Fall is in the air! Well, actually, it still feels decidedly like summer here in southern California, and I’m beginning to get quite jealous of the autumn everyone else in the country is experiencing! Cooler weather or not, our family is ready for some fall food so we are just going to go for it!
Each year when fall rolls around, we make pumpkin “rocks” (AKA pumpkin chocolate chip cookies) for all of our neighbors. My kids absolutely love walking around up and down the street with a wagon full of cookies to deliver to each house. This year I decided to get my kids in on the cooking as well as the delivering.
Making pumpkin rocks with the kids was really fun and easy. And eating the cookies with them was even easier. It was almost too hard to give these yummy cookies away!
Choosing the Recipe: Pumpkin Rocks
As I mentioned, making these cookies for the neighbors has become a tradition for us. The recipe is one I got from a friend many moons ago, and it’s a hit every time we use it.
Rankings: Pumpkin Rocks Are a Winner!
All three kids love these cookies, as do all the neighbors! The cookie is light, fluffy, and cakey, and sprinkled throughout are mini chocolate chips. What’s not to love!? As for cooking with the kids, as with most straightforward baking recipes, this cookie recipe is great. Everyone had tasks they were able to complete and I incorporated a few learning moments as well!
Steps Where Kids Can Get Involved:
- Measuring and dumping ingredients in the bowl. Kids of all ages love this task!
- Turning on the mixer. The girls helped with turning on the stand mixer for each step, and I was able to explain why we start slow and then speed up (so ingredients don’t fly all over the kitchen). My 6-year-old really understood the concept and felt very empowered with her newfound knowledge!
- Helping with the math for doubling the recipe. I have a first- and fourth-grader, so I got their brains going and had them help me double the recipe. They loved figuring out how much of each ingredient we needed; it was a great game that definitely challenged their math skills.
- Learning how to measure flour. For this recipe I taught the kids how to properly measure flour, by spooning flour into the measuring cup and then sweeping the top of the cup with the back of a knife.
- Delivering cookies to the neighbors. This was my kids’ favorite part of making these cookies: counting how many bags and cookies we needed (a lot), packing them up, and then taking them door-to-door!
This is a beloved recipe in our family so I knew the kids would like it. But, I must admit, I’m surprised each year how much all three kids love these cookies!
I think it’s time to share this fantastic recipe! Happy fall!
Pumpkin “Rocks” (AKA Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies)
From Jane Maynard (as modified from a recipe I got from a friend years ago)
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1 stick butter (4 ounces), softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (light or dark will work)
- 2 eggs
- 1 15-ounce can pumpkin
- 1 package mini chocolate chips (you can use regular-sized chips, but minis work better with this cookie
- Preheat oven to 375º F.
- Whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger in a mixing bowl and set aside.
- Cream together butter and both sugars at medium speed until light in color, about 5 minutes. Add eggs. Mix at medium speed for about 2 minutes, scraping down the bowl before and after mixing. Add pumpkin and mix until fully incorporated.
- Add dry ingredients and mix until just combined, then add mini chocolate chips and mix until evenly mixed in.
- Bake for ~18 mins.
Makes around 40 cookies if using a 2-tablespoon scoop.
Tip: The dough is quite wet so I highly recommend using a scoop for making the cookie dough balls to bake.