Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Vegan & gluten-free ultra soft pumpkin cookies filled with chunks of bold dark chocolate. Perfect cookie (not cakey) texture without a single ounce of butter–something even I thought was impossible!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies #vegan #glutenfree.jpg

I  get a little sad every year around this time. The end of pumpkin season. The day after Thanksgiving, I spend the next 10 months waiting for September 1st so I can start posting pumpkin recipes again. Every year, without fail, I’m left with a handful of recipes that never made it to the blog before the season ended.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies #vegan #glutenfree

I had just about given up on pumpkin cookies. I loooove pumpkin muffins, pumpkin bread, pumpkin cupcakes–anything that is supposed to be light and cakey, the pumpkin basically works like a dream, but cookies? I don’t like my cookies cakey, and especially while trying to avoid using butter, I just thought that pumpkin cookies were an impossible task.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies #vegan #glutenfree

After seeing my girl Sally’s recipe for her pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, I was inspired to try again. It was the first pumpkin cookie recipe I’d seen where you could see just from the photos that the texture was perfect. I did a little more research and saw this recipe on Baked by Rachel. They also looked ridiculously good–and again, with that perfect cookie texture.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies #vegan #glutenfree

I was pretty sure once I got rid of the butter, there was no way I’d be satisfied, but it turns out I couldn’t have been more wrong. The texture was absolutely spot on. The edges got ever so slightly crisp, and the middle was soft, gooey, and everything I’ve ever wanted in a cookie. The pumpkin flavor shines through, and the huge chunks of dark chocolate are the perfect finishing touch. I used a sea salt dark chocolate which I would highly recommend, but any good quality dark chocolate will do. I also made a batch with bits of Heath toffee thrown in, and let me tell you, that was magnificent. You could use white chocolate, add cranberries, anything really–the dough is the perfect container for all your favorite add ins!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: approx 2 1/2 dozen

Serving Size: 1 cookie

Pumpkin Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Vegan & gluten-free ultra soft pumpkin cookies filled with chunks of bold dark chocolate. Perfect cookie (not cakey) texture without a single ounce of butter--something even I thought was impossible!

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups gluten-free baking blend (or white whole wheat flour)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • dash salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 6 tbsp apple butter
  • 6 tbsp pumpkin
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 oz good quality dark chocolate, roughly chopped

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, cornstarch, and salt until combined. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together sugars, coconut oil, apple butter, pumpkin and vanilla until combined. Add dry ingredients and mix until combined. Gently, stir in chocolate. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. If you leave it in longer (ie: several hours to overnight), you may need to let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes before scooping and baking.
  3. Preheat oven to 350. Line two large baking sheets with silpat of parchment papers. Use a small cookie scoop to transfer dough to baking sheet.
  4. Bake until edges are lightly golden and cookies are just set, about 10-12 minutes. Cool completely on baking sheet. Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to one week.

Notes

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Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Vegan and gluten-free ultra soft pumpkin banana muffins overflowing with melty dark chocolate chips. The perfect treat for a crisp fall morning.

Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins #glutenfree #vegan

Good morning! Is it morning where you are? It’s totally not here, but these muffins make me feel like morning. That probably sounds weird. Not just because they’re muffins. Muffins are more an afternoon snack than breakfast for me. They just make me feel like morning. Like cool, crisp autumn morning on the porch. I wish I had a table and chairs on my porch. A table and chairs just for muffins.

Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins #glutenfree #vegan

Perfectly imperfect muffins. Not at all smooth like your normally think of, but with a little character and personality, and a whole lot of flavor. You see pumpkin and banana are known for making perfectly *gross word*, soft, and tender baked goods. Put them together, and it only gets better. Add some melty dark chocolate, and you’ve got the stuff dreams are made of.

Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins #glutenfree #vegan

The muffins practically melt in your mouth. No dry, cakey-ness (Okay, serious how do you spell that word?? I get a red squiggly line every time with no suggestion. Rude.) that you would expect from a health(ier) muffin. Sometimes I don’t like pumpkin in cookies because it makes them taste like, well, muffins–which is why pumpkin muffins are just perfect!

Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins #glutenfree #vegan

These are super simple and easy to make, and a perfect fall treat to have around on Thanksgiving or any get together. That is if you don’t eat them all before your family and friends arrive. ;)

Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 1 dozen

Serving Size: 1 muffin

Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

Vegan and gluten-free ultra soft pumpkin banana muffins overflowing with melty dark chocolate chips. The perfect treat for a crisp fall morning.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten free baking blend
  • 1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • dash salt
  • 2 extra ripe bananas, mashed
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips (I a combination of mini and full size)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425. Line muffin tins with paper liners and spray liners with nonstick spray. Do not skip this step--lower fat items will stick if you don't use spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together baking blend, pumpkin pie spice, cornstarch, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a large bowl mix together banana, pumpkin, brown sugar and vanilla until combined. Stir in dry ingredients until just combined. Do not overmix. Gently fold in chocolate chips.
  4. Evenly divide batter between prepared muffin tins. Bake for 5 minutes, then lower heat to 350. Continue baking until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean with just a few crumbs, about 12-15 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
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Drink & Dish: Pumpkin Waffle French Toast

Light and fluffy gluten-free pumpkin waffles turned into sweet, pumpkin french toast for the best of all breakfast worlds. Do you love pumpkin as much as I do? Check out my other pumpkin recipes.

Pumpkin Waffle French Toast #glutenfree

You know what I don’t really understand? When people eat brunch at 2 pm. I mean isn’t the entire point that it’s supposed to be between breakfast and lunch? You know, because you sleep past breakfast. Well, I don’t. I have an internal clock and 6:30 is considered sleeping in for me. When I say brunch, I mean 10am and that’s like…we’re eating at 10am because I’ve been up for 4 hours and could have already eaten, and then been hungry again by now. I’ve always had a big appetite.

Pumpkin Waffle French Toast #glutenfree

And I’m not one of those easy going hungry people either. Nope. Cranky, irritable, and hangry (hungry/angry) is more my style. Not to mention dramatic. I can’t even tell you how many times I have told Steve that I was “literally starving to death” or that “I have never been so hungry!”

Pumpkin Waffle French Toast #glutenfree

10am really is the right time. Wake up, drink coffee, start cooking, and by the time you’ve become a fully developed human being (it takes me a workout, or at least an hour), people start arriving, and you’ve become at least mildly pleasant.

Pumpkin Waffle French Toast #glutenfree

So let me explain this french toast to you. It’s really pretty simple. You take a waffle–any waffle, but preferably this pumpkin one–and you soak it in some French toast batter (do you call it batter? it’s not really a batter? you get the point…) for an hour or so, then you just pan fry it up like regular french toast. It truly is the best of all breakfast worlds. A couple things to note: If you use homemade waffles, you want them to be cooked crispy, and 1-2 days old, otherwise they will get soggy. If you’re using a frozen waffle, toast it first.

Pumpkin Waffle French Toast #glutenfree

For our final fall episode of Drink & Dish, Nicole and I went with a harvest brunch (in case my entirely too long rant about brunch time wasn’t an indication…). Nicole makes a delicious pumpkin chai latte that is so warm and comforting, it will knock your socks off! Also, don’t forget to subscribe to Drink & Dish on YouTube!

In addition, I have an important announcement! After hearing that many of you were worried about completing the Drink & Dish video challenge in the time allotted, we have decided to extend it all the way to New Years! We really want to see as many people as possible succeed with their videos, so you still have plenty of time to enter!

Drink & Dish: Pumpkin Waffle French Toast

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 40 minutes

Yield: 8-10 servings

Serving Size: 1 waffle

Drink & Dish: Pumpkin Waffle French Toast

Light and fluffy gluten-free pumpkin waffles turned into sweet, pumpkin french toast for the best of all breakfast worlds.

