Here’s my version of a ‘Certain Chocolate Sandwich Cookie’ (you know it’s an Oreo, right?) ? This time in the shape of a scary big bat! These bat chocolate sandwich cookies are perfect for a Halloween party. Make with the kiddies or grandkids or give out to the ‘trick or treaters’.
Which Cookie Cutters To Use
You can of course use any cookie cutter you might have, to make these Halloween themed Chocolate Sandwich Cookie. And in any shape you like. This bat cutter was 11 cm x 5cm (4 1/3 inch x 2 inches) at it’s widest points. I would just advise though on not using the push-release/stamp cookie cutters that are the complete shape, and have an imprint on them, as the dough has a tendency to stick to it when trying to cut them out.
What Makes This A Great Recipe
Now the cookie dough is great, but the filling will not taste quite the same as in those shop bought cookies you are familiar with. This is because they have so many ingredients in them, many of which are not naturally occurring, and I like to avoid those. However, I don’t think you will be disappointed with the taste and texture. It is sugar and butter after all! It’s also not just a standard butter cream. You are clarifying the butter before making the buttercream. BUT, don’t worry, as it is so simple to do and worth the extra 10 minutes. It makes the filling a little firmer and so the logical choice for sandwich cookies, when you don’t want it squirting all out when you take a bite. It’s also a versatile buttercream filling that can be flavoured – I made a chocolate version for some Vanilla & Chocolate Sandwich Cookies. And I also made peppermint & some orange flavoured ones for Easter Themed Chocolate Sandwich Cookies. Which also work with gluten free flour). See Photo. Click the blue highlighted words to go to these recipes.
A Note On Ingredients
A note on the ingredients used for these Halloween Oreo Style Cookies for US/Canadian bakers. I have been reliably informed that you can purchase the Golden Syrup in World Market, some Walmarts in Canada, Sobys, ‘Stop & Shop’, Wegmans, Frys (Smiths), Woodmans, Nugget Store, The Scottish Bakery, The British Store, Talin Market, Albertsons & in Dorgnacs, in some areas of the states & Canada. It is also available online at Amazon (free delivery for Prime accounts), 647-Florist.com, British Food Depot.com, UK Gourmet.us, World Market.com, Cost Plus World Market & Marina Market. (Information current at October 2019). However, if you still can’t get it, or want to try the recipe first, just use maple syrup, honey or something similar. (You can find recipes on line to make the golden syrup if you need it). It is not essential to have the exact syrup for this particular bake – if you want to make my Easy Gingerbread Cake, that does require the Golden Syrup. I have made these cookies though, without it and used maple syrup.
I won’t keep you much longer form the recipe. I just want to mention a few things first.
Be sure to chill the cookie dough, as there is baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) in it. So as to avoid too much spreading whilst baking, this is a very important process in cookie making. It also relaxes the gluten in the flour that has been worked during mixing and rolling out and helps avoid a tough cookie.
For experienced bakers, you can skip to the Recipe Card for an abbreviated version of the recipe and you can print that out. Click below –Jump to Recipe
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- 113g Butter, unsalted, cubed & soft
- (4 oz, 1/2 cup, 1 stick)
- 100g Granulated Sugar (3.5 oz, ½ cup)
- 3 tbsp Golden Syrup*
- (60g/2 oz, see notes above)
- ½ tsp Bicarbonate of Soda (Baking Soda)
- 1/8 tsp Salt
- 157g Plain Flour
- (5.5 oz, 1 + ¼ c All Purpose)
- 48g Cocoa Powder
- (1.75 oz, 1/3 c + 1 tbsp)
- For The Buttercream Filling:
- 128g Butter, melted
- (6 oz, 3/4 cup)
- 3/4 tsp Vanilla Extract
- *(Homemade Vanilla Extract)
- Sprinkle of Salt
- 187g Icing Sugar, sieved
- (6.5 oz, 1 + 1/2c Powdered sugar)
- Cake sprinkles for the bat’s eyes (optional)
- Scales or measuring cups
- Measuring Spoons
- Stand/hand mixer (or by hand with a mixing bowl)
- Other mixing bowl for dry ingredients
- Baking trays/sheets x 2 or 3
- Baking paper/parchment
- Pastry board/silicone mat (optional)
- Rolling Pin
- Small bowl of flour to dip cutter
- Cookie cutters (my bat cutter – 11 cm x 5cm (4 1/3″ x 2″)
- Cooling rack
- Timer or phone timer
- Small cooking pot
- Pastry bag (optional) or spoon & butter knife
OVEN: 180/160c Fan Oven/350f/ Gas Mar
Make The Cookie Dough
1. Combine the butter, sugar, syrup, baking soda (bicarb) & salt in a large bowl and mix on low (or by hand) until it starts to become moistened. Then increase the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy (approx. 3 minutes). The ‘creamed’ butter will be paler in colour now too. See Photo 1.
