Today, we have a great new recipe to take your leftover steamed carrots and turn them into a sweet treat with added nutrients! These are my wife’s Carrot and Orange Buttercream Sandwich Cookies.
My wife, Mae, is always up to a bit of mischief, particularly when it comes to sneaking something unexpected into a recipe. This recipe is one of those recipes. Let’s just say when she first told me what she was up to, I did not carrot all for the idea. I think you can see where I”m going with this… Mae told me she was going to make sandwich cookies (one of my faves!), then she started peeling carrots. That wasn’t the kind of sandwich I had in mind. Trust me, she said, you won’t even know there are veggies in these cookies.
Now I gotta admit that her track record for sneaking veggies into sweets is pretty good. You remember these tasty recipes: Honey My Heart Beets For You Sugar Cookies,, and Batty For You, Mayan-Spiced Red Velvet Cupcakes.. So, I conceded to leaving my opinion until I actually tasted them. I’m glad I did, otherwise I would have been eating my words, too. These were some really tasty cookies (I say were because they did not last long).
So, what makes these Carrot and Orange Buttercream Sandwich Cookies so good? The buttercream. Lucky us, we had lots left over for later (we think this buttercream would taste amazing on chocolate cupcakes, too). The buttercream has an intense kick of orange flavour thanks to a generous amount of orange zest and a bit of orange-flavoured liqueur. This isn’t the first time that Mae has put a little boozy note in her cookies either. In fact, I’m seeing a trend: Royal Maple Whiskey Cookies, Bombed Gingerbread Cookies, Loaded Oatmeal Raisin Cookies, and Tipsy Chocolate Chip Cookies.
I’ll be the first to admit that I was very skeptical about this recipe’s success. My skepticism wasn’t just because of the carrots, but also because this recipe took a bit more tweaking than usual to make it truly blog-worthy (and ultimately drool-worthy). One note about this recipe, do not skip on refrigerating your dough overnight. The dough needs to be chilled well in order to roll it out properly. You can just drop the dough by spoonfuls, but because this dough rises a bit, it ends up making some very thick cookies. You’ll want to refrigerate the dough overnight, and then take it out in small batches to roll out for cutting into whatever shape you desire. The dough rises about three times its size, so we suggest rolling the dough out fairly thin (approx 1/8 inch). Mae also suggests having a generous amount of flour on hand when rolling out this dough as it can get sticky.
Here’s what you’ll need to make my wife’s Carrot and Orange Buttercream Sandwich Cookies:
- Carrot Cookie Ingredients:
- 1 cup steamed, pureed carrots
- 1 cup Turbinado sugar
- 1 cup butter, melted
- 1 egg, slightly beaten
- 2¾ cups all purpose flour (plus more for rolling)
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tsp vanilla
- zest of 1 lemon
- Orange Buttercream Ingredients:
- ½ cup butter, room temperature
- 3 - 4 cups icing sugar
- 2 tbsp Grand Marnier or other orange-flavoured liqueur
- zest of 2 oranges
- 3 tbsp orange juice
- In bowl of stand mixer, blend butter and sugar until smooth.
- Add in egg, carrots, vanilla, and lemon zest. Thoroughly blend
- In a large, separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder & soda, salt.
- Add in small batches to wet ingredients in stand mixer. Process between each addition.
- Once all ingredients are incorporated (dough will be sticky), cover and refrigerate overnight.
- While dough is chilling, whip up buttercream icing by combining: all Orange Buttercream ingredients in a bowl (start with just 3 cups of icing sugar and add more to reach desired consistency).
- In small batches (dough warms quickly, so keep it in refrigerator when not working with it), roll out dough on floured surface to approximately ⅛ inch thick.
- Using floured cookie cutter, cut out desired shapes and transfer to ungreased cookie sheet..
- Bake for approximately 15 minutes at 350 degrees.
- Transfer to wire rack to cool completely before assembling.
- Once cooled, spread approximately 1 tablespoon of icing onto bottom of one cookie and place a second cookie on top to create sandwich effect.
- Use the tip of a butter knife to gently smooth edges of cookies.
- Refrigerate cookies or store in a cool place in an airtight container.
Gregg & Mae