These chewy pumpkin cookies have the perfect amount of pumpkin spice and each bite truly melts in your mouth. With chewy centers and spiced sugar topping, you will not believe how delicious these fall cookies are!
If you've been looking for a pumpkin cookie recipe that will give you cookies that are super chewy and not the least bit cakey, look no further! These pumpkin cookies are for all the chewy cookie fans out there. They have the absolute best texture and "mouth feel". Each bite is truly magical and I can't wait for you all to make these cookies this fall! I know you'll love them!
Why You'll Love These Chewy Pumpkin Cookies
Chewy not cakey pumpkin cookies. Pumpkin is so HARD to get right in cookies. Because of it's moisture content, it tends to make baked goods extra extra moist. This is great for cakes, but not for cookies. Usually pumpkin cookies are soft and cakey, but these cookies are the exact opposite. They are chewy and each bite truly melts in your mouth. There is a very particular way you have to make these cookies to achieve a chewy centered cookie. Be sure to read each step to find out how!
Perfect amount of pumpkin spice. The dough is flavored with the perfect amount of pumpkin pie spice and then is rolled in spiced sugar before baking. Each bite will taste like fall!
They're so easy to make. These cookies are simple. They require no chill time which means you can make them in under 30 minutes!
Ingredients for Chewy Pumpkin Cookies
- Butter- make sure it's unsalted and really softened
- Brown Sugar- we're using only brown sugar to keep these cookies extra chewy
- Egg Yolks- make sure they're room temperature
- Vanilla- as always I recommend vanilla bean paste for the best flavor, but extract will work perfectly fine as well
- Canned Pumpkin Puree- I recommend using Libby's canned pumpkin. It's the best pumpkin to use because almost all cans of it I've used have had the same consistency and are not too wet.
- Flour- just the right amount of all purpose flour helps give these cookies their perfect texture
- Pumpkin Pie Spice- a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger and cloves is used to bring warm fall flavors to these cookies
- Baking Soda & Baking Powder- equal parts are used to just slightly leaven these cookies
- Salt- Brings out all the flavors in these cookies
- Granulated Sugar- the cookie dough will get rolled in spiced sugar just before baking
Step By Step Instructions
STEP ONE: Start by drying your pumpkin. This may seem weird but it is the only way these cookies will bake properly and not turn out cakey! Spread your pumpkin on a plate and place a paper towel over the top. Lightly press to absorb the liquid. Repeat the step at least four more times. (It needs to reduce down to ¼ cup from ½ cup). Set aside.
STEP TWO: In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
STEP THREE: In a large bowl cream the softened butter and brown sugar together with an electric mixer.
STEP FOUR: Add in the egg yolks and vanilla and mix for one minute until pale and fluffy.
STEP FIVE: Add in the pumpkin and combine.
STEP SIX: Mix in the dry ingredients.
STEP SEVEN: Scoop the dough into 18 balls and roll them in the spiced sugar. Bake the cookies and then let cool slightly before enjoying!
See recipe below for the complete measurements.
Why did my cookies come out cakey? The number one reason this could happen is because not enough moisture was removed from the pumpkin. It absolutely has to be pressed with paper towels prior to being added to the batter or the cookies will not bake properly. Wet cookie dough equals cakey cookies. The pumpkin should be dry enough that it goes from being ½ cup dried down to ¼ cup. Hardly any liquid should transfer onto a paper towel once it has been dried enough. Like stated above, try to use Libby's canned pumpkin as almost all cans of it have the same consistency and are not too wet. Other brands of pumpkin can be really soupy in my opinion.
Can I use fresh pumpkin puree? I would say no because fresh pumpkin puree tends to be even more liquidy than canned. It may cause the cookies to bake incorrectly.
Can I chill the dough? Yes! Just make sure to bring the dough to room temperature before baking.
How do I store these cookies? Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to three days, or freeze them for up to two weeks!
Measure your flour properly. This is always my #1 baking tip. Do not ever scoop a measuring cup into your flour. This will always lead to using too much flour. (Trust me, I've learned the hard way that I need to measure properly!) Instead, sprinkle spoonfuls of flour into your measuring cup and swipe excess flour off with the back of a knife. Or better yet, weigh your flour. 1 cup of flour equals 125 grams.
When the cookies are straight out of the oven, go around them with a circular cookie cutter to give them a perfect circular shape!
Make sure to beat your eggs into the butter and sugar until the mixture is pale in color and fluffy, not just until it's combined. Doing this will help give you perfectly textured cookies.
Other Recipes to Try
Chewy Pumpkin Cookies
For the Spiced Sugar
- ¼ cup (50 g) granulated white sugar
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
For the Pumpkin Cookies
- ¾ cup (168 g) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup (220 g) light brown sugar, packed
- 2 egg yolks, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ cup (122 g) canned pumpkin puree Libby's works best
- 1 ¾ cups (219 g) all purpose flour, spooned and leveled
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
For the Spiced Sugar
- In a small bowl mix the granulated sugar and pumpkin pie spice together. Set aside.¼ cup (50 g) granulated white sugar, ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
For the Pumpkin Cookies
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Start by drying your pumpkin. (This step is not optional. The cookies will not bake properly if you skip this step.) Spread the canned pumpkin on a plate and lightly press with a paper towel to absorb the excess liquid. Repeat the step at least four more times. The pumpkin should be dry enough that it goes from being ½ cup dried down to just about a ¼ cup. Hardly any liquid should transfer onto a paper towel once it has been dried enough.(Like stated above, try to use Libby's canned pumpkin as almost all cans of it have the same consistency and are not too wet.) Then set aside.½ cup (122 g) canned pumpkin puree
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.1 ¾ cups (219 g) all purpose flour, spooned and leveled, 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon salt
- In a large bowl cream the softened butter and brown sugar together with an electric mixer on high speed for 1-2 minutes until light and fluffy.¾ cup (168 g) unsalted butter, softened, 1 cup (220 g) light brown sugar, packed
- Add in the egg yolks and vanilla and mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 1-2 minutes.2 egg yolks, at room temperature, 2 teaspoon vanilla
- Add in the pumpkin and mix on medium-low speed to combine.
- Add in the dry ingredients and mix on low speed just until combined.
- Scoop the dough with a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop, and roll them into balls. Then roll the dough balls in the spiced sugar. (If the dough is too "sticky" chill it in the fridge for 10 minutes, then proceed.)
- Place the cookie dough balls at least 2 inches apart on the baking sheets. (I usually bake 6 at a time.)
- Bake the cookies for 12-14 minutes. (12 minutes for really chewy centers, 14 minutes for a slightly crispier cookie). When the cookies are done baking the centers will be puffy. As they cool the centers will fall and the cookie will get "wrinkly".
- Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer them to a cooling rack to finish cooling. They are best enjoyed when they have cooled for at least 15 minutes!