Carrot Cake Whoopie Pie

It's almost Easter and I wanted to share a delicious recipe with all of you. The carrot cake whoopie pie can be found at Trolley Car Treats in Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World. It has had a few iterations, including the adorable mini version from the Art of Animation hotel, but this treat is spicy and sweet and a must for carrot cake lovers. Plus who can say no to cream cheese icing?


I also wanted to point out I found a new treat at our local King Soopers a few weeks ago and took it as a sign I should make a carrot cake whoopie pie. Behold - Sweet Middles Carrot Cake Sandwiches. These babies a couple inches wide and feel like an adult version of oatmeal cream pies from elementary school. With their miniature size it is easy to wipe out half a container without noticing. In order to craft my recipe I wanted something in between the cakey texture of Disney's version and the soft-baked cookie version from the grocery store.


Carrot cake is my favorite flavor of cake. I share that with my dad. It is complex, spicy, with lots of texture and variation. You can have simple carrot cake with spices or amp it up with coconut, raisins, and nuts. Plus gooey cream cheese frosting on top makes a perfectly balance cake in my humble opinion. To make these I followed a recipe from Caroline Russock on Serious Eats which was republished with permission from Whoopie Pie by Sarah Billingsley and Amy Treadwell.

Flour is still a hot commodity in our area so I attempted to converse my AP by substitute one cup with 1 1/3 cup of oat flour. I was pleasantly surprised by the aroma and added flavor quality from adding the oat flour. A minor substitution was dark brown sugar for light brown sugar for more molasses flavor and chewy texture. I graded the carrots by hand with a fine grater and 2 medium carrots gave me 2 cups plus a little extra that I'll use in some Broccoli and Cheddar Soup served in a Sourdough Bread Bowl later this week.

The final cookies had a robust color just like carrot cake and were super festive topped with a carrot. To make the carrot I mixed small amounts of cream cheese frosting with orange and green food coloring, loaded them into sandwich bags, cut the tips off, and piped the little designs.


I tried two different methods for the Mickey shape. First I loaded cookie dough into a Mickey cutter for the approximate shape. The dough spread too much during baking and was a bit misshapen. The perfect solution was to simply cut the cookies out again once cooled. I spread fresh cream cheese icing on the Mickey version to minimize cracking. For the rest of the round cookies I spread chilled icing with an offset spatula on the flat sides.

I put the call out to our neighbors to see if anyone wanted to share and the whoopie pies were claimed faster than I could decorate them. Initial reviews are excellent! Let me know if you make these for your Easter celebration.

Carrot Cake Whoopie Pies

Yield 15

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3 cup oat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 medium carrots, grated (about 2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup pecans (optional) 

Cream Cheese Filling:

  • 1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Sift together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt into a large bowl.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and both sugars until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, then add the eggs and the vanilla and beat until combined. Mix in the flour mixture just until combined, then add the carrots, raisins, and pecans (optional). Chill the batter in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degree F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  4. Drop about 2 tablespoons of batter onto one of the prepared baking sheets and repeat, spacing them at least 2 inches apart. Bake about 16-18 minutes until the cakes spring back when pressed gently. Remove from the oven and let the cakes cool in the pan for at least 5 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool completely.
  5. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the cream cheese and butter to combine. Switch to a whisk attachment, add powdered sugar on low speed until combined. Flavor with vanilla. Then increase speed to high and whip until fluffy about 1 minute.
  6. To assemble spread the cream cheese icing with a knife, spatula, or pipe with a star or round tip on the flat side of one cookie. Top with additional cookie. Create designs with colored icing. Enjoy!

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