Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Dark Chocolate Chunk Pumpkin Cookies

It's officially "put pumpkin in everything" season, and "can you bring a treat for _______" season now that school and activities are in full swing! I dusted off this recipe for dark chocolate chunk pumpkin cookies this week.  I don't remember where I first stumbled upon the recipe, but it is a keeper now, for sure.  The whole family loves them!  

I didn't have pumpkin pie spice (see original recipe) the first time I made them, so I subbed the spice mixture below, and just do it that way every time.  The dough needs to chill for a bit, so keep that in mind.  I am famous for reading details like that midway through the recipe and then having to backtrack (oops). The cookies and the dough freeze well, if you can keep from eating them all at once.  I think they'd made a pretty delish cookie bar, too....

Dark Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies

Whisk together the following and set aside:

2 c. all purpose flour
1 c. whole wheat flour (or just use 3 c. AP)
1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cloves

In your mixer bowl:

1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temp
1 c. granulated sugar
1 c. brown sugar, packed (I used dark - it's what I had)
2 eggs, room temp
2 tsp. good quality vanilla extract
1 c. (organic) pumpkin puree (not pie filling) - canned or homemade
10 oz. dark chocolate chunks*

* I like to have one of Trader Joe's Pound Plus bars of their super amazing 72% cacao dark chocolate (the red wrapper) on hand and use it instead - I just chop it roughly into chunks, but any dark chocolate chips or chunks work.

Beat the butter on high for about a minute, then add in sugars.  Continue beating for another minute or two, scraping the sides down as needed.  Add in eggs, and continue beating.  Add the pumpkin puree and the vanilla, and mix until combined.  Add in the flour mixture until it is fully incorporated, and then stir in the chocolate chips.  Chill the dough in a covered bowl in the fridge for an hour (or more - even overnight if you're one of those prepared kinds of people).  

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Scoop cookies out onto baking sheets lined with parchment or a Silpat mat (you can make big ones, about 2 tbsp., or I make them a little smaller, just about 1 tbsp.).  Bake them about 12 minutes, or until lightly browned - don't let them go too long, though!  They're going to be a little soft, because of the moisture from the pumpkin (yum).  Cool completely on the sheet.  Makes about 4-5 dozen cookies, depending on how large you make them. 

I have frozen the baked cookies and the dough before, both with good results, but they are SO GOOD when they're warm from the oven, so good luck with that.