My youngest son & me

My youngest son & me

About me

My name is Tanja (Sater) Miller and I'm excited about sharing my journey of converting my favorite recipes to gluten free! I am not a fancy cook - I prefer just a casual, fun meal. I am married with grown children (and have small grandchildren) & 3 dogs. I work full time as a registered nurse & I am a geek. Yes, I love Star Trek, Star Wars, Fringe, Firefly, Farscape and most of the other Scify shows. You will probably see a little of my geek side come out once in a while! Please join me on my journey of cooking, baking & converting every day recipes into yummy gluten free meals that everyone can enjoy (not just those with a gluten allergy!) Don't be shy about checking out my recipes....I have the gluten free version along with the regular recipe that I adapted from!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Chocolate Sandwich Cookies

Chocolate Sandwich Cookies. These should really be called GUT BUSTERS! These bad boys are so addicting! They are rich and they tease you into thinking you will only eat one. However, you catch yourself dreaming about you wake up and eat one with coffee for breakfast...again telling yourself that they are so rich and fulfilling that you won't eat any more. The next thing you are taking a couple nibbles throughout the morning on another cookie. Go ahead...justify it with the "quality assurance excuse".... I sure did! By the end of the have scarfed down at least 3 of them! My excuse was that they didn't look spectacular so why did my mouth think they were so awesome? Was I just hungry? So back to taste tasting for quality assurance! :) I came to the conclusion that they remind me of a chocolate dipped Oreo cookie. Yep, that good! Maybe even a little better!

I suggest that if you plan on making these cookies that you take them to a party and LEAVE any leftovers! That way your host or hostess will gain the weight instead of you! Bahahaha! :)

These cookies were a complete experiment. I tried converting a chocolate cookie recipe to gluten free for a different purpose but these turned out the perfect thickness for a sandwich cookie that I couldn't resist. They are not too chewy and they aren't crunchy....just perfect for a sandwich cookie. Plus, they weren't crumbly. The dark, rich chocolate flavor isn't real sweet either. PERFECT! These were great to use with a sweet chocolate filling. (They were great just by themselves without any fillings too! I know this because I had to taste them for quality assurance of course!)

By the way, I mixed these bad boys by hand today. My cheap little hand mixer decided to quit working. I haven't replaced it yet and I don't have a fancy Kitchenaid type stirring by hand is what I did. I kept telling myself it was like living in the pioneer days without fancy contraptions and it justified why I deserved an extra cookie!  :)

Chocolate Sandwich Cookie Recipe:
  • 1/2 cup butter (if using margarine, make sure it contains at least 65% fat)
  • 1/2 cup Crisco (if using a generic, make sure it is not a whipped version like Walmart contains too much water!)
  • 2 cups sugar (I used raw sugar but you can use regular sugar)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract or butter vanilla baking emulsion
  • 2 cups gluten free flour (If you don't have a gluten allergy then you can use regular flour! I personally don't care for the GF flour that contains sorghum for baking sweets. It has a weird aftertaste. My GF flour mix recipe is below in case you want to try it)
  • 1/2 tsp. xanthan gum (omit if your GF flour already contains xanthan gum or guar gum or if you don't have a gluten allergy and are using regular flour!)
  • 3/4 c. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)

I melted the butter and Crisco slightly in the microwave (not completely melted...just extra soft so my stirring would be easier!) I stirred together the sugar, eggs, vanilla, butter & Crisco until smooth and creamy. I gradually added the salt, baking soda and cocoa powder. Then I stirred in the GF flour and xanthan gum. (I used Trader Joe's brand of GF flour for today's recipe because I didn't have enough of my own GF mix on hand). The dough is slightly stiff like brownie mix. Stir in chocolate chips if using them. I put it in the refrigerator for about 1 hour. I used a cookie scooper (looks like a mini ice cream scooper) to drop my dough balls (don't flatten them!) onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet which keeps the cookies from sticking to the sheet. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for about 9-10 minutes. Don't over bake them. They should not be CRUNCHY but more like a brownie texture. Baking time may vary slightly depending on your altitude and individual oven so I suggest baking just 2-3 cookies the first time to see how they turn out. Make adjustments as needed (Bake a little longer or a little shorter or turn down the oven a 5-10 degrees). Cool completely before adding filling.

