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Gluten-Free Pumpkin Honey Spice Cookies

Today’s post and recipe for gluten-free pumpkin honey spice cookies is courtesy of the National Honey Board.  I did add some recommendations to make these cookies dairy-free and egg-free, as well as a couple flavor variations because my husband is not a big fan of nuts and dried fruit in his cookies. The version with the dairy-free cream cheese frosting was his favorite – so be sure to check that out at the end. 😀

photo credit: The National Honey Board

Tis the season for eating — and especially baking! But getting through the holidays gluten-free can be tough. Most traditional holiday recipes often contain gluten.  However, you can still enjoy delicious holiday treats with a little planning and the help of one versatile pantry item — honey.

All-natural honey not only adds moisture to gluten-free recipes, it also masks “off” or bitter flavors often found in whole grains and gluten-free flours. This ideal ingredient is not just a simple sweetener — with more than 300 varietals in the United States, honey adds its own special flavor to any recipe.  In general, lighter colored honeys are milder in flavor, while darker honeys are more robust.  And besides giving a touch of sweetness to every bite, honey also adds an appealing golden color to baked goods for an eye-catching, mouth-watering treat.

It can be challenging to incorporate gluten-free substitutes for popular ingredients and still get the taste and texture of counterparts containing gluten.  Honey can be the perfect addition to gluten-free recipes, especially baked goods like cookies.

Enjoy the taste of the holidays with these Gluten-free Pumpkin Honey Spice Cookies developed by the National Honey Board.  They’re sure to be a hit with both adults and kids — and they’re perfect to bring to cookie exchanges or office and home celebrations during the holidays.

I used home-grown honey that I received from Shirley over at Gluten-Free Easily (above).  Hands down the most flavorful honey I’ve ever had, it was distinctly different from the local honey here in New Mexico, much more floral (I think, these taste buds of mine are still in a coma).  I was combing through Shirley’s website, looking for a post about her honey and I was right, clover and tulip poplar blossoms.  I sure hope Shirley was right about the antiseptic qualities of honey because my boys couldn’t keep their grubby little boy hands out of the bottle, LOL!  Read more about honeymaking over at GFE!


printable recipe

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes


2 cups Gluten-Free Flour Blend* (I used Better Batter)

1 Tbs. Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 tsp. Baking Powder

1 tsp. Baking Soda

1/2 tsp. Guar Gum (omit if using a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend that contains either xanthan or guar gum)

1/2 tsp. Salt

3/4 cup Honey

1/2 cup Butter, softened (or your favorite dairy-free alternative)

1 cup Pumpkin Purée

1 large Egg (for egg-free: try 1/4 cup applesauce + 1/2 tsp. baking powder)

1 cup chopped Pecans

2/3 cup Dried Cranberries


1). Heat oven to 350°F.

2). Grease or line with parchment paper 3 cookie sheets.

3). In a bowl, whisk together dry ingredients.

4). On a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer, cream together honey and butter. Beat in pumpkin and egg (mixture will look curdled, but will smooth out when dry ingredients are added). On low speed, mix in dry ingredients until blended; mix in pecans and cranberries.

5). Drop tablespoons of dough onto prepared cookie sheets, leaving 1 inch between them.

6) Bake 15 minutes or until firm to the touch. Cool on pan 5 minutes; with spatula, transfer to wire rack and cool completely.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

*Use a store-bought blend or make your own blend by combining equal parts white rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch or cornstarch.

Nutrition Information Per Serving (1 cookie): 109 calories; 5 g fat; 13 mg cholesterol; 84 mg sodium;  16 g carbohydrate;  1 g fiber; 1 g protein

For more information about honey and for more honey recipes, visit

Heidi’s Variations:

Pumpkin Honey Spice Cookies with Dairy-Free Cream Cheese Frosting: omit pecans and dried cranberries, top with dairy-free cream cheese frosting.

Pumpkin Honey Spice Cookies with Chocolate Chips: omit pecans and dried cranberries, add 1 2/3 cups chocolate chips (or do half chocolate chips and half pecans).

Pumpkin Honey Spice Cookies with Dairy-Free Cream Cheese Frosting (above)

Pumpkin Honey Spice Cookies with Chocolate Chips (above)


  1. Heidi,

    These look & sound amazing! I love pumpkin cookies!! I can't wait to try this version as opposed to the recipe I had been using. Nice to change things up.


  2. Gorgeous cookies, Heidi! So happy you are all enjoying that honey, but especially that you put it together with pumpkin (my other fave) and made these cookies. Those ones with the cream cheese are stunning. Just pinned them. 🙂 Thanks for all the LOVE, too. You are too good to me. 😉 Oh, and love the National Honey Board!



  3. These so take me back to my youth! I love pumpkin cookies. I must try for the fall 🙂

  4. I love pumpkin cookies-I like the cranberry twist to it, gonna try this one this weekend!

  5. These look really good! My son can't have gluten (among many other things) Visit me at for recipes!

  6. Yum! These are almost like my Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cookies, just with honey. Hopefully next year we will be able to harvest some of our own honey – so pray for snow/rain = flowers=honey! And that cream cheese variation sounds delightful too.

  7. Mmmm…chocolate chips! Now they are the perfect cookie!

  8. Karla Richards says

    Heidi these look so delicious i need to try this recipe, thanks for posting this, i love your blog

  9. Nancy Olson says

    Very creative
    I love this.
    Thanks for sharing.



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