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Easy Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookies (without pumpkin puree)

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Cozy up with Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookies – no pumpkin puree needed! These quick, easy spiced sugar cookies are your fall faves. Infused with the magic of pumpkin pie spices and made in one bowl, they’ll be on baking rotation all season.

Close up of the baked cookies on the rack.

Pumpkin spice cookies without the pumpkin puree?

That’s like a Halloween party without the costumes! 🎃

Just kidding.

Like my Chai Cookies, Pumpkin spice cookies are synonymous with fall, sweaters, and everything cozy.

Another fall-perfect cookie is my Stuffed Caramel Cookies with Chocolate Chips.

They’re chewy and crisp and bursting with pumpkin pie spice.

But who says you need pumpkin puree to create the perfect pumpkin pie spice cookie?

A bite taken out of one cookie.

If you find making pumpkin pie cookies using pumpkin puree somewhat difficult, you’ll love this easier option.

They have everything you love about pumpkin pie but no pumpkins were squashed in the process!

Although the canned puree works like a charm in my creamy no bake pumpkin cheesecake!

Like my easy ginger snaps, this easy spiced sugar cookie recipe is just what you need for this fall and Thanksgiving.

Your kitchen will smell like a cozy fall wonderland with all those warm spices wafting around!

The same will happen when you make my Easy Apple Hand Pies!

Overhead of the cookies on the cooling rack.

🍪 Why You Will Love This Recipe

  • Quick & easy to make from scratch 
  • One bowl recipe
  • Infused with pumpkin pie spice
  • Make ahead
  • Freezer-friendly

These are more wholesome than your traditional sugar cookie as they’re not decorated or coated in cinnamon sugar before baking.

Similar to snickerdoodles but without the sugar coating!

If you’re interested in more fall and Thanksgiving recipes for this season, you have got to try out these cozy Cardamom Lemon Cookies.

These Pecan Shortbread Bars, this fall favorite dessert Quick & Easy Apple Crumble

Then, of course, my Easy Pumpkin Scones with No Egg.

Side view of the cookies altogether.

These pumpkin pie spice cookies are also freezer-friendly.

Which means you can make them ahead of time.

Either make and freeze the baked cookies or make and freeze just the cookie dough.

You’ll find the detailed instructions further down in this post. 

Optional Mix-In’s

Here’s a mix-in playlist to make your cookies dance with texture. Just add these after mixing the flour and before chilling, then bake as per the recipe:

Chocolate Chips: 1/2 – 1 cup of dark, milk or white chocolate.

Chopped Nuts: 1/2 cup of pecans, walnuts or almonds. Like my sultana cookies!

Dried Fruit: 1/2 cup of cranberries, apricots or raisins.

Toffee Bits: 1/2 cup of toffee bits, chopped toffee bars, toffee-flavored chips.

📋 Ingredient Notes & Substitutions

Below are the ingredients that you need to make these easy pumpkin spice sugar cookies:

Ingredients needed to make these pumpkin spice cookies are all-purpose flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, salt, egg, butter, cornflour and vanilla.
  • Unsalted butter: Use butter that comes in a block. Can be substituted with salted butter, just remove the added salt later in the recipe.
  • Granulated sugar: I used golden/raw granulated sugar for it’s added flavor. You can substitute it with regular white granulated sugar.
  • Brown sugar: Use regular light brown sugar. This recipe has not been tested using dark brown sugar or coconut sugar.
  • Egg: As you’ll be adding the egg to the melted butter mixture, although it should be cooled down, ensure your egg is at room temperature before adding it to avoid it curdling.
  • Cornstarch: Also known as cornflour in Australia, it contributes to the chewy texture but if you don’t have it on hand, omit it from the recipe or arrowroot flour makes a good substitute.
  • Baking soda: Do not substitute this with baking powder. To check if your baking soda is still active, use this handy tip.
  • Salt – use fine salt, such as a fine sea or Kosher salt. 
  • Pumpkin pie spice: Can be found in the US at your local grocery store or online. Living elsewhere, such as Australia, you can make your own pumpkin pie spice blend!

🥣 Step By Step Instructions (with photos)

How to make cozy pumpkin pie spice cookies from scratch in 7 easy steps!

Step one: Pour melted butter into a large mixing bowl. Whisk through both sugars until well combined. 

Whisking the sugars into the melted butter.

Step two: Whisk through the egg and vanilla. 

Whisk through the egg.

Step three: Sift over the flour, cornstarch, baking soda and the pumpkin pie spice. Then add the salt. 

Step four: Mix with a spatula or wooden spoon until well combined and a soft cookie dough forms, it will be thick. 

Step five: Chill dough in the fridge for 45 minutes.

Mix through the dry ingredients to form the dough.

Step six: Form cookies by scooping up 50g (2oz) or 3 level tablespoons. Place onto lined tray, leaving as tall balls, do not flatten.

Repeat with the remaining dough, leaving a gap between each. 

Step seven: Bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from the oven and gently tap the baking tray on your bench top or stove top 3 times to slightly deflate.

Allow cookies to cool on the tray for 15 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Enjoy! 

