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What is a Whoopie Pie?


Cape Whoopies
Cape Whoopies

With a name like whoopie, how can a classic treat like whoopie pies not spark joy? This classic cake-cookie sandwich of two cake-like cookies with a light and fluffy cream center has been a favorite for more than a century.

Whoopie pies are popular, especially in New England and, particularly, in Maine. There’s even an annual festival devoted to it: the Maine Whoopie Pie Festival

But what is a whoopie pie, exactly? Is it a pie, a cake, or a cookie? Read on for all the details.

What is a Whoopie Pie Made of?

Whoopie pies resemble a sandwich cookie and are made of two cake rounds and a light cream or Marshmallow Fluff center.

Whoopie pies comes in many flavors like:

  • Chocolate: Devil’s Food chocolate cake with vanilla cream
  • Chocolate mint: Devil’s Food chocolate cake with mint filling
  • Chocolate strawberry: Chocolate cake with strawberry cream
  • Peanut butter: Devil’s Food chocolate cake with peanut butter cream filling
  • Pumpkin: Pumpkin cake with vanilla cream
  • Red velvet: Red-colored chocolate cake with buttercream filling
  • Vanilla: Vanilla cake with fudge and vanilla cream
Cape Whoopies | The Food Explorer Whoopies
Cape Whoopies Whoopie Pies
Cape Whoopies | Choose Your Own

Why Do They Call it a Whoopie Pie?

It’s believed these soft cake-cookie sandwiches are called whoopie pies because of the reaction people had when they would find the sweet treat in their lunch box. 

Amish legend has it that whoopie pies were made from leftover cake batter. When children, coal miners, and farmers would discover they had the delicious treat in their lunch pail, they would yell “Whoopie!” This reaction quickly turned into the name for this hand-held snack treat. 

In Western parts of coal-mining Pennsylvania, these cuties are called gobs. They are named gobs because these chocolate cake sandwich cookies resemble lumps or gobs of coal.

Sift Dessert Bar Whoopie Cookie Box
Sift Dessert Bar | Whoopie Cookie Box
Nadia Cakes Cheeseburger Whoopie Pies
Nadia Cakes | Cheeseburger Whoopie Pies

Are Whoopie Pies a Maine Thing?

Sorta. Since 2011, Whoopie pies have been the official state treat of Maine. However, many believe they are an invention of Lancaster, Pennsylvania’s Amish and Pennsylvania German communities. 

Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and Virginia all claim to have created the first whoopie pies in the early 1900s. It’s unclear who baked these popular baked goods first.

What’s the Difference Between a Whoopie Pie and a MoonPie?

Whoopie pies and MoonPies are not the same although they both were first made in the early 1900s and were popular with coal miners. There are several differences between whoopie pies and MoonPies. 

Whoopie pies resemble a sandwich cookie and are made of two cake-y mounds and a creamy center (usually marshmallow or Marshmallow Fluff). MoonPies are a graham cracker sandwich cookie filled with marshmallow and enrobed in chocolate.

Most Famous Whoopie Pies

America’s top bakeries and confectioners are whipping up the best whoopie pies in America and shipping them nationwide on Goldbelly!

Gluten-Free Whoopie Pies

Cape Whoopies

Biting into a Cape Whoopies whoopie pie is like taking a bite into a delicious cloud of cream, sugar, and everything nice. Each New England treat is made with imported ingredients like Bensdorp chocolate from Holland and bourbon vanilla from Madagascar.

Founded in 2013, Marcia Wiggins and her team of “Whoopettes” have been making gourmet whoopie pies in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, in classic and creative flavors like Bromance (chocolate chip vanilla cakes with vanilla marshmallow filling), Dark Strawberry, and Maine-iac (decadent chocolate cakes filled with vanilla cream).

Tico’s Whoopies

It doesn’t get much better, or real deal, than Tico’s Whoopies. The only fluff you’ll find is in each satisfying cake round. Each is handmade using the recipes from Holly E. Holleran’s grandmother “Tico.” Tico’s family opened the Pennsylvania Family Bakery in 1939, which made superlative whoopie pies.

Holleran is carrying on the family tradition with Tico’s Whoopies in Glen Rock, Pennsylvania. These huge whoopie pies are big in size and taste. Each is made with classic and buttercream fillings in flavors like chocolate, peanut butter and pumpkin.

Tico's Whoopies Whoopie Pies
Vegan Whoopie Pies

B+B Bakery

Whoopie, there’s a bakery that makes gluten-free and vegan whoopie pies! After acquiring Portland, Maine’s Baristas + Bites and Love Kupcakes in 2022, Andrew and Danielle Camarata realized Danielle’s childhood dream of opening B+B Bakery, a bakery that makes artisanal treats. 
The family-owned bakery makes its chocolate and vanilla whoopie pies with locally-sourced ingredients like Cabot butter and Callebaut chocolate. Whoop! There it is — literally the best portable pick-me-up ever.

Whoopie! America’s lightest and fluffiest whoopie pies are shipping nationwide on Goldbelly!

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Read More: The Best Pie Flavors & Where to Try Them