These pumpkin cheesecake cookies are crispy on the edges, chewy in the middles, and have a creamy pumpkin cheesecake middle. The cookie has ribbons of graham crumbs for extra flavour and texture. The cookie dough is so easy to make and comes together in one bowl without an electric mixer.
🍪 Why you'll LOVE this recipe:
- Pumpkin cheesecake: The middles are filled with a molten creamy pumpkin cheesecake.
- Easy: the dough is made using melted butter and without an electric mixer. The cookies aren’t stuffed, you just scoop the cheesecake mixture into the middles for an even easier cookie.
- Graham crumbs: Graham cracker crumbs are folded into the dough at the end for swirls in the cookies.
- Pumpkin spice: The cookies and cheesecake are lightly spiced with pumpkin spice, enough to let the pumpkin flavor shine through.
These pumpkin pie cookies also have a creamy pumpkin filling and taste like mini pumpkin pies!
📝 Key ingredients
Read through for all the tips you will need for success!
Full steps and ingredients in recipe card below.
This pumpkin cheesecake cookie dough uses melted butter to get beautiful cookies with buttery crisp edges and a soft centre. And you don’t need a mixer if the butter is melted. Just a wire whisk works perfectly.
- All purpose flour: Weigh the flour to get the most accurate results. If you don’t have a scale, measure properly by stirring the bag and spooning gently into a measuring cup. Scrape the excess off the top with the flat edge off a knife without packing it into the cup.
- Graham crumbs: I bought pre-crushed graham crackers but you can also crush them at home in a bag with a rolling pin or in a food processor. If you can't find graham crackers you can also use digestive biscuits or any other similar cookie.
- Pumpkin spice + cinnamon: The cheesecake filling has a touch of pumpkin spice and there's a bit of cinnamon in the cookie dough. This gives the cookies the perfect fall flavour. Here's how you can make your own pumpkin spice mix.
Pumpkin cheesecake filling
The filling is essentially a small batch of baked pumpkin cheesecake batter. It stays gooey after filling and holds its shape really well.
- Cream cheese: Use full fat cream cheese for the best results. Low fat cream cheese has a lot of water content and will result in a watery cookie. Have the cream cheese at room temperature so it's easy to mix by hand.
- Pumpkin puree: Use a store bought canned pumpkin puree or make your own. Make sure that the puree is very thick, like a thick hummus. Reduce the puree or strain it with a cheesecloth. Check out these no bake pumpkin cheesecake bars or this pumpkin cold foam to use up your leftover pumpkin puree.
- Egg yolk: This helps the filling hold together, adding flavour and colour.
👩🍳 How do you make the cookies?
This is a two step process. First you make the cookie dough, scoop, and let it chill for at least 45 minutes (or overnight, upwards to 48 hours).
Then you make the pumpkin cheesecake filling. Scoop the filling into the shaped and chilled cookie dough - no need to stuff them like these biscoff stuffed cookies. It makes it so much easier and they look like mini pumpkin cookie cheesecakes.
Step 1: Combine melted butter, sugars, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk until smooth and thickened. Add egg and vanilla, and whisk until smooth.
Step 2: Sift flour, baking soda, and pumpkin spice/cinnamon right into the same bowl. Fold just until incorporated and no more dry streaks remain.
Step 3: Add graham cracker crumbs and fold the dough a few times to swirl the cookie dough. If needed, let the dough chill in the freezer for 7-10 minutes so that it firms up enough to scoop or roll.
Step 4: Scoop or roll 12 balls (3-4 tablespoons each) and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Using the back of the scoop or your fingers, make indents in the middles to make space for the filling. Chill the portioned cookie dough for at least 45 minutes in the fridge or overnight.
Tip: This recipe makes 12 large cookies. You can make smaller cookies if you prefer but I prefer the larger proportion of filling with the larger cookies.
Filling & assembly
Step 1: The day of baking, whisk together softened cream cheese, brown sugar, sea salt, and vanilla in a bowl until completely smooth. Add egg yolk and pumpkin puree, whisk until smooth. Refrigerate until use.
Step 2: Preheat oven to 355°F (180°C). Place chilled and scooped cookie dough on parchment lined baking sheet, leaving at least 4” of space between the cookies (they will spread). Using two spoons, scoop cheesecake filling into the middles of each cookie.
Tip: Fill the cookies all the way up with filling. The cookies will spread and contain the filling. Overfilling is ok!
Step 3: Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until edges are slightly golden. Using a spoon, push in any irregular edges to make the cookies perfectly round. Break graham crackers and press pieces over the cookies. Sprinkle with more pumpkin spice
Step 4: Let cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to cooling rack and baking the next batch.
