White Jacket Required: Pumpkin Whoopee Pies

by Heather on October 8, 2012

Once upon a time there was a girl who worked in a cubicle looking for a way to share her love of food with the world.  She started a blog, wrote about 10 posts, and then forgot about it.  One day she came across an article in a 2009 feature in Self Magazine that featured bloggers’ tips for staying healthy over the holidays and ended up going to Eat, Live, Run – a (at the time) healthy living blog about a girl named Jenna.  And her life was changed forever.


In case you didn’t know – that girl was me, and Jenna is the woman who inspired me to share my life and my food on the internet.  My life has truly been changed from reading her blog, so you can imagine how incredibly honored I was to receive a copy of her first book, White Jacket Required.  It’s been one I’ve been eagerly anticipating for some time now!

In short, the book is a fantastic memoir of Jenna’s journey through culinary school and life in general.  A lot of the stories I read were ones that I’d seen on her blog, but with more depth, emotion, and raw honesty.  At the end of each chapter is a collection of recipes, one of my favorite features of the book.  But my favorite part was feeling like I was getting to know the true Jenna behind the blog.  I felt a kinship with her and her love of baking – the way that kneading dough can bring peace in the midst of mayhem, the knowledge that following a recipe will yield the same results every time, and the way that food can bring us back to life.


I’ve made quite a few of Jenna’s recipes over the years and have never been let down – her recipes are always go-to’s in our house!  I have literally bookmarked every single one in White Jacket Required to make in the coming months, but the one that stuck out in particular was the one for Pumpkin Whoopee Pies.


See, this is the first pumpkin recipe I have made so far this year, which is actually pretty sad considering the fact that fall has come on full-force in the past week.  The good news is that these whoopee pies do NOT disappoint, and the buttercream is so good that I want eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  They’re pillowy and laced with delicious spice, stuffed with sweet vanilla buttercream, and perfect for eating too many.  I would HIGHLY recommend diving in and making them immediately – the stomachache will be worth it!

Pumpkin Whoopee Pies
By Jenna Weber,
Author of White Jacket Required: A Culinary Coming-of-Age Story

Makes about 18 whoopee pies

These cookies are very rich, almost like a cupcake, so I suggest saving this recipe for a special occasion or a rainy afternoon. The cookies are best the day you bake them; if you keep them for too long they will become a bit gummy and soft. They would also be perfect with cream cheese frosting in the middle, or on their own, sprinkled with a dusting of powdered sugar.

For the buttercream filling

  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups powdered sugar, divided
  • ¾ cup shortening

For the cookies

  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1½ cups canned pumpkin
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1½ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1½ teaspoons ground ginger

Make the filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, combine the egg white, milk, vanilla extract, and 1 cup of the powdered sugar, then mix on high speed until the mixture is creamy and light. Add shortening and remaining cup of sugar, and whip on high speed until very light, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 325°P. and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Make the cookies: In a large bowl, blend together brown sugar and oil with a spoon until well combined. Add pumpkin, eggs, and vanilla and continue to stir until smooth.

Sift together flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and spices, and then add to the wet ingredients, stirring only until combined (be careful not to overmix).

For best results, spoon batter into a piping bag with a large tip and pipe mounds of batter (about 1 tablespoon each) of batter onto the lined sheet tray, about 3 inches apart. (If you don’t have a piping bag, use two large spoons and space the batter in the same way.)

Bake cookies for about 10-12 minutes, until they begin to turn golden. Let cool completely before sandwiching cookies together with the filling.

Cookie sandwiches will keep in a sealed plastic container at room temperature for a few days.


Reprinted with permission from White Jacket Required: A Culinary Coming-of-Age Story © 2012 by Jenna Weber, Sterling Epicure, an imprint of Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.

One word:  YUM :)

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Tina @ Best Body Fitness October 8, 2012

I say three words: YUM YUM YUM! ;)

I have never really read Jenna’s blog since I’m not much of a “foodie” but I would really love to read her book. It sounds really good. And can’t beat a resource approved by someone like you.


2 Salah@BeatYourBest October 8, 2012

These look so awesome!!!


3 Alexis @ Hummusapien October 8, 2012

What an adorable story! I love Jenna’s blog as well and I can’t wait to get her book. Those cookies look super moist and delish!


4 EatLiveRun {Jenna} October 8, 2012

Heather, thank you!!!! This was so sweet…I am so glad you liked the book (and the cookies!). Giving you a big virtual hug! :)


5 Melanie @ Nutritious Eats October 8, 2012

Great story- I can’t wait to read her book. I’ve heard nothing but good things. These whoopee pies look delicious!!


6 Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic October 8, 2012

Jenna’s blog was also one of the first blogs I read and loved. These pumpkin whoopie pies sound so decadent and truly perfect for fall!


7 Kim in MD October 8, 2012

What a sweet story! These pumpkin woopie pies look AMAZING! I am craving pumpkin so much now that our weather has finally cooled off!


8 axelle the french cook October 8, 2012

Oh Heather, the last picture is giving me water in mouth ! Just want to take a bite of this little whoopee !


9 Andrea October 8, 2012

I had actually never read Jenna’s blog until I saw several other bloggers gushing about her book coming out… and then I found out that she lived in my area and was going to be doing a signing in town! The book was truthful and inspiring- and now has this girl right here ninety-five percent sure that I need to follow my dreams and go to culinary school!

Your whoopie pies are gorgeous! They are on my to-make list for october.


10 Jill October 8, 2012

Yummy! Thank you for sharing, I have been looking for pumpkin recipes to try out this week:)


11 Natalie @ Free Range Human October 8, 2012

These look delicious and I’m really looking forward to reading this book.


12 Joy October 8, 2012

YES, I read Jenna’s book as soon as it came out. I couldn’t put it down! Been wanting to make some of my own whoopee pies too. The ones you made looks delicious!


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