Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies.

These pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a MUST try this fall! Perfectly soft & chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies without being cakey.

These CHEWY pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a must try this fall! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Introducing this week’s pumpkin recipe. It’s a doozy. I am 100% in the autumn state of mind.  There is no turning back for me. Pumpkin coffee, harvest scented candles, apple pie, fuzzy socks. I can’t believe it’s already September, but I am truly loving every moment of it.

Earlier this week I compiled a little list of things I want to do this fall. I can’t wait to carve pumpkins and put them on our new patio out front.  Looking forward to pumpkin brews, boots, long walks, and fuzzy scarves. This is truly the best time of year. 🙂

To do this fall...

What are you looking forward to this fall season? Hopefully pumpkin cookies are on your list. I’m a little crazy when it comes to pumpkin cookies. I am not a fan of soft, cakey pumpkin cookies and pumpkin tends to make every single batch of cookies – cakey.  It’s like eating a pumpkin muffin top or something. Which is obviously delicious, but when I want a cookie – I want a cookie, not a muffin.

Still with me? This “cakey pumpkin cookie issue” has haunted me for 2 years.

Pumpkin cookie problems, I call it.  I made about 5 batches of cakey pumpkin cookies last year and experienced the same amount of cakey cookie batches this year as well.  I have been secretly making pumpkin cookies the entire summer, trying desperately to find the solution to my cakey cookie problem. But guess what? I solved it. I FINALLY made a chewy, soft pumpkin chocolate chip cookie that – gasp!! – doesn’t taste like a piece of pumpkin cake.

Don’t get me wrong, these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are still extremely soft. However, they are not soft like a piece of cake.

These CHEWY (not cakey!) pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a must try recipe from sallysbakingaddiction.com. You will love them!

Let’s discuss how these chewy (!!) pumpkin cookies came to life.

Pumpkin is, for lack of better words, gloppy. Doesn’t that sound appetizing? But seriously. It’s soft, it’s mushy, it’s full of moisture. It’s approximately 90% water by mass. Excessive moisture = cakey. Think about muffin batter. It’s a lot more wet than cookie dough, right?  Muffins are cakey. Cookies should not be cakey. So we want the cookie dough to be much drier than muffin batter. However, we don’t want to go throwing a bunch of flour into the cookie dough to soak up all the moisture. There’s a few tricks I learned along the way.

First, I took what I know from my tried and true Chewy Chocolate Chunk Cookies. Melted butter. Melted butter makes cookies ultra chewy, so I knew right off the bat that I wanted to melt the butter, not cream it, for my pumpkin cookies. Plus, the extra liquid from the melted butter helps cookies spread in the oven. Spreading means a crispier edge. And while these cookies aren’t crispy in the slightest, I still wanted to get as close to a crispy/chewy cookie as I could. So melted butter it is.

Second, I took a second thought about eggs. What is the purpose of eggs in a cookie recipe? They bind things together, they tenderize the baked cookie, and leave behind moisture.  I cut out the eggs completely.  After some experimenting, I learned that pumpkin can replace the eggs.

These CHEWY pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a must try this fall! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

I try not to add too many chocolate chips to the dough. Blasphemy, I know.  I want the pumpkin flavors to shine through and chocolate has a way of overpowering things.  1/2 cup of chocolate chips was the right amount.

The cookie dough will be a bit sticky. I chilled the dough for only about 30 minutes and suggest you do the same.  The cookies spread slightly in the oven, so when you roll the cookie dough into balls, slightly flatten them out.

These CHEWY pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a must try this fall! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

The most important part of the cookies’ journey to chewiness is to let them sit. Let them cool on the cookie sheet or on a wire rack for awhile. I found that the cookies get chewier over time. I baked a batch yesterday and notice that they are much chewier and softer on day two, even when left uncovered overnight. The pumpkin flavor is also much stronger on day two as well – similar to how banana bread’s flavor is glorified over the course of a day or two.

Because of this, these cookies are a GREAT make ahead recipe.

These CHEWY pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a must try this fall! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Seriously!! You have to try these cookies this pumpkin season. Chewy, chewy, chewy and oh-so-soft. These are my favorite pumpkin cookie and I am so happy (and quite relieved to tell ya the truth) to finally find the perfect recipe.

Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Perfectly soft & chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies without being cakey.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick or 115 grams) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 Tablespoons (86 grams) pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (190 grams) all-purpose flour (spoon & level)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg1
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves1
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice1
  • 1/2 cup (90 grams) semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until no brown sugar lumps remain. Whisk in the vanilla and pumpkin until smooth. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, toss together the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together with a large spoon or rubber spatula. The dough will be very soft.  Fold in 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips. They may not stick to the dough because of the melted butter, but do your best to have them evenly dispersed in the dough. Cover the dough and chill for 30 minutes, or up to 3 days. Chilling is mandatory.
  3. Take the dough out of the refrigerator. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  4. Roll the dough into balls, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough each. Slightly flatten the dough balls because the cookies will only slightly spread in the oven. Bake the cookies for 10 minutes. The cookies will look very soft and underbaked. Remove from the oven and press a few more chocolate chips onto the tops, if desired.  If you find that your cookies didn't spread much at all, flatten them out when you take them out of the oven.
  5. Allow the cookies to cool for at least 10 minutes on the cookie sheets before transferring to a wire rack.  The longer the cookies cool, the chewier they will be. I let them sit out for at least 1 hour before enjoying.  I find that their chewiness and pumpkin flavor is more prominent on day 2.

