One could say that I have a bit of a Type A personality. I love a good list (I mean c’mon, who doesn’t). Love making plans. And have a strategy for just about everything – from where to sit/stand on a subway car to vacation planning. This is probably why I love baking so much. You’re given a list of ingredients, step-by-step directions and even, sometimes, a picture of the finished product.
However, the more I bake the more I realize that things don’t have to be so rigid. Even though it’s a science, there is always room for some fun. Take whoopie pies. Most of the ones that I have come across are filled with some sort of vanilla cream. But when I saw that this one had a dulce de leche filling, I just could not pass it up. And throw some bananas in there – and it’s a whoopie pie party!
I personally would have never thought to combine bananas with dulce de leche but they worked perfectly in this whoopie pie. The cookies were perfectly cakey and fluffy. And the filling – I dare you to not eat it straight out of the mixing bowl with a (big) spoon.
Thanks for the recipe, One Girl Cookies, and for inspiring me to think outside the recipe.
Banana Whoopie Pies with Dulce de Leche Filling
For The Cookies
1 pound ripe bananas
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup canola oil
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Dulce de Leche Filling
4 ounces packaged cream cheese, at room temperature
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
1/3 cup store-bought dulce de leche
3 cups confectioner's sugar
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line 2 baking sheets parchment paper or a silicone mat.
Combine the bananas and lemon juice in a food processor. Process until no lumps remain and set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt to combine and set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat together the oil, eggs, sugars and vanilla on medium speed until completely combined, about 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Add the banana puree and mix on low for about 30 seconds. Continuing on low speed, gradually add the flour mixture. Mix until the flour is just combined, about 30 seconds, finishing by hand with a rubber spatula. Refrigerate the batter for about 30 minutes.
Using a small ice cream scoop, drop scoops of batter onto the prepared baking sheet spacing them 2 inches apart. Bake one sheet at a time for about 10-12 minutes, rotating the sheet halfway through baking. The cookies are done when they spring back when pressed gently. Let them cool on the sheet for about 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
While the cookies cool, make the filling. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment beat the cream cheese and butter on medium speed until combined to a light and fluffy mixture, about 3-4 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. With the mixer on low speed, add the vanilla, salt and dulce de leche and continue to mix for 30 seconds.
With the mixer running on low speed, gradually add the confectioner's sugar and then beat for an additional minute.
When the cookies have completely cooled, spoon about 2 tablespoons of the filling on the flat side of half of the cookies. Top with the remaining cookies. The whoopie pies will keep in an air tight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.