These soft, chewy pumpkin cookies are the perfect way to welcome fall! They’re full of the cozy pumpkin spices you love, plus high in protein and gluten-free.
You know when you make something and you taste it and you're just like, “WOW”? That's what happened when these delicious pumpkin cookies came out of the oven.
Not only was my house smelling amazing—hello there, warm fall spices!—but the cookies had the most perfect texture. Soft on the outside, slightly chewy, with an almost cake-like feel. Finished off with a quick drizzle of melted coconut butter…holy yum!
Why This Pumpkin Cookie Recipe Works
They always say that baking is a science, so let’s dig into what makes these pumpkin cookies delicious and healthy:
- A flour blend. I’ve found that gluten-free baking is best when you use a blend of flours instead of just one. Different alternative flours bring different qualities to the table, so you usually need a few to replicate all the qualities of traditional all-purpose flour. Here, I use brown rice flour and quinoa flour.
- Less fat. Obviously, less fat means fewer calories! But it’s also one of the secrets to making these pumpkin cookies nice and soft. The more fat you use in a cookie, the flatter and chewier it is. We're only using 3 tablespoons of coconut oil in this entire recipe—and that's our only form of fat.
- Depth of flavor. These pumpkin cookies have a somewhat nutty, fuller-bodied flavor from the quinoa flour and the coconut palm sugar gives it those perfect undertones of caramel.
- That coconut icing, though. My favorite healthy baking shortcut! Coconut butter is sweet and creamy; liquid when heated but solid at room temperature. This means when you heat it, it’s perfect for drizzling over cookies and muffins.
What You’ll Need
Here are all of the ingredients you’ll need to make pumpkin cookies. Make sure to check out the recipe card at the bottom of the page to see the exact quantities for each ingredient.
- Brown rice flour – High in fiber, iron, and potassium.
- Quinoa flour – Learn more: How to Use Quinoa Flour for Baking and Cooking
- Fine sea salt
- Baking soda
- Coconut sugar – Lower on the glycemic index than regular sugar.
- Cinnamon – Essential for that cozy pumpkin flavor! Make sure your cinnamon is fresh—if you open the bottle and it doesn’t have a strong aroma, it may be time to replace it.
- Ground cloves
- Melted coconut oil – Melt the oil, then measure it.
- Maple syrup
- Canned pumpkin – You won’t use the whole can here, but you can use the leftovers to make vegan pumpkin bread!
- Vanilla extract – Optional, but vanilla enhances the overall flavor of these pumpkin cookies.
- Egg – Or flax egg for vegan version.
- Coconut butter – Sometimes this is labeled as coconut manna.
How to Make Pumpkin Cookies
These might just be some of the easiest cookies you’ll ever bake! Here’s what you need to do.
- Prepare. Preheat your oven to 350ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Mix the dry ingredients. Add all of the dry ingredients to a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine.
- Add the wet ingredients. Beat the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until everything is incorporated.
- Form the cookies. Scoop the pumpkin cookie dough onto the parchment paper and flatten them slightly with the back of a spoon or fork.
- Bake. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown.
- Frost. Drizzle the cookies with melted coconut butter.
Tips for Success
These simple tips will help you achieve pumpkin cookie perfection.
- Don’t switch up the flours. Gluten-free baking can be finicky because gluten-free flours aren’t interchangeable. If you substitute either of the flours in this recipe, your cookies might not turn out!
- Make sure you use canned pumpkin. Not canned pumpkin pie filling! They’re often sold right next to each other and the cans look very similar, so it’s easy to grab the wrong one.
- Let the cookies cool before frosting. Although you can frost them while the cookies are still warm, the coconut butter will kind of melt into the warm cookies. For a more traditional frosted look, you’ll need to use warm coconut butter on cool cookies.
Here are some variations to try:
- Not a fan of coconut oil? If that's the case, I think you could swap the coconut oil with 1/4 cup of nut butter and still get a super delicious cookie.
- Fold in something tasty. Once the dough is done, you can fold in chopped dark chocolate, dried fruit, or nuts.
- Switch up the drizzle. Skip the coconut butter and melt some dark chocolate for drizzling over the cooled cookies.
How to Store
Store pumpkin cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 to 4 days.
Can This Recipe Be Frozen?
You can freeze pumpkin cookies in a freezer bag or airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw them at room temperature or pop them in the microwave for a few seconds at a time until they’re warmed through.
More Healthy Cookie Recipes
- Macadamia Nut Cookies
- Espresso Cookies
- Blackberry Cookies
- Healthy Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
- Soft & Chewy Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 2/3 cup brown rice flour
- 1/2 cup quinoa flour
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cups coconut sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
- 1 egg (or flax egg for vegan version)
- 1/4 cup coconut butter melted
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Combine all the dry ingredients into a large bowl and whisk to combine.
- Add the wet ingredients (oil, syrup, pumpkin, egg, vanilla) and beat to combine.
- Scoop the mixture onto the parchment paper and smooth them with the back of a metal spoon or flatten with a fork. Bake in the center of a warm oven for 12 – 15 minutes, until the cookies are golden brown.
- Drizzle with melted coconut butter and enjoy!