Pumpkin Cookies with Penuche Frosting Recipe
Pumpkin Cookies with Penuche Frosting Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Pumpkin Cookies with Penuche Frosting Recipe

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Packed with the flavors of Christmases past, these pumpkin drop cookies with caramel frosting are simply scrumptious and as much a part of our holiday as mistletoe and carols! They are a great way to use our home-canned pumpkin.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 10 min./batch + cooling
MAKES:84 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 10 min./batch + cooling
MAKES: 84 servings


  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 cup 2% milk
  • 2-1/2 to 3 cups confectioners' sugar

Nutritional Facts

1 cookie: 69 calories, 3g fat (2g saturated fat), 9mg cholesterol, 56mg sodium, 9g carbohydrate (7g sugars, 0g fiber), 1g protein .


  1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, pumpkin and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture. Stir in pecans.
  2. Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls 2 in. apart onto ungreased baking sheets. Bake 9-11 minutes or until edges are light brown. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  3. For frosting, in a small saucepan, bring brown sugar and butter to a boil. Cook and stir over medium heat 1 minute. Remove from heat; cool 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl; beat in milk. Gradually beat in enough confectioners' sugar to achieve spreading consistency. Frost cookies. Yield: about 7 dozen.
Originally published as Pumpkin Drop Cookies in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2005, p44

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havingfunwithmyfamily 236753
Reviewed Nov. 5, 2015

"I already have recipe requests from other women! This was a big hit at our party. I did not have butter, can you believe it?! I completely ran out, even the butter in the freezer. Gone! I substituted 1/2 cup of coconut oil, and it was perfect! What a great way to reduce fat! The pumpkin cookies were moist and fluffy. The icing was the best! The only thing I might do differently next time is spice it up with a little allspice or ginger?! Thank you for sharing!"

lovesbeach123 234072
Reviewed Oct. 5, 2015

"what size can of pumpkin?"

jthibeau 135321
Reviewed Nov. 5, 2013

"These are delicious and so easy to make. They freeze well too."

corrienat 76746
Reviewed Nov. 2, 2011

"YUMMY. Good with or without the icing"

Jeniele 153225
Reviewed Sep. 29, 2011

"I make this recipe about 12 times from October through December each year, and if I missed bringing them for our church's Reformation potluck everyone would be disappointed. This has become my signature cookie because of it's uniqueness and popularity. I don't add the pecans but the penuche frosting is a must and is what really sets this recipe apart from other pumpkin cookie recipes. It seems like it's a hassle, but it comes together really well and is TOTALLY worth it."

krstevens 156731
Reviewed Nov. 21, 2009

"Fantastic cookie. Very moist. I did not use the frosting but instead used a simple icing. I also added chocolate chips to a dozen. My family loves them."

gjburkh 85328
Reviewed Oct. 11, 2009

"very good moist cookies. my family loved them. did not put on the frosting and left out the pecan out. they are the best pumpkin cookies !"

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