sugar & spice. [pumpkin cookies w. orange buttercream frosting]

October 10th, 2011 by | comments

Since Greg so generously made room for me on the pumpkin band wagon with my trifle, I figured I’d try sneaking another dessert on board.

I made these fluffy pumpkin spice cookies with orange buttercream frosting over the weekend. Upon each bite, the palette is hit with the slight tartness of the orange followed by the spice of the pumpkin. My brother took them to work today and said they were a hit with all of his co-workers. :)

Need more pumpkin inspiration? Head over to Maris’ site at In Good Taste for her baked pumpkin doughnuts. Check out Mary’s pumpkin cake with caramel icing over at One Perfect Bite. Also, Erin’s pumpkin spice hot apple cider at Dinners, Dishes and Desserts.

pumpkin cookies w. orange buttercream frosting
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
  • Cookie recipe:
  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cooked, pureed pumpkin (fresh or canned)
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • Orange buttercream frosting recipe:
  • 4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • ½ cup (1 stick) salted butter, softened
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 6 tbsp. heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp. fresh orange juice, pulp free
  • Zest of 1 orange, plus more for garnish
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. For the cookies: Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add pumpkin, egg and vanilla and mix well. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir into butter mixture until well blended.
  3. Drop by tablespoonful onto parchment covered baking sheet, about 2 inches apart.
  4. Bake 12-15 minutes, or until golden. Cool.
  5. For the frosting: Cream confectioners' sugar and butter. Add remaining ingredients and beat until smooth.
  6. Ice cookies, then garnish with additional orange zest.
Recipe adapted from The Food Network.

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  • Omg, these look amazing! I made a pumpkin salad with an orange citrus dressing. We all have pumpkin on our minds. I have to try this recipe for the Thanksgiving holidays!

    • That’s a much healthier use of pumpkin though…sounds delicious. I need to cut it on the sweets, ha!

  • Amy

    Oooh, so festive! Now I have to get on the pumpkin bandwagon!! :)

  • These do look incredibly good, made even more so with that frosting. YUM!

    • The frosting was a refreshing change from the typical pairing of cream cheese or cinnamon/maple frosting with pumpkin. Thanks John!

  • You KNOW I love pumpkin. I am definitely on THIS bandwagon! :) These look scrumptious!

    • Oh yes, I definitely do! Glad you’re on board. xx

  • That frosting looks delicious. Yum!

  • A recipe and more recipes! Woo hoo. We’re on the bandwagon too, almost. Katherine made a pumpkin bread this weekend. Anyway, love the frosting!

    • That just might have to be my next pumpkin experiment. I’m sure it was delicious!

  • Your photographs are great! awesome visual tutorial.. c c

  • pumpkin bandwagon! giddy-up.

    these pumpkin cookies look fabulous, caroline. pumpkin must be the new black — we indulged in some pumpkin pancakes for thanksgiving day brunch today! :)

    • Yee haw. ;) Pumpkin is just so hip right now. And pumpkin pancakes? Yes please.

  • Yum! they look fantastic! I want to jump on board too! My favorite part just might be the frosting though!

    • Thanks so much! The frosting really topped them off…literally and figuratively. ha!

  • Aren’t you sweet – Thanks for the shout out with my cider! I love pumpkin cookies, there is just something so comforting about them! I never though about orange with them though, great idea!

    • Of course! I’ve got it on my list of recipes to make now. The orange was surprisingly a great, yet different, combo.

  • They look gorgeous! Your description is so enticing! I think I must be the last blogger, who hasn’t made anything with pumpkin or squash this Autumn…

    • Thank you Sissi! No worries, you’ve still got plenty of time. I’ve only made one pumpkin recipe, so you’re not too far behind.

  • These look wonderful. I love pumpkin!

    • Thanks Jamie! Me too…I can’t wait to make more recipes featuring pumpkin.

  • Now that’s a cookie I would love! Nice and thick and soft and the citrus with pumpkin sounds like a perfect match!! I love the grated zest on top. Beautiful photos compliment those cookies so nicely!

    • I really do like the cake texture of pumpkin cookies…it’s a nice change. A bit more filling though! Thanks so much, Linda. xx

  • what is that next to the biscuits on the second to last picture?!

