Chocolate Chip Snack Cakes


If you’re familiar with Little Debbie snack cakes, which are actually a Tennessee original, then these treats may spark a lot of childhood memories. These sandwich cookies are similar to a whoopie pie — soft and puffy cake-like cookies filled with frosting — but they’re not so fat that you’ll have trouble biting into them. What I like about this particular recipe is that you have the sweetness of the chocolate chip cookie on the outside, balanced by the tangy buttermilk in the buttercream frosting, creating a dessert that has just the right amount of sweetness.

Basically, it’s a hand-held layer cake, and what could be better than that?

Makes 8 4-inch or 16 2-inch snack cakes

for the chocolate chip cakes:

2 cups all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)

1 cup sugar

1 large egg

1 cup milk

1/2 cup chocolate chips

for the filling:

1/2 cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1-1/4 cups confectioners sugar

2 tablespoons buttermilk

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

To make the chocolate chip snack cakes: Whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cream the butter and sugar in an electric mixer at high speed until fluffy, then add the egg and milk and mix on medium speed until well-incorporated. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Using a large tablespoon, drop 8 large spoonfuls of the batter onto each cookie sheet, about 2 inches apart (or 16 smaller spoonfuls, if making 2-inch snack cakes). Bake the two sheets at the same time, on separate racks, for 7 – 9 minutes or until springy to the touch. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the pans for five minutes, then remove to cool completely on a rack.

To make the filling: Put the butter, salt and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and mix on low speed until it begins to come together in clumps. Add the buttermilk and vanilla extract and mix on high until fluffy.

To assemble: Put the frosting into a piping bag and pipe a layer of frosting on the bottom of one cake, then top with another cake. Can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3 days.

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