Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies + KitchenAid Stand Mixer + $200 Williams-Sonoma Gift Card Giveaway

I have fond childhood memories of baking chocolate chip cookies with my my mom and sister. When my sister and I saw our mom’s circa 1972 split pea green KitchenAid Stand Mixer come out, we knew we were in for a treat.

The process of helping my mom in the kitchen and being her little helper was almost as good as the cookies we’d bake together.

My dad always knew if my sister and I had been in the kitchen that day helping out as evidenced by the eggshells in his cookies, which we’d proudly present to him and that he’d never turn down. They simply added a delicious crunch.

As a helper, I learned early on not to crank the mixer to high speed immediately after adding the flour. A good way to make my mom mad was to spray her kitchen with flour.

MY OTHER RECIPES

The best part of cookie making came when adding the chocolate chips to the dough.

I’d always sneak a handful of chocolate chips that were supposed to make it into the cookie dough, but made it into my mouth instead.

With this cookie recipe, I wanted to embrace the classic chocolate chip cookie I grew up eating, but also incorporate everyone’s favorite fall ingredient: pumpkin.

Plenty of recipes exist for soft, cake-like, pumpkin whoopie pie cookies, but I wanted these cookies to have the traditional chewiness of a true chocolate chip cookie, but infused with pumpkin.

After testing and experimenting with so many recipes and creating everything from cakey, soft, pumpkin mounds to pumpkin-laced hockey pucks, I finally found the texture and flavor I was in search of with this recipe.

The resulting cookies are soft, tender, light and have just a touch of cakiness, but they are also chewy with some heartiness. Soft pumpkin cookie meets chewy chocolate chip cookie. The edges crisp up and the centers remain pillowy soft.

They’re packed with the warming flavors of fall, including cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, cloves, and a dash of molasses.

The chocolate chips pair nicely with the pumpkin and the flavors complement each other so well. Then again, chocolate pairs so well with most anything for me.

A few cook’s notes:

The dough is soft and a bit tacky to work with, courtesy of the pumpkin puree. Pumpkin does a beautiful job of tenderizing baked goods, but it makes the dough a bit sticky. Counteract the stickiness by chilling the dough before scooping it into balls. In my trials, I chilled the dough ranging from 90 minutes to 4 days. The longer the dough is chilled, the easier it is to work with.

Prior to baking, rolling a ball of dough through a cinnamon-sugar mixture not only creates a extra bonus of texture and flavor in the finished cookies, but it does double-duty by taking the edge off some of the dough’s stickiness.

I found the best cookies result from using 1 1/2 tablespoons of well-chilled dough, scooped using a cookie scoop, dredged through cinnamon-sugar, and flattened slightly before baking.

The cookies spread very little while baking and I recommend flattening the dough mounds slightly before baking otherwise the base will cook through and become too well done before the top sets.

The cookies keep beautifully, and paradoxically, get softer over time. The brown sugar and molasses attract moisture from the air so there’s little worry of them drying out.

Then again, I don’t think you’ll have too many extra cookies just lingering around.

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Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes about 3 dozen medium-sized cookies

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)

3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)

1 tablespoon unsulphered molasses (I use Grandma’s Original)

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, ground ginger, salt – all optional and to taste

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 cups Nestle Tollhouse Semi-Sweet Morsels

Cinnamon-Sugar Mixture, for rolling

1/3 cup granulated sugar

3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter, brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and beat on medium-high to high speed for 3 to 4 minutes to cream ingredients; stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the egg, vanilla, and beat on high speed for 3 to 4 minutes until mixture is light and fluffy. Add the pumpkin, unsulphered molasses (blackstrap molasses may be substituted but it’s bolder and more intense), 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, cloves, optional spices, salt, and mix until incorporated, about 1 minute. (All spices should be added to taste and use more or less, depending on how robustly-flavored you prefer your cookies. As written, the spices are nicely balanced and the cookies are of average intensity. Adding ginger, additional cinnamon or cloves, will give them a stronger punch and kick, rendering them more like a pumpkin-ginger-spice cookie)

Add the flour, baking soda, and mix until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips by hand. Dough will be thick and dense yet soft, and must be refrigerated and chilled before it’s suitable for scooping out and baking off. Cover mixing bowl with plastic wrap or transfer dough into an airtight container and refrigerate dough for at least 90 minutes, overnight, or up to four days.

Preheat oven to 350F. Prepare baking sheets by lining them with Silpat liners, parchment paper, or spray them with cooking spray; set aside. Make the Cinnamon-Sugar Mixture by combining 1/3 cup granulated sugar and 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl and stir to combine; set aside.

