Harvest Oatmeal Sandwich Cookies

January weather in NYC is bumming me out. With the holidays over, the cold air is no longer nipping at my nose, but rather making my eyes water and my skin dry. Instead of a beautiful white blanket of snow to cover the city, there is a constant layer of fog that frizzes my hair. Overall, seasonal depression is kicking in and I think I know the perfect remedy.

Weather forecast, meet Harvest Oatmeal Sandwich Cookies. Tweaked slightly from their original debut, they are filled to the brink with half of the Trader Joe’s baking aisle and held together by about four sticks of butter. The best part? You take two of these bad boys and sandwich them together with Brown Butter Buttercream. 

They smell like a crisp October day, taste like heaven, and will help you forget that we still have 74 more days until spring… 

XoXo,

Elizabeth 

Prep the buttercream:

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 + 1/2 sticks of butter. Continue cooking, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan, until the butter turns nutty and brown. Transfer the butter to a bowl and place in the refrigerator or freezer to chill until re-solidified. When you are transferring it, be sure to scrape all of the brown bits from the bottom of the pan into the bowl, this is where all the flavor comes from.


For the cookies:

In the small skillet over high heat, toast the coconut flakes, stirring often, until golden brown. This will take 1-2 minutes. Remove from the pan and let cool.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat 2 sticks of butter with both sugars until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs, vanilla and maple syrup, scraping the bowl and beating well after each addition. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and mix until just combined. Add the oats and mix briefly.

Add the toasted coconut flakes, cranberries, and chocolate to the dough. Mix until fully incorporated.

Scoop dough out using a 2 tbsp. size cookie scoop onto a baking sheet. Chill the scooped dough for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or a non-stick baking mat.

Once the dough is chilled, arrange on the prepared baking sheets, leaving several inches between each cookie. You may need to bake them in batches. Bake 15-18 minutes, until deeply golden around the edges. Because the maple syrup makes these cookies so soft, I found that they need a few extra minutes of baking time than my normal oatmeal cookies, which I like to take out while they are still mostly pale. Even though these cookies look darker in color, they will still be very soft.

While the cookies are baking, finish the buttercream. Scrape the chilled butter in the bowl of stand mixer. Add the remaining 1/2 stick of butter and beat until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add the vanilla and 1 tbsp. of cream and mix for 1 minute, until light and fluffy. If the buttercream seems very thick, add more cream one splash at a time until it reaches the desired consistency.

Once the cookies are cooled, spread buttercream on the bottom of half of the cookies. Sandwich together with the remaining cookies, pressing gently to make sure they stick together. Store in air-tight container or saran-wrapped tray to keep fresh and help the cream stay firm. Bring to room temp before serving!

 

Harvest Oatmeal Sandwich Cookies
Yields 15
Oatmeal Cookies, with a twist.
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Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
45 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
1 hr
For the Oatmeal Cookies
  1. 2 sticks butter, softened
  2. 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  3. 1 cup brown sugar
  4. 1/4 cup maple syrup
  5. 2 eggs
  6. 1 tsp. vanilla
  7. 1 3/4 cup flour
  8. 1 tsp. baking powder
  9. 1 tsp. baking soda
  10. 1/2 tsp. salt
  11. 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  12. 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  13. 2 1/4 cup oats
  14. 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  15. 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  16. 4 oz. dark chocolate, chopped
For the Brown Butter Buttercream
  1. 2 sticks butter, room temp
  2. 1 tsp. vanilla
  3. 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  4. 1 + tbsp. cream or milk
  5. pinch of salt
Prep the buttercream
  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 1 + 1/2 sticks of butter. Continue cooking, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan, until the butter turns nutty and brown. Transfer the butter to a bowl and place in the refrigerator or freezer to chill until re-solidified. When you are transferring it, be sure to scrape all of the brown bits from the bottom of the pan into the bowl, this is where all the flavor comes from.
For the cookies
  1. In the small skillet over high heat, toast the coconut flakes, stirring often, until golden brown. This will take 1-2 minutes. Remove from the pan and let cool.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat 2 sticks of butter with both sugars until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs, vanilla and maple syrup, scraping the bowl and beating well after each addition. Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt and mix until just combined. Add the oats and mix briefly.
  3. Add the toasted coconut flakes, cranberries, and chocolate to the dough. Mix until fully incorporated.
  4. Scoop dough out using a 2 tbsp. size cookie scoop onto a baking sheet. Chill the scooped dough for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or a non-stick baking mat.
  5. Once the dough is chilled, arrange on the prepared baking sheets, leaving several inches between each cookie. You may need to bake them in batches. Bake 15-18 minutes, until deeply golden around the edges. Because the maple syrup makes these cookies so soft, I found that they need a few extra minutes of baking time than my normal oatmeal cookies, which I like to take out while they are still mostly pale. Even though these cookies look darker in color, they will still be very soft.
  6. While the cookies are baking, finish the buttercream. Scrape the chilled butter in the bowl of stand mixer. Add the remaining 1/2 stick of butter and beat until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add the vanilla and 1 tbsp. of cream and mix for 1 minute, until light and fluffy. If the buttercream seems very thick, add more cream one splash at a time until it reaches the desired consistency.
  7. Once the cookies are cooled, spread buttercream on the bottom of half of the cookies. Sandwich together with the remaining cookies, pressing gently to make sure they stick together. Store in air-tight container or saran-wrapped tray to keep fresh and help the cream stay firm. Bring to room temp before serving!
Notes
  1. 1. I personally love the taste of brown butter, so chose a 3:1 ratio for the butter (i.e melted 1.5 sticks into a brown buttercream and added the last 1/2 stick in plain). You can decided what you prefer, melting as little as just 1/2 a stick into brown butter or doing the entire 2 sticks.
  2. 2. Make sure you let the coconut flakes cool quite a bit before adding them into the mix or they will start to melt the chocolate chunks.
  3. 3. Given that the cookies spread quite a bit in the oven, make sure to not crowd the pan.
  4. 4. A 2 tbsp. size cookie scoop will yield a fairly large cookie, and therefore large cookies sandwiches (as pictured). If you want smaller portions or are making these for a large group of people, scoop only 1 tbsp of dough onto the pan and reduce cooking time accordingly.
  5. 5. Tip for the buttercream! To help ensure you ration the buttercream properly for all sandwiches, put a dollop of cream on 1/2 of the cookies first, and then sandwich them together with the remaining half (rather than creating the sandwiches as you go...). That way, if you run short of buttercream towards the end you can re-allocate some from other cookies!
Adapted from Whole Bite Blog
Adapted from Whole Bite Blog
Little Bits Bakery http://littlebitsbakery.com/

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