I was first introduced to pumpkin cookies by one of my dorm Bible study leaders. One week near Halloween, she surprised us with a platter of pillowy cookies drizzled with vanilla glaze. I was hooked at first bite and begged her to share the recipe (which incidentally became my debut blog post in November 2010!).

Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cookies

This time around, I was set to make the usual glaze when my eye caught a jar of homemade salted caramel sauce in the fridge. All at once, I knew that caramel was the answer (isn’t it always?). With a flourish of salted caramel frosting and sprinkle of pecans, these fall darlings are a scrumptious counterpart to last year’s caramel apple cookies.

Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cookies

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Salted Caramel Pumpkin Cookies

  • Yield: 34 cookies

Ingredients

Cookies

  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups pure pumpkin
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Caramel Frosting

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt, divided
  • 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 – 2 Tbsp milk
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped

Instructions

  1. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg in a medium bowl. Beat butter and sugar in a large mixer bowl at medium speed until light and fluffy. Beat in pumpkin, egg, and vanilla until combined. Reduce speed to low and gradually add flour mixture; beat just until incorporated. Cover dough and chill in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, or overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 350Β°F and line two baking sheets with silicone mats or parchment paper. Use a cookie scoop coated lightly with nonstick spray to form 1 1/2-inch balls of dough and place two inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Use a metal spatula coated lightly with nonstick spray to flatten mounds slightly. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, for 13 minutes, until tops and edges are set. Cool for 5 minutes on baking sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. For the caramel frosting, combine brown sugar, butter, and heavy cream in a heavy saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly until butter has melted completely. Reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and 1/8 teaspoon salt until smooth. Pour sauce into a glass bowl to cool to room temperature. Whisk in powdered sugar, milk, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt until frosting is smooth and spreadable. Use a small offset spatula to frost cookies; top with chopped pecans, pressing gently into frosting.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 140
  • Carbohydrates: 22

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