Pumpkin Cookies with Browned Butter Icing

OK, I can’t resist. I have to give you all just one more pumpkin recipe before Thanksgiving tomorrow. If you’re still looking for a seasonal dessert to make, I definitely recommend these cookies.

These cookies have a subtle pumpkin flavor and are more of a cake-like cookie. They’re very soft and kind of melt in your mouth. I’d never made browned butter icing before, but it was surprisingly easy and tasted SO good! I’m glad I learned how because this icing will definitely make it to my recipe arsenal. Shout out to my girls Betty (Crocker) and Martha (Stewart) for coming up with a killer recipe. Here is my adaptation. Enjoy!

Pumpkin Cookies w/ Browned Butter Icing
Yield: 36 cookies

2¾ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1¼ teaspoons kosher salt
1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
1¼ teaspoons ground ginger
¾ teaspoon ground nutmeg
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2¼ cups light brown sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
1½ cups canned pumpkin
¾ cup half-and-half
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 cups powdered sugar
10 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon half-and-half
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg together.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and brown sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
  4. Beat in the eggs until combined. With the mixer on low, add the pumpkin, half-and-half and vanilla and beat until very well blended, about 2 minutes.
  5. Keep the mixer on low and add the dry ingredients. Beat until just combined.
  6. Use a spoon to drop the batter onto the prepared baking sheet – they should be about one and half inch rounds. (If you’re a perfectionist, or Martha Stewart, you can transfer the batter to a pastry bag fitted with a plain tip. Pipe 1 1/2-inch rounds onto the prepared baking sheet, leaving about 1 to 1 1/2 inches between them.)
  7. Bake for 12 minutes, or until the tops of the cookies spring back when lightly pressed.
  8. Transfer the baking sheet to a wire rack and let the cookies cool for 5 minutes than remove them to the rack to cool completely.Repeat with remaining batter.
  9. To make the icing: Add the confectioners’ sugar to a large heat-proof bowl.
  10. Put the butter in a small saucepan, set over medium heat and let it start melting. Continue cooking, swirling the pan occasionally, until the butter becomes golden brown and smells nutty (be patient and watch carefully –  it can go from browned to burnt quickly).
  11. Remove it from the heat and pour it over the confectioners’ sugar, scraping the browned bits from the bottom of the pan as well.
  12. Add the half-and-half and vanilla and stir until the icing is smooth. Using a small offset spatula, spread about 1 teaspoon of icing on each cookie. (If the icing stiffens before you get them all frosted, stir vigorously to lighten it up.)

Pumpkin Fudge

‘Tis the season for all things pumpkin! I have friends who seriously get obsessed with pumpkin anything this time of year. I’ve never been that person, though I am noticing myself ordering more pumpkin spice latte’s and being drawn to pumpkin treats. I’ve always loved pumpkin pie, but that was it for pumpkin-anything until my recent adult life.

I figured this year I would expand my baking endeavors and include a couple unfamiliar pumpkin recipes. So, this weekend I stocked up on my Libby’s canned pumpkin (not the pumpkin pie mix) and got to work in the kitchen.

First up: pumpkin fudge. I have to admit that my baking repertoire has historically centered around pies and cookies, so this fudge thing was new to me. I’d made basic chocolate fudge in the past, but made sure to find easy recipes with minimal steps. The results were always fine, but nothing that blew me away. This fudge, however, did in fact blow me away.

I was skeptical, because when I think of fudge, I think of milk or dark chocolate. I seem to always forget about white chocolate since on its own, it isn’t a flavor I love. But, the use of white chocolate in this pumpkin fudge recipe is perfect.

Unlike the easy fudge recipes I’ve made in the past, this recipe seemed to be a true candy recipe, and allowed me to break in the old candy thermometer. It’s more involved than some recipes, but SO worth it! I brought the fudge to work today and it’s already gone. Definitely a hit!

Enjoy 🙂

Pumpkin Fudge
Yield:  about 3 lbs

Preparation Time: 45 minutes

2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar (I almost always use dark brown sugar instead of light)
¾ cup unsalted butter
2/3 cup or 5-ounce can evaporated milk
½ cup canned pumpkin
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (I didn’t have this, so I just used cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice – I didn’t measure either – just shook a little of each)
2 cups white chocolate chips
1 (7 oz.) jar marshmallow creme
1 cup chopped pecans
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

1. Line a 9×13-inch baking pan with foil or parchment paper, leaving some hanging over the sides for easy removal.

2. Combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, evaporated milk, pumpkin, butter and spice in a medium saucepan. Bring to a full rolling boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Boil, stirring constantly, for 10 to 12 minutes or until candy thermometer reaches 234° to 240º F (soft ball stage).

3. Stir in the white chocolate chips, marshmallow creme, pecans and vanilla extract. Note: have these things ready – you have to work pretty quickly at this point! Stir vigorously for 1 minute or until the chocolate chips are melted. Immediately pour into the prepared pan. Let stand on wire rack for 2 hours or until completely cooled. Refrigerate tightly covered. To cut, remove from pan, remove foil or parchment paper, and cut into 1 inch pieces.

(Recipe adapted from Christmas Candy Recipes)