Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

BY : PUBLISHED : October 11th, 2022

These are the BEST vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! They’re thick, chewy, soft, lightly spiced, and loaded with real pumpkin flavor and plenty of vegan chocolate chips!

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completed Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies on a wire rack

Soft, Chewy, & Thick Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Fall is here, and we couldn’t be happier filling our houses with the delectable scents of apple cinnamon bread, pear crisp, and these vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! These vegan pumpkin cookies are not only perfectly soft and thick, with a crisp outside and chewy middle (not cakey), but they’re loaded with real pumpkin, are super simple to make, and are the perfect way to embrace the season!

Rather than letting the increasing energy costs slow us down (yet), we’re using it as the excuse to use the entire oven every time it’s switched on. Meaning double or triple batches of all our favorite goods to freeze for later or making a combination of fall-based treats like these easy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies alongside pumpkin chocolate chip muffins and pumpkin bread. As a bonus, baking helps to keep your house warm, too!

Even better, canned pumpkin puree allows you to enjoy these dairy-free pumpkin cookies year-round if desired. Though, with the combination of regular sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon (or pumpkin spice), these vegan pumpkin spice cookies are the embodiment of fall and require no eggs or dairy to be delicious.

The recipe requires only 10 inexpensive pantry ingredients, one bowl, and minimal hands-on effort to prepare. Best of all, it’s adaptable too. Increase or decrease the batch size, replace the vegan chocolate chips, add to the cookies, or tweak the recipe to become gluten-free, refined sugar-free, etc.

Once baked, these soft pumpkin cookies make for a delicious afternoon snack or a welcome addition to potlucks, parties, and gatherings like Halloween and Thanksgiving!

The Ingredients

This easy vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe relies on just 10 inexpensive, simple pantry staples for a budget-friendly fall treat.

ingredients for Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies measured out against a white surface
  • Pumpkin: You can use canned or homemade pumpkin puree (check FAQs for the latter) for these vegan pumpkin spice cookies.
  • Dairy-free butter: Use room-temperature vegan butter. Our favorites are Miyoko’s and Earth Balance.
  • Sugar: A combination of brown sugar and regular white sugar creates the perfect flavor and texture for these chewy, soft pumpkin cookies.

To make refined sugar-free pumpkin cookies, use coconut sugar in place or brown sugar and organic cane sugar to replace the white sugar. However, these both are more costly.

  • Vanilla extract: Use natural vanilla for the best flavor.
  • Applesauce: Store-bought or homemade applesauce is great for binding and adding moisture to these eggless pumpkin cookies.
  • Flour: Regular all-purpose flour works great for this easy pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe but can be replaced with all-purpose gluten-free flour, like Bob’s Red Mill or King Arthur’s, for vegan gluten-free pumpkin chocolate chip cookies.
  • Salt: Salt is excellent in baked goods for balancing and enhancing various flavors.
  • Baking soda: To provide lift and airiness, so these vegan pumpkin cookies are thick but not too stodgy.
  • Cinnamon: Or, if you have some, pumpkin pie spice, for more Fall spice flavor.
  • Vegan chocolate chips: Use vegan semi-sweet chocolate chips or chunks.

We also like to add raw and unsalted chopped nuts, like pecans or walnuts, but they’re 100% optional.

Optional Add-ins & Recipe Variations

Whether you want to skip the vegan chocolate chips, add a topping, or more, here are our favorite recipe adaptions.

How to Substitute the Vegan Chocolate Chips?

  • Chopped nuts
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Raisins
  • Chopped dates
  • Dried cranberries

Our favorite combination is using pumpkin seeds or walnuts with dried cranberries. They’d taste great with some vegan white chocolate chips, too.

  • Orange zest: From one orange.
  • Coffee: 1-2 teaspoons of espresso or instant coffee powder make delicious pumpkin spice latte cookies.
  • Coconut: 2-3 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut for texture and flavor.
  • Crystallized ginger: Very finely chopped and just a little for added heat.

You can also add various toppings to the dairy-free pumpkin cookies for an extra moreish, decadent treat. Options include:

  • Cinnamon sugar: Roll the cookie dough in a coarse cinnamon sugar mixture to make pumpkin snickerdoodle-style cookies.
  • Icing: Combine powdered sugar, maple syrup, plant-based milk, and a little vanilla or cinnamon to drizzle over the vegan pumpkin cookies.
  • Frosting: Pumpkin and vegan cream cheese frosting pair wonderfully, and it’s easy to veganize, too. Combine powdered sugar with vegan cream cheese and a little vanilla - that’s it.
  • Vegan chocolate: To double up on chocolate in these vegan chocolate chip pumpkin cookies, drizzle some dairy-free chocolate over the cooled cookies (semi-sweet, sweet, or white chocolate).
  • Flaky salt: A tiny sprinkle over the cookies balances and enhances the sweetness and flavors within these vegan pumpkin cookies.

