The easiest vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! One bowl, 7 ingredients and no chilling time. Chewy and crisp edges, a soft center and everything you want from cookies!
These cookies are the perfect snack or dessert for Fall (Autumn) or Thanksgiving. Alternatively, check out my popular fudge stuffed chocolate chip cookies.
Why are these the BEST vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies?!
FLAVOR AND TEXTURE: Crispy and chewy like classic vegan chocolate chip cookies BUT packed with pumpkin flavor! Unlike many vegan pumpkin cookies, these are not cakey!
DIFFICULTY: Easy to make and comes together in just 1 bowl. You only need common pantry ingredients to make these vegan cookies!
Ingredients you'll need
Light brown sugar makes these cookies slightly chewier yet it doesn't overpower the other ingredients. These cookies can also be made with dark brown sugar or coconut sugar, though they add more caramel flavor and will make the cookies darker in color. Granulated cane sugar will also work but it has less flavor than brown sugar.
Vegan block butter, ideally one which is around 80% fat. The high fat will help the cookies turn crispy and chewy!
You may use vegan spreadable margarine BUT it will make your cookies spread more and cake-like! If you do use margarine, I'd recommend chilling the cookie dough in the fridge for 30 minutes before baking!
Pumpkin puree (canned or fresh homemade) which has been reduced. See my TOP tip in the next section.
Baking soda makes the cookies more chewy and crispy compared to using baking powder. You can see the difference between cookies made with baking soda and powder in this helpful article by Handle the Heat.
A complete list of ingredients, quantities and instructions are in the gray recipe card at the bottom of this post.
TOP TIP: reducing the pumpkin puree
Pumpkin puree is packed with moisture which often leads to cookies with a cakey texture.
To make crispy and chewy cookies, I'd strongly recommend removing as much moisture as possible from your pumpkin puree. You can do this by:
- Patting the pumpkin puree with disposable paper towels.
- Quickly cooking the pumpkin puree in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until a lot of the liquid has evaporated and you get a thick spreadable puree! If in doubt, the thicker the puree, the better :).
Your final pumpkin puree should be like a thick paste.
If your pumpkin puree (canned or homemade) is already very thick, you don't have to reduce it!
How to make vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies
The cookie dough comes together in just one bowl!
Add the sugar, butter, pumpkin and vanilla extract (your wet ingredients) to a mixing bowl and beat until combined. For these cookies, we're combining sugar with the wet ingredients to help it dissolve!
For ease, I'd recommend using an electric hand beater or stand mixer to mix the ingredients. However, if you don't own one, you can simply use a spatula and some arm power!
The most important thing for this step is to make sure there are no more chunks of butter. We don't want any unmixed bits of butter in our final cookies!
Then add the flour, pumpkin pie spice and baking soda (your dry ingredients) and mix until just combined.
At first, the mixture may look a little crumbly but it'll eventually come together. You should be able to pinch the dough between two fingers without it breaking.
If your dough is too dry, add 1 tablespoon of water and mix again. If your dough is too wet, add 1 tablespoon of flour and mix again.
Once the dough comes together, add your dairy-free chocolate chips. Then fold them through!
Shaping and baking the cookies
I'd highly recommend using an ice cream scoop to portion your vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. An ice cream scoop is easy to use and makes evenly sized cookies.
I used a mini ice cream scoop and heaped each scoop with the cookie dough (making each cookie around 42g).
Scoop the cookie dough on a lined baking sheet and FLATTEN each ball with your hands or the back of a spoon. I flattened my cookies to 2 inches (~5 cm) wide which spread and baked into perfect-sized cookies.
If you don't flatten the dough, the cookies will bake as round balls... delicious, but not really what we're going for!
Alternatively, you can chill or freeze the cookie dough balls for some later midnight snacking.
Unfortunately, my cookies never last that long haha!