    • It’s a decorative pumpkin my mom has, so I just figured I’d throw it in the photo for some color. :)

      • AH ha, obviously?! hehexx

  • Yum! Love the pumpkin bandwagon. I was thinking of making pumpkin chocolate chip muffins with a cream cheese frosting tonight… but these sure do look and sound tempting! I love pumpkin everything!

    • I think those cookies would be equally delicious! Hope to see them on your blog. :)

  • Aimee@clevermuffin

    These look amazing! I can just imagine how well the pumpkin flavors will complement the icing. Yum!!

    • Thank you Aimee! The citrus/spice combo was really nice actually.

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  • Oh my, my mouth started watering as soon as I read my email this morning. YUM!!!

    • I only ate one and made myself leave the rest for my brother to take to work; otherwise, I would have easily eaten the entire batch. Ha!

  • Lovely with the orange juice and zest – like delicious little individual cakes – YUM :)
    Mary x

    • You’re so right, very similar to individual cakes. Thanks Mary! x

  • Ohhhhh no. It’s 3:55pm and I thought that I could make it through the day. Not after seeing these fluffy delights! I love nothing more than a pumpkin spice cookie that is chewy and delicious. In short, I am going to be dying at work for these last 35 minutes…YUM!

    • Isn’t that the worst? I look at blogs in the morning then I’m hungry, look at them in the afternoon and feel like I need a snack, look at them after dinner and am hungry again, somehow. Thanks Chrissy! xx

  • This looks delicious! I must try this recipe myself :)

    • Thanks! I think you’d love them.

  • I’m being sucked into the pumpkin-love, and I kinda like it! These look so good!

    • Yes you are! And it’s not over yet–many more pumpkin recipes to come. :)

  • I don’t know what I love more: the pumpkin cookie, or the heavenly orange buttercream frosting! Very very tempting, Caroline.

  • It is isn’t often that I look through a recipe and realize I have every single ingredient just sitting in my kitchen waiting to be used in a recipe. I was just contemplating what to do with my leftover pumpkin:) Very pretty!

    • Isn’t that the most ideal situation? I love when that happens, especially since it’s pretty rare. Looks like you’ll just have to make these cookies. What a bummer. ;)

  • These cookies look awesome! I have to try these as they combine so many ingredients I love. You have a great blog– gorgeous pictures and great tutorials! I look forward to reading. :)

    • Thank you so much! I’m so glad you stopped by, and hope to post some more recipes that you enjoy. Love your site. xx

  • It’s official. I can NEVER get enough pumpkin!

    • Me neither, girl, me neither!

  • —Pumpkin & Orange are 2 of my Favorite flavours! I can’t wait to make these. You rock, Caroline. WOW! x

    • You’re too sweet, I’m glad you approve. :)

  • egg me on

    Oh man, I need to hop on the pumpkin bandwagon! They look really great, Caroline! That buttercream frosting … my mouth is watering.

    • Thanks so much! And yes, you do. Don’t worry, there’s plenty of room. :)

  • Oh wow.. these pumpkin cookies look absolutely scrumptious. I mean wow. I think most kids would want these and not candy. Well they would want both actually lol

    • You’re so sweet, Kay. At least they’d be a bit healthier than candy? Well, not healthy, but at least they’re homemade/no preservatives, ha!

  • I am going to have to get onto the pumpkin bandwagon :) Lovely frosting recipe!

    • We’d love to have you aboard! Thanks so much, Tandy. x

  • Pumpkin cookies! I saw some pumpkin colored cookies at a store today and I almost grab it….homemade sounds much better and ohhh I love this frosting! Orange buttercream… that’s so yummy!

    • I agree, homemade is much better. I’m so bad at the grocery store because when I walk by the baked goods, I often criticize them and always think I can make a better homemade version. Oh gosh, what’s gotten into me? I think I’m turning into a baking snob, ha!

  • I just jumped on the pumpkin bandwagon and I’m so happy I found you and these delicious cookies! Can’t wait to bake a batch of these for our Halloween party!

    • They’d be perfect for a Halloween party! Thanks for stopping by Roxana. xx

  • Stay on the bandwagon! I’m all for finding out new ideas of things I can do with pumpkins – I’ve never cooked with them at all and am loving seeing all these recipes this year! Beautiful cookies Caroline :)

    • Isn’t it fun? I’m sure you’d come up with an amazing pumpkin recipe, Charles. Thanks so much!