How to Make Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies?

Preparing these easy vegan pumpkin spice cookies couldn’t be much simpler and requires just a handful of steps, one bowl, and minimal effort.

  • 1) First, preheat the oven to 350F/175C and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
  • 2) Next, cream the vegan butter and sugars in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Then add the pumpkin puree, vanilla extract, and applesauce, mixing well.
  • 3) Next, sift in the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt, and mix until well combined, being careful not to overwork the batter. Finally, carefully fold in the vegan chocolate chips (and chopped walnuts, if used).
  • 4) Divide the cookie dough into generous spoonfuls (for even-sized cookies, use a cookie scoop) to transfer to the prepared cookie sheet (with ½-inch space between each), flattening the dough gently with the back of a spatula.
unbaked Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies on a cookie sheet

These dairy-free, eggless pumpkin cookies don’t spread much in the oven, so you’ll need to flatten them into your desired thickness and shape before baking.

Lightly greasing the spatula can help avoid sticking when flatting the dough.

  • 5) Bake the vegan pumpkin cookies for between 12-15 minutes until they become golden-orange in color and are crisp along the edges.
  • 6) Then, remove them from the oven and transfer them to a cooling rack to cool for a minimum of 30 minutes before enjoying!

For prettier cookies, you can press a few more vegan chocolate chips into the top of each cookie immediately after removing them from the oven while they’re still soft.

FAQs

Can I use homemade pumpkin puree?

You can use homemade or store-bought pumpkin puree (not canned pumpkin pie filling) to make these easy vegan pumpkin spice cookies.

However, be aware that homemade pumpkin puree can contain more liquid and may require straining through a cheesecloth-lined strainer for about an hour to remove excess liquid.

Can you prepare the cookies ahead?

These vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are actually very make-ahead-friendly. First, you could store the cookie dough, covered, in the fridge for 2 days before baking the cookies.

You can also either freeze the unbaked cookie dough balls or roll the dough into a log and wrap it tightly with plastic wrap to freeze for up to 3 months.

You can bake the cookies from frozen, adding a few minutes to the oven time (slightly flattening them halfway into the baking) OR allow the cookie dough to thaw in the fridge overnight, then shape and bake.

Top Recipe Tips and Notes

  • Flatten the cookies: They don’t spread in the oven, so flattening/shaping them beforehand is important.
  • The cookie size: You can easily increase or decrease their size and the baking time accordingly.
  • Be careful not to overbake the cookies: They may look soft, but these vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies firm up as they cool.
  • Don’t skip the cooling time: They’re delicious warm, but their firmness, chewiness, and flavor only improve over time, making them even better after an hour or two of cooling (and even better on day two!).
completed Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies on a wire rack

How to Store Vegan Pumpkin Cookies?

Store the cookies in an airtight container with parchment paper between the layers for 2-3 days (or 4-5 in the fridge). Note that they will soften over time this way. For a slightly crisper cooker, only loosely cover them.

To freeze them, either wrap the cookies individually or in stacks with parchment paper between them. Store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow them to thaw at room temperature (for about 15 minutes) or warm up gently in a microwave in 10-second intervals to enjoy.

More Vegan Pumpkin Recipes

Or browse this list of 24 vegan canned pumpkin recipes for more inspiration!

Photos by Alfonso Revilla

completed Vegan Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies on a wire rack

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Toni Okamoto
These are the BEST vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies! They’re thick, chewy, soft, lightly spiced, and loaded with real pumpkin flavor and plenty of vegan chocolate chips!
5 from 42 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 large cookies
Calories 339 kcal
METHOD Baking
DIET Vegan

Ingredients
  

  • 1 cup vegan butter at room temperature
  • ½ cup of brown sugar
  • ½ cup of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 1 ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup of applesauce
  • teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup vegan semi-sweet chocolate chips

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (176 degrees C) and prepare a cookie sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
  • In a large bowl, mix the vegan butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until creamed. Add the pumpkin, vanilla extract, and applesauce and mix well.
  • Add the salt, cinnamon, baking soda, flour and mix thoroughly. Fold in vegan chocolate chips and walnuts, if using.
  • On the prepared cookie sheet, scoop a generous spoonful of cookie dough and flatten with a spatula. 
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes, until they turn a golden-orange color.
  • Allow to cool before enjoying.

