Homemade Girl Scout Samoa Cookies

Shortbread Cookie

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
up to 2 TBSP milk

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Mix in flour, baking powder and salt at a low speed, followed by the vanilla and milk, adding in the milk as needed to make the dough come together without being sticky (it’s possible you might not need to add milk at all). The dough should come together into a soft, not-too-sticky ball. Add in a bit of extra flour if your dough is very sticky.

Roll the dough (working in two or three batches) out between pieces of wax paper to about 1/4-inch thickness (or slightly less) and use a 1 1/2-inch cookie cutter to make rounds (I use a glass cup), then cut a smaller center hole if you would like your cookies to match the look of the original Samoa cookie (I use the end of a cake decorator tip but this step is not necessary).

Place cookies on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes, until bottoms are lightly browned and cookies are set. Allow cookies to cool completely.

3 cups shredded coconut (sweetened or unsweetened)
12-oz caramel
8 oz. dark or semisweet chocolate (chocolate chips are ok)

Preheat oven to 300. Spread coconut evenly on a parchment-lined baking sheet (preferably one with sides) and toast 10 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until coconut is golden. Cool on baking sheet, stirring occasionally. Set aside.
While cookies cool, melt chocolate in a double boiler. Once cookies are completely cool, spread a thin layer of chocolate on the base of each cookie and place chocolate side up to cool completely.

Warm caramel, then fold in toasted coconut with a spatula. Using a spoon or small offset spatula, spread topping on cooled cookies, using about 2-3 tsp per cookie. Reheat caramel for a few seconds in the microwave if it gets too firm to work with.
Transfer all remaining chocolate (or melt a bit of additional chocolate, if necessary) into a ziplock bag with the corner snipped off and drizzle finished cookies with chocolate. Let chocolate set completely before storing in an airtight container. Freezes well. Makes about 3 1/2-4 dozen cookies.

These cookies cure my craving for Samoa cookies- they taste amazing! However, they are a TON of work. Lots of steps and lots of waiting around for each layer to cool. To speed the process I suggest making the caramel a few days earlier (or earlier that day).

If you are simply looking for the Samoa taste and not trying to create a look-a-like cookie I recommend the following changes:

Skip cutting out a hole in the center of the cookie
Skip toasting the coconut
Frost the top with chocolate (instead of the bottom)
Top the chocolate with 2-3 tsp. of the caramel coconut mixture
Skip drizzling chocolate on top

I made a batch with this simplified method and found it was much faster to assemble, easier to eat and tasted just as good.

These are also good with a sugar cookie base, but for an authentic tasting Samoa, stick with the shortbread cookie.

Recipe adapted from www.bakingbites.com


emily said...

I can't WAIT to try these!!!

The Hillmans said...

Samoas are my favorite! I can't wait to try these!

Astrid said...

I would SO be making these if anyone else in my family liked coconut... *sigh*

They look amazing.