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 have been on a quest for *THE* perfect pumpkin cookie recipe for years. I like my cookies crispy. And I love making pumpkin everything this time of year. But I’ve never been able to combine to the two. So while I’ve accepted that the perfect, crispy, pumpkin cookie may not exist, I will definitely be trying these!

  2. I’m so glad I found a recipe that dealt with the ‘cakey’ pumpkin cookie issue. I left out the chocolate chips and they were a bit under-sweetened for my taste so I think next time I’ll add a couple extra tbsp of brown sugar. Fantastic recipe.

  3. Okay, question!? I love this recipe. I want to make these for a friend who is a vegan. What would you substitute the butter with? This is the best recipe I think because we melt the butter and do not use eggs. Brilliant!

  4. These cookies prove again why your recipes are my favorite! I love that the recipes are measured out in grams (so helpful because I like to measure out ingredients with a kitchen scale most of the time rather than using measuring cups). I wanted to make these cookies vegan, so I used triple filtered coconut oil instead of butter and I could not be any happier with the results. So deliciously soft and chewy!! I’m definitely making these again and again throughout the season!

  5. these cookies are beautiful!!! i will always keep this recipe. i browned my butter quite a bit to give the cookies even more flavor, and i accidentally added in the chocolate while the dough was still quite warm, so some of it melted! D E L I C I O U S

  6. Well…mine were definitely cakey. I followed the recipe but I also tripled it (bake sale contribution) Wondering if I used bread flour instead of AP  They are delicious and chewy but they stayed mounded up and do have a cake like quality. Sigh…I have chef training but baking is remains my nemesis. 

  7. My 3-year-old is allergic to eggs, and we’ve been searching for special baked goods—cookies, quickbreads, cakes—to give him during preschool parties, birthdays, etc. This is the first recipe he’s really loved. Thanks so much!

    1. My liytle boy also has an egg allergy. Looking forward to tying this recipe for the same reason. We also love The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe (Ever) from Add a Pinch.

  8. Oh my goodness…..these are SO darn good!!! I made them vegan by using Earth balance butter and they turned out perfect. This will be my new fall go to cookie recipe! Yum!!!

  9. Is there a specific way you recommend cooking the pumpkin to make purée from fresh pumpkin? I’m in Australia and canned pumpkin isn’t really a staple here!!

  10. I love all things pumpkin— even moreso than chocolate! My hometown is where 85% of Libby’s Pumpkin is manufactured, and I only use Libby’s as it’s the best for all pumpkin recipes. I just made my own recipe for pumpkin cookies (which includes an egg), and am going to try yours for comparison. For something differently delicious, I also recommend trying white chocolate chips instead of semi sweet chocolate chips. I either stir them into the batter, or melt them down and spread/drizzle over the cookies! Happy Baking!- Kelle

  11. I have never loved any of the pumpkin cookies I have tried. They are always mushy-soft. I needed a good pumpkin cookie recipe. I tried yours…no eggs made sense to me. I am glad I did. They are excellent! I will definitely be making these again!

    1. Hi Natasha! Pumpkin pie filling has sweeteners, flavors, and spices added. The texture is completely different from pure pumpkin puree and it’s not recommended for these cookies.

    1. These are amazing!! I made a batch and after they cooled I tried one and first thought it didn’t have much pumpkin flavor nor were they very sweet. However a few hours later the pumpkin flavor did intensify and were even better the next day. Because I was worried that they weren’t sweet enough I proceeded to mix up a powdered sugar glaze icing and drizzled over them. The glaze were an excellent compliment but please know that after the flavor intensified the next day that they would’ve been just as amazing without the icing. I then made another batch of dough & put it in the freezer so I can quickly bake a batch for Thanksgiving.

  12. Made these yesterday and they were a huge success. Brought them to church and they all got eaten. I baked at a higher temperature than recommended for 12 mins and they were perfectly soft and chewy the next day. They were so perfect for fall, definitely going to make these again!

  13. Any thoughts on using coconut oil instead of butter? Or cutting down on the butter and adding something else in its place?

    1. Hi Kacie! You can use melted coconut oil instead of butter. The flavor will be different, but they’ll be excellent. Many readers have made this substitution and reported back with great results!

    1. Hi Pam! I do not suggest lining baking sheets with wax paper (the coating is not heat resistant) or greasing with nonstick spray (which will cause pumpkin cookies to over-spread). Parchment or silicone baking mats are best.

  14. Hi,
    Does the pumpkin purée need to be blotted??
    I was watching your sprinkled episode but realized they were different cookies!

  15. If you are into chocolate chip cookies with pumpkin, this is it. Really wonderful recipe, the cookies were gone in a few minutes!

    I am sure you can make it fully vegan, replacing the butter with coconut oil.

    As always, I reduced the sugar amount as I find American recipes always too sweet. I loved mine with 50 grams of brown sugar and 50 grams of regular sugar.

  16. Took my cookies out of the oven after 11 min. They’re almost mushy. So I baked the second pan a bit longer 13 minutes. Still mushy. The last pan I left in for 15 minutes. They appear better. Time will tell when they cool and I leave overnight. These cookies are very nutmeg forward. I use fresh and cut it down by half. Hoping they turn out okay and I dont have to toss them. Also hoping it’s not my first fail with your recipes. I could have done something wrong ….. I’ve been baking for 45 years and have never had cookies out if the oven so mushy. Fingers crossed

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