These delicious Pumpkin Spice Cookies are the best, and so easy to make! Melt-in-your-mouth pumpkin cookies are full of flavor from warm spices, and topped with a wonderful, easy sweet & tangy cream cheese frosting. These are our favorite cookies for Fall.
Soft Pumpkin Cookies
When Fall approaches we go a little crazy for pumpkin recipes, especially easy pumpkin desserts! These Soft pumpkin spice cookies are one of our favorite fall treats.
Of course, it doesn't have to be the Fall season to enjoy the best pumpkin cookies. You can buy a can of pumpkin puree, available all year long in the grocery store, so you can indulge anytime!
What We Love About this Pumpkin Cookie Recipe
- • Delicious! The pumpkin flavor of this soft pumpkin cookie recipe, with warm spices, is perfect for your first batch of fall cookies!
• It's an easy recipe, and quick as there is no chill time (an added bonus!).
• The cinnamon cream cheese frosting is the perfect topping, and makes them even better!
• These are softer cookies with a cakey texture, rather than a chewy texture. We love cakey cookies for something different!
• Pumpkin Cookies freeze well and can be made to be gluten free or dairy free.
Here are the simple ingredients for these delicious pumpkin cookies. See the recipe card for measurements.
- Unsalted Butter: Butter gives flavor, richness, tenderness and structure for the best cookies. Or use vegan butter.
- Granulated Sugar: Sometimes I use half dark brown sugar (but don't use ALL brown sugar!).
- Leavening: Baking Soda and Baking Powder makes them rise and puff up.
- Salt: Salt enhances and balances out the flavors, especially sweetness.
- Spices: Cinnamon and Pumpkin Pie Spice. Or cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, cloves.
- Egg: Use a large egg.
- Vanilla: Vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste will work.
- Pumpkin Puree: Be sure you get 100% pure canned pumpkin purée, or make your own fresh pumpkin puree. Don't use the pumpkin pie mix.
- All-Purpose Flour: Or substitute gluten free 1:1 baking flour.
- Cream Cheese: The creamy, tangy base or the frosting. Balances out the sweetness of the powdered sugar. Or try dairy-free cream cheese.
- Powdered Sugar: Confectioners' sugar is best for cream cheese frosting as it melts right in, making a smooth and creamy icing.
Fun and different ways to change up the recipe:
• Chocolate Chips - Pumpkin and chocolate go great together! Add about 1 cup to cookie dough.
• Other Chips - Try butterscotch chips, or caramel bits for a delicious variation.
• Dried Fruit - You can add some orange zest or dried cranberries to the cookie batter.
• Nuts - Try adding some chopped pecans or walnuts for some added crunch and a nutty flavor.
• Marshmallows - Mini marshmallows make a nice addition.
How to Make Pumpkin Cookies
The full printable recipe with detailed instructions is in the recipe card below.
Here are the step-by-step photos of how to make these easy pumpkin cookies. This will help make the process easier for you!
• Mix Dry ingredients: In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt. Set aside.
• Cream the butter and Sugar: Beat ½ cup butter (room temperature) and the sugar until light and fluffy. Use a large mixing bowl with an electric hand mixer, or mix in the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment on medium speed.
• Wet ingredients: Mix in the egg and vanilla extract and beat again until it's incorporated.
• Add the pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling) and mix until evenly incorporated.
• Next, add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, and beat just until combined.
The dough is a beautiful color!
• Use a heaping tablespoon or a small-medium sized cookie scoop.
• Drop dough balls a few inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. You should get about 36.
• Bake in preheated oven for 14 to 18 minutes or until the edges are firm and the tops are set and no longer look wet (if your scoop is larger, they will need to bake a little longer. Don't over bake, though!).
• Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheet for a few minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.
• Frost: Once the cookies have cooled, use a whisk, an electric mixer or a stand mixer to mix the cream cheese until smooth. Then mix in vanilla extract and milk. Gradually add the powdered sugar and mix until incorporated.
• Add more milk to thin out, if needed. Or add more powdered sugar to make thicker.
• Frost using a piping bag to pipe icing over the cookie tops, or spread a thick layer of frosting over the tops using a knife or a spatula. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon, if desired.
• Let the cookies sit until the frosting has hardened before plating and serving.
Keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Layer them between pieces of parchment paper or paper towels to keep them from sticking together.
Freeze: It's best to freeze unfrosted cookies. Let them cool completely, then freeze them in a single layer before transferring them to a freezer baggie.
Thaw the cookies on a plate in the fridge before frosting and serving.
When you are craving some pumpkin goodness this time of year, these amazing pumpkin cookies really hit the spot!
More Great Cookie Recipes
If you make these Pumpkin Spice Cookies, please leave a comment below with a star rating. It would be nice to know how you liked this recipe!
Pumpkin Spice Cookies
- 2 Large Baking Sheet Pans
- 2 Mixing Bowls
- Hand mixer or stand mixer
- Cookie Scoop
- Pastry bag
- 2 ½ cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice* (See Notes)
- 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon Salt
- ½ cup Unsalted Butter room temperature
- 1 ½ cups Sugar
- 1 cup Pumpkin Puree (100% pumpkin, not pie mix)
- 1 large Egg
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
Cream Cheese Frosting Glaze
- 4 oz Cream Cheese softened
- ¾ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 3 ½ Tablespoons Milk (use less for thicker frosting)
- ½ cup Powdered Sugar (use more for thicker frosting)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.2 ½ cups All-Purpose Flour, 1 teaspoon Baking Soda, 1 teaspoon Baking Powder, 1 teaspoon Cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon Salt, 1 teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice*
- In another mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 6 minutes. Add the pumpkin puree and beat until evenly incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.½ cup Unsalted Butter, 1 ½ cups Sugar, 1 cup Pumpkin Puree
- Then, mix in the egg and vanilla extract.1 large Egg, 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients, and beat just until combined.
- Using a small cookie scoop or two spoons, drop balls of cookie dough onto the prepared cookie sheet about 2 inches apart.
- Bake for 14 to 18 minutes or until edges are hardening and middle inside is no longer wet but still tender. Cool for 5 to 7 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to wire racks.
Make Frosting Glaze
- To make cream cheese frosting glaze; Use a hand or stand mixer on medium speed and mix cream cheese until smooth. Then mix in vanilla extract and milk.4 oz Cream Cheese, 3 ½ Tablespoons Milk, ½ cup Powdered Sugar, ¾ teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- Then gradually add the powdered sugar and mix until incorporated. Add more milk to thin out, if needed (you want it a bit thick, but thin enough to be able to be squeezed out of a pastry bag).
- Pipe the frosting over the tops of the cookies in lines, or any design you like. If you use less milk and more powdered sugar to make the frosting thicker, you can use a knife to frost them. Garnish with a sprinkle of cinnamon and enjoy!