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Light and Dark Fruitcake Whoopie Pies with Rum Buttercream

These recipes were inspired by my mother’s fruitcakes.  In my opinion, fruitcakes on the whole get a bad rap, but I love them, and also in my opinion, my mother makes THE best.  So I won’t attempt to duplicate her cakes, but I decided to come up with a fun, handheld version with similar flavors.  It’s fruitcake on-the-go.  What’s not to love?


For the light fruitcake version (makes about 8 large pies):

  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp 2% milk
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup currants
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 3/4 cup “christmas cake mix” ( or a chopped mix of red/green cherries and mixed peel)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt.  Set aside.  In a stand mixer, cream together butter and both sugars until mixed and fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time.

Combine lemon juice with milk and let sit for 5 minutes.  Mix in baking soda and vinegar (mixture will foam).

Add half the flour mixture to the butter/sugar mixture and mix.  Add milk mixture, mix, and then add remaining flour mixture.  Add almond and vanilla, fruits and nuts and mix.

Use an ice cream scoop of desired size to drop batter onto lined cookie sheets, leaving a few inches between each one.  Bake at 350 for about 10-11 minutes or until lightly golden.  Allow to cool slightly before moving to cooling rack.

For the dark fruitcake version (makes about 9 large pies):

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 1/4 cups flour
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 1/2 cup chopped dates
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup spiced rum
  • 3/4 cup “christmas cake mix” (or suitable mix of cherries and mixed peel as above)
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Slightly warm rum and add dates and raisins.  Allow to sit until liquor is absorbed.  Mix in remaining fruit and nuts.

In stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar.  Add molasses, vanilla and egg, mix to combine.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, spices, baking soda and salt.

To a one cup measure, add 1 tbsp lemon juice and top up with milk.

To butter/sugar/molasses mixture, add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with two additions of milk.  Scrape bowl and add fruit and nut mixture.

Use an ice cream scoop to drop mixture onto lined cookie sheets, allowing a few inches in between.  Bake at 350 degrees for about 13 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly before moving to cooling rack.

Both (or either) unfilled pies can be made a day ahead and kept in a sealed container.

For the rum buttercream, enough to fill both sets of pies (cut in half if just making either or).

  • 2 cups butter
  • 4 tsp rum extract
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 8 cups icing sugar
  • 4 tbsp cream

Use a stand mixer to cream butter until smooth.  Mix in extract, vanilla and cream, followed by icing sugar, in several additions (otherwise you’ll have a huge mess of powdered sugar everywhere).  Beat on high for a couple of minutes for fluffy frosting.

To assemble:  Using the same size ice cream scoop used to place batter on cookie sheets, dollop rum buttercream on half of the prepared pies, then press on the other half.  Store in sealed containers.


2 responses »

  1. geraldine Kearley

    Those whoopie pies look so delicious with your Christmas tree in the background.

  2. Pingback: 2013 Holiday Recipe Roundup Part 2 | Food Bloggers of Canada

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