Who doesn’t love a whoopie pie? These yummy treats are made with pumpkin, spices and sandwiched together with a decadent, spiced, maple cream cheese frosting. All the flavours of autumn in one small (if indulgent) little cake.
I made mine in a couple of Wilton 12 hole, Harvest whoopie pie pans, but they work just as well baked on a baking sheet with a non-stick liner, or parchment paper. If you do use one pan, just be aware that you will need to keep washing and re-greasing it between baking the batches. This can be a little time consuming, but if you want the cute shapes, totally worth it of course!
I’ve used a mixture of dark and light brown sugar and lots of spice for a dark and spicy mixture. There is more spice in the frosting too, along with maple extract. All the flavours work so well together and create a perfect autumnal treat.
This recipe makes around 24 whoopie pies, depending on how big you make them
200g dark brown soft sugar
200g light brown soft sugar
200ml vegetable oil
2 extra large eggs
1 can of pure pumpkin puree
380g plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon ground ginger
1/2 tablespoon ground cloves
A little extra butter, melted for brushing the whoopie pie pan
280g full fat cream cheese at room temperature
115g butter at room temperature
450g icing sugar
2tsp maple extract/or use 2tbs maple syrup
1/2tsp ground cloves
Pinch of ground allspice
Prepare the fosting first by seiving together the icing sugar and spices into a bowl.
In another bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and maple extract together until light and fluffy. I do this in my stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, but you could easily do this with a wooden spoon.
Beat in the spiced icing sugar until smooth and fluffy. I wrap a towel around the mixer at this point to avoid huge clouds of icing sugar coating my entire kitchen! You don’t get that problem with a wooden spoon!
When the frosting is prepared, I pile it into a piping bag and chill until I’m ready to sandwich the cakes together. This helps to firm up the frosting a little and make it easier to handle. You could just leave it in a covered bowl in the fridge if not using a piping bag.
To make the whoopie pies:
Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF and brush the baking pan with melted butter or line a baking sheet with a non-stick liner or parchment.
Sieve the flour, spices, salt, baking powder and soda together in a large bowl.
Place the oil, sugars and vanilla in a bowl and whisk together. I used a stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, but this could easily be done with a hand whisk.
Beat in the pumpkin and eggs until smooth, then add the dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated.
If using a whoopie pie pan, I find it easiest to use a piping bag. I pipe the mixture around the outside first to ensure the batter gets into all the corners and then work into the centre in a spiral. You only need to half fill the little holes as the mixture will rise. Give the pan a tap to help any air escape and settle the mixture.
If not using a pan, drop heaped teaspoons of the mixture onto the lined baking sheet, leaving room for the cakes to expand a little.
Bake for around 7 – 10 minutes, but keep an eye on them, they are ready when the cakes spring back to the touch and a cocktail stick comes out clean.
Leave them to cool in the tin for 5 minutes, before turning out onto a cooling rack and baking the next batch. Let cakes cool completely.
When all the cakes are baked and cooled, either pipe or spread a little of the frosting onto one side and sandwich the two cakes together. You can leave them plain, or add a few sprinkles around the edge. I’ve used some bronze sprinkles here, which I think work well, but some people have been known to add crispy bacon bits too!
These are great for a party, an after-school snack, or just with a cup of coffee.