Oatmeal Cream Pies are a snack cake made by Little Debbie that have a sweet cream filling sandwiched between two soft oatmeal cookies. The treat is essentially a whoopie pie that uses oatmeal cookies as a base, but whatever you call them, the pies are pretty tasty. These Lemon Oatmeal Cream Pies are a springtime variation on those popular pies.
The cookies are a fairly straightforward oatmeal cookie that bakes up to be thin and fairly crisp. They’re flavored with fresh lemon zest and a little bit of lemon juice, which gives them a bright but subtle lemon flavor. The crisp cookies are also very easy to handle and work with because they’re not as fragile as thin, chewy cookies can be. When you add the lemon filling to sandwich them together, the cookies soften up and the whole thing takes on the perfect, slightly chewy texture that you want to find in any oatmeal pie.
I added my lemon zest to my butter and sugar while creaming them together to start the cookie dough. Beating your zest with the sugar helps to release even more lemon oil from that lemon zest, and you’ll get a bit more flavor adding it in at this point than you would if you stirred the zest in later in the recipe. If you don’t have fresh lemon to flavor these pies, you can substitute a little bit of lemon extract into the cookie dough and the filling to give them a nice lemon flavor, but you will get the best flavor when using fresh lemon zest and juice.
The cookie store very well and actually get better after a day or so has gone by, since the lemon flavor becomes more pronounced and the cookies only improve in texture with time. Keep them stored in an airtight container and these cookies will be an excellent choice for a bake-ahead dessert for a springtime brunch – or just to enjoy as an everyday treat.
Fans of the Girl Scout’s Do-si-do cookies, also known as Peanut Butter Sandwiches, will notice some similarities between them and these Toffee Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies. They look similar and both have a great peanut butter flavor to them. The signature element of those cookies is their light, crisp texture. These are chewier, making them a little more substantial, and I think they have an even better peanut butter flavor.
These peanut butter cookies have two ingredients that set them apart from your average peanut butter cookie: oatmeal and toffee. A little bit of quick cooking oatmeal in the cookie dough helps these cookies to bake up to be slightly thinner than your average peanut butter cookie, as well as a bit more tender. It also gives them a little bit of extra flavor. The toffee contributes a lot of flavor as well. Because it is finely chopped before being incorporated, it really almost melts into the cookies. When fresh from the oven, these cookies are tender and crisp around the edges, with a chewy center.
I sandwiched the cookies together with creamy peanut butter. The end result is a great combination of salty and sweet. That said, I must admit that the cookies are good on their own even without the filling!
These cookies are done when their edges start to turn golden brown. It may be tempting to overbake these cookies because they will look a little bit pale in the center when they’re golden on the edge, but overbaking them will only take away their chewiness.
A classic chocolate chip cookie is good, but sometimes it seems like they’re missing something. Something like a cream cheese filling that will lend the cookies a bit of cheesecake flavor and make them even moister and chewier than they would be without the filling!
The cookie dough for this twist on a classic chocolate chip cookie is a fairly standard cookie dough. It even bakes up into tasty cookies on its own if you don’t want to go for the filling. The dough needs to be chilled before you work with it so it is easy to handle, then individual chunks of cookie dough are flattened into discs and packed with a cream cheese and white chocolate filling. These cookies are huge, but with good reason. The cream cheese filling is soft when you compare it to the firm cookie dough and it’s easiest to wrap the dough around it when you’re working with a fairly large amount. Not that I heard any complaints about cream cheese-filled chocolate chip cookies being too big from anyone I shared these with!
These cookies are real crowd-pleasers and very satisfying to eat – thanks in large part to their size! The cream cheese filling has a nice tang to it and it contrasts well with the sweet, chocolaty cookie dough. The centers of the cookies may sink a little bit after baking, but as long as you take your time when wrapping the dough around the filling, every cookie should have a well-defined layer of cream cheese at the center.