Sandwich cookies are a monument in the history of marketing. Some genius figured out that the two layers cemented with sweet filling would prove irresistible. And they are. Do you know how many Oreos have been made? 491 billion. That’s a big number, the size the Defense Department Budget. I’m not anti-government, but what if we tried to win over everyone by showering them with cookies instead of bullets.

Here is recipe built on the Oreo idea but with a far more fascinating combination of wafers and filling. These cookies are soft and intensely cocoa-flavored. And the filling is a rich combination of pistachios and mascarpone. One bite and eyes pop open: “This is different!” This delicious cookie will be a treat for friends and family. You could probably convert a stranger into a friend with just one, although they might hold out for a second. Indulge them.

It’s clear that the best selling sandwich concept is two chocolate cookies and a whitish filling. Those “reverse” Oreos with vanilla cookies and chocolate filling have far smaller sales. I’m taking that as a culinary challenge, and if I succeed, you’ll be the first to know.

Chocolate Cannoli Sandwich Cookies

Yield: 16 Sandwich Cookies

Ingredients for the Cookie:

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into pieces at room temperature
  • ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons whole milk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup mini semi-sweet chocolate chips

Ingredients for the Filling:

  • 1½ cups chopped roasted unsalted pistachios
  • 1½ cups mascarpone cheese
  • ¾ cup ricotta cheese
  • 1½ cups confectioner’s sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ teaspoon salt


Make the cookies: Beat the butter and both sugars with a mixer until creamy. Beat in the milk and vanilla until combined. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa, salt and baking soda. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and beat until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips, if desired. Scoop the dough onto a sheet of wax paper and shape into a 2-inch-log. Wrap in the wax paper and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Slice the dough into 1/3-inch thick rounds with a sharp knife. Place on the prepared baking sheet and bake 10 minutes. Cool the cookies for a few minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the filling: Combine ¾-cup pistachios, the mascarpone, ricotta, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and salt with a mixer on low speed until just blended; do not overmix or the filling will be too thick.

To assemble, sandwich about ½-inch filling between 2 cookies. Repeat with the remaining cookies and filling. Roll the edges in the remaining ¾-cup pistachios.

Source: Adapted from Food Network Magazine