Vanilla Sandwich Cookies

Vanilla Sandwich Cookies are crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and bursting with tons of real vanilla flavor ~ this easy cookie recipe is a hit with adults and kids alike.

Holiday cookies can inspire memories for a lifetime

I’m inspired by the memory of a big box of homemade cookies that was delivered to our doorstep every December when I was growing up. My mother’s best friend packed an unbelievable variety of cookies into a huge box, the kind meant for a bathrobe, or a coat. Each treat was nested in it’s own little space and the finished product looked like a tantalizing mosaic of delights. I suppose it’s possible that my memory is embellishing this vision of Christmases past, but in those days women really did have a little more time on their hands to devote to holiday baking, and some of them went all out.

These vanilla cookies have a surprisingly complex flavor

I’m starting off my virtual cookie box with plain vanilla. The cookie itself is flecked with vanilla bean seeds, and the filling has an extra shot of vanilla extract just so you don’t miss the point. I’ve even included a chocolate filling for you types who just can’t help yourself when it comes to chocolate.

Filled cookies are fun, but I wouldn’t normally go to the trouble. But that’s what the holiday baking season is all about, going one or two steps beyond the everyday. And these cookies are worth it. And if chocolate is more your thing, try my Chocolate Peppermint Sandwich Cookies or my Nutella Sandwich Cookies.

TIP: These vanilla sandwich cookies are nice and sturdy, so they make a good choice for giving and shipping.

The cookie itself is a little crunchy, a little chewy. The fillings are so much fresher and richer than anything you’d find ready made. Go ahead and fill them as full as you want.

TIP: The filling is infinitely variable, add a teaspoon of instant espresso to the vanilla filling for a delicious coffee flavor. Or add almond extract, or a touch of food coloring. Substitute peppermint extract for the vanilla extract in the chocolate filling. Have fun with them!

Other Christmas treats to check out:

3.89 from 26 votes

Vanilla on Vanilla Sandwich Cookies

Vanilla Sandwich Cookies are crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and bursting with tons of real vanilla flavor ~ this easy cookie recipe is a hit with adults and kids alike.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Yield 2 dozen
Author Sue Moran


dry ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder

wet ingredients

  • 3/4 cup 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • seeds scraped from 1 vanilla bean
  • 2 large eggs

vanilla filling

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • milk or cream for thinning

chocolate filling

  • 1 1/4 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • milk or cream for thinning


  • set oven to 375F
  • In a small bowl whisk together the dry ingredients. Set aside.
  • Cream the butter, then beat in the sugar and vanilla bean seeds and beat until creamy.
  • Beat in the eggs and blend well. Then add the dry ingredients and mix until just blended.
  • Using a small scoop (1 inch) drop the dough on a parchment lined cookie sheet, 3 inches apart (these cookies will spread a bit).
  • Bake for about 10 minutes until the cookies are lightly golden around the edges. Cool on the pan for a couple of minutes before moving them to a cooling rack.
  • Fill the cooled cookies with the vanilla (or chocolate) filling and sandwich them together, pressing lightly to spread the filling to the edges of the cookie.
  • To make the fillings, mix the ingrdients together until smooth and creamy. Add enough milk or cream to get a thick but spreadable consistency.

Cook's notes

Filling variations

  • Ready made jam
  • Jarred caramel sauce 
  • Nutella
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.


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    Leave a Reply

    Please rate this recipe!

  • Reply
    Teri Bannon
    May 31, 2020 at 9:02 pm

    5 stars
    Hi Sue, I made the vanilla sandwich cookie with the vanilla filling as part of a care package for my son. They were delicious! I did have a difficult time getting the cookie shapes to have more of a round shape, like in your photos. Any tips?

  • Reply
    March 15, 2015 at 10:20 am

    Can you substitute pure vanilla extract for the vanilla bean?

    • Reply
      March 15, 2015 at 10:23 am


  • Reply
    February 7, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Mmmm pinned these for the cookies, I’ve been searching for a yummy cookie with a bit of a crispyness and these are them. So good and the packaging is so cute!

  • Reply
    December 15, 2014 at 11:43 am

    Has anyone ever tried vanilla bean paste in this recipe instead of the scrapings from a vanilla bean and if so how much?

    • Reply
      December 15, 2014 at 11:50 am

      I believe you can use 1 tsp vanilla bean paste for 1 vanilla bean Kyra.

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