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4 Great Pumpkin Cookie Recipes: Vegan and Gluten Free

I enjoy sharing delicious traditional recipes that have been modified to meet the needs of those who are vegan or gluten-sensitive.

These pumpkin cookies are completely vegan and gluten free

These pumpkin cookies are completely vegan and gluten free

Gluten-Free and Vegan Pumpkin Cookies

Pumpkin treats—squares, cakes, muffins, cookies—are a switch-up dessert for the various holidays that we associate with pumpkin pie, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas. But with cans of organic pumpkin on the store shelves all year long you can whip up these delicious, healthy pumpkin cookie recipes any time!

The four great pumpkin cookie recipes in this article are all vegan (no eggs, dairy or honey) and three are gluten-free (no wheat, rye, barley, or corn), with an option for gluten-free with the fourth. We have tried various recipes from books and off the internet and made adjustments so that they taste as great as (or better than) the wheat, egg, and dairy varieties. Please, make your own adaptations if you want to try that (I'm all for experimenting with your food!).

No Xanthan Gum or Guar

I have skipped xanthan or guar gum in these recipes because these gums create some discomfort for me. Allergy? I'm not sure, but I have heard the same from others. The gums thicken and add some of the mouth-feel of gluten. For the same effect, I use a chia egg (see below to see how to make one), and find that it makes a slightly spongy texture that I enjoy, and that it is mildly nutty in flavour and doesn't cause me any tummy issues. But if you have no problems with xanthan or guar gum, please use the alternate method. You could also make a flax egg (same instructions, substitute flaxseed) although I find that there is a definite flax taste/scent that I don't really like. Flax and chia both contain Omega-3 essential fatty acids that you don't find in the gums.

The "Great Pumpkin Medley" is a composite of World War I era songs (i.e., public domain) familiar to anyone who watches It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (starring Snoopy).

4-great-pumpkin-cookie-recipes-vegan-and-gluten-free

Pumpkin Pie Spice Recipe

Several of the cookie recipes below call for pumpkin pie spice mix.

Ingredients

  • 8 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons nutmeg
  • 2 teaspoons allspice
  • 2 teaspoons. turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons 100% stevia leaf (optional)

Instructions: Mix well to combine. Store in an airtight container in a cool place.

Vegan great pumpkin hermits are soft cookies with walnuts and dates. Can be made GF.

Vegan great pumpkin hermits are soft cookies with walnuts and dates. Can be made GF.

1. Great Pumpkin Hermits

Ingredients

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour or gluten-free flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 5 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon fine ground sea salt
  • 3/4 cup coconut oil, extra virgin, melted
  • 3 cups coconut palm sugar or packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 2 cups / 15 oz. tin pumpkin puree
  • 2 flax eggs (2 tablespoons flax meal mixed well into 5 tablespoons warm water)
  • 2 cups chopped dates
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts (or use 1 3/4 cups walnuts plus 1/4 cup hemp seed)

Instructions

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  1. In a small dish, mix up the flax egg. Stir until it is a smooth glutenous texture and put aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F / 177°C.
  3. Line cookies sheets with silicone mats or parchment. Alternatively, spray with oil
  4. In a large mixing bowl, whisk to combine the flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.
  5. In another large mixing bowl, whisk to combine melted coconut oil, flax egg, sugar, pumpkin puree, and molasses (you may also whirl these ingredients up in a blender).
  6. Stir wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
  7. Fold in dates and walnuts.
  8. Drop rounded teaspoons full of cookie batter onto the pans, leaving about 1.5 to 2 inches between cookies.
  9. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, checking around the 10-minute mark. Cool completely on racks. They are good warm, but even better on day 2 or 3. Store in a tin or in the fridge. Beyond a couple of days, freeze.

This is pretty complicated but the flours in this mix give the finished product a very nice taste.

Ingredients

  • 6 cups white rice flour
  • 4 cups brown rice flour
  • 3 1/2 cups tapioca starch
  • 2 1/2 cups coconut flour
  • 2 1/2 cups potato starch
  • 1 1/2 cups oat flour (GF)

Instructions: Measure into a large bowl and whisk until completely mixed.

Yield: This gives you 20 cups of flour for a variety of gluten-free cookie recipes.

Great pumpkin pecan slices have all the merits of pumpkin pie plus a yummy pecan crust!

Great pumpkin pecan slices have all the merits of pumpkin pie plus a yummy pecan crust!

