Pumpkin Sugar Cookies with Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

A thick, fluffy sugar cookie is flavored with both pumpkin and pumpkin spice to make an irresistible fall treat. Topped with homemade pumpkin-spiced cream cheese frosting, these are a hit at any gathering!

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Back when I was in college, my roommates and I would make weekly grocery store runs to our local Harris Teeter. Partially because we were adorable, but mostly because parking in Charlottesville is hard AF to find so none of us wanted to move our cars.

On these roommate shopping trips, we would spend most of our time together: buying fruits (and hiding Stacy as she sampled grapes from each of the bags), veggies, all of the frozen dinners, pita chips and hummus, and deli meats.

However, there was always a point at which we diverged to shop for our own personal treats. I, of course, always ended up in the baking aisle; Stacy would find the pre-packaged sushi; and Emily never left without an interesting new cheese. Finally, my roommate Jamie would arrive back at the cart with an assortment of Lofthouse Cookies tucked under her arm. Jamie loved those cookies, and we loved making fun of her for the fact that her skinny little body somehow managed to tuck all those cookies away while never gaining an ounce.


Now that my college days are several years behind me, and I now walk to my grocery store (#blessed to have the Columbia Heights Giant and Target!), I haven't had a Lofthouse cookie in lord knows how long. However, that's exactly what these thick sugar cookies remind me of - long strolls through Harris Teeter in sweats and flip flops, darting through aisles to avoid the previous night's hookups, and laughing the whole way home about the people we had run into. Good times, go hoos.

Pumpkin Sugar Cookies with Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting


To make these cookies, you will need:
Pumpkin Sugar Cookies
- 4 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
- 1/4 t baking soda
- 1/4 t cream of tartar
- Pinch salt
- 3/4 t pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 t cinnamon
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup (1.5 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 8 oz (1 block) cream cheese, softened
- 2-3 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 t pumpkin pie spice
- 1 t vanilla extract
- A few tablespoons light cream or half & half


First things first! In a medium bowl, combine your dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon. Whisk together well, then set aside.


In a large bowl, combine the softened butter and sugars. Whisk in the oil, pumpkin, and vanilla until well-combined. Finally, add the egg and egg yolk*, and combine well.

*Hopefully you have better luck than I did and don't end up accidentally dropping your first egg yolk into the trash can. The struggle is SO real.


Finally, stir the flour mixture into the wet mix gradually, just mixing until no streaks of flour remain. This will be thick! Now, to get the fluffy cookies of your dreams, it's very important to chill the dough. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, pop in the oven for an hour or so, and get to work on your frosting!


This is a fairly standard cream cheese frosting, taken up a notch with the addition of pumpkin pie spice. In a large bowl, beat together your butter and cream cheese until fluffy. Add your vanilla and pumpkin pie spice, and then your powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, until you achieve your desired sweetness. Thin with cream until you reach the texture you want. Set aside.

Once your dough is sufficiently chill*, preheat your oven to 350F and line two baking sheets with Silpat or parchment paper. Use a cookie (or ice cream) scoop to portion out 2T-sized balls of dough onto your baking sheets. Leave a good amount of space between them! Use either your palm or the bottom of a glass to press these balls down to your desired thickness. Bake for 12-14 minutes, until you can no longer see gooey spots on the top of the cookies. Remove from the oven to cool.

*You will be able to tell once it starts saying things like "Hang ten, dawg" and "duuuuuuuude" through your refrigerator door.


Once your cookies are cool, you're onto the final step - frosting! Swirl a generous portion of your spiced cream cheese frosting onto each cookie, and you're good to go. Invite over roommates, friends, and Tinder matches to help you eat these - they'll be gone in no time!