Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

These adorable Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies look like mini pumpkin pies! They’re buttery, easy to make and perfect for fall.

Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies on a plate

These Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies are a fall-inspired spin on my Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies. Both are made with a vanilla shortbread cookie base but these are filled with homemade pumpkin pie filling instead of raspberry jam. They’re ultra buttery, easy to make and require zero chill time. Plus I love that they look and taste like mini pumpkin pies without the hassle of actually making pie!

Looking for more fall cookie recipes? Try my Apple Oatmeal Cookies, Pumpkin Cookies with Maple Icing or Brown Butter Snickerdoodles!

Ingredient Breakdown

Pumpkin Filling:

Pumpkin puree – make sure to use pumpkin puree and NOT pumpkin pie filling. Pumpkin puree has 100% pumpkin while pumpkin pie filling already has spices and sugar added to it.

Brown sugar – sweetens the filling. I prefer using dark brown sugar for extra molasses flavor but light brown sugar also works fine!

Egg – helps bind the ingredients.

Whole milk – adds richness and moisture to the filling.

Cinnamon, nutmeg & ginger – needed to help give the filling its pumpkin spice flavor.

Salt – enhances flavor.

Shortbread Dough:

All-purpose flour – this gives the cookies structure.

Butter – provides flavor and structure. I always recommend using unsalted butter but salted butter works if that’s all you have on hand, just be sure to omit the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Do not use cold or melted butter.

Granulated sugar – sweetens cookies.

Vanilla extract and salt – enhances flavor. Always use pure vanilla extract instead of imitation for best flavor.

Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies on a wire rack

How To Make Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies

1. Make the Pumpkin Filling: in a small bowl combine the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, whole milk, egg, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt until well combined. Set aside.

2. Make the Shortbread Dough: In a small bowl whisk all-purpose flour and salt. Set aside.

3. Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to cream the softened butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy then add the vanilla extract.

4. Add the dry ingredients all at once then mix on low speed until just combined.

5. Using a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop dough and roll into balls then place onto the lined baking sheets. Use the back of a 1/2 teaspoon to make an indent in each cookie dough ball then fill with pumpkin filling.

6. Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned. Store Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge.

Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies on a baking sheet

Pro Tips For Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
  • Don’t over mix the dough! Only mix until the dry ingredients are just combined. Over mixing = more gluten development which means tough cookies. We don’t want any tough cookies here!
  • Bake one tray at a time on the middle oven rack. This ensures that there is even heat circulation.
  • You can replace the cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger with 1 teaspoon of pre-made (or homemade) pumpkin pie spice mix.

Frequently Asked Questions


Can You Make Shortbread Cookie Dough In Advance?

Yes! Once you make this shortbread cookie dough you can either refrigerate it for up to 3 days wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or freeze it for up to 3 months wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and placed in a zip-top bag.

Why Is Shortbread called Shortbread?

Shortbread gets its name from its crumbly texture which is a result of the dough’s high fat content. The traditional ratio for shortbread is 1:2:3 (one part sugar to two parts butter to three parts flour).

What’s the difference between sugar cookies And Shortbread?

Unlike sugar cookies, shortbread is made without eggs or any leavening agents. Shortbread also has a more crumbly texture as a result of the dough’s high fat content. If you’re looking for sugar cookie recipes try my Chocolate Chip Sugar Cookies or Sugar Cookies with Hershey Kisses.

Do Pumpkin Thumbprint Cookies Need To Be Refrigerated?

Yes, these pumpkin thumbprint cookies need to be refrigerated because pumpkin pie is a custard pie (which just means it’s a liquid thickened with eggs). You should refrigerate these thumbprint cookies as soon as they cool down to room temperature. You can serve them cold or at room temperature (just be sure to not leave them out for longer than 2 hours).

Can I Use Pre-made Pumpkin Pie Spice?

If you prefer to use a pre-made pumpkin spice mix simply replace the cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger with 1 teaspoon of pre-made (or homemade) pumpkin pie spice mix.

What To Do With Leftover Pumpkin Puree?

Make one of my other pumpkin recipes! Some of my favorites are:

Did you know that you can also freeze leftover pumpkin puree? Simply transfer it to an airtight container or a zip-top bag and place in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight when you’re ready to use it!

My Favorite Cookie Tools

Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies on a wire rack

If you try this recipe then please leave a rating/comment below to let me know how you liked it and feel free to ask any recipe questions you may have! 🙂

Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies

Maria Azzarelli
These adorable Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies look like mini pumpkin pies! They're buttery, easy to make and perfect for fall.
5 from 8 votes
Save To Inbox Recipe Card Form

✉ Want to save this recipe?

Enter your email and I’ll send it straight to your inbox! As a bonus, you’ll receive new recipes ideas weekly. ♥︎

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, Swedish
Servings 42 cookies
Calories 83 kcal

Equipment

  • Baking sheets
  • Stand mixer or hand mixer
  • Cookie scoop (I use a 1 tablespoon scoop)

Ingredients
  

Pumpkin Filling

  • 120 g (1/2 cup) pumpkin puree
  • 66 g (1/3 cup) brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 60 g (1/4 cup) whole milk
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ginger
  • tsp salt

Shortbread Dough

  • 300 g (2 1/2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 226 g (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 100 g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions
 

Pumpkin Filling

  • In a small bowl combine the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, whole milk, egg, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt until well combined. Set aside.

Shortbread Dough

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  • In a small bowl whisk all-purpose flour and salt. Set aside.
  • Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to cream the softened butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy then add the vanilla extract.
  • Add the dry ingredients all at once then mix on low speed until just combined.
  • Using a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop dough and roll into balls then place onto the lined baking sheets. Use the back of a 1/2 teaspoon to make an indent in each cookie dough ball then fill with pumpkin filling.
  • Bake for 15 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned.

Notes

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
 
  • Butter: I recommend using unsalted butter. You can use salted butter, just be sure to omit the 1/2 tsp salt.
 
  • Store Pumpkin Pie Thumbprint Cookies in an airtight container for up to 4 days in the fridge.
 
  • Nutrition: the provided nutritional information is an estimate per serving. Please read my Nutrition Disclaimer for more information.
Calories: 83kcalCarbohydrates: 10gProtein: 1gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.2gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0.2gCholesterol: 16mgSodium: 38mgPotassium: 21mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 587IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 7mgIron: 0.4mg
Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below & tag @myhappybakes on social!

Similar Posts

2 Comments

5 from 8 votes (7 ratings without comment)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating