It’s that time of year again. Goblins and ghouls, witches and wizards, black cats and unicorns will be parading the sidewalks in an evening-long quest for the largest haul of candy among siblings and friends. Trades will be made, candy will be gobbled and tummies will ache. It’s a rite of passage.
For those of us too old to be ringing doorbells to fill bags, buckets and pillowcases with gummy bears and chocolate bars, here’s a delicious seasonal treat for kids of all ages.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
The leftover pumpkin puree from last week’s pumpkin curry recipe, did not go to waste! These sweet and spicy morsels are soft, light and fluffy. A different version of a classic Tollhouse cookie that is every bit as delicious, but with a kick from the spices. The texture is somewhat like a cross between a cookie and a muffin top. Perfect in my mind as you can enjoy them your morning coffee or evening Netflix binging.
One batch makes about 30 cookies so there’s plenty for a party.
For those interested, here are some Pro Tips for plant-based baking:
- Only sugar labeled organic is guaranteed to be vegan. This means that bone char was not used to whiten the sugar. Please note that brown sugar is simply white sugar that has had molasses added, so that needs to be organic as well. Organic is also best for the planet, so even if you’re not vegan, it’s a good product to buy. Organic sugar has a larger crystal. For a better outcome for baking, put organic sugar in a food processor and process to break down the crystals until they replicate standard table sugar or even fine baking sugar. Just be careful not to turn it into powder unless you want powdered (confectioners) sugar.
- Plant based liquid eggs are a great substitute for eggs in cookies. The egg in this recipe is there more for a bit of fat and binding. The baking powder and soda will act as leavening to help the dough rise. Just Egg is the brand that I favor. Another brand available locally is Simply Eggless. 3 Tablespoons is the equivalent of one egg.
- It’s important to use full fat plant-based milk for baking. Oatley Full Fat and Silk Creamy Full Fat have the highest fat content that I have found. Both work well in baking and cooking.
- Miyokos is my go to vegan butter for everything. It’s available both salted and unsalted butter, in a brick, at most markets.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies:
1 ½ cups strained fresh or canned pumpkin puree
3 cups (375 grams) AP flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp fine sea salt
2-½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp ground cloves
¼ tsp fresh ground nutmeg
¾ cup unsalted plant based butter, room temperature
¾ cup organic dark brown sugar
¾ cup organic white granulated sugar
3 T Just Egg egg replacement
2 tsp plant milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
¾ cup semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet pans with Silpat or parchment paper.
Strain the pumpkin puree by placing it in a double layer of cheesecloth and squeezing some of the water out. If you use homemade there will definitely be a bit of excess liquid. You’ll need about 2 cups pumpkin puree to get 1 ½ cups strained puree. Put the strained pumpkin in a small bowl and set aside.
Whisk all of the dry ingredients through the nutmeg, in a medium sized bowl. Set aside.
In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and two sugars on medium until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, scraping down sides when necessary. You can also use a hand mixer.
In a small bowl whisk together the Just Egg, plant milk and vanilla extract and add to the mixer bowl. Mix on high about a minute, scraping down sides. Add the pumpkin puree and mix until incorporated. It will look a bit curdled. Don’t worry. It will all come together once the flour is added.
Add the flour and mix on low until just incorporated, scraping down sides. Add the chocolate chips and mix in by hand. The dough is a bit sticky.
Use a large cookie scoop or small ice cream scoop to scoop rounded balls of dough onto the lined pan with room between each cookie.
Bake 13-15 minutes until edges are starting to brown. The cookie should still be a bit soft to the touch in the center. Let cool on pan 5 minutes and then move to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Store in a covered container for a few days. They freeze well.
About Deborah Brooks
Deborah is currently a documentary film producer. She is also a former certified personal trainer and fitness nutrition coach. The shutdown of business due to Covid-19 and the implication of an animal wet market connection caused her to rethink her high animal protein food lifestyle. She has spent the last year exploring the world of plant based eating for her own health as well as the health of the planet and all of its sentient beings. Her recipes can be found on Instagram. She would love you to follow along on her journey.
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