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Soft and Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

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These are the softest, chewiest pumpkin cookies loaded with chocolate chips – and there’s no mixer required!

Stack of chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on a wire rack and dark background

This probably goes without saying, but the hardest thing about making a recipe that has ingredients you don’t like or can’t have is that you can’t taste test your own recipe. Well, I mean, you can, but you’ll hate it and it’s not worth making yourself miserable.

That’s the situation I was in making these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. Pumpkin and I don’t hang out, so I don’t make recipes that have it. But people have asked for a pumpkin chocolate chip recipe, and I found out through my site analytics that people have been searching my site for them and come up empty handed. Well, be disappointed no more, pumpkin lovers! I’ve found myself some reliable and willing taste testers, and they helped me deliver on this one.

Side shot of a stack of chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on a wire rack and dark background

Fall is when all things pumpkin come out. Pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin flavored pastas, pumpkin bread and cookies. So frankly it’s a little insulting to the majority of America that I haven’t done this sooner. I’M SORRY. Better late than never, right?

What I’ve found is that it’s really, really hard to make a pumpkin cookie that isn’t puffy and just like eating a little round piece of cake. Those are easy to make, and I’m told they’re delicious. But I wanted a soft, chewy cookie that you could sink your teeth into. Guess what? I did it.

A bottle of Karo® Corn Syrup on a dark background surrounded by loose chocolate chips

I suppose I should give credit where credit is due though – it happened with the help of Karo® Corn Syrup. By leaving out egg entirely and substituting granulated sugar for corn syrup, you get the softest cookie I’ve ever made that has that super satisfying slow separation when you tear in half to share with a friend. You know what I’m talking about. That slow-mo video, beautiful visual of a crinkled, chewy cookie being torn in half, exposing the soft center and melty chocolate chips.

A pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on a wire rack and dark background with a bite taken out showing the chewy and soft inside

Sorry, I’m gonna need a minute.

Stack of chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on a wire rack and dark background

How familiar are you with Karo® Corn Syrup? Probably more familiar than you realize! It’s been around for over 100 years and is the top corn syrup brand, and you might recognize it as a key ingredient to a classic pecan pie during the holidays, but have you ever used it in brownies or cookies?

If not, I can’t tell you how much you’re missing out. Karo® Corn Syrup gives cookies this irresistible chewiness and soft texture. And as you now now, I freaking love soft and chewy cookies. What I’ve found over the years is that I can get these wonderfully soft and chewy textures by swapping out some of the white or brown sugar in my cookie recipes with 75% that amount in corn syrup. Karo® Corn Syrup always makes my cookies chewier on the outside, but still soft in the middle.

And that’s how cookies should always be. Don’t at me.

A chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookie broken in half to show the soft and chewy inside against a dark background

Tips for making chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies

  • Make sure all your canned pumpkin is room temperature before you start – if you had some leftover in the fridge that you’re going to be using, just let it set out for 15 minutes to come to room temperature. The texture changes slightly when it’s chilled and could be difficult to combine, so make your life easier and start with room temperature canned pumpkin.
  • Use a large sturdy whisk for mixing the wet ingredients, then switch over to a wooden spoon or spatula for the rest. The mixture will get too thick for the whisk and get stuck in it.
A four photo collage showing the process of making pumpkin chocolate chip cookie batter
  • Use your favorite kind of chocolate chips: semi-sweet, milk chocolate, dark chocolate – whatever you like! You can even use mini chocolate chips if you want.
  • Cover your bowl of dough with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, but I recommend 1 hour. Chilling the dough is non-negotiable because it’s pretty sticky and needs that time to firm up before you bake them. 
Four photo collage showing the process of making pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough
  • Press down on the top of each cookie (and add a few more chocolate chips to the top, if you want, for presentation’s sake) to flatten them a bit – they won’t spread much as they bake. They will be a bit puffy when they first come out of the oven and then deflate a bit and crinkle on top as they cool.
  • I find the best results when you portion out 6 cookies on each baking sheet, but only work on sheet at a time. Scoop out six cookies from your chilled dough, roll them into balls, flatten the tops, stick the pan in the oven and put the bowl back in the fridge. Keeping the dough chilled until you’re ready for it will result in evenly baked cookies, and they’ll be more uniform in size and spread.
A chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies being held against a dark background

While I might not love the taste of pumpkin, I have to admit the batter is pretty. Just look at these swirls of pumpkin getting mixed in:

Pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough in a clear bowl with a metal whisk

And I’m always in love with the process of adding chocolate chips to a batter – I don’t know what it is:

Pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough with a pile of chocolate chips and a wooden spoon

The finished cookie dough just looks frame-worthy, if you ask me:

Pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough in a clear bowl

So if you’re still looking for pumpkin recipes to pass the time until we turn to all things peppermint and gingerbread, add this to your list. 