2. In a separate bowl, weigh out & sieve the flour & cocoa powder. Then mix together thoroughly. See Photo 1.
3. With the mixer on low, slowly sprinkle in the dry ingredients until it forms a stiff dough, mixing in-between each addition. See Photo 1, right pic.
4. Using your hands, knead against the insides of the bowl to form a smooth ball of dough. See Photo 2.
5. Next line the baking trays/sheets with paper. (If there’s no lip on these, best to hold in place with some baking spray or grease with butter, so the cookies don’t go sliding off the tray).
6. On a pastry board/silicone mat or work top/counter, place some baking/parchment paper down and a little icing/powdered sugar if needed. Flatten the dough into a disc. Place another piece of the paper on top & use your rolling pin to roll out the dough to a 4-5mm (1/6- 1/5″) thickness. (I used 2 x 2p coins that I measured, as a guide). Be careful not to make any thinner than this or you will over cook the cookies. A little thicker is ok. See Photo 3.
Cut Out The Cookies
7. Dust the cutter in flour or icing/confectioners’ sugar or even cocoa powder and cut out as many cookies as you can, remembering to dip the cutter again. I find the easiest thing to do is lift & peel away the scrap dough and then use a palette knife to lift the bat cookies. Re-roll the scraps and repeat the cutting until all used up, remembering to try to make pairs for the sandwich cookies. Tip: if any of the bats are not cut sharp, gently fix them with your finger tips before lifting them. See Photo 4.
8. Next position the bat cookies on the baking trays/sheets with a little gap in-between. They won’t expand too much because we will chill them. Now at this point, you can add eyes for the bats if you want. I had little lime green cake sprinkles, that when added to the bats made them look like how their eyes look in the dark! But you can use any contrasting colour, or use something very small to make a tiny eye shape. (I however, forgot to put them on until after I had started baking, so after a few minutes in. But it was still fine. Just make sure they are ok for using in the oven see Photo 5 below).
Chill The Cookies Before Baking
9. Chill the prepared cookie dough, for 1 hr before baking, to ensure they keep their shape and don’t spread out. This should pretty much always be done with cookies.
10. Heat up the oven up to 180c/160c Fan Oven/350f/Gas Mark 4, before the 1-hour chilling time is up.
Bake The Cookies
11. Bake the cookies until firm enough that you can lift them gently with a spatula. See Photo 6. They should still be soft. Remember to turn and rotate the baking trays/sheets during cooking. My large bats finished baking after 13 minutes. I could move them before that but started to crack, indicating not quite baked yet. My regular recipe smaller cookies bake off at about 9 minutes. Because of the colour, it is really easy to over cook and even burn these cookies. The trick is to get out before they are set up, as they will harden once out of the oven from residual heat from the baking tray/sheet. This happens really quickly, so leave on the baking sheet/tray for no more than 2 minutes and then transfer, paper and all to a cooling rack. If you think you have baked too much, don’t allow any cooling on the tray and move to the rack immediately.
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Make The Buttercream Filling
1. Melt the butter in a small cooking pot on the stove top on medium to high heat. Then turn the heat down to low-medium heat, letting it simmer and remember to stir. The butter will hiss & pop. If browning reduce the heat further. Continue until the butter is silent and then strain through a sieve into a bowl. There will be foamy fat residue sticking to the sides of the bowl and in the bottom of the sieve. See Photo 7 of the process. This is just the fats and liquids separating.
2. Add vanilla and salt. The mixture will sizzle again so be careful when mixing through. Check out my article for How To Make Homemade Vanilla Extract
3. Add in the sieved icing/powdered sugar and mix by hand until all sugar is incorporated and a smooth paste is formed. I like to use a fork or metal spoon for this. See Photo 8. This will only take a minute, so no need to get the mixer out again. Leave till ready to fill the cookies, but don’t put in the fridge or it will set up too hard.
