Marisa Churchill, a former contestant on Top Chef, loves to put healthy spins on scrumptious classics. Her cookbook, Sweet & Skinny ($24), is all about healthier ways to make your favorite desserts. So far, Marisa has shared with us her recipe for PB&J Cookies and Almond Joy Macaroons. This week, we learn how to whip up some good ol' Whoopie Pies!
Makes 14 pies
Per Pie: 170 calories, 6 grams of fat
Nonstick pan spray (if not using parchment or baking mats)
1 2⁄3 cups all-purpose flour
1⁄3 cup whole wheat flour
½ cup good-quality unsweetened cocoa powder, natural orDutch-processed
1 ¼ teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup plain nonfat Greek-style yogurt
¼ cup low-fat buttermilk
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2⁄3 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
¼ cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons non-hydrogenated shortening, such as Spectrum brand
3 tablespoons liquid egg substitute
1 cup store-bought marshmallow crème
MAKE AHEAD! The batter for the pies can be made up to 24 hours ahead and refrigerated, tightly covered, before scooping and baking them.
Preheat the oven to 350°F with one rack in the bottom third and another in the top third of the oven. Coat two 17 × 12-inch rimmed baking sheets with pan spray (even if they are nonstick), or line them with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the all-purpose and whole wheat flours, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In another medium bowl, whisk together the yogurt, buttermilk, and vanilla until the mixture is smooth.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the brown sugar, butter, and shortening together on medium-high speed for 6 to 7 minutes, until the mixture is light and fluffy. (If using a standing mixer, use the paddle attachment.) Add the egg substitute and beat on medium for 2 minutes longer. Add one-third of the flour mixture and beat on low speed for 1 minute. Scrape the bowl down, add half of the yogurt mixture, and beat on low speed for 1 minute. Repeat this process, scraping the bowl down and beating for 1 minute, as you add half of the remaining flour, then all of the remaining yogurt, and finally all of the remaining flour.
Use a scoop or a large spoon to make 28 mounds on the prepared Baking sheets, using 1 1/2 tablespoons of the batter for each mound and spacing them 2 inches apart. (To make the smoothest cakes, coat a small ice cream scoop with pan spray or oil, or coat your hands and use them to shape the mounds into smooth domes.)
Bake the cakes for 12 to 14 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center of a cake comes out with just a few sticky crumbs stuck to it. Halfway through the baking time, rotate the pans from top to bottom and front to back.
Transfer the pans to a wire rack to cool, about 1 hour.
To serve: Spoon a generous tablespoon of marshmallow topping onto the flat side of one cake and press a second cake over the filling. Repeat with the remaining cakes and filling. Let the filled pies set for 10 minutes before serving.Store any leftover pies, filled or unfilled, in a re-sealable plastic bag at room temperature for up to 3 days. If using store-bought topping, serve the pies within 4 hours of filling them.