It’s just enough pumpkin and pumpkin spiced flavor to satisfy a pumpkin craving, but not so much that it’s overwhelming and makes you feel like you’re eating the inside of a jack o’ lantern.

Stack of chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on a wire rack and dark background

Now go grab yourself a bottle of Karo® Corn Syrup and get to baking! And don’t forget – if you’re looking for even more recipes to make with that red bottle of magic, check out these cookie and bar recipes for more ideas!

Overhead shot of a stack of chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies on a wire rack and dark background

After you’ve made this recipe, please leave a comment below with a rating – and if you came from Pinterest, add a photo to the Pin of what you make to the pin to share your experience!

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Soft and Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Soft and Chewy Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

These are the softest, chewiest pumpkin cookies loaded with chocolate chips – and there’s no mixer required!

  • Author: Leslie Kiszka
  • Prep Time: 1 hour (includes chilling time)
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes (each batch)
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: About 18 cookies 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: American

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice*
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup Karo® Corn Syrup
  • 1/3 cup canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips of choice (milk, semi-sweet or dark)

Instructions

  1. Melt butter in your preferred manner (either in the microwave or in a small saucepan on the stove), and let cool slightly (about 10 minutes).
  2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, pumpkin pie spice*, baking soda and salt. Whisk to combine, and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar and corn syrup. Whisk to combine.
  4. Add pumpkin and vanilla, and whisk again to combine.
  5. Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and stir until just combined. Add chocolate chips and stir again until just combined.
  6. Cover bowl and place in the fridge to chill for at least 30 minutes, preferably 1 hour.
  7. Preheat oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with nonstick silicon mats (aff link) or parchment paper. Set aside.
  8. Use a medium cookie scoop (aff link) to portion out dough onto first prepared baking sheets (no more than 6 on a sheet at a time), roll into balls, flatten the tops a bit with your hand or the bottom of a glass, and bake for 10 minutes. Let cool for 10-15 minutes on baking sheet, then move to wire rack (aff link) to cool completely.
  9. Put the bowl of dough back in the fridge between each batch to ensure it stays chilled as long as possible – this will make it easier to work with and more uniform when they bake. Enjoy!

Notes

*If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice, substitute the following: 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

  • Make sure all your canned pumpkin is room temperature before you start – if you had some leftover in the fridge that you’re going to be using, just let it set out for 15 minutes to come to room temperature. The texture changes slightly when it’s chilled and could be difficult to combine, so make your life easier and start with room temperature canned pumpkin.
  • Use a large sturdy whisk for mixing the wet ingredients, then switch over to a wooden spoon or spatula for the rest. The mixture will get too thick for the whisk and get stuck in it.
  • Use your favorite kind of chocolate chips: semi-sweet, milk chocolate, dark chocolate – whatever you like! You can even use mini chocolate chips if you want.
  • Cover your bowl of dough with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, but I recommend 1 hour. Chilling the dough is non-negotiable because it’s pretty sticky and needs that time to firm up before you bake them.
  • Press down on the top of each cookie (and add a few more chocolate chips to the top, if you want, for presentation’s sake) to flatten them a bit – they won’t spread much as they bake. They will be a bit puffy when they first come out of the oven and then deflate a bit and crinkle on top as they cool.
  • I find the best results when you portion out 6 cookies on each baking sheet, but only work on sheet at a time. Scoop out six cookies from your chilled dough, roll them into balls, flatten the tops, stick the pan in the oven and put the bowl back in the fridge. Keeping the dough chilled until you’re ready for it will result in evenly baked cookies, and they’ll be more uniform in size and spread.

Keywords: chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin spice chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin spice cookies

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This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BakeBetterCookies #CollectiveBias #ChewyCookies

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Tracy

Tuesday 1st of October 2019

My kids had been asking for pumpkin cookies and I didn't know what to make. Someone shared your recipe with me and it was a big hit. I used mini chocolate chips and added walnuts.

Leslie Kiszka

Tuesday 1st of October 2019

I'm so glad you liked them - thanks for stopping by to leave your feedback and a rating!

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