These pumpkin whoopie pies are a delicious fall twist on the classic whoopie pie. They’re two pumpkin cake “cookies” sandwiched together with cream cheese frosting in the middle, and they’re so irresistible.
These pumpkin whoopie pies are perfectly spiced with cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice, and filled with a super creamy tangy and sweet cream cheese frosting. I just love the combination of pumpkin baked goods with cream cheese frosting.
I hope to share a recipe for chocolate whoopie pies soon, but of course I had to share a version that is perfect for the season right now. Enter in pumpkin whoopie pies.
What are whoopie pies?
Whoopie pies are like miniature cakes, that are sandwiched together with a yummy frosting in the middle. For this version we’ve got a pumpkin cake like cookie (that I mostly only call a cookie because it’s shape) that is filled with a cream cheese frosting.
Pumpkin cookies are already very cake like, so I started with my my pumpkin chocolate chip cookies recipe. I went with all vegetable oil, instead of half applesauce and half vegetable oil, and 1 cup less flour because we want them a little less stiff than cookies, and even more moist on delicious. But it needs to be a more sturdy batter than an actual pumpkin cake because we need the dough to hold it’s texture a little bit so these can bake up separately on a cookie pan.
How to make pumpkin whoopie pies?
Preheat your oven and line a baking sheet (or two) with parchment paper or a silicone liner.
Combine the brown sugar, granulated white sugar, and oil together till nice and smooth. Add in the pumpkin. Then stir in the eggs and vanilla extract till it’s all just combined. Make sure to scrape the bottom and sides as needed.
Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. You’ll need flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, ground ginger, and ground cloves. Whisk them together till they’re combined and set them aside.
Dump the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until you have a nice soft dough. Use a 1.5 TBS cookie scoop, scoop the dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. The batter is runnier than a typical cookie dough so make sure they are about 2 inches apart so they don’t spread too much and make one giant cookie. I also had to help some of them to be round as they came out slightly oval shaped when I first put the batter on the tray. You can also scoop the batter into a pastry bag and pipe it out to try and help their shape.
Bake the cookie cakes until they are set and the tops start to crack, and a toothpick stuck in the center of the cookie comes out clean. Remove from the oven and let the cookies cool for a few minutes on the baking sheet then transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Repeat until the batter/dough is gone.
When the cookies are cooled you can make the frosting filling. Beat the cream cheese in a large bowl until its nice and smooth, this should be about 2 minutes. I like using my stand mixer for this, but a hand mixer works well too. Then add in the butter and mix until that is totally smooth too. Add in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and mix over low speed (this keeps the powdered sugar from flying out the sides) and mix until the frosting is nice and creamy.
Flip one cookie over and spread frosting onto the bottom of the cookie. Place another cookie on top with the bottom down so both cookie bottoms are to the middle, and the rounded tops are on the outsides. You can enjoy them immediately, or put them in the fridge to chill for 1 hour up to 4 days. (I personally like them slightly chilled)
Tips for making pumpkin whoopie pies?
- You can substitute 1/2 cup of plain applesauce for half of the oil in the recipe if you want to make it a bit lighter.
- You want to use pumpkin puree NOT pumpkin pie filling. The only ingredient on the can should be pumpkin.
- You can add 1 cup of chocolate chips to the batter for a fun chocolatey twist.
- Use a 1 1/2 TBS cookie scoop to scoop the batter onto the cookie sheet. This keeps your hands cleaner because the batter is very sticky. This also helps the cookie cakes keep their shapes uniform.
- Match similar sized and similar shaped cookies to one another before frosting them so you don’t have sides sticking out as much.
- Put the frosting into a ziplock baggie and snip a medium sized portion off the end of one of the corners. Squeeze the frosting out through the bag and onto the cookies to frost them evenly.
How to store pumpkin whoopie pies?
These pumpkin whoopie pies should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will stay good for 3 to 4 days. The filling on these whoopie pies is made with cream cheese, so to keep it from going bad, and also to keep the filling from getting too soft, they need to be placed in the fridge after too long. They can stay safely at room temperature for 2 hours before needing to be put back in the fridge, though the frosting may get too soft and squish out the sides even after 1 hour.
The cookie sandwiches are very moist, and delicate also, so I recommend storing them in a single layer, as they’ll stick together where they touch and may also get flattened from the extra weight.
You can also wrap them individually in plastic wrap to keep them from sticking to each other. The cake may stick a bit to the plastic, but it should be easy to open up, and the whoopie pies can also be unwrapped just part way as you eat them to keep your hands clean while eating them.
How to freeze whoopie pies?
You can freeze the baked whoopie pies for up to 3 months. Wrap them individually in plastic wrap them stick them in a freezer safe bag. Before enjoying, thaw the cookie sandwiches overnight in the fridge.
These pumpkin whoopie pies are the perfect combination of pumpkin spice and cream cheese frosting. They’re soft, sweet, and so delicious. They’re such a yummy fall cookie!
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Pumpkin Whoopie Pies
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated white sugar
- 15 oz pumpkin puree
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 eggs
- 3 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 TBS ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 8 oz cream cheese (softened, in a block, not a tube)
- 1/2 cup butter (softened, 1 block)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- Large Mixing Bowl
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees farenheit.
- Line a baking pan with parchment paper or a silicone liner.
- Combine the vegetable oil, brown sugar and white sugar in a large bowl. Stir for about 1 minute.
- Add in the pumpkin puree and vanilla extract, and stir it all together.
- Add in the eggs and stir the mixture until the eggs are just combined in.
- Dump in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves.
- Stir it all together till you have a nice soft batter.
- Carefully scoop the batter by the 1 1/2 Tablespoon full onto the prepared baking pan.
- Put the pan into the oven and allow the "cookies" to bake for about 9 to 11 minutes (mine took 10) until they are cooked through and a toothpick can be inserted into one and comes out clean.
- Let the whoopie pies cool on the pan for about 10 minutes then transfer them to a cooling rack to cool completely. (Don't place them too close to one another as they tend to stick to each other if touching)
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
- Beat the cream cheese in a medium sized bowl with a stand mixer, or hand mixer until it's smooth. About 2 minutes.
- Add in the butter and beat until smooth.
- Add in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and beat until the whole thing is smooth.
For Whoopie Pie Assembly:
- Flip one of the cookies over to reveal the bottom and spread the frosting smoothly over the bottom. (One way I like to do this is putting the frosting in a ziplock bag or pastry bag and snipping off the corner and piping the frosting on)
- Place another cookie on top of the frosting to make a sandwich, with the domed part of the cookie facing up.
- Place the frosted cookie sandwiches back onto the cookie sheet.
- Repeat with the remaining cookies.
- Place the pan in the fridge for 1 hour to help the frosting set.
- Carefully remove the cookies with a metal spatula when you're ready to serve them as the soft cake may stick to the liner some.