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Whoopie Pie Recipe

Lena Elwell

The biggest change I’ve noticed since moving back to New York is the smell. I know it’s spring here because the birds are chirping and the weather has been nice the past few days. When I lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, I knew it was spring because I could smell the manure the farmers spread on the fields.

With spring in Lancaster came trips to one of my favorite places in the world.  A place where a person can get lost for hours. A place called Roots.

Roots is one of the largest indoor and outdoor farmers markets and flea markets I’ve ever been to and I’ve been to a lot.

At Roots I was surrounded by all sorts of wondrous things.  From locally grown fruits and veggies to interesting little trinkets to Amish made lemonade, quilts to Amish made whoopee pies.

I’m not a big fan of sweets and really don’t care for cakes or pastries, but I do love a good moist, homemade whoppie pie. Lately I’ve been missing the whoopie pies from Lancaster PA, so decided to see how hard it’d be to make my own and it really doesn’t look all that difficult.  I know mine won’t taste the same as the ones made by the Amish at Roots, but perhaps they’ll hold me over for now.

Did you know that Pennsylvania, Maine and New Hampshire all lay claim to creating the first whoopie pie?  However, the Pennsylvania Dutch Convention and Visitors Center in Lancaster, PA claim that the whoopie pie comes from a mix of the areas Amish and Pennsylvania Dutch culture and recipes have been handed down through the generations and because recipes are learned and not written down, there’s no paper trail to back up this claim.

Either way, whoopie pies are delicious and I can’t wait to try this recipe I found for oatmeal whoopie pies courtesy of The Pioneer Woman*.



  1. 2 cups Brown Sugar
  2. 1/2 cup Butter, Softened
  3. 1/4 cup shortening (Crisco)
  4. 2 whole Eggs
  5. 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  6. 1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  7. 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  8. 3 Tablespoons Boiling Water
  9. 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  10. 2-1/2 cups Flour
  11. 2 cups Quick Oats

Filling Option #1

  1. Marshmallow Crème

Filling Option #2

  1. 5 Tablespoons All-purpose Flour
  2. 1 cup Milk
  3. 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  4. 1 cup Butter
  5. 1 cup Granulated Sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cream brown sugar, butter, and shortening. Add eggs and mix. Add salt, cinnamon, and baking powder and mix. Mix baking soda and boiling water, then add to the bowl and mix. Add flour and oatmeal and mix well.
  3. Scoop dough onto parchment-lined cookie sheets so that you have rounded heaping teaspoons. Bake for 10 minutes, being careful not to burn. Remove from oven, transfer to a cooling rack, and let the cookies cool completely.

Filling #1

  1. Scoop small amounts of marshmallow fluff onto cookies, then press a second cookie on top. Freeze immediately if not serving right away, or serve right after filling (fluff will ooze.)

Filling #2

  1. In a small saucepan, whisk flour into milk and heat, stirring constantly, until it’s very thick. Remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature. Stir in vanilla.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. You don’t want any sugar graininess left. Then add the completely cooled milk/flour/vanilla mixture and beat the living daylights out of it. If it looks separated, you haven’t beaten it enough! Beat it until it all combines and resembles whipped cream.
  3. Scoop a small amount onto cookies, pressing a second cookie on top.

If you’re interested in trying out a couple other different kinds of whoopie pies, my friend Judy Johnson offers the following recipes:

Chocolate Hazelnut Whoopie Pies (scroll to the fourth post to see the recipe)

Chocolate Hazelnut Whoopie Pies- photo by Judy Johnson

Shoofly Whoopie Pies (scroll to the second post to see the recipe)

Shoofly Whoopie Pies- photo by Judy Johnson


*Whoopie Pie recipe adapted from The Best of Amish Cooking, by Phyllis Pellman Good.

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