Made with pumpkin puree, coconut flour and whey protein, these keto & gluten-free soft pumpkin cookies are not only delicious, but also super nutritious and filling. Each keto pumpkin cookie contains less than 1 net carb and over 2 grams of protein!
They are sweet and gently spiced, and really tender/cakey and light – like “muffin top” cookies. But it’s not all! 😁 This soft pumpkin cookie recipe is easy and mess free: Inline with with my lazy baking technique (like I did for these keto peanut butter & chocolate cupcakes), you just need ONE BOWL and ONE SPOON to mix up the dough!
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Why these are the easiest pumpkin cookies
These soft pumpkin keto cookies are unbelievably quick and easy to whip up for 3 reasons:
First, you don’t need to cream butter and sugar (in this case, sweetener). Second, this is a no-chill cookie dough – so no resting time in the fridge! You just mix the cookie dough ingredients and take it straight into the oven!
Third, you don’t need to scoop up the dough – after mixing the cookie batter, just shape them up by hand, rolling into balls. This soft pumpkin cookie dough doesn’t stick to your hands, in fact, it feels a little like soft putty. They are quite fun to shape up!
Keto and gluten-free flours: I use a combination of coconut flour and low-carb, unflavored whey protein isolate for the perfect soft keto cookie texture.
Sweetener choices: I made this recipe with my homemade erythritol stevia blend and I got perfectly sweet cookies! You can use any keto sweetener that measures 1:1 to sugar, though: Swerve, Lakanto, PureCane.
If you’re using pure erythritol or (my new favorite) allulose you can increase the amount of sweetener by 30%, as they are about that less sweet than sugar. But these cookies are as sweet as “real sugar” cookies, so if you prefer less sweet cookies you don’t need to change a thing.
Warm spices: I suggest ground cinnamon, ginger powder (you can leave out if you don’t love spicy cookies) and freshly grated nutmeg! – Please! It’s just SO MUCH BETTER than the store bought powdered version that’s a crime not to use it!
But, of course, you can sub everything for pumpkin pie spice mix if you don’t have the separate spices.
Using pumpkin left overs
One recipe these soft keto cookies calls for just about one third cup of pumpkin puree, so they are perfect for when you need to use up extra pumpkin left over from an opened can.
It’s fall season and you have plenty of pumpkin to use up? You can try my recipe for baby bundt pumpkin cakes with lupin flour, which uses 3/4 cup of pumpkin puree, or make this 5-minute pumpkin and coconut soup, which takes a whole can (nearly 2 cups).
Best tip for pumpkin cookies
This step is not absolutely necessary, but I like to blot away the excess moisture of the pumpkin puree to make it thicker. It helps get a nicer, richer dough that makes the best cookies.
This baking tip applies to either homemade pumpkin puree or pure canned pumpkin, which can be also be a bit soupy sometimes.
It’s very simple to do: just create a “pumpkin blotting pad” by folding some paper towels (or a clean cloth) at the bottom of a bowl. Or, you can put the paper or cloth at the bottom of a sieve, and then rest the sieve on the rim of a larger bowl, for better drainage.
Rest the pumpkin puree on top of the paper/cloth. The excess liquid will slowly be absorbed into it, which will get you a thicker pumpkin puree.
The time it takes varies, but if you want to prepare it on the day before to be sure that most water has been drained away you can leave the pumpkin puree blotting in the fridge over night. There’s no issue in using the cold blotted pumpkin puree straight from the fridge to mix the cookies.
How to make
This soft pumpkin keto cookie dough is very easy to mix and gets ready in a matter of minutes, so start pre-heating the oven right away to 180 °C (355 °F), and line your cookie baking sheet with parchment or wax paper.
Mixing the cookie dough
To make the least amount of mess (I’m lazy) (no, snap the band, I’M PRACTICAL!) I like to use just one large bowl for the whole cookie recipe. I measure the butter into this bowl, and melt it in the microwave, at the lowest setting, in short bursts.
You want the butter just warm enough to be to be fully melted, but not “hot”, and specially not boiling!
Breaking up the cold butter in pieces before melting helps the process go faster without creating areas of hot butter amidst un-melted pieces.
Mix the butter with the keto sweetener, then add the vanilla extract, and the blotted pumpkin puree (it’s ok to use it cold). Mix it well.
Next, add the dry ingredients: coconut flour, unflavored whey protein, and the spices. Mix everything up, until you get a soft, crumbly cookie dough.
Shaping and baking
It’s pretty easy to shape these keto pumpkin cookies by hand, as they are not sticky at all. I divided the batter by cutting in two, then four, with the spatula inside the bowl (making an “X”). Then, I took each part and made 4 cookie dough balls from each – for a total of 16 cookies.
These cookies don’t really spread, so you’ll need to be gently flattened. They will grow a bit, but the shape doesn’t change after baking. So shape them like you want them to look when ready.
The oven should be at temperature by now, so go ahead and bake these pumpkin babies until they have golden cracked tops like the picture above – mine took 15 minutes at 180 °C (355 °F).
I know this is gonna be hard now, because your kitchen smells like being wrapped in a blanket drinking hot tea at the porch in a late autumn afternoon. With a cat purring in your lap. But try and wait for the keto pumpkin cookies to cool down completely before eating 😉
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