Funfetti Sandwich Cookies

Last week my neighbor Jack celebrated a birthday. He turned 5, and he is without a doubt one of the coolest 5 year olds I know. He’s outgoing and so funny, but also sensitive and caring. When we bought this house, our neighbor was about 7 months pregnant with him, so I have literally known him his entire life. It’s so hard for me to believe he’s actually 5!

Obviously I couldn’t let his special day pass without making him something sweet. He loves when I share brownies and s’mores cookies, but I wanted to do something unexpected. I’ve gone out for ice cream enough times with him to know he loves rainbow sprinkles, so I had no doubt a funfetti-inspired treat would go over very well.

Funfetti Sandwich Cookies

These funfetti sandwich cookies are made entirely from scratch – no cake mix necessary. The base recipe is a chewy sugar cookie, to which melted butter and rainbow sprinkles are added to give the boxed funfetti effect. The filling is one of my very favorite simple buttercream recipes; I used it to make funfetti cupcakes last year, and it works just as well here. Shane served as the official taste tester, heartily approving of these before I delivered them to Jack. As Josie suggested, Shane liked them best just slightly cold from the fridge. They got a thumbs-up from Jack too. He diverted his attention from his new Angry Birds toy long enough to enjoy one – huge win :)

Funfetti Sandwich Cookies

A quick note on the yield – I made 24 cookies (so 12 sandwiches) using my small cookie scoop, and then I switched to an ice cream scoop and was able to make five huge cookies (like the ones above). I’d guess that I probably would have been able to make another 10-12 cookies (5-6 sandwiches) had I continued on with the small scoop.

Funfetti Sandwich Cookies
cookies from Pink Parsley (originally adapted from Yammie’s Noshery), filling from Funfetti Cupcakes (originally from Cook’s Illustrated)

Cookies
2 cups cake flour
2/3 all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus 2 tablespoons, melted and slightly cooled
1 1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1/2 cup rainbow sprinkles

Buttercream Filling
1 tablespoon heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup rainbow sprinkles

In a medium bowl, whisk together both flours, the baking soda and the salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the room temperature butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4-5 minutes. Mix in the melted butter, vanilla, egg and egg yolk until completely incorporated. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients in two batches, beating just until the dough comes together. Fold in the sprinkles with a rubber spatula.

Chill the batter for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 375 F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Using a small cookie scoop (mine measures about 1 1/2 inches across – you’ll need to adjust the baking time accordingly if yours is larger), portion the batter onto one of the prepared baking sheets, spacing the cookies about 2 inches apart. Bake (one sheet at a time) for about 10 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies are set and light golden brown. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the cookies cool for 5 minutes then remove the cookies to the wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with all of the dough, alternating baking sheets.

To make the filling: stir the heavy cream, vanilla extract and salt together in a small bowl. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium-high speed until smooth, about 30 seconds. With the mixer on low, slowly add the confectioners’ sugar a little at a time until it is completely incorporated and the mixture is smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl then beat in the heavy cream mixture. Increase the mixer to medium speed and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy, about 4 minutes, stopping once to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the sprinkles, and beat briefly on low speed to incorporate.

{Note: the filling can be made a few days ahead and refrigerated. When you are ready to use it, let it come to room temperature and then beat briefly.}

To assemble: match the cookies in pairs by size. Transfer the filling to a piping bag and pipe a generous amount onto the flat side of one cookie of each pair. Sandwich the cookies together, and press the filling to the edges.