Red velvet sandwich cookies

Like the Oreo grew up and made way for a much more interesting sibling: tangy cream cheese icing sandwiched by rich cocoa biscuits. 

There’s no solace in “trial and error” or “it’s all part of the process” when you’ve spent hours shopping for just enough ingredients and meticulously following a recipe; only to test out the finished product and realize there’s something missing. 

What were meant to be sweet inside out red velvet cookies, turned out to be oddly savoury when I figured out that adding sugar to the cream cheese was in my imagination and, in fact, didn’t happen. (Surprisingly, I did receive some positive reviews on these cheesy cookies, albeit from an unpicky friend.) 

Attempt number two was just as unsuccessful, using a traditional cream cheese frosting recipe for surprise centre. The butter component of the filling was not happy in the oven, bubbling up and making for a very greasy biscuit. 

I ended at attempt number three after scrapping the whole inside-out concept altogether (it’s gimmicky, who needs it!) and instead, rolled out the same dough for some cookie-cutter action. Even if my original plan failed another two more times, I would find a way to incorporate the cream cheese icing. 

In the making

✘ Don’t get distracted by a podcast and forget the sugar!! 

✔ For mess-free cookie stuffing, pipe the icing. The two-spoon method can get very, very sticky. 

✔ Opt for gel food colouring, so it doesn’t change the consistency of your dough.

Red velvet sandwich cookies with cream cheese icing filling

  • Servings: 18
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Classic red velvet flavours, rich with cocoa and tangy cream cheese, in a chewy sandwich cookie

Credit: adapted from for the biscuit and good ol’ for the filling


For the cookie dough

  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature 
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tbsp. red food colouring

For the icing

  • 1 package (225 grams) cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup butter, room temperature 
  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract 


The cookies

  1. Preheat oven to 350° and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a mixer, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla.
  3. Sift flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. Combine with the wet mixture and follow with red food colouring. 
  4. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  5. On a flat surface using a rolling pin, roll out dough to 1/4 inch thick. Use cookie cutters to cut an equal number of sandwich tops and bottoms, around 34.
  6. Bake cookies 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool completely before assembling with icing.

Cream cheese icing

  1. In a medium bowl, cream together the cream cheese and butter until creamy.
  2. Mix in the vanilla, then gradually stir in the confectioners’ sugar. Store in the refrigerator after use.

Sandwich assembly 

  1. For neat and pretty edges, put icing in a piping bag fitted with a round or star-shaped tip.
  2. Pipe a generous amount of icing onto the bottom cookie, not too close to the edge or else it will ooze out the sides.
  3. Top with another cookie to complete the sandwich.
Red velvet sandwich cookies with cream cheese icing
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