Gingerbread Whoopie Pies

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Spicy ginger cookies are filled with sweet vanilla buttercream to create homemade Gingerbread Whoopie Pies! This easy Christmas dessert is so festive and fun!

Sandwich cookies with buttercream frosting.

Easy Gingerbread Whoopie Pies

Whoopie pies probably aren’t the first things that come to mind when you think ‘Christmas cookies.’ But, I’m here to convince you that they should be, because these Gingerbread Whoopie Pies are simply perfect for your holiday dessert plans!

These warm, chewy gingerbread cookies are infused with cinnamon, nutmeg, molasses, brown sugar, and, of course, ginger. Then, all of that goodness is enhanced with a healthy dose of vanilla buttercream filling! Who could turn down such a treat?

The number one reason I love these soft, cake-y cookies is because they have quintessential Christmas flavor, but I also love that I get to eat two cookies for the price of one dessert! No taking-a-second-cookie guilt today, my friends.

I hope you enjoy this Christmas cookie recipe as much as my family has!

Three whoopie pies on a plate.

What Are Whoopie Pies?

Delicious! But more specifically, whoopie pies are made up of two cake-like cookies with some sort of frosting or sweet filling sandwiched between them. You can make them with all sorts of flavors (red velvet, pumpkin, chocolate, etc.) and for all sorts of occasions. Today, though, I thought gingerbread would be perfect for upcoming holiday celebrations!

Vanilla buttercream in a bowl next to gingerbread cookies.

Recipe Ingredients

Time to go over the gingerbread whoopie pie essentials. Round up the following ingredients for the cookies and the filling:

For the Gingerbread Cookies

  • Flour: I used all-purpose flour for these gingerbread cookies.
  • Salt: To enhance the sweetness/flavor from the spices.
  • Baking Soda: To help the cookies rise up nice and tall.
  • Spices: Here’s where the classic gingerbread tastes comes from! Round up some ground ginger, ground cinnamon, and ground nutmeg.
  • Vegetable Shortening: Shortening helps to ensure that your cookies won’t spread out too far while baking.
  • Butter: Soften this before starting.
  • Brown Sugar: I like to use light brown sugar because it has beautiful caramel undertones.
  • Egg: To bind the cookie dough/batter together.
  • Molasses: They can’t be gingerbread cookies without molasses!
  • Buttermilk: For extra rich flavor.

For the Vanilla Buttercream Filling

  • Butter: You can use salted or unsalted, either works.
  • Powdered Sugar: To thicken up the filling and add sweetness.
  • Milk: You can use 1%, 2%, whole, etc.
  • Pure Vanilla Extract: To make it a truly vanilla buttercream filling. 🙂

How to Make Gingerbread Whoopie Pies

I just want to take a second to mention how amazing your kitchen will smell once these cookies are baking. There’s no better way to get in the mood for Christmas than by filling your kitchen with that freshly-baked gingerbread cookie fragrance! Some festive music might help too, though…

Anyway, here’s how these gingerbread whoopie pies come to be:

Make the Cookies

Preheat the Oven to 375: Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Mix the Dry Ingredients: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, and spices.

Cream the Butter and Sugar: Then, in a large mixing bowl, combine the shortening, butter and brown sugar. Beat until the mixture is smooth and fluffy. Add the egg and beat the mixture until it is incorporated.

Combine the Dry and Wet Ingredients: Add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix to combine. Mix in the molasses, the remaining dry ingredients, and the buttermilk.

Prepare the Baking Sheet: Using a spoon, drop 1 tablespoon of dough, leaving 2 inches between each cookie, on the prepared baking sheets.

Gingerbread cookie dough on a baking sheet.

Bake: Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cookie comes out clean. Remove the pan from the oven and place it on a rack to cool completely.

Make the Filling

Cream the Butter: Beat the butter with your mixer on high until it’s light and fluffy, (about 1 minute).

Add Powdered Sugar: Do this 1/2 cup at a time, and continue to mix on low until combined.

Pour in the Milk and Vanilla: Beat on high until you reach the desired consistency. Spread the frosting onto the cooled whoopie pie and place another cookie on top, sandwiching them together.

Tips for Success

I know this isn’t the simplest cookie recipe out there, but it’s easier than I thought making whoopie pies would be! Here are a couple more tips to make the process even smoother:

  • If You Want Bigger Cookies: For bigger cookies, and thus whoopie pies, scoop out 1/4-cup of dough instead of 1 tablespoon.
  • For Thinner Frosting: If you’d like the vanilla buttercream to be thinner, feel free to add more milk to the filling.
  • Let Whoopie Pies Cool Completely Before Frosting: If you try to fill the cookies too quickly after baking, they may crumble or fall apart, so I would suggest letting them set completely.
  • Refrigerate the Whoopie Pies: This is optional, but the filling tends to stay in the cookies better if you let the pies chill for a bit. If you’re fine with a little mess, though, feel free to dig in immediately!
Gingerbread whoopie pies in a loaf pan.

