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.


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.


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.


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!



  1. Decades ago, my Brownie scout leader invited me to her home and helped me make a from-scratch cocoanut cake for my mother’s birthday. It was the best cake my family ever had, and nothing to date has matched the good taste and good feelings of that memory.

  2. My grandmother, my mother and I would bake Italian cookies for the holidays. It was lots of fun, then we would plate them and bring them to our family and friends.

  3. When I was growing up, my favorite treat to bake with my mom was her special meringue cookie recipe. THey are soft, pillowy, and oozing with melted chocolate chips, and one million times better than the crunchy, artificial -tasting meringues that you can buy at the supermarket. My sister and I would always beg her to make them on special occasions!

  4. The pumpkin cookie recipe looks good. I can’t wait to try it.
    I love to bake at the start of fall, and straight through the Holidays. As soon as the colder days come, I take advantage of heating the house with the oven, and the great smells that fall baking brings.

  5. I have so many wonderful memories but a favorite one is with my grandmother. My grandmother had ten children so when she baked, she baked a lot. We often made homemade donuts in the inter and she let my siblings and I roll the dough and then roll the finished donuts in cinnamon ans sugar, I miss her and I miss those days.

    Have a great weekend, Elizabeth

  6. My favorite baking memory was baking “Big Pancake” with my mom on Sunday mornings. We would mix the ingredients together and then put it in the hot oven and I would watch it rise and puff up so high it seemed like magic to me – then eat it with powdered sugar and strawberries! YUM!

  7. Such delicious looking cookies; makes me want to start baking right now.

  8. Teaching my daughter how to bake is my most memorable experience

  9. First of all, these look absolutely amazing. I love pumpkin cookies, and I’m excited to try out the recipe.

    Second, my baking memory: When I was younger, my family really had a rough time. My parents divorced when I was 8, and it was nowhere close to a civil parting. There was, figuratively speaking, mud-flinging, scratching, and biting involved. That being said, I will always remember with fondness baking with my mom. She had this old recipe book that was covered in flour and stains from being used so much. It had TONS of recipes in it. We would always bake cookies and brownies, and it always brightened my day (despite all of the divorce drama). Later, we got an electric breadmaker, and I would make homemade cinnamon rolls all the time, and just thinking about it now, I can still smell them baking in the oven.

    It’s amazing what a little time spent together baking can do.

  10. I remember like it yesterday watching my mother bake Christmas cookies and decorate them beautifully. She then covered them in Saran Wrap and hung them on the Christmas tree. All of us kids would wait (not so patiently) until the tree would come down so we could have the cookies. We never cared how stale they were. My mother knew exactly how many cookies she hung on the tree and there better have been the same amount each day. She was a terrific baker and cook.

  11. Mom would always make persimmon cookies around Christmas…..they’re still my favorite! It’s just not the holidays until I make up a batch…

  12. My favorite baking memory is baking in the kitchen with my MEMA! I would put my apron on just like her and I would grab a chair and stand right beside her. She would let me roll out the pastry for her Chicken N Pastry! (So Yummy!) We would make buttermilk biscuits and candied yams! My favorite was making Chcocolate Chip Cookies for dessert! We would make the biggest mess, but it was so much fun! I was always covered in flour from HEAD to TOE :-)

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  14. Back in high school I became good friends with an exchange student from France. We immediately bonded over food, having both been raised in families with long traditions of delicious cooking and regional recipes.

    One weekend she and I decided to make gingerbread cookies. With some help from my mom to get us started, we took over the kitchen and spent several hours giggling and having a great time as we measured ingredients, stirred them together, and carefully cut out our cookie shapes.

    What’s great is that I have a photo from then of the two of us in the kitchen, with big smiles, and flour all over our faces!

  15. My older brother and I spent one night trying to throw together our perfect biscuit recipe. We made about 4 batches of six at a time, and played with different ratios of shortening, butter, flour, and some secret ingredients! We love cooking together, and this spontaneous night was one of my favorite memories with my brother.

  16. My grandmother Tillie made the most wonderful pies, cakes and cookies from scratch. Made with very basic ingredients and lots of love.