Ingredients

    For the pumpkin waffles:
  • 2 cups gluten-free baking blend
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • Dash salt
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 3/4 cup reduced fat buttermilk
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • For the french toast:
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs + 8 egg whites
  • 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 1/2 tbsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 tbsp pumpkin pie spice

Instructions

  1. To make the waffles, in a large bowl whisk together baking blend, baking powder, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice and salt.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together wet ingredients. Gently fold wet ingredients into dry until just combined. A few small lumps are fine--you do not want to overmix. Let stand for 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat waffle heater. Spray with nonstick spray. Once batter has rested, cook until lightly browned and edges are crisp, about 10 minutes.
  4. To make the french toast, in a large bowl beat together pumpkin, eggs, almond milk, vanilla, maple syrup, and pumpkin pie spice. Place waffles in a large shallow dish and cover with pumpkin/egg mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  5. Spray a large skillet with nonstick spray. Cook each waffle until browned and edges crisp, about 5-7 minutes per side. Serve immediately with maple syrup and fresh berries if desired. Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

Notes

Best with crisp-cooked day old waffles. You may use frozen waffles or any waffle you'd like. This is a huge recipe that can easily be halved or quartered.

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Pumpkin Pecan Granola

Pumpkin Pecan Granola #vegan #glutenfree

This morning I went out for a run, and my first thought when I stepped outside was “It feels chilly out”!!!! I practically jumped for joy. There is a warmth in my heart that can only be described as fall, and I don’t intend to stop sharing my love about it any time soon. Forgive me?

Pumpkin Pecan Granola #vegan #glutenfree

Of course I needed a special fall granola. Okay, that’s a lie. I made this in, like, April and thought I should probably wait until fall to post it. I do promise not to post exclusively pumpkin recipes for the next 3 months, but I can’t promise that there won’t be a whole lot of ‘em. ;)

Pumpkin Pecan Granola #vegan #glutenfree

This granola just has a *hint* of pumpkin, so if you’re not as obsessed with the flavor as I am (ummm, WHY NOT), I think there’s a good chance you’ll still enjoy it! Lots of crunchy pecans, a hint of spice, big granola clusters, and soft, sweet dried cranberries. This granola just screams fall, and the flavors complement each other perfectly.

Pumpkin Pecan Granola

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Yield: approx 12 cups

Serving Size: 1/2 cup

Pumpkin Pecan Granola

Warm and cozy pumpkin spice granola with pecans and dried cranberries is the perfect way to add some fall flavor to your breakfast every morning!

Ingredients

  • 5 cups rolled oats (use gluten-free if applicable)
  • 3 cups pecans, coarsely chopped
  • 2/3 cups almonds, coarsely chopped
  • 1/3 cup milled flax seed
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
  • heavy pinch sea salt
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 cups dried cranberries

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 300. Line two large baking sheets with silpat or parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. In a very large bowl, mix together the oats, nuts, flax seed, pumpkin pie spice and salt.
  3. In a small saucepan, warm the pumpkin puree, maple syrup, coconut oil, and vanilla extract until well combined, whisking constantly.
  4. Add the pumpkin mixture into the dry ingredients and toss to combine. Divide mixture evenly between your 2 prepared baking sheets.
  5. Bake until browned and crispy, about 1 hour. Lightly toss granola half way through.
  6. Cool completely. Add cranberries and gently toss to combine. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. The granola will stay fresh for at least one month. I’ve never made a batch last any longer than that, but it’s still great a month in!
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Drink & Dish: Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups {gluten-free}

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups #glutenfree

I would like to propose that the United States of America switch to 3 days weekends. Or, at least that my schedule could switch to 3 day weekends. I feel like one day I spend riding my bike all day (not at all an exaggeration! 2-5 hours is seriously allllll day), and the next day is filled with meal prep, grocery shopping, laundry (ew), and various other errands. Cleaning should probably be in there somewhere, but we all know I don’t actually do that.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups #glutenfree

Today my husband ran his first 5k!! It didn’t go quite like he would have hoped, but I’m still beyond proud of him for getting out there and making it happen! I also convinced a few work friends to tag along, and two of them did their very first race as well! It was fun to get out there, but it turns out not doing any speed training for almost 9 months is not the way to run at your PR pace. Who knew? Anyway, that was my weekend. 56 mile bike ride Friday (okay so that wasn’t even the weekend yet…), 36 mile bike ride Saturday (my first group ride, I didn’t get dropped, and Strava told me I rode one of the miles @ 23mph!!!), and then a 5k on Sunday. I need a weekend from my weekend.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups #glutenfree

The good news is the first day of fall is finally here, and I’m *finally* feeling a hint of it in the air. I couldn’t be happier. It’s no longer hot at 5am. In fact, there is a nice breeze, and the temperature feels perfect. I don’t see any triple digits on the horizon, and pumpkin spice syrup is sneaking its way back into my iced coffee every now and then. And also, my cheesecake.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups #glutenfree

I know everyone says it, but I really do love this time of year. There is something so cozy about the fall, and knowing that the holidays are coming (<3 all things holiday spirit!). It just makes my heart happy. Not to mention the flavors. I’ve always been obsessed with the pumpkin spice latte. The last couple of years, I’ve made pumpkin spice latte cupcakes, but I wanted to share something a little different with you guys that still showcases the amazing flavor combination. Every year, I make pumpkin cheesecake for Thanksgiving, and decided to do a little twist on that. The result? Like cheesecake and a pumpkin spice latte had a love child, and it only got the best genes from each parent. They are ridiculously good, and even include a gingersnap crust with a hint of coffee flavor to bring everything together.

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups #glutenfree

To pair with my cheesecake cups, Nicole made a spiced pear martini that is bursting with fall flavors. I’m not normally someone who jumps at pear flavored things, but the spices round it out perfectly to create a not-too-sweet, cozy pear drink that is a must try! And of course make sure you check out the latest episode of D&D and please subscribe on YouTube!

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups {gluten-free}

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 5 hours

Yield: 12 cups

Serving Size: 1 cup

Pumpkin Spice Latte Cheesecake Cups {gluten-free}

All the flavors of the fall favorite pumpkin spice latte in individual cheesecake cups with a gluten-free gingersnap crust.

Ingredients

    For the gingersnap crust:
  • 1 cup crushed gingersnap crumbs (I used gluten-free)
  • 1/2 tsp espresso powder
  • 1 1/2-2 tbsp coconut oil, melted (start with 1 1/2, and add a little extra if it needs it--it depends on the brand of gingersnap and how much oil is already in the cookie)
  • For the cheesecake:
  • 1 lb reduced fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 tsp espresso powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • For garnish:
  • Whipped cream
  • Freshly ground nutmeg

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Spray a standard muffin tin with nonstick spray. Set. Aside.
  2. To make the crust, combine gingersnap crumbs, 1/2 tsp espresso powder and coconut oil in a medium bowl. Place approx 1 tablespoon of crust into each muffin tin. Press down with your fingers, the back of your spoon, or a shot glass. Bake until set, about 7-10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack while you prepare the filling.
  3. To make the cheesecake, beat cream cheese, pumpkin puree and brown sugar together in a large bowl or stand mixer. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until combined. Beat in vanilla, pumpkin pie spice and 1/2 tsp espresso powder.
  4. Evenly divide the cheesecake batter between your 12 muffin tins.
  5. Bake until lightly browned and just set, about 15 minutes. Turn the oven off and crack the door. Allow cheesecakes to sit in opened oven for an additional 15 minutes.
  6. Cool completely on a wire rack, then refrigerate until fully chilled, about 3-4 hours. Garnish with whipped cream and freshly ground nutmeg (if desired) to serve. Store covered in refrigerator for up to one week.
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