Red Velvet Whoopie Pies
Red Velvet Whoopie Pies Erin McDowell

Rule of thumb: Homemade is always better than store-bought. And that rule especially applies on Valentine's Day. We suggest you skip the heart-shaped box of chocolates and make these red velvet whoopie pies instead. We bake little red velvet cakes and then sandwich them together with a cream cheese and marshmallow frosting for a playful take on a classic treat.

RELATED: Red Velvet Pancakes

Makes 9 medium whoopie pies
Start to Finish: 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

Cakes

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

¾ cup light brown sugar

¼ cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

One 1-ounce bottle red food coloring

1¾ cups all-purpose flour

¼ cup cocoa powder

¾ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup buttermilk

Filling

One 8-ounce package cream cheese, at room temperature

½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

One 16-ounce jar marshmallow fluff

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

2. Make the cakes: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter with both sugars until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes.

3. Add the egg, vanilla extract and food coloring; mix well to combine.

4. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the cocoa powder, baking soda and salt to combine. Add the flour mixture to the sugar mixture and mix to combine. Add the buttermilk and mix until a smooth batter forms. Scrape the bowl well to make sure the ingredients are fully combined.

5. Using an ice-cream scoop or two spoons, scoop ¼ cup mounds of batter onto the prepared baking sheets, leaving at least an inch between each mound.

6. Bake until the cakes begin to brown around the edges and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out clean, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool completely.

7. While the cakes cool, make the filling: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whip attachment, whip the cream cheese with the butter and marshmallow fluff to combine.

8. Assemble the pies: Turn half the cakes upside down, spoon 3 to 4 tablespoons of filling onto the center and top with another cake. Press gently to spread the filling to the edge of the cake. Repeat with the remaining cakes. Serve immediately. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Bring to room temperature before serving.

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