  • There is a plethora of pumpkin recipes coming but I don’t see any canned pumpkin here – do you deliver cookies:)

    • Yeah, I’m not sure if I’d make these cookies if I didn’t have the canned pumpkin. Too much work! I’m sure we can arrange a delivery. :)

  • Love pumpkin cookies..the orange buttercream looks awesome!

  • Lovely cookies, lovely frosting. Love this recipe

  • I have to admit I have never cooked with pumpkin before as they dont readily sell tinned pumpkin puree in the UK and I cant face cutting one up. However, these cookies look delicious, especially the orange buttercream frosting on top!

    • Oh gosh, I wouldn’t want to face cutting one up either. The canned is just so much easier for cooking and baking. Thanks so much, Mandy!

  • Oh, stop that Caroline, I’m gaining weight just visiting your blog!!! Lol. These look absolutely delicious. The orange zest is particularly smashing!

    • Haha! Pretty sure I’ve gained a couple of lbs just looking at your site too.

  • I think pumpkin is the best ingredient for the fall. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

  • These sound like they’d be right up my alley! I love how fluffy these cookies look! :-)

    • The fluffiness is the best part. :)

  • Orange zest and buttercream with pumpkin?! You have my permission to jump all over the pumpkin bandwagon again and again and yes, again! I would love to be snacking on some of these right now! :)

    • Different combo, right? The flavors actually worked really well together. I think Miss A and Mr. N would love them. :)

  • Oh Greg this and Greg that…make it a double…Gregg …Please…lol

    Just wanted to thank you for your comment on my recent post, which, apparently someone found the writer of to be an intriguer of his country… as at precisely 9 A.M. the following day, ( Yesterday morning )some program hop – scotched over my Max Security program, and shut my “Windows” , so I had no chance of reconfiguring the hard drive obliteration bug they sent me…Imagine that… seems it just doesn’t pay to chide the “Um Hum ” department…as this is my 3rd new computer this year….But, after all my frustrations…imagine my elation’s… I’m back on line…only to find that this last post… was my 2nd most popular viewed … Ever!!! Bless You

    • Ah, what a bummer, I’m so sorry Paul! Glad everything got sorted out though and that you’re back online.

  • Those cookies look irresistibloe! I love such fall treats.



  • These look so light and fluffy! I thought they were muffins at first.

    • They do resemble muffins a bit, don’t they? Definitely a similar texture.

  • Holy moly!! Orange and pumpkin together is a genius combo. Those looks absolutely fantastic…they are just calling my name.

    • Thanks Lauren! If I would have known, I would have sent some your way and not had my brother take all of them to work. ;)

  • These look phenomenal Caroline and I’ll be a “metro” man for a second and say that fake/decorative pumpkin is cool as well. ;-)

    • Nothing wrong with metro! Just means you have great taste. Thanks so much, Jed. :)

  • Wow, these look great. Sort of brings memories of Trick or Treating back to an old man. Beautiful photos too.
    Bless You

    • Ohhh the trick or treating days. So much fun. Thank you Paul!

  • I am so on that pumpkin bandwagon too, I can’t seem to get off! I’m making a bread/cake with pumpkin & chocolate chips today with a chocolate ganache, I have no idea how it’s going to turn out but if it’s anything like your cookies I’ll be really pleased, they look lovely!!

    • It’s a great bandwagon to be on. Oh wow, that sounds like one deliciously decadent cake/bread right there. Can’t wait to see it on our blog! x

  • Nice seasonal choice, Caroline!

    • Always gotta embrace the seasons as much as I can. :)

  • these pumpkin cookies look exceptional, and I really like the touch of orange icing. there can never be too many pumpkin treats this time of year!
    thanks for visiting my blog; I know I shall enjoy exploring yours! Nancy

    • I completely agree–never too much pumpkin. Thanks so much, Nancy! xx

  • Caroline :)

    I made these the other day and they were absolutely AMAZING!!! (I did cream cheese frosting though…next time totally going for the orange buttercream!)

    • I’m so glad you liked them! Cream cheese frosting is always delicious with pumpkin. :)

  • These look amazing!!

  • OMG!
    You are an artist and pumpkin mmmm

    • Aw, you’re too sweet, thank you! :)

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