Pumpkin Sugar Cookies


Sprinkle these pumpkin cookies with cinnamon sugar or decorate them with royal icing.

Pumpkin Sugar Cookies Recipe
Photo: Grace Elkus
Hands On Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs
30 cookies

Why wait for December to roll out a batch of sugar cookies? We dreamt up an excuse to make them two whole months earlier. This recipe is an adaptation of our favorite sugar cookie recipe, but instead of another stick of butter, we substituted a half cup of pure pumpkin puree. Roll the dough out flat, punch them out with a pumpkin cutter, and bake them for just about 10 minutes.

The results are tender and slightly chewy (although you can bake them a tad longer if you like a crispier cookie). To finish it off, these pumpkin cookies would taste delicious sprinkled with cinnamon sugar before baking. However, we like to dress them up with a little tinted royal icing for a festive touch. Put them out if you’re hosting the pre (or post) trick-or-treating festivities.



  • 2 cups all purpose flour, plus more for work surface

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger

  • ¼ teaspoon ground allspice

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda

  • Pinch ground cloves

  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • ½ cup pure pumpkin puree

  • ½ cup granulated sugar

  • ½ cup brown sugar

  • 2 large egg yolks

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Royal Icing

  • 2 large egg whites

  • 2 cups confectioners sugar

  • orange and green food coloring or sprinkles


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Whisk flour, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, baking soda, salt, and cloves in a large bowl.

  2. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter, granulated and brown sugars together until smooth. Add the pumpkin and beat to combine. Add egg yolks and vanilla and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.

  3. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add flour mixture and mix until evenly incorporated. Shape into a disk, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour.

  4. On a floured surface, roll the dough to a ¼-inch thick. Using a pumpkin-shaped cookie cutter, cut into shapes and transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet, spacing them 1½ inches apart. Freeze until firm, about 15 minutes.

  5. Bake until just beginning to brown at the edges, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool slightly on baking sheets, then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

  6. Using an electric mixer, beat egg whites and confectioners sugar on low speed until smooth and shiny. Divide icing into 2 or three bowls and tint with green or orange food coloring as desired. Transfer icing into a piping bag or a resealable plastic bag (snip the corner just before decorating). Decorate cookies as desired.

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