Spiced Pumpkin Cookies for Everyone (Gluten-free, vegan, and healthy!)

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I need to find a way to bring you the scent of my kitchen right now.  It smells all sweet and cinnamonny.  Just like the all best Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s parties.  And Grandma’s kitchen.  Because they, of course, all included delicious, spiced, baked things. 

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While we’re dreaming here, I may as well wish that I could just send you these cookies through your computer via the interweb. I have no doubt you and your family could enjoy a spiced cookie or two! 

Wait – can I pause and wish for a giant brick oven, too?

Hmm… guess I won’t be getting those wishes quite yet.  Well, since I can’t send you these cookies or their lovely aroma, I suppose we’ll just have to talk about how you can get your hands on some!

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It’s just a given that most of us will want cookies at some point or another.  Maybe all the time!  And it’s also a given that cookies will be baked in extra abundance during the holidays, which, in turn, increases the want for cookies.

So, with every little boy and girl and their moms wanting cookies (not to mention the dads, grandmas, grandpas, and neighbors,) it’s usually a good idea to make the cookies everyone will love.  If only to simplify the already hectic holiday season. 

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By taking out some common problem ingredients, such as dairy, eggs, and gluten, and replacing them with other easily accessible ones (at many grocery stores and any nearby health-food stores,) you can make super-fantastic cookies worthy of even your most discerning eaters. 

And trust me – these will work their magic on your traditionalists JUST as well as it does with the gluten-free, vegan, and health-foodies.  (Maybe just don’t tell everyone how healthy they are before they try them!)

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Spiced Pumpkin Cookies for Everyone 

Makes about 44 two-inch servings

Ingredients:

2 c. gluten-free rolled oats

2/3 c. gluten-free oat flour

1/3 c. almond flour (or more oat flour for nut-allergies)

1/3 c. whole-grain brown rice flour

1 tsp. baking soda

¼ tsp. xanthan gum

½ tsp. salt

1 ½ tsp. ground cinnamon

¾ tsp. ground ginger

½ tsp. ground allspice

¼ tsp. ground nutmeg (best if freshly ground, in which case use less than 1/8 tsp.)

1 cup pure pumpkin puree (you can make your own!), room temperature or slightly warmed

2/3 c. unsweetened applesauce, room temperature or slightly warmed

1/3 c. unrefined coconut oil, melted

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 T. ground flaxseed

Directions:

Optional additions for added flavor/ nutrition: 1 T. chia seeds, ½ c. dried cranberries, raisins, chopped pecans, and/or 1/3 c. dark chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine dry ingredients through ground nutmeg in a bowl using a whisk.

In a separate bowl, combine pumpkin puree through flaxseed with a whisk.

Add wet ingredients to the dry, and thoroughly combine with a spatula without over mixing.

Use a small scoop to make cookies about 1.5” in diameter and space them evenly on a cooking-sprayed baking sheet.  (I usually use about 3 large baking sheets total, with up to 12 cookies per each.)

Bake the cookies about 12-13 minutes, or until browned on the bottoms, and no longer gooey or overly soft in the center.  Cool 2 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack.  These are absolutely lovely eaten directly out of the oven, and delicious at room temperature or even chilled in the refrigerator.

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Nutrition Facts

  • Serving Size: one 2-inch cookie (23 g)
  • Calories 63
  • Calories from Fat 22
  • Total Fat 2.5g 
  • Saturated Fat 1.4g 
  • Total Carbohydrates 9.8g 
  • Dietary Fiber 0.9g 
  • Sugars 5.2g
  • Protein 1.0g
  • Vitamin A 14%
  • Iron 2%