Best Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

I’m confident you’ll love these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! I worked hard to create a chewy pumpkin cookie that’s not cakey like most pumpkin cookie recipes. Omitting the egg, using melted butter, and blotting the pumpkin guarantee these pumpkin cookies taste like our favorite chewy chocolate chip cookies with brilliant pumpkin spice flavor.

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

Sometimes you just need a chocolate chip cookie, especially when pumpkin spice season– I mean fall– takes over.

Out of all my pumpkin recipes, you’re looking at one of the best. Originally published in 2013, these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are a constant hit with bakers around the world. I bake at least 3-4 batches each fall season and they ALWAYS put me in a fall state of mind. Sometimes I even replace the chocolate chips with chopped pecans or roll them in cinnamon sugar to yield white chocolate pumpkin snickerdoodles!

What are you looking forward to this fall season? We can add pumpkin cookies to this list!

To do this fall...

These Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Are:

  • Soft-baked, but not as soft as a piece of cake
  • Chewy
  • Egg-free
  • Buttery
  • Perfectly pumpkin spiced
  • Relatively quick– only 30 minutes to chill the dough

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Video


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

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

This is Not a Cakey Pumpkin Cookie

I have appreciation for all pumpkin cookies, but I definitely prefer chewy pumpkin cookies over cakey pumpkin cookies. You know the pumpkin cookies that taste like soft pieces of pumpkin cake? They’re obviously good, but when I want a cookie, I want a cookie. Not cake.

This “cakey pumpkin cookie issue” haunted me for years. I made about 10 different pumpkin cookie recipes, desperate to find the solution to my cakey cookie problem.

And guess what? I finally solved it. You see, pumpkin is soft, mushy, and full of moisture. In fact, pumpkin puree is approximately 90% water by mass. (That’s what helps make pumpkin bread so moist!) But for cookies, excessive moisture = cakey texture. Think about cake batter or muffin batter– it’s a lot more wet than cookie dough, right? We actually want cookie dough to be sturdier and drier to produce denser, chewier cookies.

My 4 Tricks to Apply in this Recipe

  1. Blot the Pumpkin: This first trick is actually optional, but I find it remarkably useful when I make pumpkin oatmeal cookies. Using a paper towel, blot out some of the pumpkin’s moisture so all that’s left is the flavor. See photo below. Use the blotted pumpkin in the cookie dough.
  2. Melted Butter: As you know from chewy chocolate chip cookies, melted butter makes cookies ultra chewy. Instead of creaming butter and sugars together, start with melted butter and whisk in the sugars. You don’t need a mixer!
  3. Skip the Eggs: What is the purpose of eggs in a cookie recipe? They bind ingredients together, tenderize the texture, and leave behind moisture. After some experimenting, I cut out the egg completely. Pumpkin replaces the eggs.
  4. Give it Time: Let the cookies cool a cooling rack for awhile. They’re delicious warm from the oven, but I find both their chewiness and flavor amplify over time. Sometimes I even leave them uncovered on the cooling rack overnight. The next day, they’re chewier and more flavorful. That being said, this is an awesome make-ahead dessert recipe!

Blotting pumpkin with paper towel

Chill for Only 30 Minutes

This pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough is a little sticky. Chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling into balls and baking. The cookies only spread slightly in the oven, so slightly flatten out the cookie dough balls with the back of a spoon before baking.

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

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

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

Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes
  • Yield: 18 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

I’m confident you’ll love these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! Omitting the egg, using melted butter, and blotting the pumpkin guarantee a chewier texture.


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick or 115g) unsalted butter, melted & slightly cooled
  • 1/4 cup (50g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6 Tablespoons (86g) pumpkin puree (see note)*
  • 1 and 1/2 cups (190g) 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
  • 3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 cup (90g) semi-sweet chocolate chips, plus a few extra for the tops

Instructions

  1. Whisk the melted butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together in a medium bowl until no brown sugar lumps remain. Whisk in the vanilla and blotted pumpkin until smooth. Set aside.
  2. Whisk the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and pumpkin pie spice together in a large bowl. 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. The chips may not stick to the dough because of the melted butter, but do your best to combine them. Cover the dough and chill for 30 minutes or up to 3 days. Chilling is mandatory.
  3. Remove dough from 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. Using the back of a spoon, slightly flatten the tops of the dough balls. (Without doing so, the cookies may not spread.)
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges appear set. The cookies will look very soft in the center. Remove from the oven. If you find that your cookies didn’t spread much at all, flatten them out with the back of a spoon when you take them out of the oven. Press a few chocolate chips into the tops of the warm cookies, if desired.
  6. Cool cookies on the baking sheets for at least 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.  The longer the cookies cool, the even better they taste! The flavor gets stronger and the texture becomes chewier. I usually let them sit, uncovered, for several hours before serving. Chewiness and pumpkin flavor are even stronger on day 2.
  7. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Allow to come to room temperature, then 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. Here are my tips for how to freeze cookie dough.
  2. Pumpkin: Squeeze as much of the moisture out of the pumpkin puree as you can before adding it to the cookie dough. I simply squeeze the puree with paper towels. See photo in the post for a visual. This will help produce a less cakey cookie. Less moisture is a good thing here! Measure 6 Tablespoons AFTER the pumpkin has been squeezed/blotted. Do not use pumpkin pie filling.
  3. Pumpkin Pie Spice: If desired, you can use 1/4 teaspoon each: ground nutmeg, ground allspice, and ground cloves instead of pumpkin pie spice. If doing so, don’t leave out the cinnamon.
  4. Bigger Batch: Cookie recipe can easily be doubled by doubling each ingredient. Chill the cookie dough for 45 minutes.
  5. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: chocolate chip pumpkin cookies

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

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

670 Comments

  1. 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!

  2. 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 ?

  3. 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!

  4. 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. 

    1. 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. 

  5. 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! 

  6. 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!!!

  7. 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?

  8. 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!

  9. 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

  10. 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!

  11. 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

  12. 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! 

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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 🙂

  16. 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.

  17. 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!

  18. I tried these and liked them. I used coconut oil in place of butter. Maybe that’s why my dough was very dry so I kept adding more pumpkin purée until I achieved the right texture. They came out almost like a very moist muffin cookie. I’ll make again. Thank you!

  19. These are the best pumpkin cookies!! I make them all year long, and everyone always raves about them. My two biggest tips are: chill the dough the full time and DON’T overbake. Thanks for sharing, Sally!

  20. Cold dough and par-baking are the keys to getting these cookies chewy! Slightly pressing down the dough ball was sage advice. Thanks for a crowd-pleasing recipe!

      1. Wait, I just made the dough and it is chilling. Should I have blotted the pumpkin? It doesn’t state that anywhere in the recipe!

      2. I recommend blotting if using fresh pumpkin puree. For canned, it’s typically fine (without blotting) for this recipe.

      3. They turned out perfectly, best texture of any pumpkin cookie I’ve ever had. Kudos to you for figuring out the secret to chewy pumpkin cookies!

  21. Oh My Goodness! Deliciousness! My friend made these for our ladies church group on Sunday and we were all LOVING them sooooooo much! I am super picky about my cookies and I was in heaven with the texture and flavor (not too pumkiny). I got the link to your recipe and am baking them for my family today! YUM! Thank you!!!!

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