How do you feel about homemade oreo cookies? I know, a dream come true. Make them as thin or thick as you want, and fill will all the vanilla frosting you want. It's usually double stuffed Oreos for me but I give you the best tip for making a thinner and firmer filling. Close your eyes and taste that unique flavor, so similar to the original, and probably healthier as we know what ingredients go into making them.
Originally posted in 2015, this post has been updated with text and images to serve you better. The recipe remains the same.
I've given these cookies to friends, taken them to the office (several times), and not only they're always a hit (that's a no-brainer) but people actually ask if they're Oreos. Which they are, but we all know how homemade versions of commercial cookies are not always on point.
Well, this recipe is, and it's barely adapted from Flour, the fantastic cookbook from Joanne Chang. I have tried other very popular recipes but I'm sticking to this one.
- Cocoa powder - this one makes or brakes the recipe. Not only because of the flavor but because of the color. You need the darkest type of unsweetened cocoa powder if you want those almost black cookies.
- Butter - it should be at room t° and pliable without being melty and shiny. I haven't tried this recipe with oil (which is in the original cookie) in case you're wondering.
- Chocolate - semisweet is the best to achieve a deep flavor with enough, but not too much, sweetness.
- Vanilla - I love vanilla paste or extract (which is natural) as opposed to vanilla essence (which is artificial).
See Notes in the recipe card for links to my favorite brands.
There's nothing difficult about making homemade Oreos.
- Mix butter with sugar, then add the egg.
- Add the melted chocolate. I do it in two parts to ensure it's well mixed (images 1 and 2, below).
- Sift the dry ingredients over the butter mixture (image 3) to ensure a smooth and faster mixing. This is a good tip because we don't want to overmix a batter or dough once the flour is added.
- The batter will be soft and look somewhat grainy (image 4).
- Make a log by dumping the chocolate mixture on a piece of plastic wrap, shaping, and then wrapping it in the plastic until it's as tight as can be. You might want to prick once or twice the plastic so that any air that is trapped inside is released. It will be somewhat irregular (image below).
- At this point, it needs to be refrigerated until firm enough to cut. It can also be frozen up to a month.
Commercial Oreo cookies are round and have a pattern.
The easiest way is to make them round but let go of the pattern. That's what I do because, you know, I love simplicity. You can buy cookie stamps online if that's your thing. There might be some with the Oreo inscription probably.
When ready to bake, cut the log into rounds, about ¼ inch thick, or less if you want thinner cookies (image above).
Recommendation for perfect circles: after cutting the rounds shape them again with your hand, making them as perfect a circle as possible. Because when the log rests in the fridge or the freezer the bottom part flattens a bit.
Vintage Kitchen Tip
When baking cookies we have to keep an eye on them as a minute or two can make a difference in texture and crunchiness. These can be a little tricky because the cocoa powder is very dark, but they will go from shiny wet to a more matte surface. Always remember to leave space between them as they spread during baking (images below).
My biggest recommendation with cookies in general: do a test bake with a few and see how long it takes to get the result you want. Cookie sized and ovens are all different and, as I said before, a minute or two can make a big difference.
Vintage Kitchen Tip
Here, there are a few debates about how it should be. Some use white chocolate as part of it, some don't. Some fillings are fluffier than others. And so on.
After trying several recipes, I still lean towards the easy filling, a simple buttercream with powdered sugar. It works so well and it comes together so fast!
Type of butter
But, there's a way to better the consistency of a simple filling - make it firmer so it doesn't overflow when you bite into your gorgeous homemade Oreos - and that is by using brown butter instead of regular butter.
Brown butter is simply cooked butter and what happens is that the water is evaporated (yes, butter has water, sometimes a lot!). So, what happens to the filling when you add it? Since there is less liquid the filling has a more solid structure and firms up once it dries.
The downside is that brown butter is called that way because it turns a golden color, so your filling will not be as white as if using regular butter.
You can read all about brown butter in this post. There are photos on how to make it and of course a detailed recipe.
The amount of filling and size of the sandwich cookies are up to you. After all, you're the one making homemade oreo cookies from scratch, you deserve them as big and as fat as you want.
The individual cookies (no filling) can be stored for weeks (or months!) in airtight tins.
Once filled they keep for a few days in the same container. Remember that the filling will transfer some humidity to the cookies and soften them as the days go by.
Raw cookie dough: keep it in the freezer for at least a month. Baked cookies as well.
Related recipes you might like:
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For the cookies:
- 1 cup butter, melted and lukewarm
- ¾ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 7 oz semisweet chocolate, melted and lukewarm
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
For the filling:
- ½ cup butter, room temperature
- 1 ⅔ cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon milk
- Pinch of salt
For the cookies:
- Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl until very well mixed.
- Add vanilla and melted chocolate in 2 parts. Mix well.
- Add egg and mix until well incorporated.
- Sift over this mixture (or do it in a different bowl and then add) the flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda. Do it in 2 parts for easier mixing.
- Make sure it's very well mixed, leaving no dry spots.
- Have a large piece of plastic wrap on the counter.
- Put half of the batter in the form of a shaggy log lengthwise, and roll the plastic (as you would cinnamon rolls) making a cylinder with the cookie dough.
- It will feel bloated so lightly pierce the plastic wrap in a few places to release air bubbles. The tighter the better. The ends of the plastic will be rolled; tuck them underneath.
- Repite with the rest of the dough.
- Refrigerate these logs until firm enough to cut, about 1 hour and upto 1 week (or frozen 1 month). Place them in a smooth place in the fridge so that they keep their round shape as much as they can.
- Preheat oven to 325ºF/170ºC.
- Line baking sheets with parchment paper,
- Cut the logs into rounds about ¼ inch thick.
- Re-shape them again with your hand to create the best circular shape you can and arrange on the sheets an inch or two apart.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until they are somewhat firm to the touch. See Notes, below.
- Let cool completely on wire rack before filling. Let the filling harden or set before eating.
For the filling:
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl until creamy and smooth.
- Add more sugar if you want a firmer filling. Powdered sugar and butter brands are different so you might need to adjust the amounts.
- Refrigerate until ready to use.
Using brown butter for the filling: follow instructions to make brown butter, let cool completely and use as directed in the filling part of the recipe.
Baking: do a test bake with a few and see how long it takes to get the result you want. Cookie sized and ovens are all different and, as I said before, a minute or two can make a big difference.
Storing: he individual cookies (no filling) can be stored for weeks (or months!) in airtight tins. Once filled they keep for a few days in the same container. Remember that the filling will transfer some humidity to the cookies and soften them as the days go by. Raw cookie dough: keep it in the freezer for at least a month. Baked cookies as well.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Refrigeration + cooling down: 2 hours
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: oreo cookies