Best way to store these cookies
These pumpkin cookies have a little more moisture than regular chocolate chip cookies so it's important to store them in an airtight container. Like all cookies, these will soften over time!
To refresh your cookies, you can reheat them in the oven. Bake them on a baking tray for 5-10 minutes at around 100°C (210°F). You'll have a fresh dessert in just minutes!
TIP: You know when you buy a packet of crackers and sometimes it comes with little inedible packets of silica? Place a couple of those packets inside your container with the pumpkin cookies. It'll help the cookies stay a little crispier for longer!
Common questions and answers
I haven't tried making these gluten-free but they may work with a high-quality 1:1 gluten-free flour blend.
I haven't tested this myself so can't vouch for results. However, if you do, I'd recommend adding a generous pinch of salt to mimic the flavor of butter.
Yes! I'd recommend:
- pecans or walnuts for crunch
- pumpkin seeds or oatmeal for healthier pumpkin chocolate chip cookies
- orange zest for a little kick
More vegan pumpkin desserts
Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
- ¼ cup (50g) pumpkin puree, weighed after being reduced/patted dry (note 1)
- ¾ cup (145g) light brown sugar, dark brown sugar or coconut sugar (note 2)
- ½ cup (115g) vegan butter, room temperature (note 3)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
- 1 ¼ cup (155g) all-purpose plain flour
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice, or ½ tsp cinnamon, ¼ tsp nutmeg and ¼ tsp ginger powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of any good quality salt, if using unsalted butter
- 1 cup (100g) roughly chopped vegan chocolate or chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Or skip this step and save the cookie dough for later (note 4).
Preparing the pumpkin puree:
- If your pumpkin puree is very thick and not watery, you can use it as is. If your pumpkin puree has a lot of moisture, lightly pat it with disposable kitchen towels until it's dry. Alternatively, heat the pumpkin puree in a small saucepan for 5 minutes. Reduce the puree until some of the water evaporates and the puree thickens.
Preparing the pumpkin cookie dough:
- Add the sugar, butter, pumpkin puree and vanilla extract to a large mixing bowl. Mix until there are no more chunks of butter.
- Add the flour, spices and baking soda to your mixing bowl. Mix until just combined. The mixture is ready when you can pinch it between two fingers and it doesn't crumble. If your dough is too dry, add 1 tablespoon of water and mix again. If your dough is too wet, add 1 tablespoon of flour and mix again.
- Add the chocolate chips to your cookie dough and fold until combined. If some of the chocolate chips don't 'stick' to your dough, don't worry. We can stick them back onto the cookies later!
Shaping the vegan pumpkin cookies:
- Using a small/regular ice cream scoop, portion your cookie dough into balls. Slightly flatten each ball with your hands so each cookie is around 2 inches (5 cm) wide. If any chocolate chips are remaining in the bowl, simply press them into the surface of your cookies.
- Arrange your cookie dough balls on 2 lined baking sheets. Leave around 2 inches (5 cm) between each cookie as they will spread a little.
Baking and storing the cookies:
- Bake the vegan pumpkin cookies for 12-15 minutes or until they are slightly golden brown. When you take them out of the oven, they will continue baking on the baking sheet!
- Enjoy the cookies warm or store them in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Although, these cookies never last that long in my house!
- Make sure you don't use pumpkin pie puree! Before reducing, my pumpkin puree was about ⅓ cup (65g).
- Light brown sugar is the best for these cookies as it has the best flavor and allows the color of the pumpkin to shine. However, you can still use dark brown sugar or coconut sugar. Your cookies will still be delicious but your cookies will be darker.
- Vegan margarine spread will also work. However, your cookie dough will be softer and your cookies will be thinner and cakier. To compensate for this, chill your dough in the fridge for 30 minutes before baking.
- Alternatively, you can shape your cookie dough then freeze or refrigerate them in an airtight container or wrap them in plastic. To bake the cookies, you don't need to preheat the oven. Just place one or more balls of cookie dough on a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden.
This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you.