  17. The first year I dated my now husband, I wanted to make his birthday dessert. I knew he liked chocolate cake and cheesecake, so I decided to combine the two into cupcake form. Mind you, I had NEVER baked anything before and did not even have all the right tools (not even a muffin pan). Instead I bought some “free standing” aluminum muffin wrappers, and found a recipe online, improvising with boxed cake mix and a tub of cream cheese. Long story short, the cupcakes came out mishapen, and kind of sunken in from my failed attempt to have a “cheesecake surprise” in the middle. They looked so ugly! But didn’t taste as bad. My husband ate one graciously and still remembers my first baking attempt for him. Now, 8 years later, I may try to recreate it – the right way – for his upcoming birthday.

  18. A specific baking memory I have is with my mother. I was home between graduating college and going to law school and it was a nerve racking time in my life because I was about to move from NC to Boston. My mom could tell I was stressed out and so we took to baking, something unusual since my father does ALL the cooking on a normal basis. But he went out of town for work so for our first try we set out to tackle a blueberry lemon pie. We even made our own crust! It took a little trial and error and almost an entire day but by the end we had a delicious crust, a lemon layer and a beautiful blueberry layer on top. I have never felt more accomplished and it was delicious! Now I continue the baking up here in New England as a way to relieve school stress, breaking out the start to it all, the famous lemon blueberry pie, only on special occasions. :-)

  19. When I first married the only thing I could cook was chocolate chip cookies, It was also the only thing my mother could not turn out perfect. So I was thrilled when my brother was overseas and she would get the care packages ready and then ask me for a batch of chocolate chip cookies. they were his favorites 50 years later my brother is still eating my cookies and still loving them.

  20. Sharon Wetherington Reply

    Would love to win!!!

  21. My favourite baking memory is entering the competitions at the A&P show in New Zealand as a child, which is I guess the equivalent of a state fair. I always loved beating people older than me!

  22. I love making fresh rosemary bread with rosemary from my aunts garden. It goes so fast there are rarely leftovers for the week.

  23. My favorite baking memory was when my grandmother finally gave me her top secret, super moist, chocolate decadance cake recipe and showed me how to make it. I was just 10 years old. We were standing in her kitchen and I had been begging her to teach me the recipe. I remember it like it was yesterday. It was a warm summer day and you could smell the honeysuckle bushes right outside the window. She pulled out all of the regular ingredients, cake flour, cocoa powder, eggs, etc. Then she got onto a stepstool and reached into the very back of her cupboard and pulled out a small tin. She told me it was her special mix of ingredients. She told me what they were and told me how to make it. We finished up the cake and promptly sat down and ate some. I remember thinking that my grandmother was always going to be there because she was so young at heart. She died a few days later, but I always have that memory of her acting like a young girl while we were making her top secret, super moist, chocolate decadance cake.

  24. My mom never baked anything and I have to admit I do bake but it all comes from a box….kids like it though so that should count for something….lol

  25. As a wedding present, my Mom compiled a recipe book for me, filled with all of our family and friends’ “famous” recipes. Along with each recipe, she added special notes about when the dish was first served, what special memory it is associated with, who loves it the most, etc. It was such a special gift, and It makes cooking and baking so much more meaningful.

  26. My mom baked from scratch but unfortunately I did not pay attention. I bake from a box paying attention to the smallest detail.

  27. Yummy pumpkin CC cookies, I want to make them!!

  28. My favorite baking memory is baking classic Christmas cookies. It was a whole family affair. My parents, all my brothers, and I would spend hours baking and decorating cookies. As little kids, our treat for decorating all of the cookies was for each of us to then have one cookie that night to decorate for ourselves. We all tried to outdo each other with the most frosting and sprinkles we could fit! Now my favorite baking escapades are me and my mom experimenting with gluten-free and sugar-free brownies and other treats… so different from my childhood memories!

  29. My dad always made the best cranberry orange nut bread. He made it from scratch with fresh cranberries. Alas, I have lost his recipe. He passed away 32 years ago.

  30. I loved baking cranberriy orange cookies during Thanksgiving and Christmas. The scent throughout the house was wonderful

  31. My best memory was eating chocolate chip cookie dough and baking cookies with my Mom

  32. my best memory is making rum balls for the holidays–and then watching the family enjoy them. My grandmother always helped with them and since she pasted away in the 60’s they haven’t been the same –guess it was the grandma touch.