Assemble The Cookies
4. Using a regular tea making spoon or butter knife and spread a good amount of filling on top of one cookie. Place a second cookie on top and squeeze together until the filling comes out of the edges. Then use the end of a small spoon and scrape around the edges, removing the excess. See Photo 9. Alternatively apply with a piping bag. You might have to thin the filling down a bit to do this though.
5. Store in a tin or airtight container and they will be good for a few days.
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DIFFICULTY LEVEL: easy, beginner
- Scales or measuring cups
- Measuring Spoons
- Mixing bowl for dry ingredients
- Baking sheets/trays (2 or 3)
- Baking/parchment paper
- Rolling Pin
- Small bowl to dip cutter
- Cookie Cutters (large bats were 11 cm x 5cm (4 1/3″ x 2″))
- Cooling rack
- Timer or Phone Timer
- Small pot
- Pastry bag or butter/palette knife
For The Cookie Dough
- 113 grams Butter, unsalted, cubed & soft (4 oz, ½ cup, 1 stick
- 100 grams Granulated Sugar (3.5 oz, ½ cup)
- 3 tbsp Golden Syrup* (see notes above) (60g/2 oz
- ½ tsp Bicarbonate of Soda (Baking Soda)
- ⅛ tsp Salt
- 157 grams Plain Flour (5.5 oz, 1 + ¼ c All Purpose)
- 48 grams Cocoa Powder (1.75 oz, ⅓ c + 1 tbsp)
For The Buttercream Filling
- 128 grams Butter, unsalted & melted (6 oz, ¾ cup)
- ¾ tsp Vanilla Extract (See below for link to make your own extract)
- 1 Pinch Salt
- 187 grams Icing Sugar, sieved (6.5 oz, 1 + ½ cup Powdered sugar)
PREPARE THE COOKIE DOUGH
- Combine butter, sugar, syrup, baking soda (bicarb) & salt in a large bowl and mix on low (or by hand) & then increase speed to medium & beat until light & fluffy (approx. 3 minutes).
- In a separate bowl, sieve the flour & cocoa powder together & mix thoroughly. With the mixer on low, slowly sprinkle in the dry ingredients until it forms a stiff dough, mixing in-between each addition. Then knead against the insides of the bowl to form a smooth ball of dough.
- Next line the baking trays/sheets with baking/parchment paper.
CUT OUT THE COOKIES
- Between 2 sheets of paper, roll out the dough to a 4-5mm (1/6- 1/5″) thickness.
- Dust the cutter in flour or icing/powdered sugar or even cocoa powder and cut out as many cookies as you can. Carefully place on the prepared tray/sheet & chill for 1 hour. Do not skip this stage.
BAKE THE COOKIES
- Bake the cookies until firm enough that you can lift them gently with a spatula. They should still be soft. If they start to crack on lifting, bake a little longer. My bigger bats take about 13 minutes and small round or square cookies usually about 9 minutes. Take out just before they are set up, as they will harden once out of the oven from residual heat from the baking tray/sheet. Leave a few minutes & transfer to a cooling rack. If you think you have baked too much, don’t allow any cooling on thetray and move to the rack immediately.
MAKE THE BUTTERCREAM FILLING
- Melt the butter in a small cooking pot on the stove top on medium to high heat. Turn the heat down to low-medium heat, letting it simmer & remember to stir. The butter will hiss & pop. If browning reduce heat further. Continue until butter is silent & then strain through a sieve into a bowl. Foamy fat residue will be sticking to the sides of the bowl and in the bottom of the sieve. Add vanilla & salt & mix through.
- Add in sieved icing/powdered sugar & mix byhand until all sugar is incorporated and a smooth paste is formed. I like to use a fork or metal spoon for this. Leave till ready to fill the cookies, but don’t put in the fridge or it will set up too hard.
ASEEMBLE THE COOKIES
- Using a spoon or butter knife , spread a good amount of filling on top of one cookie. Place a second cookie on top & squeeze together until the filling comes out of the edges. Then use the end of a small spoon & scrape around the edges, removingthe excess. Alternatively apply with a piping bag. You might have to thin the filling down a bit to do this though.
- Store in a tin or airtight container and they will be good for a few days.
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