2. Great Pumpkin Pecan Slices

Ingredients

For the crust:

  • 1 2/3 cups pecan pieces
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 1 1/2 cups pitted dates

For the pumpkin "custard":

  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup organic granulated cane sugar (or coconut palm sugar)
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice mix (scroll above for DIY recipe)
  • 2 teaspoon agar agar powder (powder not flakes)

Instructions

  1. Put pecans, dates, coconut and cinnamon into a food processor and process until it is finely chopped. Press into a 8 x 8 pan.
  2. Combine all other ingredients (except agar agar) over medium heat, whisking constantly, until thick and smooth.
  3. Add in agar agar and whisk for a full minute until completely dissolved and mixed in.
  4. Remove topping from heat and carefully pour over 8 x 8 crust, gently smoothing into place with the broad base of a large flat spoon.
  5. When somewhat cooler, cover with lid or plastic and put in the fridge.
  6. Cut into squares and serve up when fully cold and set. Keep refrigerated. Enjoy!
Great pumpkin molasses cookies are like spicy little cake donuts, but healthy!

Great pumpkin molasses cookies are like spicy little cake donuts, but healthy!

3. Great Pumpkin Molasses Cookies

Ingredients

  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 cup organic granulated cane sugar
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup blackstrap (unsulphured) molasses
  • 1 small, very ripe banana, peeled and cut in pieces
  • 1 chia egg (1 tablespoon ground chia seed mixed well in 4 tablespoons water)
  • 2 1/4 cups gluten-free flour mix (see sidebar or use ready-made)
  • 4-5 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice (scroll above or use ready-made)
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • extra organic granulated cane sugar to roll cookies in prior to baking

Instructions

  1. In a food processor bowl or with electric beater, mix the coconut oil and sugar until creamed.
  2. Add in the pumpkin puree, molasses, banana, chia egg and mix until combined.
  3. Add in GF flour, pumpkin pie spices, and sea salt.
  4. Put the batter in the fridge for 1+ hours to firm up.
  5. After the batter has chilled, preheat oven to 350°F / 177°C.
  6. Make small bite-sized balls and roll them in sugar. Place them on mat and push down to flatten with thumb or back of spoon. Use silicone baking sheet, parchment paper or foil to prevent sticking.
  7. Bake for about 8-10 minutes (depending on how hot your oven is). Don't over-bake.
  8. Let sit on the pan when removed from the oven for a few minutes.
  9. Carefully place on cooling racks to cool down completely.
Pumpkin oatmeal breakfast cookie: your porridge as a yummy cookie!

Pumpkin oatmeal breakfast cookie: your porridge as a yummy cookie!

4. Great Pumpkin Oatmeal Breakfast Cookies

These pumpkin-oatmeal breakfast cookies are a great substitute for regular porridge. They are full of omega essential fatty acids (chia seed, walnuts) and other great nutrients to start your day. And they are delish! You could eat them any time of the day.

You can make them in an oven or individually in a drawer-type air fryer using a piece of parchment paper clipped to fit the air fryer drawer bottom.

Yield: 2 giant cookies or 3 medium size ones

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quick oats (if you are celiac or sensitive to oats, get GF oatmeal
  • 1+ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice mix (scroll above)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (optional)
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1 chia or flax egg (1 T. ground chia or flax seed well mixed into 4 T. warm water)
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (or two well-mashed bananas)
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 3 plump Medjool dates, chopped (or other dried fruit of choice)
  • chocolate chips (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F / 177°C. (This will be the temperature you use in your air fryer as well, but do not need to preheat it.)
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the oats, pumpkin spices, baking powder and salt.
  3. Combine well, by hand, or in a food processor: chia egg, pumpkin puree, maple syrup.
  4. Combine the pumpkin mix in the bowl with the oats, spices, salt, and baking soda.
  5. Set aside about 1/3 of the mix before adding in the walnuts and dates.
  6. Make 2 individual cookies with the batter (using your hands) on the individual parchment cut-outs. Use the dough you set aside to cover the fruit and nuts so they don't burn. Press chocolate chips onto top of cookies (or you could work them into the other dough and just leave the top plain.)
  7. Oven: Bake for about 12+ minutes until golden. Air fryer: Bake for about 6-7 minutes.
  8. Leave on pan for a few minutes after removing from the oven, and then cool down completely on cooling racks. If using an air fryer, leave in unit to cool down slightly before moving to cooling racks.
  9. Enjoy!

Special Thanks!

I want to personally thank Eunice and Ken who grew the Great Pumpkin that I had a chunk of and that I used for ALL of the recipes in this article. And thanks to my great neighbour, Iris, who is so thoughtful and brought the hunk of pumpkin over. Every year a group of our neighbors compete to grow the largest pumpkin—and because they are so generous, everybody wins!

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