The cookie dough balls on the baking tray to bake for 12 minutes.

💭 Expert Tips

  • Melt butter first: Melt butter and cool for 10-15 minutes until slightly warm; if too hot, the egg may curdle when added. 
  • Room temperature egg: Ensure your egg is at room temperature before starting to prevent it from curdling when it’s whisked with the warm melted butter.
  • Don’t overmix: Avoid overmixing after adding the flour to prevent tough cookies. Mix until flour is just incorporated, then mix in the sultanas just until distributed.
  • Chill the dough: You only need 45 minutes to chill the cookie dough in the fridge. This makes it easier to roll the dough and prevent flat cookies.
  • Don’t overcrowd the pan: These cookies need space to spread out and strut their stuff. Give ’em room to groove!
  • Do not flatten ballsNo need to flatten the dough balls on the baking sheet. Keeping them tall allows them to spread naturally during baking in the oven.
  • Deflate cookies: Tap cookies on the bench top or stovetop to deflate them after baking; this creates the classic cookie top waves.
Close up showing one cookie amongst many.

Serving Suggestions

  • Creamy Dip: Whisk up some cream cheese and powdered sugar for a delectable dipping sauce.
  • Ice Cream Sandwich: Place a scoop of vanilla ice cream between two cookies for a decadent dessert.
  • Top with whipped cream: A dollop of whipped cream to recreate a heavenly slice of pumpkin pie.
  • Rum Hot Chocolate: Make this rum nightcap for guests or just yourself, alongside a slice of this pumpkin cheesecake.
  • With Yogurt: Enjoy a pumpkin pie spice flavor infusion by crumbling a cookie or two over yogurt with fresh berries or Overnight Weetabix for a delightful breakfast or snack.
  • As a gift: Present them in a vintage cookie jar for that cozy, thoughtful homemade gift or as christmas cookies for friends and family.

Common Mistakes To Avoid

  • Overmixing: Mix just enough, or you’ll get tough cookies, and nobody wants that!
  • Not chilling: Skip the chill, and your cookies may spread like gossip. Chill for shape and flavor.
  • Overcrowding: Cookies need space to breathe and spread. Don’t let them become a cookie blob!
  • Overbaking: Brown edges mean it’s time to come out, even if they feel soft in the middle. They’ll firm up as they cool but remain soft and chewy in the center.
Pumpkin spice cookies sitting on wire cooling rack next to bowl of pumpkin pie spice

Troubleshooting

Are these pumpkin spice cookies giving you a hard time? Let’s dive into some problems and solutions for you.

Cookies Spread Too Much:


1: Chill the dough for 45 minutes before rolling the cookies.

2: Keep cookie dough balls tall, do not flatten before putting them into the oven.

3: Do not use a hot baking sheet.

Cookies Not Spreading In The Oven?

Too much flour might be crashing the party. Extra flour dries out the dough, tipping the wet-to-dry balance.

Ensure to measure ingredients correctly. No need for extra flour, even if the dough seems wet.

Cookies Are Too Tough:

Avoid overmixing the dough, and measure flour accurately.

Unevenly Baked Cookies:

Use parchment paper on your baking sheet and place cookies evenly apart, leaving enough space for them to spread.

Cookies Are Too Dry:

Watch the baking time, they’ll turn golden brown around the edges but can still look too soft in the center, that’s ok, we want soft centers!

A stack of cookies.

⏲️ Storage Instructions

Store: Allow cookies to cool completely and store in an airtight container, at room temperature for 1 week.

Freeze: Place baked and cooled cookies in a freezer-friendly zip-lock bag or container, layered with parchment paper between each layer of cookies to prevent sticking. Label with the date and freeze for up to 3 months.

Thaw: At room temperature for 1-2 hours until soft enough to eat.

FREEZE COOKIE DOUGH FOR LATER USE:

  1. Preparation: Form the dough into individual balls as instructed, and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, ensuring they’re not touching.
  2. Freezing: Freeze the baking sheet for 1-2 hours, or until the cookie dough is firm.
  3. Storage: Transfer the frozen cookie balls to a zip-lock bag or airtight container, layering with parchment paper if needed. Label with the date, and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Baking Options:

From Frozen: Preheat your oven as directed in the recipe, and add a couple of extra minutes to the baking time. Monitor them closely until they’re ready as per recipe instructions.

Thaw Before Baking: Thaw the frozen cookie balls in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight, then bake as per the original instructions.

Stack of pumpkin pie spice cookies with a bite taken out of one cookie sitting on top

💬 Recipe FAQ’s

Can I make this cookie dough in advance?

Yes! Simply cover the dough and chill in the fridge overnight. Ready to bake? Let it sit for 5-10 minutes at room temperature until the dough is pliable enough to roll the balls. Then, follow the recipe and enjoy.

Can I add mix-ins to these pumpkin spice cookies?

Yes! Spice up that cookie dough with 1/2 to 1 cup of chocolate chips, nuts, or dried fruit. Just toss ’em in after the flour and before chilling.

Can I freeze cookie dough to bake later?

