Valentine’s Day is next week, and although we don’t make a big celebration of the ‘Hallmark’ holiday, I do use it as an excuse to make (and eat) something sweet. Because our house is filled with teenagers with a variety of tastes, I had to come up with something that would please everyone. This year I decided that I would make a version of the traditional Whoopie Pie, with a red velvet twist.
Who doesn’t like Red Velvet cake and cream cheese icing???? Although this recipe was made from scratch, it is also easily adapted for the semi-homemade version, using cake batter mix and store-bought icing. Either way, they are easy to make, adorable and beyond delicious. Just a warning, if you don’t have teenagers in your home to clear them out in a single day, you might want to share them with friends and family. Otherwise, you will end up eating more than you wanted to, they are so good!
Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated white sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 ounce red food coloring
Cream Cheese Filling:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 – 8 ounce cream cheese, room temperature
3 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. In a large bowl sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
3. With your mixer (use your paddle attachment if you have one), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg beating until combined . Beat in the vanilla extract.
4. In a small mixing bowl, mix the buttermilk and red food coloring with a spoon. * Hint – place a paper towel under your bowl in case the food coloring splashes out – it will stain.
5. With the mixer on low speed, add 1/3rd of the flour mixture and then 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture. Repeat the process until well combined.
6. Using a small ice cream scoop (or a standard tablespoon), drop heaping tablespoons of the batter, approximately the same size, onto baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Space about 2 inches apart.
7. Smooth the tops of the cookies to prevent any peaks with your finger or spoon dipped lightly in water to prevent sticking.
8. Bake for 9-11 minutes.
9. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
10. Cream Cheese Filling: Beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth and creamy. Add in the vanilla extract and beat until incorporated. Slowly beat in the confectioners sugar, and continue to beat until smooth and creamy
11. Match up similar sized cookies. For each pair, take one cookie and spread a heaping tablespoon of the filling on the flat (bottom) side. Top with the other cookie. Repeat until all cookies have cream filling.
12. Optional: Take a few tablespoons of the filling and thin it out in a small bowl with milk until it is able to be drizzled from the tip of the spoon. Place thinned icing in a small piping bag, plastic bag or over the edge of a spoon and drizzle lines back and forth over the tops of the Whoopie Pies.
13. If there are any left, the Whoopie Pies can be stored in the refrigerator, in an air tight container, for several days. Makes about 18 sandwich cookies.
For those who want the short cut version:
1box of Red Velvet Cake mix
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup flour
Mix the above ingredients, bake as directed above. Ice with store-bought cream cheese icing.
Mary and Jim
**If you would like to receive our Recipe Of The Week each Friday – be sure to sign up to follow the blog, hit the “like” button on the Facebook sidebar, or follow us on Twitter.