish.
Powdered Sugar: Sweetens and thickens the frosting.
Salt + Vanilla: Flavor, flavor, flavor.
Making the Marshmallow Fluff Filling
Beat butter + marshmallow fluff: Cream together marshmallow fluff and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add in remaining ingredients: Reduce the speed to low and add the powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract; mix until all of the sugar has been incorporated.
Beat until fluffy: Increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 to 5 minutes, until the mixture is light and fluffy.
Assemble the Whoopie Pies
Fill the bottom side (the flat part) of half of the cookies with frosting and top with the remaining cookies. To fill the cookies you can:
Pumpkin Spice + Maple: With fluffy pumpkin spice cookies and a sweet maple cream cheese filling these pumpkin spice whoopie pies are the perfect fall treat.
S’mores Whoopie Pies: With a graham cracker cookie, chocolate ganache, and a marshmallow fluff filling, what s’more could you want??
Make them Gobs!
As someone who hails from western Pennsylvania, I grew up calling these “gobs”. I’ve since learned that there is one big difference between traditional whoopie pies and gobs – the filling!
While whoopie pies include this wonderfully sweet marshmallow-laced filling, gobs traditionally have a less-sweet filling made from a cooked flour/milk mixture. If you would like to use a traditional gob filling, make the white filling/frosting from my Ho Ho Cake – it is the same as gob filling!
Store your whoopie pies at room temperature for up to 5 days in an airtight container.
This recipe can easily be doubled for more whoopie pie enjoyment!
Want to make them mini? Use a small cookie scoop – about 2 teaspoons of dough – and bake for 4 to 5 minutes.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt; set aside.
Using an electric mixer, cream together the shortening and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract and beat for another 1 to 2 minutes, or until completely smooth and combined. Reduce the mixer speed to low, add one-third of the flour mixture and beat until just combined. Add the buttermilk and mix again, followed by another third of the flour mixture, the hot water, and then the remaining flour mixture. Give the batter a few quick folds with a rubber spatula to ensure all of the ingredients are incorporated.
Drop the dough onto the parchment-lined baking sheets using a medium cookie scoop (about 1½ tablespoons of dough). Bake in the preheated oven for 5 to 6 minutes. The cookies should look puffed and completely set. Let cool on the baking sheets for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Make the Filling: Cream together the marshmallow fluff and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce the speed to low and add the powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla extract; mix until all of the sugar has been incorporated, then increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 to 5 minutes, until the mixture is light and fluffy.
Assemble the Gobs: Using a pastry bag with round decorating tip, or a spoon, spread some of the filling onto the bottom side of half of the cookies. Top with the remaining cookies. The gobs can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Doubling: This recipe can easily be doubled.
Mini: Use a small cookie scoop (or about 2 teaspoons of dough). Reduce the baking time by 1 to 2 minutes.
Storage: The whoopie pies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Freezing Instructions: Wrapped individually in plastic wrap, the assembled whoopie pies can be stored in an airtight container or ziploc bag for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator or for a brief time at room temperature.
Make Gobs: Replace the filling with the white filling/frosting recipe from my Ho Ho Cake.