Easy vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies that are chewy and soft rather than cakey! These cookies are made with only 7 ingredients, come together in one bowl and don't need to be chilled before baking!
Why you'll love this recipe
TASTE: These vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are full of pumpkin flavor and pumpkin spice! I also loaded them with chocolate chips for good measure!
TEXTURE: Chewy and crisp edges with a soft gooey center. However, if you prefer cakey or crispy cookies, I have included some tips for you.
DIFFICULTY: They come together in one large bowl and you don't need a stand mixer!
Simple ingredients you'll need
Notes about the ingredients
Light brown sugar makes the cookies chewier than using regular granulated sugar! You can also use dark brown sugar or coconut sugar which will make the cookies more caramelly and darker in color.
Pumpkin purée. I tested this recipe with Libby's canned pumpkin and homemade pumpkin puree and they both work well. Pumpkin puree contains a lot of moisture which normally makes cookies cakey rather than chewy. However, I have a few simple tricks to make chewy cookies.
Vegan block butter, melted not at room temperature. Melted butter is more dense which leads to chewier cookies! You may use melted coconut oil but I recommend adding a generous pinch of salt to mimic the buttery flavor.
Chocolate chips and chunks. I used both for these cookies so we get lots of little bits of chocolate and larger pools of chocolate! However, you can use whichever you prefer.
Baking soda makes the cookies chewier and crispier compared to cookies using baking powder. You can see the difference in this helpful article by Handle the Heat.
The full list of ingredient quantities and instructions are in the gray recipe card at the bottom of this post.
My TOP TIP for chewy cookies
For chewier cookies, I recommend removing as much liquid as possible from your pumpkin puree.
To remove the excess moisture, you can either:
- Blot the pumpkin puree with disposable paper towels (pictured) OR
- Quickly heat the pumpkin puree in the microwave or in a small saucepan over medium heat. When the puree has thickened, it's good to go!
This cookie recipe will still work if you use your pumpkin puree as is, but your cookies will just have a cakey texture.
Tips for preparing the cookie dough
Since the butter is melted, you can make the cookie dough by hand!
First, mix all the wet ingredients to dissolve the sugar and ensure the pumpkin is evenly distributed.
Then add the dry ingredients and mix until just before it's combined. The dough may be a little sticky at this stage but don't worry - it'll firm up quickly!
Finally, fold through the dairy-free chocolate chips. Make sure the dough isn't too warm (from the melted butter) otherwise, it will melt the chocolate chips.
Shaping and baking the cookies
I recommend using an ice cream scoop to portion your cookie dough. It's easy to use and helps you make evenly-sized pumpkin chocolate chip cookies.
For slightly thick chewy cookies (like pictured), flatten the cookie dough balls slightly. For very thick cookies, leave the dough balls as is.
How to save the cookie dough for later
If you want to enjoy your vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies later, store them in an airtight container or bag. The cookie dough can be refrigerated for 2 days or frozen for a few months. If freezing, I recommend keeping them as balls or slightly flattened balls (depending on how thick you want your cookies).
The cookies can be baked straight from the fridge or freezer! They will take a few extra minutes to bake but are as delicious as fresh cookies.
How to store pumpkin cookies
The pumpkin content in these cookies helps keep them soft for days. They are a little softer than classic vegan chocolate chip cookies so, it's important to store them in an airtight container.
If you'd like to refresh these pumpkin cookies, pop one in the microwave for a few seconds. Or you can reheat a few in the oven at 210°F (100°C) for 5-10 minutes. You'll have fresh cookies in just minutes!
For cakey pumpkin cookies, don't blot the pumpkin and don't flatten the cookie dough balls before baking.
For crunchy cookies, blot the pumpkin as much as possible, press down the cookie dough balls before baking and cook them for an extra 3-5 minutes.
Yes! I recommend:
- pecans or walnuts for crunch
- white chocolate chips or chunks
- pumpkin seeds or rolled oats for healthier pumpkin chocolate chip cookies
- orange zest for a little kick
If you want to make cookies without chocolate chips, I recommend my vegan pumpkin cookies. They have more pumpkin puree for flavor which makes up for the lack of chocolate chips.
More vegan pumpkin desserts
Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1 ½ cup (285g) packed light brown sugar, dark brown sugar or coconut sugar (note 1)
- ¾ cup (170g) vegan butter, melted and cooled
- ½ cup (115g) pumpkin puree, canned or homemade, not pumpkin pie filling (note 2)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
- 2 ½ cups (315g) all-purpose plain flour, or gluten-free all-purpose flour (note 3)
- 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice, (note 4 for homemade blend)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt, if using unsalted butter
- 1 cups (170g) vegan chocolate chips, and/or chopped dairy-free chocolate, plus extra if desired
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Line 2-3 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Preparing the cookie dough:
- Add the sugar, butter, pumpkin puree and vanilla extract to a large mixing bowl. Whisk until well combined.
- Add the flour, spices and baking soda to your mixing bowl. Use a wooden spoon to mix until just before it's combined. The cookie dough should be a little sticky.
- Add the chocolate chips/chunks and fold through.
Shaping the cookies:
- Roll the dough into balls, about 2 tablespoons of dough each or a heaped mini cookie scoop. Arrange them on a baking sheet with about 2 inches (5cm) between each. For super thick cookies, leave the balls as is. For regular cookies (pictured), slightly flatten each ball. If desired, press more chocolate chunks/chips into the tops of each cookie.
Baking and storing the cookies:
- Bake the cookies for 13-15 minutes or until the edges appear cooked and golden brown. The centers will still look unbaked but the cookies will continue cooking as they cool down. If desired, press a few extra chocolate chips into the top of the cookies. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for 15 minutes then transfer them to a cooling rack.
- 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!
- Light brown sugar is the best for these cookies as it's not overpowering and keeps the cookies an orange color. Cookies made with dark brown or coconut sugar will be more caramelly and darker.
- For chewier pumpkin cookies, remove the excess moisture by blotting the pumpkin puree. Place the puree on a couple of sheets of disposable paper towels and blot with extra paper towels. See the blog post for pictures. I started with ¾ cup (170g) of pumpkin puree and blotted it to get ½ cup (115g).
- These cookies work well with King Arthur's Flour Measure for Measure flour (using the cup measurements). Readers have also successfully made these cookies with Bob's Red Mills 1:1 gluten-free flour blend however, I haven't tested it myself.
- To make your own pumpkin pie spice, combine 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon ground ginger and ¼ teaspoon ground cloves. If you don't have any of the spices, use more of the others.
This recipe was originally published in September 2021 and updated in 2022 for simplicity.
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