Trying Out A New Recipe: Justine Doiron’s “Best Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies”

Athena ScalziI’ve stated this before in a post from a few months ago, but I have a bad habit of following a ton of cooking/baking people on Tik Tok and then never actually trying out their recipes. Yesterday, however, I saw one of my favorite foodie Tik Tokers, Justine Doiron (@justine_snacks) post a recipe for pumpkin chocolate chip cookies. I thought, well I could just do that right now! So I got up and did it! That almost never happens, but I’m glad it did, because these turned out really well.

First things first, the ingredients:

Ingredients laid out on a counter. There's a stick of salted Kerrygold butter, a can of pumpkin, flour, sugar, dark brown sugar, ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, baking powder, cornstarch, and Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips.

This recipe is actually a vegan recipe, but it says you can also just use regular butter, so I did! I also used salted because it didn’t specify salted or unsalted, it did say (in bold) to not skimp on salt, because it aids with gluten formation! So I figured it couldn’t hurt to use salted instead of unsalted.

The recipe also says to use 2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice, but I didn’t have any on hand, so I googled how to make pumpkin pie spice, and used this recipe that came up! And I did end up halving it because I knew I only needed 2 tsp of the mixture. Also, I didn’t have allspice, so I omitted it. Sometimes you have to work with whatcha got.

Moving on, this recipe is pretty simple in terms of ingredients, the only thing you probably won’t have on hand (like me) is the pumpkin pie spice and the canned pumpkin. And maybe the chocolate chips. Other than that, it’s pretty standard stuff!

Here’s what my pumpkin pie spice mix ended up looking like:

A black bowl containing a brown spice mix. It mostly just looks like ground cinnamon in a bowl.

I’m not sure why my ginger was clumpy since it was a new bottle, but whatever.

I whisked together all the dry ingredients in a bowl, and then creamed the sugar and butter together in a stand mixer:

A silver stand mixer bowl with the butter and sugar mixture in it. It is light brown in color from the brown sugar.

It said to add the pumpkin on a slow speed, so I did just that:

A silver stand mixer bowl with the butter, sugar, and pumpkin mixture in it. It is slightly more of an orangish beige now than a brown.

Then I added the dry ingredient mixture in all at once, but the recipe says to mix it in by hand instead of using the stand mixer. I’d assume it has something to do with gluten development and not overworking it, so I just folded them in nicely:

A silver stand mixer bowl with the pumpkin cookie dough in it.

And of course, the chocolate chips:

A silver stand mixer bowl with the completed pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough in it.

Wow! That was really simple! It was a relief to bake something with no issues.

I let the dough chill in the fridge for about thirty minutes while I preheated the oven, and then I made the dough into 75g balls. The recipe says that you should get eight balls, but I got nine! I’m not sure how since they were all 75g.

Nine circular lumps of pumpkin chocolate chip cookie dough on a parchment lined baking sheet.

And after fifteen minutes, I got these bad boys!

A close up of one of the fully baked cookies. It looks like a normal chocolate chip cookie except it's slightly tinted orange and has tons of cracks on the surface.

And the cross-section:

The pumpkin cookie broken in half, revealing the middle full of melty chocolate chips.

Hell yeah! Successful cookies! I’m pretty happy with these all things considered.

They were quick and easy as far as homemade cookies go, and the fact you can easily make them vegan is neat, too! I liked that these were small batch because I get tired of putting batch after batch of cookies in the oven and setting tons of timers. This was one and done, which was nice.

As far as taste goes, they’re not super heavy on the pumpkin since they only have a quarter cup in them, they’re more cinnamon-y flavored than anything, really. So if you like warm spice flavors in a soft cookie with melty chocolate chips, this is the cookie for you!

I will definitely be trying out more of her recipes in the future. I think I’d like to try her blueberry cookies at some point.

Also! My mom told me that some of y’all came up to her at WorldCon and told her to tell me that you like my posts (especially the food ones!) Thank you so so much to all of you that told her to tell me that! Hearing it really brightened my day, and it sticks with me whenever I do end up writing food posts like this. The fact that y’all enjoy them brings me so much joy!

Do these cookies strike your fancy? Would you use semi-sweet chocolate chips or a different kind? Are you a pumpkin fan? Let me know in the comments, and have a great day!


27 Comments on “Trying Out A New Recipe: Justine Doiron’s “Best Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies””

  1. I do like your posts and the cookies look good, but… not for me. I don’t like pumpkin in any form and I dislike anything spice cakey.

