Apple Pecan Oatmeal Creme Pies

I used to bring the unhealthiest (but delicious!) lunches to school when I was younger: Bologna or corn beef sandwiches with a side of doritos or cheetos  finished by a tasty, packaged snack cake or cookie (aka- twinkies, ding dongs, etc).  We always had ample junk food in the house to create these lunches and my kitchen cabinets were the envy of all of my friends.  My favorite dessert snack by far was Little Debbie’s Oatmeal Creme Pies.  While my lunches have become healthier with age (although residency occasionally interferes), I still have a weakness for those Oatmeal Creme Pies of my childhood.

The other day when I was looking for some baking inspiration, my co-worker showed me some recipes she had been eyeing on pinterest.  One reminded me of the oatmeal creme pies and inspiration struck!  I decided to make my own grown up version.

Apple Pecan Oatmeal Creme Pies

Apple Pecan Oatmeal Cookies (adapted from Joanne Chang’s Flour cookbook)

1 cup (sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup (150 g) granulated sugar
1 cup (200 g) packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 3/4 cup (245 g) flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 3/4 cup (175 g) old –fashioned rolled oats (not instant or quick-cooking)
1 cup chopped apple (from about 2 apples)
1  cup toasted pecans, chopped

Creme Pie Filling (Adapted from Joanne Chang’s Flour Cookbook)

2 sticks of unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 1/3 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 tbsp maple syrup
2 dashes of cinnamon
pinch of kosher salt

Preheat the over to 350 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and sugars until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile in a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt, making sure there are no lumps of baking soda. Stir in the oats.  Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat until thoroughly combined. On low speed, or by hand, gradually add the flour and oat mixture to the creamed butter, mixing until completely incorporated.  Add the chopped apples and pecans and mix until just incorporated.

At this point you can portion the dough out into 1 Tbs balls and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.  If time does not permit, this refrigeration step can be skipped (but does make for a better cookie).

Place the dough balls on the parchment lined baking sheet, an inch apart. Bake for about 10 min or until just starting to become golden brown.  DO NOT overbake!  Remove from oven and cool completely on a cooling rack.

While cookies are cooling, make the creme filling in a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment.  Cream the butter on medium high.  On slow, gradually add the confectioner’s sugar.  Once incorporated and smooth, turn speed up to medium and add maple syrup, cinnamon and salt.  Increase to high and beat for 1 minute until fluffy.

Pipe or spread filling onto bottoms of half the cookies and then top with the rest of the cookies to make creme pies.

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