Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Made With Coconut Oil {Gluten-Free, Vegan}

When I first started testing for soft and chewy pumpkin chocolate chip cookies, I was using melted coconut oil for the main source of fat. This ingredient was not working, so I finally made the switch to using melted vegan butter (you can also use regular, grass-fed butter) and it worked beautifully. But then I realized that I also changed the procedure, in that I was whisking the melted vegan butter with the granulated sweeteners. I hadn’t been doing this with the coconut oil, and realized that perhaps the magic was in the method. Therefore, I (re)set out to see if melted coconut oil could in fact be used if I followed the same steps I did when I was successful.

What you need to know when using coconut oil for pumpkin chocolate chip cookies

I have always said coconut oil is a challenging fat with which to bake cookies. Coconut oil is more conducive when making breads, muffins, cakes, and cupcakes, as you don’t have to consider the “spreading” factor. Additionally, many cookie recipes call for “creaming” butter and sugar together, and while room temperature coconut oil can be used in this way (see this snickerdoodle cookie recipe for an example), it’s a delicate fat for the creaming process.; it breaks down and starts to become more melty when even just the slightest amount of heat is applied (yes, even when you just whisk really fast as you do in the creaming process). The major difference is in the chemical structure: coconut oil is a medium-chain triglyceride, whereas butter is a short-chain triglyceride. If you are baking cookies with coconut oil (or anything for that matter) and they don’t turn out, the reason can be chalked up to chemistry.

Whisk the melted coconut oil and granulated sugar together.

Just as the brown “butter” pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe calls for whisking the melted butter with the granulated sweeteners before incorporating it into the other wet ingredients, you will want to do the same thing with this recipe. Initially, I was simply whisking the melted coconut oil in with the other wet ingredients, while the granulated sweeteners were being incorporated in with the flour mixture, but this distinction makes all the difference. Why? Because when the granulated sugars are whisked in with the melted oil, it is then treated as a “wet ingredient” in the overall mixing process; this leads to a better cookie dough than if the granulated sugar was stirred in with the other dry ingredients. When I was treating the granulated sugar as part of the dry ingredients, the cookie dough (and thus the cookies) came out too grainy.

Use refrigeration as a natural binder.

It is often the case, that when you are baking with coconut oil, the baked goods will taste better after chilling in the refrigerator for a few hours, or even overnight. This is because the coconut oil further solidifies and firms when cold, resulting in a better texture. Before refrigeration, the baked good will still be delicious, but it just might fall apart more easily, especially if you are omitting the eggs. Using refrigeration as a natural binder will prevent this from happening.

Planning and prep

Just as in the brown “butter” pumpkin chocolate chip cookie recipe, there are a few main components of this recipe to consider before baking. The first is blotting the pumpkin. My advice is the use a digital scale, and weigh out your tablespoons in a paper towel-lined bowl. That way, you can blot and ensure precise pumpkin measurements at the same time. Kill two birds with one stone!

The second thing to consider is using melted coconut oil. I keep a jar of coconut oil in a warm spot in my house so it always stays melted. If you are melting your coconut oil on the same day as baking, I suggest doing so in a saucepan or in your microwave and slightly cooling for 10 to 15 minutes before whisking in the granulated sweeteners.

Lastly, you will need to chill the dough for about 10 to 15 minutes before baking. After beating everything together, simply stick the mixing bowl with the dough in your refrigerator. With the brown “butter” recipe, I chilled the dough for a bit longer, but coconut oil more quickly solidifies in the refrigerator, so 10 to 15 minutes will suffice. If you chill the dough too long, the coconut oil will become too hard, prevent rolling, and will actually have a detrimental effect on the outcome.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies Made With Coconut Oil {Gluten-Free, Vegan}

Another option to make these seasonal chocolate chip cookies! Use coconut oil instead of (vegan) butter for an upgraded ingredient. Whisk the melted coconut oil together with the granulated sweeteners for the perfect cookie dough you can even enjoy raw!
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Cooling Time 1 hour
Course Dessert
Servings 14 cookies


  • Baking sheets
  • Mixing bowls
  • Hand beater or stand mixer
  • whisk
  • saucepan if using to melt coconut oil


  • cup Healthified homemade gluten-free flour blend or GF 1:1 baking flour see note
  • 2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 6 tablespoons pure pumpkin puree room temperature and blotted about 98 grams if using organic; see note
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup granulated allulose
  • ¼ cup granulated coconut sugar
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil
  • ½ cup chocolate chips or chopped chocolate plus more for topping if desired


  • In a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, combine the gluten-free flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, baking soda and sea salt. Stir to combine.
  • In a small separate bowl, combine the pumpkin puree, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Stir until combined and creamy.
  • In another small separate bowl, stir together the allulose and coconut sugar. Pour in the melted coconut oil, and whisk until creamy. Add the pumpkin puree mixture and whisk again until everything is incorporated and creamy.
  • Pour the wet ingredients in the bowl with the flour mixture and beat until a dough is formed. Fold in the chocolate chips. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Once the dough has chilled, use a cookie scoop or your hands to gather about 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons of dough and roll it into balls. Place the balls of dough at least 2 inches apart on the baking sheets, and use your fingers to gently press and flatten the dough. Add a few extra chocolate chips on top if desired (this is only for looks and not necessary).
  • Bake for 12 to 14 minutes until the edges have started to firm and turn golden brown. The cookies will continue to firm as they cool. Allow the cookies to cool for about 10 minutes on the baking sheets, before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely, about 1 hour. You can even allow them to further cool and firm in the refrigerator until ready to enjoy.


Healthified homemade gluten-free flour blend
Blot the pumpkin and weigh it out at the same time: Use a digital scale, and weigh out your tablespoons in a paper towel-lined bowl. 
Keyword Dairy-free, Egg-free, Gluten-free, Nut-free, Soy-free, Vegan