Since it's the season for it, we've been doing a lot of cooking and baking with pumpkin lately, and I have to say I really love it. Pumpkin on it's own has a pretty bland, boring, squashy flavor, but added to baked goods it adds a unique, pleasing flavor and a wonderful moisture that you can't get from a lot of other ingredients. Pumpkin pie is probably the most traditional use for the common orange squash, but every now and again it's really fun to incorporate it into other kinds of dishes -- like these pumpkin cookies!
Typically when you put pumpkin in a cookie, it turns out being rather cake-like and puffy. It's hard to achieve a chewy-in-the-middle, crispy-around-the-edges kind of cookie when you use pumpkin, but these cookies do it! This is hands down the best pumpkin cookie I've ever made or tried, and I really can't say enough good things about it.
The difference between this recipe and many other pumpkin cookie recipes is that it has no eggs. Generally, eggs are a leavener, but in this case they are omitted and it seems to make a big difference. The cookies are delicate coming out of the oven, sporting those same pumpkin cookie characteristics - a bit puffy, awfully tender, and just a tad cake-like, but as they set they settle a bit, and morph into this really lovely golden-brown cookie.
The pumpkin flavor is subtle, as is the flavor of all the fall spices, but I found that they really helped to enhance the overall flavor of the cookie. Where something like a molasses cookie takes a bunch of spices and makes each bite an explosion of spicey flavor, the spices in this recipe serve to elevate the flavor of the pumpkin, making for a wonderfully balanced cookie.
There is definitely an abundance of chocolate in here - if you aren't a huge chocolate chip fan (which I find virtually impossible!), you can reduce the amount, or you could go crazy and swap them out for butterscotch chips. I have another GREAT pumpkin recipe coming soon that features butterscotch chips with pumpkin, and it's definitely a tasty flavor pairing.
But I digress... these cookies are fantastic. If you have leftover pumpkin hanging around, or a hankering for some really great fall cookies, dive into this recipe! You won't regret it.
What's your favorite fall cookie recipe?
Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies adapted from Let's Dish
Ingredients 1 cup butter, softened 3/4 cup brown sugar 1 cup white sugar 2 teaspoons vanilla 1 cup canned pumpkin puree 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon cloves 1/4 teaspoon allspice 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 cup whole wheat flour 2 cups chocolate chips
Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl), cream together butter and both sugars on high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add vanilla and pumpkin and beat for about 3 more minutes, until pumpkin is completely incorporated and mixture looks smooth.
In a medium bowl, stir together salt, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice and both flours. Mix dry ingredients into pumpkin mixture just until incorporated. Stir in chocolate chips.
Drop by large rounded tablespoons onto ungreased cookies sheets. (I actually used a pan with a silpat and a cookie scoop, and it worked wonderfully.) Flatten the cookies slightly with the palm of your hand before baking (use a slightly damp hand if the dough is too sticky). Bake for 8-10 minutes or until cookies are just beginning to brown. Let cool on pan 5-10 minutes, then move to a rack and cool completely.