🍪 Make ahead
You can make and portion the cookie dough up to 48 hours before. This will give the dough plenty of time to chill completely and for the flavour to develop.
Freezer batch: Prepare and fill the cookies according to instructions and freeze the dough (with the filling) on a baking sheet in a single layer. Once completely frozen, transfer into an airtight container or bag. This prevents the frozen dough from sticking. Take out raw cookies and place them frozen on a baking tray. Bake them from frozen, adding 2-4 minutes to the bake time.
The pumpkin cheesecake cookies need to be stored in the fridge because of the cheesecake filling. Store in an airtight container with layers of parchment paper between the layers of cookies so they don't stick.
Freeze the cookies in an airtight container or bag for up to two months.
Tip: Gently warm the stored cookies in an oven or microwave to soften them up and make them taste like they're freshly baked.
📖 Recipe FAQs
These cookies come out chewy even if you over bake them, just as long as you measure the flour properly. Weigh the flour for the best and most consistent results. If you don’t have a scale, use a measuring cup properly: mix the flour with a spoon to fluff it up and carefully spoon it into the measuring cup. Scrape the rest off without packing in the flour. Underbake the cookies a bit for extra chew.
Pop the dough back into the freezer to firm up a bit before scooping it out. If you measured the flour correctly (using a scale or the fluff and scoop method) then you shouldn’t add any more. The cookie dough is very soft right after mixing but will firm up quite a bit!
Do not skip this step! You need the gluten to relax and the butter in the cookie to firm up again. That way you get the best chewy texture in your cookie. Your cookie will look and taste completely different if you don’t chill it! Chill for longer than 30 minutes or overnight for even better flavour and texture. The longer it chills, the deeper the flavour.
To get perfectly round cookies, push the edges in with a spoon as soon as they come out of the oven. This evens out any uneven edges and will help make a thicker cookie. This will only work while the cookies are still hot and pliable.
🍂 Related fall recipes:
Check out my best pumpkin desserts for more easy pumpkin recipe ideas.
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Pumpkin Cheesecake Cookies
- 1 cup butter melted and cooled
- ¾ cup brown sugar packed
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 ⅛ cup all purpose flour 260g
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ cup graham cracker crumbs
- 2 graham crackers optional
- Combine melted butter, sugars, and salt in a large bowl. Whisk until smooth and thickens. Add egg and vanilla, and whisk until smooth.1 cup butter, ¾ cup brown sugar, ½ cup granulated sugar, ½ teaspoon sea salt, 1 large egg, 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Sift flour, baking soda, and cinnamon right into the bowl. Fold just until incorporated and no more dry streaks remain.2 ⅛ cup all purpose flour, ½ teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- Add graham cracker crumbs and fold the dough a few times to swirl the cookie dough. Let the dough chill in the freezer for 7-10 minutes so that it firms up enough to scoop or roll.½ cup graham cracker crumbs
- Scoop or roll 12 balls and place on parchment lined baking sheet. Using the back of the scoop or your fingers, make indents in the middles to make space for the filling. Chill the portioned cookie dough for at least 45 minutes in the fridge or overnight.
Filling & Assembly
- The day of baking, whisk together softened cream cheese, brown sugar, sea salt, and vanilla in a bowl until completely smooth. Add egg yolk and pumpkin puree, whisk until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.5 oz cream cheese, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, ⅛ teaspoon sea salt, ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract, ½ teaspoon pumpkin spice, 1 large egg yolk, ¼ cup pumpkin puree
- Preheat oven to 355°F (180°C). Place chilled and scooped cookie dough on parchment lined baking sheet, leaving at least 4” of space between the cookies (they will spread).
- Using two spoons, scoop cheesecake filling into the middles of each cookie. They need to be filled all the way up, it’s ok if you overfill. The cookies will spread and contain the filling.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until edges are slightly golden. Using a clean spoon, push in any irregular edges to make the cookies perfectly round. Break graham crackers and press pieces over the cookies. Let cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before transferring to cooling rack and baking the next batch.2 graham crackers
- Measure the flour properly. Use a scale for the best accuracy. Alternatively, fluff the flour with a spoon, carefully spoon it into a measuring cup without packing it in, and gently scrape the excess off with the flat edge of a knife. Don't pack the flour in.
- Refrigerate the cookie dough if it isn't thick enough to scoop.
- Have the cream cheese very soft so that it's easier to mix. This helps you get a smooth cheesecake filling.