Satisfy your fall sweet tooth with this small batch of Pumpkin Whoopie Pies! With incredibly soft and flavorful pumpkin cakes sandwiched together with a maple cream cheese frosting, they will be a big time favorite for sure!
these homemade pumpkin whoopie pies are
- super soft and moist
- a sweet dessert, but not overly sweet
- easy to prep
- paired nicely with maple cream cheese frosting
- absolutely delicious chilled
- a small batch recipe that makes 7 medium-size whoopie pies
- perfect as a fall after dinner treat
This recipe was an easy adaptation from my Pumpkin Cinnamon Cookies recipe. With their super soft, cake-like texture, I realized they would make the perfect whoopie pie! It is basically the same recipe, but we're just using a larger size cookie scoop and baking them slightly longer.
what is the best size cookie scoop to use?
For larger pumpkin whoopie pies, like the ones I made here, I recommend using a 3 ½ tablespoon-size cookie scoop. The cookie scoop I used is size #16 from Solula. This will give you roughly a 3 ½ inch diameter domed cake.
For smaller pumpkin whoopie pies, use a 1 ½ tablespoon-size cookie scoop.
pumpkin whoopie pies shopping list
Here's what you'll need to make these yummy whoopie pies!
- All-Purpose Flour. I used the King Arthur brand, but use what you like best. I did not make this with any other type of flour.
- Baking Soda and Baking Powder. Both are needed!
- Cinnamon. Gives the pumpkin a nice added bit of flavor!
- Salt. Just a pinch is needed (or ⅛ teaspoon)
- Vegetable Shortening. Room temperature is best. I did not test this with butter, but it could be used as a substitute if you don't have access to shortening.
- Granulated Sugar. Just good old fashioned white granulated sugar will work perfectly. Or you can use organic pure cane sugar.
- Egg. Yep, just one and make sure it's also at room temperature. I do not have any egg substitutions.
- Canned Pumpkin. We're using pumpkin puree and not pumpkin pie filling or pumpkin butter. Be careful not to mix them up. I used Libby's Organic Canned Pumpkin.
- Cream Cheese. This is only for the frosting. It's best softened to room temperature.
- Unsalted Butter. Also just for the frosting and should be at room temperature.
- Vanilla Extract. Used for both the pumpkin cookies and the cream cheese frosting.
- Powdered Sugar. This is only for the cream cheese frosting. Make sure it's sifted prior to adding it to the frosting mixture.
Vegetable Shortening. I did not make these pumpkin whoopie pies using butter, but it can be used in place of vegetable shortening if you don't have easy access to it or you just do not care for it.
It is a 1:1 ratio and should also be at room temperature. It's also important to note that using butter will possibly make the pumpkin cakes spread out much more, losing the dome shape.
All-Purpose Flour. It's the only type of flour I used for this recipe, but a 1:1 gluten free flour could possibly work here. Both King Arthur and Bob's Red Mill make them.
The Egg. I do not have any egg substitutions for this recipe. You can, however, check out The Minimalist Baker for some good egg substitutions for baking!
how long will whoopie pies last in the fridge?
In a tightly sealed container, they will keep for up to a week in the refrigerator.
can I freeze whoopie pies?
Yes, you can easily freeze these pumpkin whoopie pies!
You will need plastic wrap and a sealed food container or freezer bag for storage. You can also just freeze them with just the plastic wrap. I recommend wrapping them in 2 layers of plastic wrap.
Stored properly, homemade pumpkin whoopie pies will last about 3 months in the freezer.
quick tips for making pumpkin whoopie pies
You can chill the dough. Since technically this is a cookie recipe, you can chill the dough for up to 24 hours. This comes in handy if you can't get to the baking part right away. The whoopie pie dough should be kept in the refrigerator covered with plastic wrap.
Space out your pumpkin cakes. I recommend not overcrowding your baking sheets. I baked 6 cake singles per baking sheet which gave them enough space to fill out. They will rise up into the dome shapes and spread slightly, but not too much.
You can bake the pumpkin cakes ahead of time. Another time saver tip—you can bake the pumpkin whoopie pie cakes ahead of time. Keep them in a sealed container at room temperature adding a layer of wax paper in between to prevent them from sticking to each other.
They'll keep at room temperature for up to 3 days in a tightly sealed container. If you notice the cakes are a little moist on top, leave the lid open to let some air in before frosting them.
Amount of frosting. This maple cream cheese frosting recipe makes just enough to pipe all 7 whoopie pies.
Piping. I used the Wilton 8B piping tip which is a very large tip, but worked perfectly for these pumpkin whoopie pies.
You can use any piping tip you prefer though or you can apply the maple cream cheese frosting with an offset spatula. Use a smaller piping tip if making smaller size whoopie pies.
Easily double the recipe. If you have plans to feed more people, you can easily double both the pumpkin whoopie pie cakes recipe and the maple cream cheese frosting. I would also recommend making them smaller with the 1 ½ tablespoon-size cookie scoop.
Let the cakes cool. Before piping on the maple cream cheese frosting, make sure your pumpkin whoopie pie cakes have cooled completely. Otherwise your cream cheese frosting will melt. Not fun.
Pumpkin Whoopie PiesAuthor:
pumpkin whoopie pies
maple cream cheese frosting
- 4 oz Cream Cheese, room temperature
- 2 tbsp Unsalted Butter, room temperature
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- ¼ cup Maple Syrup
- 2 ½ cups Sifted Powdered Sugar
pumpkin whoopie pies
- Adjust the oven rack to 2nd level position (just above center) and preheat the oven to 350ºF.
- Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone mats and set to the side.
- In a medium-size mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Set to the side.
- Using your hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the vegetable shortening and granulated sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.
- Add in the egg, then canned pumpkin puree and mix until completely blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Switch the mixer speed to low gradually adding in the dry ingredients until the cookie dough is just combined.
- Using a 3.4 tablespoon size cookie scoop, place the cookie dough roughly 2 inches apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 15-18 minutes at 350ºF. Each pumpkin cake should have a nice golden brown edge to it.
- Remove from oven and allow cakes to cool on baking sheet for about 5-10 minutes before transferring them to a wire cooling rack. Cakes should be completely cooled before frosting.
maple cream cheese frosting
- Using your hand mixer or stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and unsalted butter on medium-high speed until smooth and well blended. Add in the vanilla extract and maple syrup. Continue to mix until fully combined.
- Switch the mixer speed to low gradually adding in the sifted powdered sugar until it's well blended. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
- Using the Wilton 8B piping tip, pipe a circle of frosting onto the bottom of one whoopie pie cake. Place another cake on top to sandwich it together. I start the piping tip in the center of the whoopie pie cake and move outward in a spiral shape.
- Place frosted whoopie pies in an airtight container in the refrigerator with a sheet of wax paper in between to keep them from sticking together. You can also tightly wrap each whoopie pie with plastic wrap, then place in a sealed container, and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.
looking for more desserts?
Here a few suggested categories from my recipe box!