Yes! Scroll upwards to find the storage instructions where I provide detailed steps on how to freeze your cookie dough for later use. Here’s a quick rundown:

1. Chill dough for 45 minutes, form balls, and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2. Pop them into freezer bags or Tupperware, labeled with date and recipe.

3. Freeze up to 3 months.

4. Ready to bake? Place frozen balls on a baking sheet, let sit while the oven preheats, then bake as usual, adding 1-2 minutes.

Voila, fresh cookies from the freezer!

If you enjoy this recipe, please consider leaving a ⭐️ star rating and a comment review below. I love to hear what you think and it’s much appreciated. Thank you! Your email address will not be published. Sam x

the baked cookies on a serving rack.

Easy Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookies

Samantha Pickthall
Pumpkin Pie Spice Cookies made without pumpkin puree. These spiced sugar cookies are easy and quick to make. Only 45 min chill time & bakes in 12 minutes!
4.75 from 35 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Chill Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 17 minutes
Course cookies, Dessert
Servings 16 cookies
Calories 184 kcal

Ingredients
 
 

  • 160 g unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup golden granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar, how to pack
  • 1 large egg, weighing approx. 55g-60g in shell
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (225g) all-purpose flour, scoop & leveled
  • 2 tsp cornstarch, or cornflour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt, or Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice, see notes if you don't have it

Instructions
 

  • Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally. Alternatively, melt in microwave in 30-second intervals.
  • Pour melted butter into a large mixing bowl and set aside to cool for 10-15 minutes until it’s only slightly warm. Don’t let it firm back up again.
  • Add both sugars and whisk for 20 seconds until well combined. NOTE: The mixture will thicken gradually; avoid leaving it too long, as it will become harder to whisk the egg in the next step.
  • Add egg and vanilla, and whisk until well combined, about 15 seconds.
  • Sift over the flour, cornstarch, baking soda and pumpkin pie spice. Then add the salt.
  • Using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, fold and mix until a soft cookie dough forms, it will be thick.
  • Chill the cookie dough in the refrigerator for 45 minutes, or if the bowl is too large, wrap the dough and refrigerate without the bowl. *For overnight chilling, see notes below.
  • While dough chills, preheat oven to 180ºC (356ºF). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  • After the 45 minutes, remove dough from fridge.
  • Scoop and weigh 45g (1.5oz) of dough to form each cookie; roll into tall balls and place on lined tray, without flattening the balls. NOTE: Without a food scale, use 3 level tablespoons per cookie.
  • Repeat with remaining dough, spacing cookie balls 10cm (4 inches) apart to allow for spreading, and leaving gaps near tray edges. Bake in batches, as they won't all fit on one tray.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes until edges are lightly golden. Centers may look slightly under-baked; that's what keeps them soft and chewy.
  • Remove from oven and tap the tray on your bench top or stove top 3 times to help slightly deflate.
  • Allow cookies to cool on tray for 15 minutes.
  • Carefully transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. They’ll still be soft and delicate so handle with care to avoid breakages.
  • Enjoy!

Video

Notes

  • Pumpkin Pie Spice: If you don’t have it on hand, use the below spices instead:
2 tsp (6g) ground cinnamon
1 tsp (2g) ground nutmeg
1 tsp (1g) ground ginger
1/2 tsp (2g) ground allspice
1/2 tsp (2g) ground cloves
 
  • Chill dough overnight: To chill your dough overnight, make it per the recipe instructions and instead of chilling it for 45 minutes, leave it wrapped in the fridge overnight. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes prior to shaping the cookies to let it soften.
 
  • Deflate cookies: Tap cookies on the bench top or stovetop to deflate them after baking; this creates the classic cookie top waves.
 
 
  • Store: Allow cookies to cool completely and store in an airtight container, at room temperature for 1 week.
 
 
  • Freeze: Place baked and cooled cookies in a freezer-friendly zip-lock bag or container, layered with parchment paper between each layer of cookies to prevent sticking. Label with the date and freeze for up to 3 months.
 
  • Thaw: At room temperature for 1-2 hours until soft enough to eat.

Nutrition

Calories: 184kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 2gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.4gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0.3gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 150mgPotassium: 35mgFiber: 0.4gSugar: 16gVitamin A: 266IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 17mgIron: 1mg
Keyword bakery style cookies, fall, pumpkin pie spice, pumpkin spice, thanksgiving
Tried this recipe? Let us know how it was!

If you enjoy this recipe, please consider leaving a ⭐️ star rating and a comment review below. I love to hear what you think and it’s much appreciated. Thank you! Your email address will not be published. Sam x

2 Comments

  1. What is golden granulated sugar exactly? We have granulated sugar here in the Netherlands, but it’s just white and not golden. Is it the same as brown sugar or cane sugar? Can I replace it with either one of these?

    1. Hi Naomi, golden granulated sugar has a pale amber color and a light molasses flavor, sitting between white granulated sugar and brown sugar in taste. You can use your regular white granulated sugar for this recipe, no problems at all. Enjoy! Sam 🙂

4.75 from 35 votes (35 ratings without comment)

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