Form 1 1/2 tablespoon-sized balls of dough using a cookie scoop and dredge each ball through the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Place balls on baking sheets; cookies spread very little and can be spaced about 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Flatten balls slightly before baking to ensure cookies cook through evenly. Bake for 12-13 minutes or until the edges near the bases of the cookies are golden and set, and tops have just set; cookies will continue to firm up as they cool. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheets for at least 10 minutes before moving them. Cookies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Cookies can be kept vegan by using vegan margarine such as Earth Balance and replacing the egg with a flax egg. Cookies can be made gluten-free by using a gluten-free flour blend such as Bob’s Red Mill.

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And now, onto the Giveaway portion of this post. You can enter to win:

a $200 gift card from Williams-Sonoma

and a KitchenAid Stand Mixer

Yes, one lucky person will win both.

The mixer is from the KitchenAid Custom Metallic® Series | Tilt-Head Stand Mixer | Flour Power™ Rating – 9 Cup

It’s a 5-Quart size with a 10-speed Solid State Control

It comes with a flat beater, wire whip, and dough hook

It retails for $649.95

I’m sure I don’t need to sell you on the benefits, workmanship, and high quality nature of a KitchenAid Stand Mixer or twist your arm to pick out $200 worth of items from Williams-Sonoma.

Although Tweets, Facebook mentions, or Pinterest Pins about this post are appreciated, they are not required for entry.

Simply answer the following question by leaving a comment below to enter the giveaway:

Please share a favorite baking memory. (Please be detailed and specific)

Contest ends Monday, October 8, 2012 and winner will be chosen randomly. Open to continental U.S. residents only. Complete contest rules can be found at the bottom of this page.

This post is sponsored by Nestlé® Toll House® Morsels, the perfect special ingredient for all of your family’s favorite treats!

 



820 comments on “Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies + KitchenAid Stand Mixer + $200 Williams-Sonoma Gift Card Giveaway”

  1. My Mom wanted to be alone when she baked. She’ll didn’t want 5 children in the kitchen bugging her. She said that she needed to concentrate on what she was doing. Lol. Whenever she baked a cake she had this tiny pan that would make 6 little cupcakes. Real tiny ones. We were not naughty b/c we wanted our cupcake when it came out of the oven. Lol. I have never seen one like it since. Now she doesn’t no where it is.
    Now I love watching my parents making pizzeles together and my Mom scolding my Dad. He just laughs it off. They make a double batch or so every holiday, over 150 of those big cookies!

  2. A bunch of us girlfriends joined together and proclaimed the weekend before christmas our “annual baking extravaganza” it is a GREAT time for fellowship, friendship, food and of course BAKING! we bake a variety of christmas goodies while listening to christmas music and chatting the day away. By the end of the day, each person goes home with a BOX filled with assorted goodies to give to our families for the holidays all made with love and FUN in the spirit of christmas. It is such a great way to get together and have awesome “girl” time together!

  3. My favorite memory is baking a traditional Filipino dessert with my mom that she used to bake with her mother and grandmother called Brazo de Mercedes. We messed up quite a few times but it turned out delicious!

  4. Some favorite baking memories of mine were from when I was 10 years old and older, helping my mom bake cookies or bars. My grandfather lived just two houses down from us, and he and my dad both had a major sweet tooth. They loved and appreciated any homemade treat, so my mom would bake a few times a week.

    Because even at that age I loved gathering recipes, I wrote all of the family favorites down and kept them bound in a red folder. I would go through all the recipes and ask her which one we were going to make, even if we had several versions of the same type of cookie or brownie. Then I would either help with the making of them, or eventually, I would make them on my own. She was a very patient teacher.

  5. One of the first times I made cookies with a friend (sans adult help,) we put them on the cookie sheet way to close together. A lot of them morphed together and caused a big U shape to form. It kind of looked like a pair of pants, so after this, whenever planning on having a sleepover, we’d say, “Let’s have a pants party!” We then would purposely put them close on the pan, in hopes to re-enact the pants shape. The first pair of pants was chocolate chip, but as we got older and more creative, there were many other flavors to follow.

  6. My favorite baking memory was always centered around Christmas and helping mom make m and m cookies for Santa. We would leave them by the front door because we lived in Florida and didn’t have a chimney. To this day, my sister and I still make them every Christmas for our dad. We are 47 and 49 years old.

  7. My favorite baking memory was around Christmas when I was 13-14 years old. My mom and I went to my Aunt’s to bake all kinds of goodies for the holidays (traditional sugar cookies, buckeyes, butterhorns, etc.) The memory stands out in my mind for some reason because I think it was the first time I felt “grown-up”. My family didn’t have me there to be a “little helper” they actually wanted me to do my own baking. It was great!