    Oh well, better luck for me next time.

  2. Oh you cookie temptress, you! These look so good. When I use to bake I used semi-sweet chocolate chips. But I don’t do this as much now that I’m diabetic. So I really watch my intake of goodies and eat more sugar-free or goodies that use sugar-alcohol that don’t impact as much on one’s blood sugar. Augh, getting old is a bummer.

    But I can still appreciate this. Great note on the small batch. Sometimes you just want a few and not some output where you see you’ll be having cookies for the next week and a half. Ha.

  3. Oooohhh, those look amazing!

    I am a huge fan of anything with the combination of pumpkin and chocolate, and what a bonus to have the recipe scaled for a small batch, too. My elder kid makes wonderful pumpkin-chocolate-chip muffins, but their recipe yields two dozen of the things, which is about 23 more than I can eat before they start to mold.

    I consider Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate to be the gold standard for baking, so I think you chose exactly correctly for this recipe. Only my very subjective opinion, though – I know there are many other preferences.

    My personal preference is for a more dominant pumpkin flavor, so I might play with proportions just a bit to amp up the pumpkin, since you mentioned that it’s pretty mild. But I am wary of altering proportions too much in baking, having had some memorable disasters when I got overenthusiastic about changes.

    Speaking of the pumpkin, that was a big can of the stuff, and a quarter-cup must have left a lot behind. It freezes very well, I have found, and if I know that I’ll use it in a specific quantity (e.g. half a cup at a time), I’ll freeze it in portions so I can thaw out just what I need later. Pumpkin pancakes are pretty awesome, if you ever want to try another variation on the theme.

    I’m so glad you posted about baking again, Athena! I hope you’ll share more of your adventures here – I really enjoy them!

  4. They look super-yummy! I love that you kde your own pumpkin pie spice as well.

    I recommend Penzey’s spices- they make lots of cool, small batch spices.

  5. I always enjoy your posts, especially the cooking ones, so was glad to see this one. These cookies look delicious! I love pumpkin anything, and am a chocoholic so approve of the chocolate chips. I know you said they didn’t have a strong pumpkin flavor, but I’m also a big fan of spice flavored sweet baked items so am sure I would like them. I also appreciate that the recipe only made a small batch. (And I second the recommendation for Penzey’s spices! Great company).

  6. Mmm, pumpkin chocolate chip! I kinda forget about these during most of the year, but I make a batch or two in the fall. I will have to locate my recipe and see how much pumpkin is in it, because I recall the cookies are very pumpkiny.
    I notice your cookies look a bit cakey, and mine turn out that way too, and it’s a nice texture.
    Thanks for posting and reminding me about this recipe!

  7. Another great food post! Yes, I do enjoy them.

    I also really like recipes that include vegetables like pumpkin or zucchini but then aren’t dominated by the taste of them. It feels like you’re getting away with sneaking something healthy into a food that is a treat. :)

    I mean, I do like the taste of pumpkin, but it also seems like lately the whole country goes “pumpkin spice” crazy this time of year, which is annoying. As an aside though, my husband has added these types of spices to an otherwise basic brownie mix or recipe, to good effect.

  8. If you’re ever feeling the vibe, you should know that homemade pumpkin puree is super easy to make and (IMO) way better than canned. Get a little pumpkin, cut in quarters & scoop the seeds/pulp, cut each quarter in quarters, toss ’em all in a covered microwave-safe dish. Add about 1/4 cup water, microwave about 8 minutes to steam it. Let cool; drain water. You should be able to remove the rind with just a spoon or table knife. Mash with a fork or use a blender, depending on your texture preference. Voila! This freezes well too.

  9. In my experience, ginger always clumps. You just mush the big clumps with the back of a spoon, and try to ignore the small clumps.
    Also, in my opinion omitting the allspice improved the spice mix, and omitting the cloves would have improved it even more. I love pumpkin, and have been disappointed many times with pumpkin pie ruined by a horribly cloven Pumpkin Spice. I don’t own a pumpkin spice mix–I just use cinnamon and a very little nutmeg and/or allspice.

  10. Granny Roberta, that is exactly why we never buy premixed spice combinations, too – we want to balance the flavors ourselves. Even if we like all the components in a particular mix, we want to be able to adjust the proportions to our own liking.

