Okay, so…pumpkin season is coming to a close. And I know you’ve seen it all: Vegan White Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies, Pumpkin Spiced Latte Cupcakes, Brown Butter Cake & Pumpkin Spiced Buttercream. We’re rounding out this fun Pumpkin month with a special (and easy) recipe. These Chocolate Pumpkin Cookie Sandwiches are just like your favorite ice cream cookie sandwiches that you love. This recipe is a unique twist on one of our fall grocery store items: Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookie Mix. This mix has chocolate, oats, and pumpkin flavors throughout. Talk about a trifecta!
Trader Joes Fall Favorites
This Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookie Mix is bright on display amongst the rest of the fall items promoted. Every year, Trader Joes decks out their entire store and product list with fall flavors! Pumpkin: cold brew coffee, bagels, bread + muffin mix, ice cream, hummus, oatmeal, yogurt, waffles, samosas and SO MUCH MORE. And this is just pumpkin, we haven’t even touched the other flavors like cinnamon, apple, maple, or caramel. The cookie mix stood out as something we could have fun with for our Pumpkin month at TKC!
Everyone loves ice cream cake, ice cream sandwiches, and ice cream cookie sandwiches. They are so good, but either melt too fast or leaves you with a soggy cookie. How do we avoid this? It’s simple: replace the ice cream with a smooth buttercream. These sandwiches will last all day long, won’t melt, and is much easier to add different toppings to. Have fun with ideas like drizzling chocolate over the sandwiches or creating a well in the middle of the icing, and filling it with pumpkin butter (or caramel, nuts, etc). We followed package instructions + added white chocolate chips to the final batter.
I’ve come to enjoy making buttercream because there are so many flavors to explore. Whether it’s lemon based, orange based, coconut based, or chocolate based–buttercream can always be fun and exciting! Don’t let the task of making buttercream take you out of your baking zone. Although it can be very tricky, and quite complex to make, I’ve settled on some key tips to making the perfect buttercream:
- Beat the butter first until it becomes fluffy, then add powdered sugar in small chunks.
- using softened butter is best
- Use milk or heavy cream
- heavy cream will help you get that thick, creamy texture, while milk will give you a fluffier texture.
- add your milk or cream slowly. you can always add more, but you can never take the milk out.
- Add vanilla extract (or any other flavored extract)
- this brings extra flavors and added sweetness to your buttercream
- Cover the bowl with a towel while mixing
- there are many times I’ve had powdered sugar flying everywhere when adding it to the mixer because it wasn’t covered
- The spatula test!
- this is a quick way to confirm that your frosting is the perfect consistency
- press a spatula into your frosting and pull it up.
- the frosting should be a stiff peak with a slight curl on the end
- if it’s too stiff add more milk, if it’s too thin, add more powdered sugar (1/3 cup at a time)
And that’s it! There’s nothing more satisfying than putting buttercream into a piping bag and letting your creative mind flow when you’re decorating.
If you’re loving pops of chocolate in your desserts, checkout our favorite recipes: Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls & Marble Chocolate Banana Bread.
Now let’s get into these Chocolate Pumpkin Cookie Sandwiches!
Chocolate Pumpkin Cookie Sandwiches
- Trader Joe's Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Oatmeal Cookie Mix
- ½ cup butter softened
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp water
- ½ cup white chocolate chips
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- ½ cup butter softened
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp milk
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 350°F
- In a large bowl beat together butter, eggs, + water. Slowly add in Trader Joes's mix + beat on medium. Toss in white chocolate chips + fold in using a wooden spoon/spatula.*
- Separate dough into 14 balls. Bake for 13-14 minutes. Let cookies cool for 10-15 minutes before transferring to a wire rack or a plate.
- In a medium bowl, beat butter on medium-high until smooth + fluffy. Add in powdered sugar (1/2 cup at a time) and beat on medium speed.
- Add in cinnamon, milk, + vanilla bean paste + beat for an extra 2-3 minutes.
- Using a piping bag + tip, pipe frosting onto the bottom of 1 cookie. Add chopped pecans and top off with another cookie.
Make your cookie sandwiches with your own special twist + tag us on Instagram #thekitchenconversation!