Homemade Oreos

After 3+ years gluten free, and 5 years with general food restrictions (Caleb was diagnosed with a dairy allergy early on), potlucks still make me nervous.  What will we bring?  Will anyone eat it?  Will other people know what is in their food?  How do we limit cross contamination?  

My general rule of thumb has become to bring a safe main dish, a safe side, and a safe dessert.  I also try to make these dishes as allergy friendly as possible for others on a restricted diet.  I remember the look of joy in an older woman's eyes when I brought a carrot-spice cake that was nut free.  She said it had been years since she had been able to indulge in this former favorite treat.  The extra effort is worth it- I promise.

I have as many successes as failures, however, in my feeding of the crowds.  I remember one church dinner where a teenage boy turned down one of my chocolate chip cookies.  Ouch!  Not this time though....

This time, I started with a cake mix cookie recipe.  I used this one (minus the chocolate bits), but there are others out there.  In theory you can do this with a gluten containing mix, but honestly- why?  You never know who needs a special accommodation and you can make their day by providing them with a food that is gluten free (and dairy free) and amazing!  I used Betty Crocker Gluten Free Devil's Food Cake Mix (available at most grocery stores), Canola Oil, and Eggs.  I made 2 boxes because I knew I would be feeding a crowd.

Form the mix into small flat pieces.

I found that the circle between my thumb and forefinger was the perfect size.  They do flatten down, so don't put them too closely together (I did on my first pan.)

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Bake at 350* for 8-12 minutes.  Leave them on the pan for an extra few minutes so they get a little crisper on the bottom.

After they cool, choose 2 that are close in size.

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Put a spoonful of coconut cream on the bottom of one cookie (see below for recipe).

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Make it into a sandwich.

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Serve & Enjoy!  You may even come home with the ultimate potluck compliment- and empty dish.

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Filling Options

Coconut Cream (Base Recipe)

Cream with a hand beater:  (1) the solids portion from one can of coconut milk (refrigerate it first to help it separate) (2) powdered sugar, and a few drops off vanilla (3) to the desired consistency.  I usually add about 1 cup of powdered sugar at a time.  Thin with some of the liquid from the can if needed.

Chocolate Cream 

Add 1/2 Cup of Cocoa powder to the coconut cream recipe 

Mint Cream

Use mint extract in place of vanilla extract.  Add a few drops of green food coloring if desired

Peanut Butter Cream

Substitute peanut butter for the solid coconut cream (step 1 in the base recipe).  You will need to thin this more than the other recipes. 

Final notes:  If you use the Betty Crocker GF mix with oil, you will be making a gluten free and dairy free cookie.  You could theoretically use any frosting or whipped cream in the center, but the coconut flavor is not overly strong in the filling.  It is worth going to the extra effort to make the filling dairy free as well.   Peanut Butter Cream is delicious, but not recommended for feeding crowds because of the obvious nut allergy potential and because unless you have an allergy friendly house (or open a new jar), your peanut butter has gluten in it!

Oh and we tried freezing a few just to see what would happen, and while the coconut cream was too hard to eat straight out of the freezer, the cookie was perfect- Caleb might be enjoying his first ever (homemade) ice cream sandwich later this summer!

Update:  The peanut butter cream filling freezes perfectly!

2 comments :

Lisa said...

Those look delicious! Maybe they will be our Easter treat!

Anneabell said...

These look great! I'll have to look into making them!!