RECIPE: Gluten-Free Pumpkin Whoopie Pies

Everyone likes Halloween treats, even kids that are gluten sensitive. When I saw these on Pinterest, I wondered if I could adapt the recipe for the gluten-free kiddos at our apple picking evening a few weeks ago!

I was worried that my gluten free versions would not mound up as well as the original recipe, but I think they turned out well enough. My one complaint was the filling. I don't think I used enough powdered sugar or kept it cool enough, so the filling got a little too soupy. But the kids liked them just the same. They were pretty darn good. The adults liked them without all the candy decorations, and felt that for gluten free, they were pretty moist and tasty.

The original recipe was from, BTW!

Here's to Halloween, GF or NOT!!

Gluten-Free Pumpkin Whoopie Pies 


one package gluten-free vanilla cake mix, we like Pamela's
1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
15 ounces of pureed pumpkin 
1/2 cup apple sauce 
2 tablespoons of canola oil 
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract 


4 ounces of cream cheese, softened 
1/4 cup of butter, softened 
2 tablespoons of pumpkin purée 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

For decorating 

6-7 green apple Laffy Taffy's or green Airheads 
12 or so Tootsie Rolls, cut in half 
(I am not sure if these candies are gluten free, fyi, so check if your child is very allergic before using)

Preheat oven to 350˚. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large bowl using a whisk, combined cake mix, pumpkin pie spice, pumpkin puree, apple sauce, canola oil and the vanilla extract. With a large tablespoon, drop the batter onto large circular mounds on prepared cookie sheets about 2" apart. Gently pat down large mounds so that cookies don't get to high.

Bake for about 15 minutes, or until cookies are set. I rotated the sheets once while baking. Let cool five minutes on the cookie sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 

In the meantime, beat cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add the pumpkin purée and vanilla extract, and slowly add in the powdered sugar until you reach the desired consistency. If you wish, you can color the filling with orange food coloring. 

Next, count how many tops and bottom you have. That way, you will know how many stems and leaves to make. Also, I recommend you decorate the tops first, before filling and matching bottoms. You have to push the stems into the cookies, and if they are already assembled, you may push out some of that yummy filling and squish them too much. SO prep your tops first, then assemble everything together gently.

So once you know how many stems and leaves you need, roll your Tootsie Rolls in your hands until smooth and a little bit stretched out to look like a stem-it helps to pinch the centers and the ends so that they can easily be pushed into the whoopee pie tops. If using Laffy Taffy, heat them in a microwave for five seconds and break off about 1/3 of the taffy. Then shape into a ball and then shape into a leaf. If using airheads, they will shape to whatever you want without much heating. The heat of your hands actually does that work for you. Stick leaves on stems and if you have extra green candy twirl them around your pinkie finger or a clean pencil to make little vines. 

Push the Tootsie Roll stems in each top, adhere a leaf to the stem, and add a vine if you have one. Next take a bottom, and spread a healthy layer of cream cheese filling, and match up a pumpkin top to it. Continue until you are all done. 

Serve up to your little Gluten Free munchkins!



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