Did you feel a change in the air this week? The one here snuck up on me. It wasn’t a conscious decision to wear plaid three days in a row, or to pull my scarves from the bottom drawer, or even to add these to my Amazon cart, but here we are. Fall has arrived. Let’s don our best flannel and bake a big batch of Pumpkin Snickerdoodles!
Forget the cakey, muffin-like pumpkin cookies you’ve had before. These Pumpkin Snickerdoodle Cookies are chewy, buttery, and softer than a fancy hotel pillow.
They’re the best of cinnamon sugar cookies, meets pumpkin pie, meets (ultimately) my mouth.
About These Delicious Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
My grandma’s snickerdoodles were one of my favorite cookies growing up, so they’ve long held a soft spot in my heart. She made her snickerdoodles small, which made them easier to sneak to her grandkids when our parents weren’t looking. I can still feel the excitement of opening the green lid of her cookie tin to reveal the homemade snickerdoodles below.
I once asked my grandma the difference between a snickerdoodle cookie and a regular sugar cookie. Her explanation was that snickerdoodles contain cream of tartar, which makes them taste special, and they are always rolled in cinnamon and sugar.
For this pumpkin snickerdoodle recipe, I stayed true to my grandma’s directives—cream of tartar and plenty of cinnamon sugar—but replaced part of the butter and the egg with pumpkin puree. To amp-up the “pumpkin factor,” I also added lots of warm spices like ginger and nutmeg.
Like all my other healthy pumpkin recipes, the pumpkin flavor makes the snickerdoodles incredibly soft and moist, while the spices give them a coziness that’s perfect for chilly fall days. I also used whole wheat pastry flour, which makes the Pumpkin Snickerdoodles even more tender and gives them a little nutritional boost—all the more reason to go back for seconds (and thirds!).
More Pumpkin Dessert Recipes
- Vegan Pumpkin Pie
- Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies
- Pumpkin Sheet Cake with Greek Yogurt Cream Cheese Frosting
- Pumpkin Spice Latte Cookies
- Cream Cheese Pumpkin Brownies
- Healthy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread
- Maple Pumpkin Scones
Tools Used to Make This Recipe
For the Cookies:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter - (1 stick)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 7 tablespoons pumpkin puree - perfect for using up leftover pumpkin from any of these recipes
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar - make sure its fresh and not expired
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder - I recommend aluminum free
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp ground allspice
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- In a medium, microwave safe bowl, melt the butter. Let cool slightly, then briskly whisk in the granulated sugar and brown sugar, until no brown sugar lumps remain. Whisk in the pumpkin and vanilla extract until smooth. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the whole wheat pastry flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and all spice. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients all at once. With a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir by hand, just until the flour disappears. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, then let chill for at least 30 minutes or up to 3 days.
- When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat mats. In a shallow dish or bowl, stir together the 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon for rolling.
- With a cookie scoop or spoon, portion the dough by 1 1/2 tablespoons and roll into balls. Roll the dough in the cinnamon and sugar mixture to coat, then arrange on the prepared baking sheet. Flatten the balls slightly (the cookies only spread a little bit as they bake). Bake for 9-11 minutes, until the edges are barely golden (the cookies will look underdone). Place the baking sheets on a wire rack and let cool 10 minutes, then remove the cookies to a wire rack and let cool completely.
- Store leftover cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months.
- Unbaked cookie dough balls can be frozen for 3 months in a ziptop bag with all of the air squeezed out. Arrange the dough balls on a baking sheet and bake directly from frozen.
- To make the dough ahead, prepare it up to the point of baking, then store it in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
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