No, you did not misread the title of this post. These are indeed Everything Bagel Shortbread Cookie Sandwiches, but before you turn your nose and call them weird, I think it’s worth mentioning that while they technically are cookie sandwiches, they’re not like the cookie sandwiches we’re used to around this time of year. These aren’t sweet at all. You won’t find sugar in the ingredient list because that would be weird, and I’m not some kind of animal. The dough is a savory shortbread, flavored with parmesan, salt and pepper and they’re filled with a [store-bought] garlic and herb cream cheese, and topped with my favorite everything bagel seasoning blend. They were inspired by these doughnuts I made a while back, and I believe they’re going to steal the show at everyone’s cookie exchange this year. Believe in me. I won’t steer you wrong.
This is a very easy recipe, and as you’ll notice later on the ingredient list is short. That’s what makes them so great. That and the flavor of course. Let’s start by making the shortbread dough. I want to reiterate that these are a savory cookie and not sweet at all. Don’t let the word “cookie sandwich” scare you off. Combine the flour, parmesan, salt and pepper in a food processor.
**Note: You can make this in a stand mixer as well, and even by hand, but the food processor makes it much easier!**
Pulse the dry ingredients a few times to evenly combine. Add the softened butter and pulse until the butter breaks down and the dough comes together to form a ball.
Dump out the dough onto a work surface and bring it together the form a smooth dough. Cut it in half and then wrap each half in plastic wrap. Chill for at least 30 minutes.
**Tip: You can make this dough ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until ready to use. The longer it sits in the fridge the firmer it’ll get. You’ll want to let it come down to room temperature before rolling out.**
Working with one half of dough at a time, roll out on a well-floured work surface to about 1/4-inch thick. Cut into circles using a 2-inch cookie cutter. Place the cookies on a baking sheet lined wrapped with parchment paper. Bring together the scraps and re-roll again.
**Tip: Just make sure you have an equal amount of cookies because you’re going to sandwich them together and you’ll need two for each.**
Cut out a hole in the center of half of the cookies (using a smaller circle cutter). Brush those with egg wash and sprinkle liberally with everything bagel seasoning. Bake until lightly golden brown in a preheated 350 degree F oven for about 15 to 18 minutes.
**Tip: I buy the everything bagel seasoning from Trader Joe’s but if you can’t find it, you can just make it yourself. Combine equal parts granulated garlic, granulated onion, black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, poppy seeds, salt and black pepper.**
Once the cookies have cooled completely, top the bottom halves with about a tablespoon of garlic herb cream cheese. Filling the cookies is a lot easier if the cream cheese is softened.
**Tip: I transfer the cream cheese to a piping bag with a plain circle tip to make filling the cookie sandwiches easy as can be! If you don’t have a piping bag, you can just spread it with a small offset spatula or butter knife.**
These cookies are best eaten the day you make them, but if you have any leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. They need to be refrigerated because of the cream cheese. If you don’t want to eat them cold the next day, you can let them come to room temperature before eating.
I used a garlic and herb cream cheese to give them an even more robust flavor, but plain cream cheese or whatever your favorite flavor is will work just the same. Just pick up whatever you like from the store!
If you want to make another savory bagel cookie variation, you can skip the everything bagel seasoning and just top with sesame seeds and you’ll have a “sesame seed bagel,” or you can sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese and chopped up pickled jalapeño and have a “cheese bagel!”
I think these cookie sandwiches are a must at this year’s cookie swap, and if you’re a fan of everything bagels, just like me, then you don’t want to miss out on these. You’ll probably have to convince your family and friends to give them a try and reassure them that they’re not sweet at all, but once they try them, they’ll be hooked!
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup grated parmesan cheese
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 large egg, whisked
- ¼ cup everything bagel seasoning
- 1 cup garlic and herb cream cheese, softened
- Combine the flour, parmesan, salt and pepper in a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the dough comes together into a ball. Transfer to a work surface and shape into a ball. Cut in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Chill for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Working with one piece of dough at a time, place on a well-floured work surface and roll out to about ¼-inch thick. Using a 2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out the dough into circles and place on one of the prepared baking sheets, about ½-inch apart from each other. They don't spread out, so you can place them close together. Bring together the scraps, re-roll and cut out more circles. You'll want an even number of cookies since you'll be sandwiching them together. Using a smaller circle cutter cut out a hole in the center of half of the cookies. Set aside. Repeat with the second half of dough and place the cookies on the second prepared baking sheet.
- Brush the tops with egg wash and sprinkle liberally with everything bagel seasoning. Bake until lightly golden brown, about 15 to 18 minutes, rotating the pans from top to bottom, front to back to ensure even baking. Remove from the oven and let cool completely on the baking sheets.
- Transfer the cream cheese to a large piping bag, fitted with a plain circle tip, and pipe out about a tablespoon onto the bottom halves. Then place the top halves gently on top of the cream cheese. Serve immediately. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Enjoy!