  8. My mom never did a lot of cooking/baking, so most of my baking memories are recent. I do, however, have 1 distinct childhood baking memory. Every Christmas my mom made a bunch of cookies and-of course-chocolate chip cookies were one of them. Her chocolate chip cookies were awful, did not taste good at all. However-the dough was delicious! She would usually be multi-tasking, and often leave the cookie dough in the refrigerator for awhile prior to baking, sometimes overnight (I know…I don’t know why they never tasted good. Must have been the recipe). She would always be very firm with my dad, brother, and I that we were not allowed to eat any dough (other than the beaters which she totally let my brother and I eat the dough off of-1 beater a piece). As soon as she was gone (downstairs, outside, etc.) my dad and I would sneak into the kitchen and steal little finger-fulls of dough as often as we could. It was so much fun. And the dough was so delicious :)

  9. One of my earliest memories of anything is when I was a wee tot and my two older sisters decided to make green taffy. Why green, I have no idea; maybe it was St. Patrick’s Day. I remember them messing around with the candy thermometer and over-shooting the required temperature, so what they got instead of taffy was this rock-hard, glass-like substance that stuck to everything like cement. I believe my mom had to throw out a pan, a spoon and a few other utensils because this stuff just wouldn’t come off. It sure was pretty, though.

  10. Getting together with my mother inlaw,sister inlaw, our daughters and now my great nieces making Christmas cookies

  11. A favorite baking memory is decorating Christmas cut out sugar cookies with my 4 siblings…my mom was so patient with us as we were up to our elbows in frosting and sprinkles. The kitchen looked like a hurricane had come through, but we were all so happy. The cookies may not have looked the best, but my mom didn’t care!

  12. My favorite baking memory is making cookies almost every weekend with my daughter! Now that we are helping my dad out, he is loving them too

  13. My favorite baking memories are baking at Christmas with my children and husband. When my daughter was small (she is 21 now) I would bring her table and chair into the kitchen and we would make sugar cookies, it was so much fun, the sprinkles and flour was all over the place. When my son (17 now) was old enough he joined in, and between my kids and husband they started decorating some of the sugar cookies like aliens!! We still bake and yes I still have alien cookies that are put in a “special” tin! My daughter and I still bake chocolate chip cookies together, she is spoiled and because we baked so much together, store bought cookies just does not do it for her.

  14. Baking Christmas cookies with my Gran.

  15. My fondest baking memory would have to be when my mom taught me how to make her homemade butter almond press cookies. It had a ridiculous amount of butter in the recipe, but that’s what made it so great. We would dye them different colors and the almond would make them smell amazing!! As a last touch, we would sprinkle them with different colored sprinkles and put them on old newspapers to cool. I still have my mom’s cookie press, and even though she’s passed on, I plan to carry on the tradition with my girls. Your recipes are delicious and my daughter and I are making the pumpkin chocolate chip cookies today. thanks!!!!

  16. I fondly remember baking christmas cookies with my mom. Baking christmas cookies is still one of my favorite things to do even as an adult.

  17. The ONLY thing my dad ever attempted to make in the kitchen were chocolate chip cookies. Growing up that was the biggest treat making those with him! I remember one night we had chocolate chip cookies and skittles for dinner (my mom must have been out of town!)

  18. We were making cookies one day and i turned the mixer on high instead of low and the flour flew everywhere!! Then i had to clean it up:/

  19. My favorite baking memory is making Greek Easter cookies with my paternal grandmother who passed away in 2005. We use to sing a song when making them, and I am sorry if it doesn’t make any sense in English, but in Greek it rhymes and we would sing. Koulourakia are a Greek Easter/Christmas cookie.

    Koulourakia, Koulourakia me ta dio mas ta herakia. Which means Koulourakia, Koulourakia with are two little hands.

    mmalavec(at)med(dot)umich(dot)edu

  20. When each of my children turned two, we made brownies together. I have pictures of those days with them licking the beaters and getting the batter all over themselves. It’s something I will always remember.

  21. Favorite baking memory: Sitting at my grandmother’s kitchen table and watching her whip up her wonderful creations :)

  22. For sure my fondest baking memories would be ones with my good ole’ Easy Bake Oven. I used to make layered cakes, cookies and brownies. One time I had the great idea to have my own bake sale (age 8). I made a whole batch of chocolate chip cookies, but somehow substituted salt for sugar. needless to say – I didn’t sell many cookies. Oh well!

  23. My favorite baking memory; being so exicited to help my Mom bake, and eat the cookie dough. OMG, that was so lonf ago :).

  24. Baking peanut butter cookies with my Mom. She never got me involved in the cooking, so it was a treat to learn how to bake cookies and spend time together.

  25. My favorite baking memories are baking cookies at Christmas time with my kids when they were younger. They are now teenagers. They loved to decorated the sugar cookies. Sometimes they would have a friend over and they would join in. We had a lot of fun.

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