    I’ll add another strong endorsement of Penzey’s spices, too. That’s the only kind we ever buy. They’re strongly flavored, responsibly sourced and very fresh. When I counted the spice cabinet one day a few years ago when I was bored, I found we had over 70 of their offerings on hand. They do web-ordering for parts of the country that don’t have a bricks-and-mortar Penzey’s store nearby. And Bill Penzey, the owner, has strongly felt opinions about the world that happen to align well with mine, so I like supporting a business that supports the same things that I do.

  11. Salted caramel chips are seasonal for reasons beyond my comprehension, but they should be on the shelf soon, and I bet they’d be fantastic in these cookies.

  12. Those look fabulous! I agree with the small batch love…with only two of us in the house, we have to find people to share desserts with before they go bad. Also agreeing with the comments about Penzey’s spices. We like them so much we have given them as gifts to friends who bake.
    I am one of the people who enjoys all of your posts but not someone who talked to your mother about them. So the writing love goes even further than she got to hear.

  13. I love the thought of small batch baking! It definitely cuts out the tedium of making endless batches at once, plus you can try more flavors!

  14. Usually if they don’t say for butter, they mean unsalted. But it sounds like it didn’t matter in this recipe!

    Also agree with Penzeys. We just got our most recent order yesterday and it came with a free colorful Choose Love mug that had a reminder to vote on the bottom. Also their spices are really good quality. Great quality, reasonable prices, good people.

    My DH’s favorite cookies are pumpkin raisin. You’re reminding me that it’s that time of year for him to make them. :D

  15. I immediately began worrying about the rest of that big can of pumpkin puree–what to do with it? I seem to recall freezing some in 1 cup amounts one time, and it worked OK. This recipe looked good, but it reminded me of a two layer chocolate and pumpkin cake I used to make. Maye I should see if I can tweak it to make it fit in my diet, which means Splenda for sugar and Atkins baking mix for flour, meaning heavy, heavy, heavy. So, maybe not. Anyhow, I expect you and yours enjoyed eating them and I enjoyed reading about making them.

  16. These cookies look delicious! I’m a fan of pumpkin but also glad it’s usually only widely available for a limited time. Keeps it special.

    I really enjoy following along in your cooking adventures!

  17. Larger batches of cookie dough can be rolled into logs and stashed in the freezer, and when friends come by unexpectedly you can slice off a small batch and produce fresh warm cookies, like, TaDa!

    Or, when you just want just a few cookies to dunk in your coffee. And you only have to mess up the kitchen once, for many small batches.

  18. This is not related to the cookies, but they look great. I ordered a box of candy from Misaky Tokyo, and had an interaction with one of their people, and let her know I learned about them from you and directed her to your post. She replied that she read your post and it was beautiful!

    Just wanted you to know.

  19. Thank you for sharing, Athena! Would you consider a post on your salmon bowl? Saw it on your dad’s tweet and it looked amazing.

  20. Oh, those look tasty! I’ll just use regular butter, and since I inexplicably have FIVE bags of white chocolate chips in the pantry, that’s what I’ll use. I think when my husband shopped for chocolate chips at one point, they were low on chocolate but had tons of these white chocolate ones, and he figured that’d be groovy. And they’re fine, but when I want chocolate, I usually want the other kind, you know? Heh. These cookies sound likes flavor profile that would play well with white chocolate, though.

    Add me to the list of people who greatly appreciate your cooking/baking posts! I enjoy all your posts, really, but since I spend so much time in the kitchen myself, I really get a kick out of your cooking posts. And thanks for sharing this one – I’m looking forward to trying these!

  21. Charlie told me that he would like to try a homemade dog treat.

    Can we send you some family recipes, not found in cookbooks?

  22. First off, thank you so much to everyone for sharing your thoughts with me and thank you for all the compliments on my cookies/baking post! I’m so glad I could whip these up and share them with y’all.

    @ Colonel Snuggledorf, I also prefer Ghirardelli semi-sweet chocolate chips for just about everything!

    @ Rt Boyce, the creator of the recipe I used mentioned that pumpkin makes cookies cakey! I’m sure that had something to do with it.

    @ Judith S Anderson, wow thank you so much! It means a lot to me that the company was able to see my post, that was so kind of you to share it with them!

    @ Yvonne, I should’ve documented the salmon bowl! Alas, I didn’t photograph the process or anything so I don’t really have any content to post about. I could definitely do it again in the future, though, or other savory/dinner recipes!

    @ John, yes feel free to send recipes! I’d be very appreciative.

    Again, thank you all so much for the love on this post! It warms my heart <3

  23. You might want to check out the Smitten Kitchen website and even get Deb Perelman’s cookbook. Her recipes aren’t too fussy and cook up fine.

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