Make ahead tip: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.Allow to come to room temperature and continue with step 3. Baked cookies freeze well up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw.

Recipe Notes:

  1. Use 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice instead of nutmeg, cloves, and allspice, if desired. Don't leave out the cinnamon. I like to add a lot of spices to increase the cookies' spice/pumpkin flavor. Go by your spice preference.

 

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Q: What is on your fall check list? Anything you have planned? Anywhere you want to go? Anything you want to bake? 

CHEWY NOT CAKEY! Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies-- a chewy pumpkin cookie is hard to come by. This recipe nails it!

521 comments

  1. SO good —— “Chewy, soft pumpkin chocolate chip cookie that – gasp!! – doesn’t taste like a piece of pumpkin cake.” Loved these and how easy they are to make!  Another wonderful recipe.

  2. Thank you for this recipe, Sally!  They were delicious, soft and chewy!  My hubby loves these so much…best aphrodisiac ever, lol.  😉  I’ll be sharing this recipe for sure.  Happy Holidays!

  3. So perfect! I used tenderflake shortening rather than butter, and they turned out wonderful. Just make sure to let them sit for a while before you eat them. So soft and delicious!

  4. I live in scotland and dont think i can buy pumpkin puree could i substitute with grated butternut squash?

  5. OMG, these are to die for. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe! I have to make a double batch otherwise they are just gone in no time. The only thing is they were way too sweet for us, so I cut the sugar in half and only use a coconut one. Absolute favourite in my household!

  6. These are simply the best. Dough is so good. Cookies are perfect! I would recommend doubling every time because there aren’t enough in one batch!!!so glad I found this recipe! 2 years ago! 

  7. Aloha! I loved this recipe! Thank you. Though I thought it was funny you mentioned melted butter supposedly leading to spreading cookies with a crispier edge, but you melt and mix it, then put it in the fridge to firm up, resulting in non melted butter. Haha. Regardless they tasted good. You just have to manually press them for sure. 

  8. Sally, thanks for these delicious cookies. I tried them and loved them for their texture and taste. I have a cookie website http://www.thefinercookie.com. They are definitely worth posting. Just to let you know that I gave you full credit with a link back. Your site is wonderful. Keep up the good work. Here’s the link to my post. Please come and see. http://www.thefinercookie.com/cookie-recipes/pumpkin-chocolate-chip-cookies.

  9. Just made these, BEEYOUTIFUL cookies!!! I subbed ground cardamom for nutmeg as I was out of nutmeg (how does that HAPPEN???). Also reversed ratio of dark sugar to white so my cookies are a little darker. Pressed choco chips on top after they had cooled 5 mins post-baking. Stunning! Would post pic but don’t know how?

    Am MAKING myself wait till tomorrow to try as you said better with age! 😉

    Dudley in NC

  10. I am so excited to try this recipe! Have you drained your pumpkin before? I tried another no-egg pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe that called for draining canned pumpkin on paper towels. It did not have melted butter, so I will try your recipe with drained pumpkin. Hopefully that will intensify the pumpkin flavor. But do you think it will need more moisture?

    Thanks!

  11. These cookies are amazing ! My children and husband loved them. I used home made pumpkin purée instead of tinned and followed the rest of the recipe exactly . However, the cookies stuck to the baking parchment and crumbled when I tried to take them off. Anybody else face this problem ? Can you suggest why this happened and how to avoid this problem ? Was it the chocolate chips ?

  12. These were great!!! I have always disliked that pumpkin cookies are cakey!   Dally, you get me.  I just made them tonight and I LOVE them. I was surprised how much pumpkin flavor they have with only 6tbsp of pumpkin.  Also I thought the dough looked so small, but it worked out.  I would probably double this if I make it again, though, since it only makes 18cookies and I feel like most cookie recipes make 24-36. FIVE STARS!

  13. Ok now I’m seriously confused reading through these comments! How did everyone get delicious cookies? Mine looked the same coming out of the oven as they did going in. I left the second batch in for longer and they just didn’t cook AT ALL! Where am I going wrong? I have to admit I probably won’t try this recipe again but is be curious to know if you have any ideas. 

    • Well, the culprit was a broken oven. Oh boy. So readers, don’t try to bake these at 250. Believe it or not, they don’t turn out. 

