Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip Cookies: Two Ways
I’ve decided that I want to experiment more in my baking, creating different combinations of flours and comparing the results. I’ve done lots of reading about the different gluten-free flours that are available and found Gluten Free Girl’s ‘Guide to Gluten-Free Flours’ to be very helpful. I had already accumulated a variety of flours in my fridge but I bought some more recently to add to my pantry.
My pumpkin craze/flour experimentation in the kitchen started last Sunday. I wanted to try to make a gluten-free version of Sara Foster’s Pumpkin White Chocolate Chunk Cookies. Just reading the name of the cookie made me want to eat them!
I decided to cut Sara Foster’s recipe in half and make it twice, using two different flour combinations. The other major change that I made to the Foster’s recipe was substituting chocolate chips for the butterscotch chips she uses. (Nestle’s butterscotch chips have barley in them and I couldn’t find any other brands that I was sure were GF.) I felt like the chocolate chips worked really well! Each batch made about 2 dozen cookies. Feel free to double the recipe below if you want to make more. (If you do double the recipe, I recommend that you still only use one egg.)
I didn’t have any real rhyme or reason behind the flours that I used, but I did use potato starch and xanthan gum in each combination.
Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip Cookies:
- 1 cup GF baking flour mix (I’ve listed my flour combos below)
- ¼ teaspoon xanthan gum (if you’re a gluten eater, and using one cup of regular flour, you don’t need the xanthan gum)
- ½ teaspoon of baking soda
- ½ cup chocolate chips
- 6 Tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1/3 cup canned pumpkin or fresh mashed pumpkin
- ½ cup GF rolled oats (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
- ¾ cup white chocolate chips
Batch #1 GF Flour Mix:
- ¼ cup tapioca flour
- ¼ cup white rice flour
- ¼ cup teff flour
- ¼ cup potato starch
Batch #2 GF Flour Mix:
- ¼ cup almond flour
- ¼ cup brown rice flour
- ¼ cup potato starch
- ¼ cup garbanzo bean flour
(Note: I didn’t use a flour sifter for any of these, but I also didn’t pack it tightly in the measuring cup.)
Preheat oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or grease lightly. Mix flour, baking soda and xanthan gum in a bowl.
In a separate large bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together for 2 to 3 minutes, scraping down the bowl as needed, until fluffy. Add the egg and pumpkin puree and stir to combine.
Add the flour mixture to the pumpkin mixture and stir to combine. Add the oats, white chocolate chips and chocolate chips. (You can also add ½ cup of walnuts, but I omitted this part in my recipe.) Stir until the ingredients are combined and there is no visible flour.
Refrigerate mixture for at least 10 minutes or overnight. Drop balls of cookie dough onto baking sheet and bake for 13-15 minutes on a center rack of the oven, until they start to darken a little at the edges. Rotate the cookie sheets halfway for even baking. Let cool on cookie sheets for 10-15 minutes before putting them on a plate or wire rack.
So what were the results of my test kitchen? (Can you tell I’ve been reading a lot of Cooks Illustrated lately?)
Batch #1 (tapioca, white rice, teff):
Batch #2: (almond, brown rice, garbanzo)
Well, you can see from the pictures that the two batches came out different colors and different consistencies. My taste tester (David) preferred Batch #2 (almond, brown rice, garbanzo) when the cookies were fresh out of the oven, but as we went through the week, he and I both preferred Batch #1 (tapioca, white rice, teff). In the photos below, Batch #1 is on the right below (the darker one.)
Batch #1 held together better over time and didn’t fall apart when I brought them to friends to try. The good news is that they were both tasty cookies, but they tasted entirely different. So the flour combo you use does make a difference in baking, but I don’t think there’s a ‘right’ answer. I’m going to continue experimenting and I’ll let you know what I find. I do think it’s good to keep some potato starch in the combination and it’s smart to not use all of one flour, but that’s just me. Let me know what baking flour combinations you like to use.