Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

Crispy gluten free vanilla wafer cookies that you can cut out into any shape you like. Fill these lightly sweet cookies with buttercream filling and make a vanilla wafer sandwich cookie. Lemon flavor optional!

Gluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

Sandwich cookies fill up cookie-gift boxes with all the space they take up. Not to mention that they’re impressive since all you have to do is use an open star piping tip for the filling & people think you’re a wizard.

Gluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

These aren’t shortbread cookies, really, because they have an egg. The egg really helps them hold their shape, though, and you can forget about making neat little sandwiches otherwise.

Gluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich CookiesGluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

I put lemon zest in these cookies because it perks them up. Pay attention cookies! But it’s completely optional since you have to add a lot of lemon to make these truly lemon cookies.

Whatever you do, don’t just zest a couple lemons and figure you’re all done in the lemon department. You really need to zest, then chop chop chop chop chop, or the lemon zest lends a certain unpleasant texture to such simple cookies.

Gluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

You have my express permission to decide whether you want these cookies to be a little more brown, and so a little more like shortbread since they’re more crumbly, or, well, or not.

And they really do need no more than 10 minutes unless you roll them super thick or unless you don’t have a properly heated oven.

Gluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

One big dollop of filling on the underside of half of the cookies is nothing short of gorgeous, even before you sandwich.

The cookies themselves are not very sweet. The sweet filling is the perfect way to balance the tastes.

Gluten-Free Vanilla Wafer Sandwich Cookies

Now go eat your sandwich. It’ll make you big and strong.

Like this recipe?

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 24 sandwich cookies


For the Cookies
1 1/4 cups (210 g) all purpose gluten free flour (I like Better Batter here)

1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)

1/4 cup  ( 36 g cornstarch)

1/2 cup (58 g) confectioners’ sugar

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon finely chopped lemon zest (from about 2 lemons) (optional)

8 tablespoons (112 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 egg (50 g, weighed out of shell) at room temperature, beaten

For the Filling
8 tablespoons (112 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon powdered lemon peel (optional)

2 cups (230 g) confectioners’ sugar

2 to 4 teaspoons milk, at room temperature


  • Preheat your oven to 325°F. Line rimmed baking sheets with unbleached parchment paper, and set them aside.

  • Make the Cookie Dough. In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, cornstarch, confectioners’ sugar and salt, and whisk to combine well. Add the optional lemon zest, and whisk again to combine. Add the butter and then the egg, and mixing to combine after each addition. The dough will come together and should be smooth and relatively thick. Place the dough between two sheets of unbleached parchment paper and roll into a rectangle a bit more than 1/8 inch thick. Place the dough on a flat surface and place in the freezer until firm (5 to 7 minutes).

  • Make the Filling. While the dough is chilling, make the filling. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, place the butter and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Add the salt, optional powdered lemon peel and confectioners’ sugar, and mix on low speed until the sugar is absorbed. Turn the mixer to medium speed and mix until the filling comes together (3 to 4 minutes). It will be very thick. Add 2 teaspoons milk, and mix on medium speed until the filling becomes smoother and creamier, but still thick. Add more milk if necessary to reach the desired consistency. Transfer the filling to a pastry bag fitted with a large piping tip (I used a large open star tip, like this one), and set it aside.

  • Bake the Cookies. Once the cookie dough is chilled, cut out shapes using a 2 1/2 inch oval (or round) cookie cutter. Place the cutouts on the prepared baking sheets less than an inch apart from one another (they will not spread during baking). Place the baking sheets, one at a time, in the center of the preheated oven and bake, rotating once, until just beginning to brown around the edges (about 10 minutes). Remove from the oven and allow the cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • Assemble the Cookies.  Turn over half of the cookies, and pipe a generous amount of filling on each overturned cookie. Top with the remaining cookies to create sandwiches, pressing down gently to force the filling to the very edge of the cookies. Allow to sit at room temperature (or in the refrigerator) until the filling is set. Serve chilled or at room temperature.


Comments are closed.

  • Alden'smom
    December 22, 2012 at 10:05 PM

    For a “vanilla sandwich cookie” it is conspicuously missing vanilla. I do think they sound fabulous though.

    • Alden'smom
      December 24, 2012 at 7:51 PM

      I made these last night but added Vanilla Bean Paste as vanilla is hugely important in our house.  These taste great.  We opted not to make them sandwiches but rather cut out NinjaMen and will frost them today because that is my son’s favorite holiday treat.

  • JacintaKnuth08
    December 19, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    This look’s great!!! I have to figure out who I can give them too!! :) 

  • Patti
    December 19, 2012 at 6:56 PM

    Ok Nicole, do not joke about leaving your blog.  I find no humor in it.  REALLY!!!  You have made my gluten free living, well, livable and also enjoyable.  So no more jokes……..ok?

    On the cookies……….I cannot get over how much you bake and your ideas are awesome.   Can’t wait to try them!!

  • Rtwohy
    December 19, 2012 at 4:25 PM

    How do you make
    gf cake flour?

    • gfshoestring
      December 19, 2012 at 6:59 PM

      I explain exactly how in the recipe ingredients, Rtwohy.

  • Taylor G.
    December 19, 2012 at 2:54 PM

    Do you think it would be okay if I omit the egg? We cannot have egg in my family. 

    • gfshoestring
      December 19, 2012 at 3:56 PM

      I talk about this in the post, Taylor. It won’t hold together as a sandwich cookie without the egg. It will be shortbread, which is nice, but quite different. I would suggest you review my gluten-free cookie recipe index for another option.

  • Eldel59
    December 19, 2012 at 12:55 PM

    I’ll bet they are good with orange also… and chocolate filling. This may be the cookie that saved Christmas.

    • gfshoestring
      December 19, 2012 at 3:58 PM

      Good idea, Eldel! Sounds like a good riff on these. Merry Christmas!
      xoxo Nicole

  • Adele
    December 19, 2012 at 10:15 AM

    Your blog made me laugh before my second cup of coffee!  That’s not easy.  Would like to suggest that you get a microplane for zesting, very fine zest and no more chopping.  Be careful, they are very sharp.

    • gfshoestring
      December 19, 2012 at 3:57 PM

      Thanks, Adele, but I already use a microplane and while it makes fine shavings of zest, they are long. Still need to chop chop chop.
      xoxo Nicole

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