  14. I found this recipe 2 years ago when I was trying to recreate a recipe similar to my grandmother’s. I made them for a meeting at work (I work for a large coffee chain), and they both paired well with out Thanksgiving coffee and were a huge hit all around! This is year three that I’m gearing up to make them again, so I guess that makes it a tradition! Thanks for creating this delicious recipe; I make sure to recommend your blog to anyone looking for both delicious and easy to access recipes! 

  15. I make these every fall, and my husband loves them! He asks for me to make these ones specifically! And I always get tons of compliments on them along with the white choc pumpkin snickerdoodle cookies! Thank you SO much for the awesome recipes!!!

  16. Just made these tonight with my 2 year old. They came out great! We made them a bit healthier by using 1/4 cup applesauce and cutting the butter in half. Thanks for sharing the recipe with us! Btw, has anyone tried using carob chips in place of the chocolate chips?

  17. I’m so excited to try these! I too dislike the cakey-ness of pumpkin cookies and always knew there would be a way to overcome that to make them like a REAL cookie! I’m trying these tonight! Thanks!

  18. On day one these are so good and soft… something happens on day 2 that makes them even better!! 

  19. Just made them but with gluten  free  flour. They turned out great  

  20. I’m really sad, these just did not work for me at all. Followed the recipe, chilled the dough for like 2 hours. Baked the first half of the dough on a silpat for 8 mins, they were SUPER not done…put back in for another 2 mins, didn’t want to overbake them since the directions say they’re supposed to look under done. Did the second half of the dough on parchment paper (I only have one silpat lol) and just went 10 minutes. I was never able to move them to a cooling rack…thought if I let them sit on the pan longer they’d set up. After about an hour, went to try them – still pretty much mush. I mean, they TASTED good (since there’s no eggs in the batter I felt fine eating them under baked) but pretty much felt like I was just eating cookie dough. Just to try to salvage them somewhat, I put them back in the oven after that to try to solidify them, but that pretty much just sucked all the moisture out entirely and now they’re back to being cake-like, dry cookies 🙁 I have no idea what went wrong in the first place!

    • Hi Alli! Next time, I would simply keep them in the oven for a few extra minutes the first time around. So sorry about that!

  21. We can’t get tinned pumpkin where I am, but I always wanted to try pumpkin recipes like this,
    is it fine to replace with some mashed up pumpkin? Kabocha/japonica ok? Would it be better to roast it if I did (if I boil it it might be too watery) I could also steam maybe

  22. This recipe is delicious. I loved it so much I doubled the next batch I made. I did however bake them for 12 minutes and they came out perfectly. I also did not flatten them because I like a puffed up cookie rather than a flatten cookie (just a personal preference). My family devoured these beauties within days. Thanks for the great recipe!

  23. Wonderful! Made these to take to work for Trick or Treating today, huge hit. I used 1/2 c Splenda brown sugar blend and 1/2c regular Splenda and used white whole wheat flour (hubby is diabetic- knew he’d want some too

  24. As a new baker, this was the first cookie recipe I have tried. The results are, I am either an excellent baker or this is a great recipe, hopefully both! Thanks for the extra tips such as browning the butter, ensuring the batter gets chilled, etc. I will most definitely be keeping thus recipe! 

  25. This recipe just didn’t cut it for me. The cookies tasted like flour! Hubby said they were not my best. My best calls for MORE pumpkin…1 cup pumpkin, and a few extra secrets. Melt (and brown the butter. Add the sugars (1 cup sugar & 1/2 cup brown sugar) to the butter and let it dissolve while the butter cools to room temp. Then add the full 1 CUP pumpkin. Add 1 egg and the vanilla to the butter mixture and beat 1 minute. Rest it for 3 minutes. Repeat 2 more times (Americans Test Kitchen can explain the science behind this). Mix the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients. Depending on your elevation, you will need to add more flour until you have a thick glue (but not full cookie dough) consistently. Add your chocolate chips and nuts as desired. Bake 350° for 15 minutes. Also…add more cinnamon. Definitely more cinnamon. Keep your dough cold while each batch is baking.

  26. I followed the recipe exactly and these cookies turned out like rubber. Still cakey but very unpleasant. Not a good kind of chewy but worse, rather like a soft tire. I added an egg and 1/4 cup of vegetable oil to try to salvage them before my boyfriend got home and I ended up with the old cake-like cookies that I was trying to avoid in the first place. Still, the second batch was more edible.

  27. I’ve been making these every fall for the past 3-4 years and I love them! I come to this blog post each time. Such a good recipe and everyone I share them with LOVES them! Thank you 🙂

  28. The proportions in this bake are exceptional! That being said, I found that I had to up the cook time to 15 minutes. The first batch I made with these specifications turned out wet after only 10 minutes of baking and I had to pop them back in for another 5. Definitely use this recipe, but raise the cooking time.

  29. Sally, I want to hug you.  Your recipes are winners every. single. time.  These cookies are no exception.  The only problem?  Not eating them all before our Thanksgiving celebration!  All hail the non-cake-like cookie!

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