Is it just me or do you think that every Monday needs to start out with delicious sweet treats like these Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies?
It’s so hard to get motivated to work Monday mornings after a nice relaxing or fun filled weekend. For my husband and I, this weekend was pretty laid back, which was just fine with me after having family in town for the last week. Not that I didn’t love having them here, but it was nice to just lay around with nothing planned this weekend. Saturday we started the day at one of my favorite coffee shops and ended it at one of my favorite ice cream shops, not bad for a Saturday! Sunday ended up being cloudy, cold, and rainy, so I got caught up on some cooking and chores around the house. When it’s cloudy out I can justify staying inside and getting housework done, but when it’s sunny and beautiful out like it usually is here, all I want to do is be outside. How did you spend your weekend? The other great thing about this weekend was these Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies!
I’m slightly embarrassed to say that the last time I made these was last Thanksgiving. They were a huge hit and everybody devoured them. Why I didn’t share the recipe with you last year is beyond me, but hey better late than never! The original recipe for these cookies comes from Cooking Light, so of course they are already fairly healthy to start with, in cookie terms at least. I made a few changes to the cookies to amp up the healthiness and the flavor. I decided to make the cookies completely out of whole wheat pastry flour. At first I was a little concerned they might be too dense, but they actually turned out perfect! They are slightly cakey with a little chew to them. I also cut out some of the sugar that the original recipe called for and decided to use honey for half of the sweetener. When it comes to sweeteners they are all sugar of course, I just choose to use different ones for the unique flavors they have. For instance, the honey has a slight floral taste that was perfect for these cookies.
For more added flavor I chopped up pecans and added some unsweetened coconut. I love these additions in carrot cake so I knew they would taste equally as good in the cookies. Once the cookies had baked and cooled I filled them with a delicious cinnamon cream cheese frosting. I kept the filling lighter by using low fat cream cheese and only a tablespoon of butter. The cinnamon cream cheese frosting was the perfect compliment to the carrot cake cookies. It was just like having a mini bite size version of carrot cake without all the added fat and calories that carrot cake is notorious for having. These Carrot Cake Sandwich Cookies are perfect for bringing to a party, sharing with friends, or enjoying on a cold rainy day like I did yesterday!
For the Carrot Cake Cookies
- 1 1/2 cups carrots, finely shredded
- 1 T. granulated sugar
- 2 T. butter, melted
- 1/2 T. grapeseed oil
- 1 1/2 T. plain non fat Greek yogurt
- 3/4 t. vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 3 T. honey
- 3 T. brown sugar
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1 t. cinnamon
- 1/8 t. nutmeg
- 1/4 t. kosher salt
- 1/4 t. baking soda
- 2 T. pecans, chopped
- 2 T. unsweetened shredded coconut
For the Frosting
- 4 ounces light cream cheese, softened
- 1 T. butter, softened
- 1/4 t. cinnamon
- 1/4 t. vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
To Make the Cookies
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Add the shredded carrots and the tablespoon of sugar to a small bowl and toss together.
- Place the carrot mixture over a fine mesh strainer and let the excess liquid drain out.
- In a microwave proof bowl melt the butter.
- Once the butter has cooled whisk in the oil, yogurt, egg, vanilla, and honey.
- In a separate bowl whisk together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, baking soda, brown sugar, pecans, and coconut.
- Add the wet mixture and the drained carrots to the dry mixture and fold together until combined.
- Scoop tablespoons of the dough onto the prepared cookie sheets and flatten them slightly with the palm of your hand.
- Bake the cookies for 10-11 minutes or until the cookies are set.
- Cool the cookies completely on a wire rack before adding the frosting to them.
To Make the Frosting
- In a medium sized bowl whisk together the softened cream cheese, butter, cinnamon, vanilla, and powdered sugar.
- Once the frosting is smooth, add about a teaspoon of the frosting to the flat side of one of the cookies and top it with the other cookie.
- Repeat with the remaining cookies and filling.
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