Whether you need a quick dessert for a work function or something sweet to satisfy your own craving, these pumpkin cookies are beautifully easy to make and pair well with a simple cream cheese frosting!
I’m not a huge pumpkin spice kinda gal. But you can bet that once a year I do indulge in pumpkin spice season just a little…. Maybe a latte here, or plenty of pumpkin cookies there!
Pumpkin cookies are so quick and easy to whip up. Full of pureed pumpkin and topped with cream cheese frosting… Ooh! Life doesn’t get much better!
Before you get too deep in to baking with pumpkin. There are a few do’s and don’ts you should know about baking with pumpkin.
Tips for Baking with Pureed Pumpkin
Don’t Use It as a Substitute for Sugar and Butter
As with each cooking or baking recipe, there is a method behind the madness of each measurement you make. Every single recipe has their own specific ratio of ingredients.
This ratio of ingredients is balanced out just so, so there is adequate moisture to the baked good, enough leavener to make the product raise, enough sweetness to satisfy a sweet tooth, etc.
Pumpkin puree does not have any sugar, butter, or spices pre-mixed into it. So substituting pumpkin puree to compensate for sugar, etc. will leave you very disappointed in your end product.
Avoid Using Pumpkin Pie Filling as a Substitute for Pumpkin Puree
Tin canned pumpkin pie filling is an already pre-mixed product. Being a pre-mixed product, pumpkin pie filling already has plenty of sugar and spices mixed into the pumpkin puree.
Adding in a product that already contains it’s own sugar and spices can throw off the ratio of those ingredients in your recipe.
Some recipes you definitely don’t want extra sugar and spice in! Or if you’re trying to re-create a skinny version of a recipe with limited sugar, then you will definitely want to make sure you don’t have extra sugar added in!
Plus each pre-made pumpkin pie filling is different! That means a totally different combination of sugar, spices, etc. for each brand of pumpkin filling. But that also means, if you’re using pre-made pumpkin pie filling that you’ll need to adjust accordingly!
Don’t Under Bake It
Regardless of the pumpkin recipe you’re baking, you will always be fighting against the additional moisture of the pumpkin puree.
What does that mean for your baking project?
Most likely extra baking time to make sure everything is cooked through completely.
When baking with pumpkin puree in a recipe, try and follow the baking time and temperature as best as you can.
As a double check, insert a toothpick or knife into the thickest part of the muffin, pie, etc. If the toothpick comes out clean, everything is properly baked. If not, bake it a few extra minutes.
Ingredients You’ll Need to Make the Cookies
First things first….pumpkin. You will need some pumpkin puree for this recipe. Whether it’s fresh, frozen, or tin canned, you’ll need some pumpkin.
Check the link HERE to make your own fresh or frozen pumpkin puree!
Other ingredients you’ll want to make sure you have on hand are spices. All spice, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon. You will need small amounts of all of these spices for your cookies!
Besides those specific must haves, everything else is fairly basic pantry supplies:
- Brown sugar
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- All-Purpose Flour
For the Frosting
This cream cheese frosting is as simple as they come, folks! I promise! This is a super multi-use cream cheese frosting that can be used for many different recipes!
What you’ll need for it….
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Cream cheese
How to Make the Cookies
To make the cookies you’ll first need to cream together the softened butter and sugars. By mixing these ingredients together it ensures that there is even dispersal of sugar throughout the batter. It also helps to increase the overall volume of the batter. This means you end up with a lighter textured cookie or cake!
Then add in your wet ingredients such as egg, pumpkin, vanilla extract. Mix everything thoroughly. In a separate bowl, mix together all of your dry ingredients. By mixing these together separately it makes sure that all dry ingredients are evenly dispersed, just like with the sugar and butter.
Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mixing after each addition of dry ingredients until well combined and no lumps in the dough.
Be sure to chill the dough prior to baking for about 20-30 minutes. This helps to firm up the dough to create tablespoon sized cookie dough balls for baking!
Bake the tablespoon sized cookie balls at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 12-13 minutes or until the tops of the cookies are set. Let the cookies cool to room temperature before frosting!
NOTE: What Does it Mean for a Cookie to be Set?
A cookie is set if the edges of the cookie are firm or dry to the touch. This also means the top of the cookie doesn’t look wet. It should feel like raw cookie dough if you gently touch it with your.
Plus you also need to keep in mind that cookies will continue to bake on the hot pan for a few minutes when removed from the oven until the pan cools.
Fall is a good time to try new recipes and get your own fill of pumpkin spice and everything nice!
Hungry for More?
Cream Cheese Pumpkin Cookies
- ½ cup butter softened
- ¼ cup brown sugar packed
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- ½ cup pumpkin puree
- ¼ tsp all spice
- ¼ tsp nutmeg
- ¼ tsp cloves
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
Cream Cheese Frosting:
- ½ 8-oz block cream cheese
- 2-3 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-2 tsp milk
For the Pumpkin Cookies:
- Cream together the softened butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until well mixed and fluffy.
- Add the egg, pumpkin puree, and vanilla extract. Mix until combined.
- In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Slowly add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Mix well after each addition of dry ingredients until well combined with no lumps.
- Chill dough in the fridge for 20-30 minutes.
- Drop chilled dough by the 1-2 Tbsp. sized ball onto a greased baking sheet.
- Bake at 350° Fahrenheit for 12-13 minutes or until the tops of the cookies are set. Allow cookies to cool to room temperature before frosting.
For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
- In a medium sized bowl, mix the cream cheese and vanilla extract with a hand held or stationary mixer until the cream cheese is fluffy.
- Slowly add in the powdered sugar by the ½ – 1 cup. Mix well with the mixer after each addition.
- After each addition of powdered sugar, add in ½ tsp of milk and combine.
- Add in enough powdered sugar until it reaches your desired consistency.
- Frost cooled cookies with cream cheese frosting and sprinkle with ground cinnamon. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 weeks.