Friends, autumn is upon us. Well, not us per se, but maybe you. In San Antonio, temps are still hot and humid, but it’s technically fall, so between fashion magazines pushing sweater dresses and boots, and Starbucks whipping up pumpkin spice and salted caramel lattes, we’re being made to believe that it’s cold outside.
This recipe, more than all the beef stews and root vegetables I’ve roasted in my life, feels like fall. It tastes like fall, like a mug of something hot by a fireplace, dressed in a cozy sweater with a dog snoring nearby.
I first found this recipe through Creature Comfort‘s post on an ice cream filling for Martha Stewart’s pumpkin whoopie pies. I liked the idea of a chai spice filling, but I wanted a filling that wasn’t going to melt. So, I used Martha’s cream cheese filling and added the spices from Creature Comfort.
It was an immediate success! Everyone loves these. The only thing people don’t like is that they want more of them.
This recipe makes 12 whoopie pies, if you make the cookies pretty big, like ice cream scoop big. If you use a tablespoon or regular spoon, you can get 36 whoopie pies from these.
A note: one of the good things about this recipe is that it’s incredibly unhealthy. I mean, there’s a lot of oil and sugar in it. So once you make it, you don’t really want to eat a lot of them, because you know exactly what’s in it. As I’m typing this, there are 12 of them in my kitchen, and I don’t want to eat any of them. F’real.
Pumpkin Spice Whoopie Pies
For the Cream-Cheese Filling
- 3 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 teaspoons nutmeg
- 1-2 teaspoons cloves
- 1 tablespoon chai concentrate (liquid chai, which you can find in the tea section of your grocery store)
For the Pumpkin Whoopie Cookies
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cloves
2 cups firmly packed dark-brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
3 cups pumpkin puree, chilled
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Make the cookies: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or a nonstick baking mat; set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves; set aside. In another large bowl, whisk together brown sugar and oil until well combined. Add pumpkin puree and whisk until combined. Add eggs and vanilla and whisk until well combined. Sprinkle flour mixture over pumpkin mixture and whisk until fully incorporated.
- Using a small ice cream scoop with a release mechanism, drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Transfer to oven and bake until cookies are just starting to crack on top and a toothpick inserted into the center of each cookie comes out clean, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely on pan.
- Make the filling: Sift confectioner’ sugar into a medium bowl; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter until smooth. Add cream cheese and beat until well combined. Add confectioners’ sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and chai concentrate, and beat just until smooth. (Filling can be made up to a day in advance. Cover and refrigerate; let stand at room temperature to soften before using.)
- Assemble the whoopie pies: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Transfer filling to a disposable pastry bag and snip the end. When cookies have cooled completely, pipe a large dollop of filling on the flat side of half of the cookies. Sandwich with remaining cookies, pressing down slightly so that the filling spreads to the edge of the cookies. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate cookies at least 30 minutes before serving and up to 3 days.