Variation Ideas

Though I’m a big fan of these gingerbread whoopie pies as they are, there are many possible variations that you could try! Here are a few suggestions:

  • Add Cinnamon to the Buttercream: If you’re a big fan of that homey cinnamon sweetness, feel free to make this a cinnamon buttercream filling!
  • Make Them Mini: Mini whoopie pies are so fun! Just make the scoops of cookie dough a bit smaller, and voila!
  • Use a Cream Cheese Filling: Cream cheese frosting would also pair really well with these gingerbread cookies.
  • Switch Up the Spices: You can use more cinnamon in the cookies, less nutmeg, etc. You could even try experimenting with other spices like apple pie spice.

How to Store and Reheat Extras

Store your homemade whoopie pies in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you want to warm them up again, pop them in the oven/toaster oven on a baking sheet for a few minutes.

Gingerbread whoopie pies with vanilla buttercream filling.

Gingerbread Whoopie Pies with Vanilla Buttercream Filling

11 11 11
WW Freestyle: 14
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time1 hr
Spicy ginger cookies are filled with sweet vanilla buttercream to create homemade Gingerbread Whoopie Pies! This easy Christmas dessert is so festive and fun!
Course: Dessert / Holidays
Cuisine: American
Servings: 20
Calories: 234
Author: Katerina | Diethood

Ingredients

For the Cookies

  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 stick butter , softened
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk

For the Filling

  • 1 stick butter
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Instructions 

For the Cookies

  • Preheat the oven to 375.
  • Line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, and spices; set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the shortening, butter and brown sugar; beat until the mixture is smooth and fluffy.
  • Add the egg; beat until incorporated.
  • Add half of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix to combine.
  • Mix in the molasses, the remaining dry ingredients, and the buttermilk.
  • Using a spoon, drop 1 tablespoon of dough, leaving 2 inches between, on the prepared baking sheets. For bigger cookies, scoop out 1/4-cup of dough.
  • Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cookie comes out clean.
  • Remove from the oven and place the pan on a rack to cool completely.

In the meantime, make the filling.

  • Beat butter with mixer on high until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
  • Add powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time, and continue to mix on low until combined.
  • Pour in the milk and vanilla, and beat on high until you reach desired consistency. Add more milk if necessary.
  • Spread frosting onto the cooled whoopie pie and place another cookie on top, and sandwich together.

Notes

Recipe for the Cookies adapted from King Arthur Flour
 
Nutrition Facts
Gingerbread Whoopie Pies with Vanilla Buttercream Filling
Amount Per Serving
Calories 234 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Cholesterol 9mg3%
Sodium 192mg8%
Potassium 240mg7%
Carbohydrates 48g16%
Fiber 0g0%
Sugar 29g32%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 25IU1%
Calcium 51mg5%
Iron 1.8mg10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keywords: gingerbread recipes, whoopie pie recipe

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21 Responses
    1. Katerina Petrovska

      Hi Nancy! I just double checked and they also use 3.75 cups. This is by far the best whoopie pie recipe that I’ve tried, so I just follow theirs to just about a “T”. 😀

  1. Tracy

    These are delicious! Everyone loved them! I used all butter no shortening and twice the amount of buttermilk as my batter was very dry. I also added lemon zest and finely chopped crystallized ginger to the buttercream. Amazing thanks!

  2. Averie @Averie Cooks

    It’s really good I missed this post in Dec b/c I would have HAD to make them. I still want to…like now! These flavors are so me!

  3. Jean (Lemons & Anchovies)

    I seem to always be out of town so I have never been able to take advantage of the post-Christmas sales. Would love to be able to buy some ornaments at half-price!

    Love these whoopie pies and of course the buttercream filling. 🙂

    Merry Christmas, Kate!

  4. Jacob

    Loved your blog. Everything looks so simple and delicious. You have a great way of describing (complicated things) into simple things! Lovely!

  5. Kankana

    I know! Didn’t the year just flew by faster than last year ? Crazy huh!
    Anyways, those woopie pies looks gorgeous and so perfect. I need to bake some soon, as soon as my baking sheet gets free 😀

  6. Paula @ Vintage Kitchen

    So yummy! Perfect flavors for this season. I can´t believe I still haven´t made whoopie pies.

  7. The Mom Chef ~ Taking on Magazines One Recipe at a Time

    Those look amazing! I’m not sure if I’m done shopping, but I don’t stress about that kind of thing because the gifts aren’t our main focus anyhow. And no, I don’t go shopping right after Christmas. I hate those crowds more than I like the deals. 🙂

  8. Laura Dembowski

    I want these for Christmas! Whoopie pies are the best and gingerbread ones sound amazing. I bet they go great with the buttercream.

  9. Stacy

    Yummy, Kate! Kids and adults both would enjoy these Gingerbread Whoopie Pies. Now, I’m on a mission to make them gluten free! Thanks for sharing & Merry Christmas!

  10. Ramona

    We make Christmas all about the food and getting together in my family… I only have to buy presents for all the kids. Makes life so much easier. Now these whoopie pies would be perfect on our dessert table. They look fabulous. 🙂

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Katerina of Diethood
Hey There!
I'm Katerina, a cookie-maker & picture-taker! For me, eating is a moment to share, an enjoyment, a passion. I hope you enjoy my recipes!

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