Notes

  • Flatten the cookies: They don’t spread in the oven, so flattening/shaping them beforehand is important.
  • The cookie size: You can easily increase or decrease their size and the baking time accordingly.
  • Be careful not to overbake the cookies: They may look soft, but these vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cookies firm up as they cool.

Nutrition

Calories: 339kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 3gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.1gSodium: 241mgPotassium: 87mgFiber: 2gSugar: 26gVitamin A: 3899IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 38mgIron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Please tag us at @PlantBasedonaBudget! 🙂

Disclaimer: Although plantbasedonabudget.com attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, kindly note that these are only estimates. Nutritional information may be affected based on the product type, the brand that was purchased, and in other unforeseeable ways. Plantbasedonabudget.com will not be held liable for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on nutritional information. If you need to follow a specific caloric regimen, please consult your doctor first.

About Toni Okamoto

"They say you are what you eat, so I strive to be healthy.
My goal in life is not to be rich or wealthy,
'Cause true wealth comes from good health and wise ways...
we got to start taking better care of ourselves " - Dead Prez

View all posts by Toni Okamoto

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Beatriz says

    5 stars
    These are amazing! Need to make more asap 🙂

    • Andrea White says

      You dooo! They're the perfect fall treat!

  2. Katie says

    5 stars
    these pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are incredible! Perfect for fall!

    • Andrea White says

      Agreed! So so good for the fall and all year round too!

  3. Teodora says

    5 stars
    One of the best cookie recipes I've tried so far!

    • Andrea White says

      Agreed! Such a yummy cookie recipe for the fall!

  4. Judith says

    5 stars
    Súper tasty and easy to make too!

    • Andrea White says

      Agreed! Gotta love the easy and delicious ones!

  5. Jere Cassidy says

    5 stars
    I love pumpkin and chocolate together and your cookie recipe is super simple to make. These will be perfect for Thanksgiving treats.

    • Andrea White says

      Hope everyone enjoys them for the holidays!

  6. Jess says

    5 stars
    These cookies are perfect for fall

    • Andrea White says

      Yesss! So fun to make during the fall season!

  7. nancy says

    5 stars
    best chocolate chip cookies with pumpkin! I love this so much right now that it's fall time!

    • Andrea White says

      Agreed! Such a yummy fall combo!

  8. Andrea White says

    5 stars
    These fall cookies are my jam! So tasty and easy to make!

  9. Judith says

    5 stars
    A great combination of flavours and easy to make too!

    • Andrea White says

      Gotta love the easy and simple ones!

  10. Choclette says

    5 stars
    These pumpkin choc chip cookies have such an adorable colour. They taste pretty good too. Great recipe, thank you.

    • Andrea White says

      So glad you enjoyed them! They're a delicious one!

  11. Tina says

    5 stars
    I'm obsessed with these pumpkin cookies! The best fall cookie ever!

    • Andrea White says

      You are not alone! They're so good!

  12. Nora says

    5 stars
    These pumpkin chocolate chip cookies are simply divine! Perfect for the coming autumn!

    • Andrea White says

      They're the perfect fall cookie!

  13. Amy says

    5 stars
    So yummy! I'll be making these parts of my Thanksgiving dessert menu!

    • Andrea White says

      Love it! It will be a hit for sure!

  14. Mary says

    5 stars
    Yum! I love these cookies and I will be making them again for our Community Bale Sale in November. I know they'll sell!

    • Andrea White says

      Love it! Hope you do great!! 🙂

  15. Shelby says

    5 stars
    Pumpkin chocolate chip is one of my favorite flavor combos! And these cookies come out so comforting.

    • Andrea White says

      Right?! They pair together oh so well!

  16. Jacqui says

    5 stars
    I’m in love with these cookies! They are wholesome, delicious and fun to make.

    • Andrea White says

      I'm with you! They come out so good every time!

  17. Nancy says

    5 stars
    Nice tasty combo with chocolate chips and pumpkin. Yummy!

    • Andrea White says

      It's quite the duo! So glad you enjoyed it 🙂

  18. Judith says

    5 stars
    A tasty variation on traditional chocolate chip cookies.

    • Andrea White says

      Yesss! It's a great way to mix things up during the fall season!

  19. Sarah says

    5 stars
    How do you make chocolate chip cookies Even better? Just add pumpkin! What a great fall recipe, this would be great for cookie exchanges.

    • Andrea White says

      Couldn't agree anymore! Such a great combo for fall!

  20. Emily says

    5 stars
    I made these cookies with my homemade puree and they were amazing! Thanks for the great recipe!

    • Andrea White says

      Gotta love that pumpkin taste for fall!

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