Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

by Caterina Borg, Good Food Gourmet on November 28, 2011


You know it’s that special time of the year when the scent of burnt embers fill the air from neighboring fireplaces and that crisp chill in the morning has each of us pulling out all of our woolly socks and scarves that have been long packed away.

As I walk through the grocery stores, the smells of sugar and spice overcome my senses and my mind wanders to all kinds of Holiday desserts. My favorite desserts during this time of the year is anything made with pumpkin. The natural moisture lends such a great texture to delicious cakes, especially this pumpkin snack cake with cream cheese swirl recipe that I recently fell in love with.

Recently, I had been experimenting with pumpkin chocolate chip cookies to make for the Holiday season because many of my customers were asking for them, and after making them a few times, I ran into a few issues that others seemed to be having also. Many of the recipes I tried used pumpkin puree which gave the final result a more cakey texture, which is fine if you want cake or if you’re making whoopie pies….but my thinking was that if I was trying to make a cookies,  the final product should taste like a cookie…

Time after time I got the same result and ended up going back to the drawing board for more research. Then, I came across a few recipes that used pumpkin butter of all things! The ingredient label of a few different brands either listed pumpkin and sugar or pumpkin and honey as the main ingredients…and it made sense. Cook down the puree with a little sugar to remove as much moisture as you can, but what was the final result going to look and taste like?

I was willing to give it a shot…and to my surprise it worked but with a good bit of tweaking to the final recipe.

I provided the cup measurements, but I also scaled everything out to provide you with weight measurements, which the other recipes did not do. I also decided to use a store bought pumpkin butter instead of making my own, which gives a more consistent result time after time. The batter for this cookie will be soft, so don’t worry. Just make sure to pre-scoop them and freeze them for a few hours before baking.

The cookies were absolutely delicious in taste and texture and they remained nice and gooey even the next day. The addition of the chocolate chips sent them over the top, and if you like nuts, you can add some of those too. This is a great cookie for your Holiday line-up and one that will make your friends and family swoon.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies (makes about 20 large 2.5oz cookies)
1 cup salted butter, cold (8 oz or 2 sticks)
1 ¼ cups packed brown sugar (11 oz)
1 cup pumpkin butter (8 oz)
1 large egg (1.8 oz)
2 teaspoons vanilla (.2 oz)
3 cups all purpose flour (15 oz)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin spice (or ½ teaspoon nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon cloves, ¼ teaspoon ginger)
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips (16 oz)
½ cup roasted pecans, chopped
NOTE:  For a firmer cookie, add 1 cup brown sugar and ¼ cup granulated sugar

Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of your stand mixer and cream together until just mixed then add the pumpkin butter, egg and vanilla. Measure out all of your dry ingredients, and while the machine is running, add the dry ingredients a little at a time into the bowl until it is all incorporated and just mixed…do not over mix! If you are going to add the nuts, add them now in addition to the chocolate chips and mix until just incorporated. Scoop out the batter onto a paper lined tray and freeze the dough for at least 2 hours. When you are ready to bake, preheat your oven to 350°F and place 6 of the dough balls onto a parchment lined half sheet pan. Bake for about 12-15 minutes until they are golden brown all over and then pull them to cool completely before serving. These spread beautifully and remain somewhat thick. For best results, make sure to always scale out your ingredients.

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