Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Pumpkin Pecan Oatmeal Cookies

It seems to me that the "pumpkin craze" grows more and more every year.  Trust me - I am not complaining - I jumped on the pumpkin bandwagon long before it was popular.  

Pumpkin coffee, pumpkin breads, pumpkin beer, pumpkin cookies, pumpkin cakes, pumpkin cereal, pumpkin pudding, pumpkin everything.  It seems like pumpkin has made it's way into nearly every supermarket isle.  As much as I love pumpkin - even I will admit that there are some foods that you should NOT add pumpkin to.  (Pumpkin Spice Hershey's Kisses???)

One place that I do not mind pumpkin though is desserts - cookies and cupcakes.  I love the flavor of pumpkin.  I like that it can be used in place of or to reduce the amount of fat that is added to baked goods.  I also appreciate the fact that it boosts the nutritional content - therefore justifying eating more. :)

Pumpkin-Oat Chocolate Chip Cookies
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups quick oats
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 1/3 cups packed light-brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, oats, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger for 30 seconds, set aside.

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip together butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar until creamy (occasionally stop and scrape down sides and bottom of bowl throughout entire mixing process).

Blend in egg then blend in vanilla extract and pumpkin puree.

With mixer set on low speed, slowly add in dry ingredients and mix until combined.

Mix in pecans.

Let batter rest 5 - 10 minutes (this just gives the oats some time to absorb the liquids so batter isn't so sticky and cookies don't spread so much).
Scoop dough out 2 Tbsp at a time (I used a 1 1/2-inch cookie scoop, which I recommend using for evenly shaped cookies and fill it heaping), and drop onto Silpat or parchment paper lined baking sheets, spacing cookies 2-inches apart.

Bake in preheated oven 12 - 14 minutes.  Allow to cool on baking sheet several minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.

As an added bonus - these yummy little cookies are lactose free! 

For those of you who are trying to avoid dairy during the holidays - these are a great option. 


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