Chocolate Cream Filling Recipe:
  • 1/3 cup margarine or Crisco (make sure it contains 65% fat and is not whipped)
  • 2 tbs. unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tbs. corn starch or tapioca starch (or Jello pudding mix powder)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract or butter vanilla baking emulsion

Mix all ingredients together until fluffy. If you are finding that the filling is too sticky then add either a little more powdered sugar or a couple tablespoons of corn starch or tapioca starch. I add the corn starch or tapioca starch usually because it will keep the filling from being so sweet. Or you can add a tablespoon or two of chocolate or vanilla pudding mix powder. If you are finding that it is too stiff then add a tablespoon of water until you get a fluffy but slightly firm texture. I mixed my batch by hand since my mixer was broke. It turned out fine. The mixer makes it a little fluffier than my hand mixing but it still turned out okay! I have used the leftover homemade Nutella Frosting in place of this chocolate cream filling and it was delicious also. (See recipe from June 2013 for the Brownies with Nutella frosting recipe!) Store bought frosting in my opinion don't do these justice. It is too sweet and not thick enough. NOTE: I have substituted 1/4 cup cream cheese with 2 tbs. Crisco (instead of the 1/3 cup margarine or Crisco) and the recipe turned out just fine too!

Once the cookies have cooled completely then place about 1-2 tablespoons of filling onto the cookie. (This will depend on how much filling you like in your sandwich cookies and how big your cookies are!) I used the cookie scooper for my filling and scooped one "scoop" onto each cookie, gently spread a little bit with a knife and then topped with another cookie...making a sandwich. I decided to melt some semi-sweet chocolate chips in the microwave with a tsp. of Crisco until smooth and then drizzled over the sandwich cookies for decoration and extra chocolate. Not that these bad boys needed any more chocolate! Since there is no such thing as TOO MUCH CHOCOLATE...what the heck, I drizzled it over the top and YUMMY! We liked it but you certainly don't need to do it.

Taste one. If you are finding the flavors explode in your mouth and your tongue is very happy....pack up the remaining cookies and get them out of your house! This is a warning! If you do not do this...expect to gain a pant size by the end of the week! These bad boys are gut busters! Completely addicting! They call your name when you are innocently doing chores!

My Homemade Gluten Free Flour Blend Recipe:
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice flour
  • 1 cup white rice flour 
  • 1/2 cup glutinous rice flour (made from sticky rice, gluten free)
  • 1 cup potato starch (not flour)
  • 1/2 cup nonfat dry milk, make sure it is very fine in texture
  • 1 cup corn starch or tapioca starch (I used tapioca starch for this batch)
  • 3 tbs. xanthan gum
Combine all ingredients together well. You can put it in the blender for an extra smooth texture if desired. I store mine in a glass container and use it in place of regular flour in all my recipes. This particular blend I really like for baked sweet goods. 

Okay, these pictures are torture. I am craving ANOTHER cookie. This is bad. Really bad. Really, really bad! I think I need to pack these up and drop them off at a friend's house. My brother's wedding is 6 months Hawaii. YIKES! I can't eat any more of these cookies today or I will have to buy a new wardrobe!

If you are feeling a little devilish today...bake your skinny girlfriends a batch of these bad boys. Just don't let them open the box and offer you one. Get out of there before that happens or you will be tempted!

Enjoy your day!
Gluten Free Casually


  1. These have been staring at me for nearly 2 days, and I uncharacteristically have shortening on hand, so I broke down today and made them. I used this all purpose flour recipe because its what i had premixed up:

    Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix (mix together and store in a cool, dark place, or in fridge for long-term storage):
    1 1/4 C (170 g) brown rice flour
    1 1/4 C (205 g) white rice flour
    1 C (120 g) tapioca flour
    1 C (165 g) sweet rice flour (also known as Mochiko)
    2 scant tsp. xanthan gum

    They turned out amazing. I did have to add nearly 2 1/2 tbsp of water to get the frosting to cream up, but it turned out just like oreo cream consistency when I was done. These kind of remind me of those little debbie fudge round cookies.

    Thanks so much, will make again!

  2. Jamie,
    Glad you enjoyed them! I made them twice this week! My husband and his friend Armando (neither require GF diet) ate these like crazy! They couldn't believe they were GF! :)