Warm chai spices plus earthy, sweet pumpkin make for an unforgettable remix of the classic snickerdoodle cookie recipe you'll want to bake every fall!
This fall cookie recipe makes 16 soft and chewy pumpkin spiced sugar cookies spiced with an authentic blend of chai spices. My chai-spiced pumpkin snickderdoodle cookies are just the right amount of sweet and everyone in your family will love them. Let's get into the delicious details.
And if you enjoy this recipe, you'll love my Peanut Butter Chai Cookies!
So, what makes a cookie a snickerdoodle?
A snickerdoodle is essentially a sugar cookie rolled in cinnamon sugar. This is a twist on the classic snickerdoodle cookie recipe, minus the cream of tartar. Since I don't typically keep cream of tartart on hand, I tested this recipe with and without and found that homemade pumpkin snickerdoodles taste great without it.
So, if you're looking for an easy snickerdoodle recipe without cream of tartar, you're in the right spot. They’re super soft and chewy, light and springy and almost cakey with firm slightly crisped edges.
The spice in these fall snickerdoodle cookies comes from the perfect blend of cozy chai spices, exactly as you'd find them in my instant chai mix for morning lattes.
What You'll Need for this Recipe
Spices - You'll use a chai blend of allspice, black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, ginger, and nutmeg for the sugar spice mixture as well as cinnamon and nutmeg inside the cookie dough. Use the best quality ground spices you can get.
Baking Powder and Baking Soda together are my secret for a nice rise and springy texture on these cookies that is so delightful and unique. Don't skip these!
Brown Sugar and Granulated Sugar are both necessary in this cookie recipe for texture and sweetness with a hint of caramelized flavor that complements the cozy spices.
Pumpkin Puree turns the cookie dough a bright orange color and you can use either fresh or canned pumpkin puree. Make sure not to use pumpkin pie filling, though, as it has extra ingredients you don't need in these cookies.
Check out the recipe card below for full ingredients list, measurements, nutrition facts, and step-by-step instructions!
Substitutions & Variations
Can I make this recipe dairy free? Yes! This is already a vegetarian pumpkin snickerdoodle recipe without eggs but if you want to make the cookies completely plant-based, aka vegan pumpkin snickerdoodles, replace the butter with a vegan butter or refined coconut oil.
How to Make Pumpkin Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies
Step One: Whisk together the dry cookie ingredients in a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, beat the wet cookie ingredients together.
Step Two: Add the wet and dry mixtures together and stir by hand until just combined. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Step Three: Scoop out chilled dough and roll in chai spice and sugar mixture.
Step Four: Space each ball of dough out on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
Pro tip: Use a cookie scoop or dinner spoon and roll into 1 ½ inch balls for perfectly even-sized cookies.
Step Five: Bake until cookies are light golden brown and firm to the touch.
Step Six: Cookies will continue to bake on a hot cookie sheet so transfer them to a wire cooling rack to keep from burning the bottoms.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, otherwise, you're just making sugar cookies. In this recipe, each little ball of orange dough is rolled in a mixture of sugar and chai spice mix then baked to perfection.
My chai pumpkin snickerdoodle cookies won't brown much on top or bottom. Gently press into the tops or sides of the snickerdoodles to test doneness. They should give a little then return to their shape. If they retain the imprint of your finger from the press test, they aren't quite done and if they are hard to the touch, they're burnt. These cookies will harden a bit as they cool but still remain soft and chewy at room temperature.
Let the cookies cool until they are comfortable to handle (about five minutes) if you want to enjoy them warm, or allow them to come to room temperature (about 15 minutes, depending on the temperature of your kitchen).
If you like baking with chai spices, check out my Chai Banana Nut Bread with Whipped Honey Butter next. It's a fall favorite!
More Pumpkin Baking Ideas for Fall
Hopefully, you'll enjoy a batch of soft pumpkin snickerdoodle cookies soon and very soon. And sharing is caring, so be sure to pin this two-bite pumpkin snickerdoodle recipe over on Pinterest. Thanks for reading!
Chai Spiced Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
- 1 cookie sheet
- 1 whisk
- 2 mixing bowls
- 1 hand mixer or stand mixer
- 1 silicone spatula or kitchen spoon
- 1 spatula
- 1 wire cooling rack
For the Pumpkin Sugar Cookie Dough
- 1 ½ cups flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- ½ cup granulated white sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup unsalted butter softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Chai Spice Sugar Mix
- ¼ cup granulated white sugar
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ teaspoon ground allspice
- ⅛ teaspoon ground clove
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon nutmeg
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, sea salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Set aside.
- In another bowl, mix together granulated white sugar, brown sugar, pumpkin puree, butter, and vanilla until smooth and uniform.
- Combine wet and dry ingredients and mix until a dough forms. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes or more.
- While dough chills, preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit. Combine sugar and spices for the chai spice mix in a small bowl.
- Using a tablespoon, scoop out chilled dough and roll into 1 ½-inch balls. Roll each ball in the chai-sugar mixture then place on a baking sheet about one inch apart.
- Bake cookies for about 12 minutes or until they pass the press test: gently press to top of a cookie. It should yield to gentle pressure then regain its shape. Edges will lightly brown but tops will not brown.
- Transfer cookies to a rack to cool.