Whoopie. What a huge fluffing mess…

by Mara Eyllon on September 24, 2010

In homage to that sticky, sucrose sensation known as Marshmallow Fluff, Post Somerville Test Kitchen is mixing things up a bit this week. Drop the veggies — instead of our weekly experimentation with fresh farmers market produce, we’re serving up the sweet stuff in preparation for tomorrow’s fifth annual Fluff Fest in Union Square, featuring special guest, the Whoopie Pie. 

The origin of this serving-sized treat, consisting of a healthy peak of cream-filling sandwiched between two small cakes, is a point of a contention between the Pennsylvania Dutch and Mainiacs, both of whom claim to have invented the famed cake that is rapidly gaining ground across the country. The cakes, which may be purchased in single-serving cellophane packages across the Northeast, are best either home baked or from a local bakery or farmers market. As legend has it, the name derives from the gleeful cries of children and husbands alike as they opened their lunch pails to discover that “Whoopie!” there’s a cake, pie, cream, frosting, sandwich, thing in there.

Our initial reaction to the Whoopie Pie theme for this year’s Fluff Fest was to dream up an alternative to the traditional treat, using a nutella flavored cake, chopped hazelnuts, and a banana cream filling. But after many hours of experimentation and several batches of rock hard, nutella flavored cookies,  we decided to go with cut and dry Whoopie Pie flavors including a batch of Dutch chocolate and a batch of pumpkin, with a slight variation of the traditional filling.

Call us lazy, but the filling variation is actually using plain fluff sans extra sugar, sans butter. We tried a few traditional cream recipes, all of which utilized various proportions of butter or shortening, powdered sugar and Fluff, only to find them all cloying when paired with the sweetness of the cakes. Plain Fluff makes a great filling, it’s gooey, near candy texture contrasts perfectly against the domes of moist cake, and this week more than ever, it seems it is most appropriate to let Fluff be the star of the show. So, with no further ado, we present…

Fluff Whoopie Pies Two Ways (Pumpkin and Dutch Chocolate)

Dutch Chocolate Whoopie Pies 


Yields eight pies

1/2 cup Duch processed Cocoa Powder

1 1/4 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 cup well shaken butter milk*

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 cup well packed brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

Marshmallow Fluff

*You may make your own buttermilk by setting 1 tbs of white vinegar or lemon juice in a bowl, adding 1 cup milk and allowing the mixture to sit for 5 minutes.


Preheat oven to 350 degrees

In a  bowl mix together flour, baking soda, salt and cocoa powder. In a separate, large bowl cream butter and sugar together with a whisk or electric mixer until a smooth paste forms. Add vanilla and egg, and incorporate.

Alternately add flour mixture and butter milk into the butter-egg-sugar mixture. Continue to stir until all ingredients are well mixed into a thick batter. Instructions for building the pies may be found after the Pumpkin Whoopie Pie recipe.

Pumpkin Whoopie Pies


Yields eight pies

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1/3 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup granulated sugar 

1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree

1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

1 large egg

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp ground ginger

a pinch of allspice 

a pinch of nutmeg

1/4 tsp kosher salt

Cake Preparation

In a large bowl, mix together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and set aside. With an electric mixer or whisk, cream together butter and sugar. Add vanilla, egg and pumpkin into the butter sugar mixture and whisk until smooth. Slowly stir wet ingredients into flour mixture until the batter is smooth and thick.

Preparing the Pies  (for both Dutch Chocolate and Pumpkin Flavors)

Scoop out 16 tablespoon sized dollops of batter onto 2 stick-free or parchment paper lined cookie trays (leave about 2 inches between cakes) and bake for approximately twelve minutes. Once the cakes have cooled, scoop 1 tablespoon of fluff onto the bottom side of cake and top with another cake (bottom facing toward the Fluff). The cakes themselves will last for about 4 days in an airtight container. However, we recommend making the fluff sandwiches immediately before eating (as you can see in the picture, the Fluff begins to melt and gets a bit messy).


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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Fathmina September 24, 2010 at 12:40 PM

I will definitely be trying the pumpkin version this fall! Mmm mmm!

Mara September 26, 2010 at 3:48 PM

I also recommend filling the pumpkin pies with cream cheese frosting.

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