These pumpkin gingerbread cookies only seem like an indulgence. Packed with protein and fiber, these lower carb, high protein, gluten free, vegan, and paleo cookies are the perfect way to stay on track this holiday season. I promise you won’t miss any of the bad stuff either. These pumpkin gingerbread cookies are quite honestly the most addicting little cookies ever! Warming cinnamon paired with the unmistakable zest from the ginger, these cookies are packed with flavor!
Maybe I’m a little biased, but anytime I get to decorate cookies, they automatically become a favorite of mine to make! The first round of these I decorated was a bit of a fiasco, the coconut butter was just too thick to work with. But once I figured out that adding a bit of room temperature coconut milk to the coconut butter created a much smoother and easier to work with consistency, this became a pretty fun activity. Even Dave helped! He made his own gingerbread man, equipped with George Washington hair and another with little puffs for hands. Let me know if you see his cookie in the picture below!
Well it’s officially holiday cookie celebration time! Baking has started here at PancakeWarriors, although I have to admit I have quite a few things to deal with this year that I’ve never had to worry about in the past. Gluten free baking, to start with. And right now we are trying to limit simple sugars for Dave as he may or may not be battling a candida overgrowth (we are treating him as if he does). That is why you won’t notice my usual culprits in these cookies. No applesauce, no bananas. Just pumpkin (a veggie filled cookie) and coconut milk! These end up being pretty low carb, since the only sugar is from the molasses.
Speaking of molasses, I had to make a batch of these without molasses for Dave since molasses is currently off limits for him as well. Let me tell you, those little beauties were just as tasty, but I really do love what molasses does to gingerbread cookies!
I used coconut butter to frost these cookies, it’s all natural and no added sugar. And it’s freaking delicious. You could also use cashew butter or melted white chocolate, all of which would be amazing on these pumpkin gingerbread cookies. Just put the coconut butter in the microwave for about 15-20 seconds to get it nice and runny then add the room temperature coconut milk. Once the cookies have all been frosted, just store them in the fridge for a few minutes to let the coconut butter harden and viola,
perfectly iced cookies!
When you are making the dough for these cookies, it’s going to be quite difficult to stir it by the end. This is so that the end product will roll out and hold it’s shape when making the gingerbread men shape. You will also need to be sure you add all the coconut oil to the recipe, as it helps the cookies harden in the fridge, which makes forming the dough a little easier.
The easiest way I’ve found to roll out the dough is to place the dough on a large piece of parchment paper. Then flatten the dough with your palms. Once flat, cover the dough in a sheet of waxed paper and roll out with a rolling pin (or wine bottle). Be sure not to roll the ends out to thin, as they will not cook evenly if the dough is drastically different thickness. You can easily roll the scraps up and re-cut the dough two or three times without having to put it back into the fridge. Easy peasy and kids love helping with cutting out the gingerbread men (and decorating them), so make these often, they are healthy after all!
Once you have the dough rolled out, work quickly to add it to an already greased parchment paper lined baking sheet. I like to grease the parchment paper with coconut oil spray. I end up moving around the gingerbread men quite a few times when trying to get them all on one baking sheet. It’s like a puzzle so the coconut oil spray really helps when I have to move them around.
Want to see this recipe in action? Scroll down to the bottom of the post and watch my video – you can see these cookies from start to finish and see just how easy they are to make!
- ⅔ cup pumpkin puree (organic if possible)
- ¼ - ⅓ cup unsweetened coconut milk (in the carton)
- 2 tbs. chia seds
- 2 tbs. molassas
- 2 scoops vanilla protein powder (I used MRM Veggie)
- ¼ cup almond flour (or almond meal)
- 2 tbs. coconut flour
- 2 tbs. coconut oil (melted)
- 1 tbs.cinnamon
- 1 tsp dried ground ginger
- 1 tsp. grated ginger (I buy it in a jar but you could also freshly grate it)
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. baking soda
- ¼ cup coconut butter, melted and runny
- 1-2 tsp. unsweetened coconut milk, at room temperature
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Start with adding the pumpkin puree and milk to a large bowl. Sprinkle in the chia seeds and stir to combine.
- To the pumpkin puree mixture, add molasses, cinnamon, dried ground and fresh ginger and melted coconut oil and stir to combine.
- Add the protein powder, almond flour and coconut flour, baking powder, and baking soda and stir to combine.
- This will likely be very thick and tough to stir at the end. Be sure to incorporate all the the ingredients (except the coconut butter and extra milk) then place the dough in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
- After chilled, place the dough on a large sheet of parchment paper. Flatten the dough with your hands then cover with a piece of waxed paper. Roll out the dough to ⅛ inch thickness.
- Cut the dough with a cookie cutter. Remove the excess dough and transfer the cookie dough to a pre-greased parchment paper lined baking sheet.
- Bake at 350 for 15-17 minutes depending on how thick you make these.
- Makes about 18-20 cookies
- Once the cookies have fully cooled (1-2 hours in the fridge), you can frost them! Use coconut butter with just a bit of milk and cake decorating tool. Alternatively you could just slather these in coconut butter and sprinkles too! They are so good they don't need frosting, so if you are short on time, just skip this part!
What about you?
- Favorite holiday cookie?
- Do you decorate cookies or just slather frosting on them?
- Have you ever used coconut butter as frosting?