A New Way of Making Something Flavors of Whoopie Pies

Sweet Treats: Whoopie Pies

Whoopie pies are a New England traditional snacking cake created with rich chocolate cake rounds layered with vanilla and marshmallow crème filling.

A regional delight from the Northeast spreading around the rest of the country, a whoopie pie is created with two chocolate cake rounds sandwiched together with a hefty dollop of marshmallow creme icing. We in Maine claim it heartily, even dubbing it the official state treat, but acknowledge that Pennsylvania may have a right to claim it too.

Evocative of common lunchbox goodies, they make terrific homemade snacking cakes. In Maine, we don’t need an occasion to eat whoopie pies; a whoopie pie makes an occasion, though they often show up at birthdays, celebrations, and even weddings.

Why These Whoopie Pies Are the Best

When you break it down, a whoopie pie just has two elements: the chocolate cake and the marshmallow filling. When a dessert’s flavor is so simple, a recipe needs to get the details perfect. Here’s how the details of this recipe add up to a wicked dessert.

Butter is more delicious than oil, yet oil makes moister cakes more than butter. This recipe meets in the middle and uses both softened butter and vegetable oil, so you don’t have to sacrifice between flavor and texture. Sweetening the mixture with dark brown sugar ensures a soft, moist cake and contributes a deeper molasses taste that complements the chocolate. For this dish, Dutch-process cocoa powder is my top choice over natural cocoa powder. The cocoa that goes through the Dutch process is darker and, more significantly, has a more refined and savory taste. Using buttermilk not only makes the cakes airier but also gives them a somewhat sour, creamy flavor.

Frozen Marshmallow Cream Center

Traditional whoopie pies, true to their New England roots, use a marshmallow creme filling. A spreadable paste with the same flavor as marshmallows, marshmallow crème was developed in the early 1900s in Somerville, Massachusetts. It makes the filling for whoopie pies sweet, creamy, and slightly thicker than standard frosting.

Whoopie Pies

Developing New Flavors for Whoopie Pies

While chocolate and marshmallow cream are always a safe bet, whoopie pies are a blank slate for creative taste combinations. If you find regular filling boring or are just searching for some creative twists, try one of these alternatives:

Peanut Butter:

Make the peanut butter filling by beating 1 cup softened unsalted butter, 2 cups powdered sugar, and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt for 2 minutes. Add 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter and 1 cup marshmallow fluff and continue mixing until smooth and creamy.


For a mocha flavor, follow step 9 and add 1 tablespoon of instant coffee dissolved in 1 tablespoon of hot water to the filling in addition to the vanilla essence.


In place of the vanilla extract called for in step 9 below, add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of mint essence to the filling.

Chocolate Cake Mix, Flour, and Eggs, for Rounds


  • 2 measuring cups (240 grams) of all-purpose flour (see recipe note)
  • A half cup (42 grams) of Dutch-process cocoa powder
  • The equivalent of one teaspoon of baking powder
  • Just one teaspoon of baking soda
  • One-half of a teaspoon of kosher salt
  • unsalted butter, room temperature, 1/4 cup (57g)
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) (60ml) crude oil extracted from vegetables
  • 213 grams (1 cup) of packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 medium-sized eggs at room temperature
  • Exactly one vanilla extract teaspoon
  • Buttermilk, one cup (or 240 ml)
  • In the Middle
  • Butter, unsalted, 1 cup (227 grams), room temperature
  • Powdered sugar: 1 cup (113 grams)
  • About 2 1/4 cups of marshmallow creme, can be found in a 7- to the 7.5-ounce jar.
  • The equivalent of one teaspoon of vanilla essence


Get the oven ready by preheating:

Put in a preheated 375°F oven. Prepare 2 baking sheets by lining them with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.

Put the dry stuff together:

Combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium basin using a whisk.

To make butter and sugar cream:

For about three minutes, using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, oil, and brown sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy.

Whoopie Pies

Toss in the eggs and vanilla extract:

 Beat well after adding each egg. Mix in the vanilla essence, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl during the process. To achieve the desired results, the combination should be airy and pale.

Mix the dry and wet ingredients:

Add half the flour mixture at a time, followed by all of the buttermilk, and then the remaining flour mixture. Mix on low speed just until each item is incorporated after adding it. If necessary, stop the mixer and scrape the bowl with a rubber spatula to achieve thorough blending. The consistency of the batter should be similar to a thick chocolate cake batter.

Scoop the batter:

Use a 1-ounce cookie scoop, or, if you don’t have one, roughly 2 teaspoons of batter for each cake round. The batter should be dropped onto the prepared baking sheets with about 2 inches of separation between each cake.


 Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Bake for 8 minutes, flipping sheets halfway through (you may need to bake in batches). The finished cakes should have a matte finish and spring back when lightly poked in the center. You can test the doneness of one of the middle cakes by inserting a toothpick into the middle of the cake and removing it with no or very few crumbs on it.


Let the cakes cool for 5 minutes in the tins before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely before filling.

To make the filling:

Wait until the cakes have cooled before proceeding. Butter and confectioners’ sugar should be beaten together for 2 minutes on medium speed in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large mixing basin with a hand mixer) until pale and satiny. Once smooth, add the vanilla extract and marshmallow creme and continue mixing. After 30 seconds of mixing, scrape the bowl’s sides and bottom and give it another go. While light and airy, the filling will be denser than ordinary cake icing.

Making whoopie pies entails:

You can start putting together the whoopie pies once the cakes have cooled down completely. Apply the filling on the flat surface of half the cakes by spreading or scooping out about 2 tablespoons. Put another cake on top and sandwich it.

Whoopie pies can be stored for up to three days at room temperature if they are layered between wax or parchment paper and kept in an airtight container.

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