This is the recipe you’re looking for! It’s the original 1980s Libby’s Great Pumpkin Cookie recipe from women’s magazine ads!
My mom made the Great Pumpkin Cookies every year when I was a kid, and now I make them every year with my kids! My kids love decorating Great Pumpkin Cookies more than decorating Christmas cookies!
Libby’s Great Pumpkin Cookie is a pumpkin-chocolate chip-oatmeal cookie and bakes up HUGE and soft!
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Here are 4 tips to make sure your Great Pumpkin Cookies turn out GREAT!
- Use parchment paper AND cooking spray! These cookies are GINORMOUS and you don’t want to chance any breaks!
- Put just 4 cookies on each cookie sheet! They spread out like crazy, but you can’t refrigerate the dough or you won’t be able to spread the cookies into shape. I use these cookie sheets so the kids can decorate the cookies without having to move them off the cookie sheet!
- Take the fun outside! My kids are big enough not to make a crazy mess decorating these cookies (and clean it up if they do!) but for years I set everything up on our patio table and hosed it off when they were done. If it’s cold outside, use two dollar store plastic tablecloths: 1 on the table and 1 under the table! Toss the kids into the bathtub when they’re done, then roll up the tablecloths and throw them away.
- Don’t mess with the recipe! You can practice gluten free, maple syrup, coconut cream frosting substitutes on some other poor recipe—if there’s a time for real sugar, butter, and flour, it’s Halloween time! Have you baked with Einkorn flour? It makes bread, cookies, and cake taste amazing, and it’s real food!
- You can use any frosting you like; I make a simple buttercream because it’s cheaper than canned frosting and just as easy to make as to open a can. Yes, I use food coloring in the frosting—the more garish, the better, as far as the kids are concerned. Yes, the Halloween candies and sprinkles the kids decorate the cookies with are full of high fructose corn syrup and dyes. See #4 above.
- I always buy the cookie decorations at Winco because I can buy a small amount of each candy in their bulk foods department and I don’t end up with a ton of leftover candy. The kids get enough candy Trick or Treating!
- Don’t forget to buy enough frosting dispensers to cover each kid! I have 2 kids but I have 6 frosting dispensers so they can decorate Halloween and Christmas cookies and gingerbread houses with their friends! I use these frosting dispensers because they’re easy to load and easy for the kids to squeeze and change out the decorating tips without making a holy mess.
- You can also put the frosting into bowls and use butter knives or popsicle sticks to spread the frosting on the cookies (they’re shorter than table knives so they won’t tip out of the bowls), or make frosting dispensers out of Ziploc bags. Fair warning: Ziploc bags filled with frosting usually blow out when kids use them!
Libby’s Great Pumpkin Cookie recipe isn’t just for Halloween! It’s also a great recipe to use from Labor Day (the official start of Pumpkin Spice Latte season!) through Thanksgiving because they include two perfect fall flavors: pumpkin and cinnamon! They’re fun to make for any fall brunch or for Thanksgiving breakfast with just a little cream cheese icing piped on (see top photo!)
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup quick or old-fashioned oats, uncooked
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 cup butter or margarine, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 1 egg, slightly beaten
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup Libby's Solid Pack Pumpkin
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- Assorted icings or peanut butter
- Assorted candies, raisins or nuts
- Preheat oven to 350°
- Combine flour, oats, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt.
- Cream butter; gradually add sugars, beating until light and fluffy.
- Add egg and vanilla; mix well.
- Alternate additions of dry ingredients and pumpkin, mixing well after each addition.
- Stir in morsels.
- For each cookie, drop ¼ cup dough onto lightly greased cookie sheet; spread into pumpkin shape, using a thin metal spatula.
- Add a bit more dough to form stem.
- Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until cookies are firm and lightly browned.
- Remove from cookie sheets; cool on racks.
- Decorate, using icing or peanut butter to affix assorted candies, raisins, or nuts.
- Yields 19 to 20 cookies.
- Variation: Substitute 1 cup raisins for morsels.