These Thanksgiving weekend cookies are perfect for sharing and easy to double-batch for a crowd. The recipe features pumpkin puree and cranberry sauce, an ideal opportunity to use leftover ingredients.
What are Thanksgiving weekend cookies?
These cookies are drop cookies, usually made with leftover ingredients used to make dishes for the Thanksgiving meal. Cranberry sauce, pumpkin puree, nuts, warm spices, chocolate chips, brown sugar, and butter are all mixed into a delicious cookie that everyone will love.
These cookies are perfect to gift, but they are also suitable for a snack after a long shopping day. (Black Friday, anyone?)
Drop cookies are probably the simplest cookies to make. Their name comes from the dough that is soft enough to drop off the spoon and onto the baking sheet.
The basic mixture is often made by the creaming method, where butter and sugar are beaten together until light and fluffy. Eggs are added, followed by flour, raising agents, and flavors.
What ingredients do you need?
- Unsalted butter- I always use unsalted butter in my baking, as I like to control the amount of salt I use inside the recipes. However, if salted butter is all you have in the fridge, use it, but skip the salt in the recipe.
- Dark brown sugar- I like the depth of flavor that dark brown sugar brings to the recipe. However, you can use instead light brown sugar.
- Granulated sugar- comes to complement dark brown sugar. Both sugars are needed in the recipe as they have different amounts of moisture.
- Canned pumpkin puree- remember that almost used can of pumpkin puree sitting in the back of the fridge, totally abandoned? This is the perfect occasion to use it to make these cookies.
- Cranberry sauce- any leftover cranberry sauce is good, even slightly spicy. I used a somewhat spicy cranberry sauce in the past, and the cookies were divine. The spiciness makes them more interesting.
- Vanilla extract- Use the best vanilla extract you can find. You will thank me later!
- Large eggs- are standard for baking in the US, and this is what we use. You will need only one egg.
- All-purpose flour- Please do not replace it with self-rising flour. If you do not have flour in your pantry, buy some.
- Old-fashioned oats- Rolled oats or quick oats are perfect for this recipe.
- Spices- ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and ground cloves bring flavor and the warmth of late Fall. Delicious!
- Baking soda- please do not confuse it with baking powder. They do different things in a recipe.
- Salt- all baked goods need a pinch of salt to balance the sugars and the flavors. Please do not skip it unless you use salted butter.
- Chopped nuts- walnuts, pecans, and almonds are good, but they are optional if you need to skip them.
- Semisweet chocolate chips- chocolate chips are always good in cookies, and I would not commit them. You can replace them with dark chocolate chips.
How to make these cookies
Step 1. In a standup mixer, place the butter and sugar in the cream butter and the two types of sugar until light and fluffy. You can do this step using a hand mixer or a whisk.
Step 2. Add the egg, pumpkin puree, cranberry sauce, and vanilla one by one. Mix after each addition.
Step 3. Whisk together flour, oats, spices, salt, and baking soda in a separate large bowl. Gradually add them to the creamed mixture.
Step 4. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts until incorporated. Do not overmix.
Step 5. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for about an hour or until firm.
Step 6. Preheat oven.
Step 7. Drop the dough by rounded tablespoons on ungreased baking sheets, or use an ice cream scoop to form a more even cookie. Leave a distance of about 1-2 inches between the cookies.
Step 8. Bake until the edges of the cookies are golden brown. Cool the cookies on pans for a few minutes, then move them to cool on wire racks.
These cookies are best eaten on the day that they are made. They are moist, soft cookies that are delicious when slightly warm from the oven.
They need to be cooled completely before storing them. If you are not planning to eat them straight away, store them as soon as they have cooled.
Store them in an airtight container, and if possible, they should also be stored in the refrigerator to retain the freshly baked flavor for up to a week.
Freezing the cookies
The best way is to freeze the cookies on trays, then pack them into an airtight container with parchment paper or wax paper between layers. To thaw, leave them at room temperature for about 20 minutes.
Serve them with coffee, tea, or your favorite drink. I like them with a glass of wine sometimes. Also, these cookies are perfect for gifting.
I plan, for example, to fill little bags with cookies and gift them to my guests when they go home after Thanksgiving.
More recipes to enjoy
Check out the web story for this recipe: Pumpkin Cranberries Cookies For Thanksgiving Weekend
Thanksgiving Weekend Cookies
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened
- ½ cup dark brown sugar packed
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¾ cup canned pumpkin puree
- ½ cup cranberry sauce
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 large egg at room temperature
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ½ cups old fashioned oats
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chopped nuts walnuts, pecans, almonds
- 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
- In a large bowl of a standup mixer, cream butter with sugars until light and fluffy, about 6-7 minutes. (if you don't have a KitchenAid, use a hand mixer or a whisk).
- One by one beat in the egg, pumpkin puree, cranberry sauce, and vanilla.
- Grab a large bowl and whisk together flour, oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, salt, and baking soda. Gradually add them to the creamed mixture.
- Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.
- Cover the bowl and refrigerate for about an hour or until firm.
- Preheat oven to 350F/180C.
- Drop the dough by rounded tablespoons on ungreased baking sheets. Leave a distance of about two inches between the cookies.
- Bake until the edges of the cookies are golden brown, for about 16-17 minutes. Cool the cookies on pans for 5 minutes, then remove them to cool on wire racks.