  33. As a kid, we never got Oreos or Chips Ahoy like the cool kids, but now I wouldn’t trade those memories of standing on a chair in the kitchen watching my mom make chocolate chip cookies. She always used the classic Toll House recipe and I would “help” by throwing the chocolate chips into the mixer and stealing a few for myself.

  34. When I was a child my mother and I spent some evenings cracking various kinds of nuts (mostly walnuts) to use in her holiday baking. We would sit around the kitchen table drinking hot chocolate, singing Christmas carols, and cracking nuts. I miss those days!

  35. My favorite baking memory was going over to my favorite Sunday School teachers’ house to bake chocolate chip cookies! She let me eat some of the chocolate chips, which I NEVER got to do at home…LOL Everytime I bake chocolate chip cookies, I think of her.

  36. Baking with my precious granddaughters every year.

  37. My son decided to intertwine string through every handle and draw throughout my kitchen. After we cut all the string down, my daughter and son decided to make gingerbread houses. The kids were very neat while decorating and even decided to clean up their messes when they were done. :)

  38. I remember one Thanksgiving, my daughter, who was 13 at the time, decided to make Thanksgiving dinner all by herself. She made her first turkey, all of the sides, and a ton of gingerbread cookies. They were all very good, but she has decided never to do a turkey again because it took all day ;)

  39. I would love to win! One of my favorite memories is baking anise cookies with my mom for Christmas. I still cherish those memories and now make cookies with my grand daughters.

  40. My favorite baking memory was baking my brother’s birthday cake this past year. It was my first time making every party of a cake from scratch, so I had no idea what I was doing. The bavarian cream’s texture wasn’t right and the raspberry icing was too runny, but I was happy to be able to even create a cake for someone.

  41. Not necessarily my favorite but definitely memorable. My first time baking a pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving I was about 10. I had a little help from my mom and older sister but for the most part it was me. I ended up putting in a 1/2 tablespoon of salt instead of a 1/2 teaspoon into the crust and didn’t realize it. When it came time to eat the pie the crust was waaaay too salty. Everyone ended up scraping out the filling and eating that with whipped cream and leaving the crust behind! We all laughed and that it one mistake I will never make again.

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  43. I love fall and pumpkin recipes. Those cookies look amazing! I remember making cookies often when I was a child. One time while reaching up to get something from the top shelf my long hair got tangled into the beaters of our old mixmaster. Pulled my head right to the bowl! It took my mom quite some time to get my hair and the beaters apart. Scary at the time but defiantly a funny memory now.

  44. My favorite baking memory is making and decorating sugar cookies with my kids every year over the holidays. Those cookies look so yummy! You can not go wrong with pumpkin and chocolate. :)

  45. I remember the first time I’ve ever baked – I was home alone for the first time and excitedly bought all the necessary ingredients for a basic chocolate chip cookie – flour, chocolate chips, butter, etc. Now, I come from an Asian family that never bakes, and I was in 8th grade. But somehow, something went horribly wrong, and I ended up with a soppy gooey mess – absolutely disgusting – and a kitchen filled with smoke. I have no idea what went wrong, but after that incident I didn’t bake until my second year in college when I had an oven. The first thing I baked? Chocolate chip cookies, beautiful and tasty! I’ve been baking constantly ever since because it’s a great stress reliever and I can make friends with food :)

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  47. I have made these cookies both with chocolate chips and raisins and they turn out great either way.

    The hint of molasses and spice blend is perfect. Thx for a great recipe.

    • Thanks, Jeanette, for the feedback on the cookies! So glad you like them and have made them two ways! I have a molasses version sort of based on these, coming out in the next week or so, which I’m currently in love with :)

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  49. I love baking for my family when I go back home for the holidays. I made pumpkin bread at x-mas and even my traditional Taiwanese relatives loved it!

  50. I think I might be the only baker in my family. I more or less look up recipes and tweak the ingredients to my liking, experiment here and there. I enjoy giving the gift of baked goods for birthdays and holidays and the recipients enjoy them too. I also like to leave some treats in my workplace’s break room from time to time; I smile at the excitement they bring.

    My favorite memory would be entering a Chiquita Ultimate Banana Recipe contest. I had fun creating and submitting my banana sunshine cookie recipe and ba-nano bytes recipe. The bytes were a runner up and I won some neat Chiquita swag.

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