If you think Oreos or JoJo’s Sandwich Cookies are good, you’re going to go bonkers for these.
A rich cocoa enhanced cookie dough (think of it like a rich chocolate sugar cookie) is given an extra hit of chocolate with chocolate chips and then baked off. An airy vanilla buttercream is then whipped up and then added between two cooled cookies.
Know what you’ve got now?
I’ve just given you tickets to cookie heaven.
I’ve made Homemade Oreos in the past with some success, but the recipe I’ve used (a Martha Stewart one, I believe) was one that started with a much richer, denser cookie, something more akin to a chocolate shortbread.
While the end result was delicious, my quibble was with the texture of the cookie; I didn’t like that the cookie didn’t have enough give to it and it was way too rich to eat two pieces of shortbread and filling.
It was time to experiment a bit.
I leafed through one of my hundreds of cookbooks, and once again ended up with a trusty old friend.
I’ve mentioned this book plenty of times before, as in the time I made these banana chocolate chip muffins.
They were a big hit.
And the time I used the book to make this Blackberry Coffee Cake.
Just look at that gorgeous blackberry-laced frosting drizzled on top and those sinfully buttery clumps on top.
I’ve made so many scrumptious recipes out of this book that I sensed that the Chocolate Sandwich Cookie from Lauren wouldn’t disappoint, either.
So I pulled out my ingredients and got going. I had thank you notes I wanted to drop off and a gaggle of teenagers coming over after school.
Homemade Oreos were just the thing for both.
The recipe calls for softened butter.
A professional baking instructor once told me to look for this kind of give when you need softened butter (at room temperature, a pressed finger will go all the way through the stick).
I made the dough (very easy), formed it into two logs (I doubled the recipe), and then chilled them for about two hours until they were firm.
I cut them into discs and took the advice of giving them plenty of space between — it’s true they spread quite a bit and you don’t want them to bake up as a big glob.
I think twelve cookies on one cookie sheet is as many as will comfortably fit while still keeping separate.
I added chocolate chips; as an experiment I add a few on top of some of the cookies pre-cooking (as seen above) and some I pressed into the cookies just as they came out of the oven. I wanted to see which way I like them better.
Oh, and I also gave the baked cookies a quick flit of salt — just enough to bring out those dark cocoa flavors and the quality of the great butter I used (Land O’Lakes unsalted).
I liked the latter chip insertion method best; it’s a little bit messier as they’re a bit gooier…
…but if you’re filling the cookies with flat sides on the outside (as below), it doesn’t really make a difference.
Don’t overcook these cookies. It’s easy to do but if you want to retain that softness in the cookie so you have that yielding-to-the-filling feeling, about 6-8 minutes really is enough time to firm them up sufficiently.
While the cookies were cooling, I made a quick filling — a vanilla buttercream.
Please — do not attempt to substitute shortening or margarine for the fat here; the author says you can use the former and they will last longer if you do, but think about this.
If you are going to all the effort of making homemade Oreos, are you really worried about longeivity? Doesn’t the flavor of the butter trump shelf-life here? What a colossal missed opportunity it would be if you skimped on the quality of the filling.
Now that’s settled, let me show you my lovely little frosting.
I just couldn’t resist adding in just the tiniest bit of my favorite color.
I’d never read the tip before of adding in a bit of water (or you could use milk, I suppose) to enhance it’s spreadability; I added in twice the recommended liquid and I loved the consistency of the filling (and with no loss of flavor).
I found it easiest to use my ice cream scoop for the filling; I used my smallest one, added a big scoop right in the middle and then put the top on gently. I then pushed down until the filling came almost to the edge of the cookie.
It was go time.
I think I made my cookies bigger than the recipe calls for –these cookies as you can see filled up almost the entire saucer, about the size of my fist.
I wouldn’t dare go any bigger than this — not only would the cookie perhaps buckle (remember, it’s a fairly soft cookie) but in good conscience I couldn’t give anyone other than a NFL player that many calories in one sitting.
They were big enough, however, to feel like a really lux treat.
You should have seen the look on Oliver and Co.’s faces when I told them they’d come over on a good day because I was unofficially calling it Homemade Oreo Baking Day.
I’d given them each an apple when they walked in and waited until they were almost ready to go to give them their cookie (I love a big happy ending, don’t you?).
They each were told to pick one out and have a seat on the big blanket I’d left for them in my front yard.
As you can see, these Dark Chocolate Sandwich Cookies were the size of small hamburgers — and these teenagers squealed when they saw them.
(See why I love to cook and bake so much? The former is appreciated for the sustenance and the latter for the pure joy. Who wouldn’t want to be the captain and delivery gal of that much goodness?)
Charlotte, my little chocoholic, got one, too.
And because she’s my daughter, she spent five minutes looking at each one critically before picking out The VERY BEST HOMEMADE OREO.
Here’s the one I picked out for myself. I had to quality test, right?
Teachers at the school also got some Homemade Oreos and someone who had done me a very big favor got a box, too.
One question remains.
Still think you can’t buy loyalty?
Buy, no. Bake, yes.
- For the Cookie:
- 1 C. unbleached all-purpose flour
- 6 Tbs. unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted
- ½ tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp. salt
- 10 Tbs. unsalted butter, softened
- 1 C. granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- For the Filling:
- ½ C. (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 2½ C. confectioner's sugar
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract (I doubled that)
- pinch of salt
- 1½ tsp. water (I doubled that, too)
- Make the cookies. Combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
- Cream the butter and granulated sugar together in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until smooth. Stir in the flour mixture until just combined.
- Divide the dough into 2 portions. Shape each portion into a log about 9 inches long and 1½ inches in diameter. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or for up to 24 hours (Dough logs may be wrapped in plastic and frozen for up to 1 month. Defrost the dough on the counter for 15 minutes before proceeding).
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Slice the dough into ¼ inch thick rounds and place the cookies on an ungreased baking sheet, leaving about 2 inches between each cookie. Bake the cookies until they are dry on top, 6 to 8 minutes (a minute or two longer for partially frozen dough). Let them stand on the baking sheet for 5 minutes and then remove them from the sheet with a metal spatula to a wire rack and let them cool completely.
- Make the filling. Cream the butter and confectioners sugar together in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer on low speed until combined. Stir in the vanilla and salt. Add the water and beat on high until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Use the filling immediately or cover the surface of the filling with plastic wrap. Store the filling in the refrigerator for up to 1 day and re-whip it before using.
- Spoon 1 tsp of the filling onto the flat side of the cookie. Sandwich with another cookie. Repeat with the remaining cookies.