These pumpkin caramel cookies are soft pumpkin stuffed with caramel. They are rolled in cinnamon sugar and topped with more caramel pieces. They taste like the best parts of the fall season in a cookie!
These pumpkin caramel cookies are perfect if you want some homemade delicious pumpkin cookies this time of year. They are easy to make and have lots of gooey caramel and pumpkin spice flavors. If you are looking for a great recipe for a fall cookie you will love these perfect cookies!
Why This Is The Best Pumpkin Cookie Recipe
- Pumpkin cookies- These soft pumpkin cookies are packed with flavor!
- Caramel- These cookies have caramel inside and on top!
- Cinnamon sugar- The cinnamon sugar coating on these cookies goes perfectly with the pumpkin flavor and gives a perfect texture to complement the soft cookies.
Ingredient Notes for Caramel Pumpkin Cookies
Here are some notes on the ingredients. For a full list of ingredients, check out the recipe card below.
- Unsalted butter- Take this out 2 hours before baking to get to room temperature.
- Brown sugar- I used dark brown sugar instead of light brown sugar for this because the extra molasses gives a richer flavor.
- Egg yolk- Pull this out 2 hours before baking to get to room temperature.
- Pumpkin puree- Make sure to use pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie filling since it has added ingredients we do not want.
- Soft caramels- I prefer Werther's soft caramels as they have a better texture and flavor than other brands like Kraft, but you can use your preferred caramel candies. Be sure not to use hard caramels or a caramel sauce!
- Dairy free- You can use your favorite dairy free options for this recipe!
- Gluten free- I haven't tested this gluten free. Let me know if you do.
- Homemade pumpkin puree- I recommend canned usually for convenience, but if you make homemade pumpkin puree.
Step By Step Instructions
Here is how to make and bake these pumpkin caramel cookies.
STEP 1: Chill caramels. Place 12 caramels in the freezer. They will need to be cold before using them.
STEP 2: Dry ingredients. Sift the all purpose flour, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a medium bowl.
Pour the pumpkin puree on a plate and blot it with paper towels. Repeat 3-4 times to remove the excess moisture.
STEP 3: Beat butter and sugar. Use a mixer to beat the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar together on high speed for 2 minutes. It should become a lighter color.
STEP 4: Wet ingredients. Add pumpkin puree, vanilla extract, and egg yolk to the butter mixture. Mix on medium speed until combined. Then, add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until combined.
STEP 5: Prep. Mix sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Then, preheat the oven to 350°F. Meanwhile, line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
STEP 6: Scoop. Use a large cookie scoop (2 tablespoon or 2 oz) to scoop the cookie dough. While in the scoop, press your thumb into the center of the cookie. Place a frozen caramel inside and press the dough back over the hole.
STEP 7: Coat cookies. Roll each ball in the cinnamon sugar. Place 6 cookie dough balls per prepared sheet. Press them down slightly with your hand to flatten them a little bit.
STEP 8: Bake. Bake each baking sheet for 13-15 minutes. They are done when the edges are lightly golden brown. Place a caramel on top of each cookie immediately. If caramel has leaked use a spoon to press the cookie back into shape. Let the cookies cool on the hot pan for 15 minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
Expert Baking Tips
- Properly measure your flour- Make sure the flour is spooned and leveled. If you stick the measuring cup directly into the flour, it will compact the flour giving you too much flour. Compacted flour can cause the cookies to not spread.
- If the cookies are spreading too much, make sure you are using parchment paper on the cookie sheet. If they are still spreading too much this could be the butter was too warm before adding the ingredients. If it still spreads too much, you chill the cookie dough balls for 10-15 minutes.
- If you live at high altitude, add an extra 2 Tablespoons of flour. This will help with the spread.
- The cookies should be slightly underdone at first, because they will continue to cook as they cool. This helps to make sure they are chewy.
- Make sure the caramels are frozen all the way through as they can leak out of the cookie a lot if they melt too fast.
No, unfortunately the caramels will not fit into smaller cookies. The smaller cookie dough is much more prone to leaking the caramels even if you use smaller caramels.
Yes they can! Store the cookie dough balls in an airtight container or use plastic wrap. Do not stuff them with the caramels yet. Store in the freezer for 30 days. Let the cookie dough balls thaw and then stuff the balls of dough with the frozen caramels before baking.
Yes you can. However, I recommend making them into cookie dough balls first, but not adding the caramels before chilling overnight. Wrap them in plastic wrap. Make sure they come to room temperature, then stuff each dough ball with frozen caramels before baking.
- Pumpkin chocolate cookies- Replace the piece of caramel with chocolates!
- No cinnamon sugar- Rolling the cookies in cinnamon sugar is delicious, but optional. They cookies will work just fine without.
- Reduced caramel- You can choose not to put caramel on top of the cookies if you prefer less caramel.
- Parchment paper: I use premade sheets of parchment paper vs the roll of parchment paper. It makes baking a lot easier!
- Large cookie scoop: I love this OXO cookie scoop.
Storing and Freezing
Store the pumpkin caramel cookies at room temperature in an air-tight container such as a zip lock bag up to 5 days.
Freeze the baked cookies in an airtight container, such as a freezer bag, and freeze up to 30 days. Thaw for 1-2 hours before eating.
Other Pumpkin Recipes To Try
Try these fall recipes too!
- Apple Cider Muffins
- Puff Pastry Apple Tart
- Apple Cider Cheesecake
- Maple Bacon Cupcakes
- Salted Caramel Brownies
Pumpkin Caramel Cookies
- 2 cups All-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon Pumpkin pie spice
- ½ teaspoon Baking powder
- ½ teaspoon Baking soda
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1 cup Unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 cup Brown sugar packed light or dark
- ¼ cup White granulated sugar
- ¾ cup Pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract
- 1 Large egg yolk room temperature
- 12 Werther's soft caramels plus more to top the cookies
- ½ cup White granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- Place the 12 caramels into the freezer. They need to be completely cold before using.12 Werther's soft caramels
- In a medium bowl, sift the flour, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Pour the pumpkin puree on a plate. Press paper towels over the pumpkin. Do this 3-4 times to blot out all the moisture.2 cups All-purpose flour, 2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon, 1 teaspoon Pumpkin pie spice, ½ teaspoon Baking powder, ½ teaspoon Baking soda, 1 teaspoon Salt, ¾ cup Pumpkin puree
- Using a mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar, and sugar on high speed for 2 minutes. It will become lighter in color.1 cup Unsalted butter, 1 cup Brown sugar, ¼ cup White granulated sugar
- Add in the pumpkin puree, vanilla, and egg yolk. Mix on medium until combined. Add in the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until just combined. Take off the mixer and scrape the bowl using a rubber spatula.1 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract, 1 Large egg yolk
- In a small bowl, mix the sugar and cinnamon. Preheat the oven to 350℉. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.½ cup White granulated sugar, 2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- Use a large cookie scoop (2 oz or 2 TBSP) to scoop the cookie dough. While still in the scoop, place your thumb into the center about ½ way down. Place a frozen caramel in the hole and cover back up with cookie dough.
- Roll the cookie dough ball into the bowl of cinnamon sugar. Place 6 cookie dough balls per cookie sheet. Take your hand to lightly press the cookie dough ball down.
- Bake for 13-15 minutes. Bake until the edges are lightly golden. Immediately top the cookie with pieces of caramel. If any caramel leaks out of the cookie, use a spoon to press the cookie back into a circle.
- Let the cookie sit for 15 minutes on the pan before transferring to a cooling rack.