35 Cookie Recipes That Are Perfect For Fall
Think of fall's best flavors: cinnamon, maple, nutmeg, maple, cranberry, chai, and more. Now, think of those flavors on display in a batch of warm, chewy cookies. This collection of fall-friendly cookies evokes the same coziness you'd pair with a cup of coffee on a chilly day. Our Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Coffee Glaze, for example, are basically the edible form of everyone's favorite seasonal latte, while our Chai-Spiced Snickerdoodles offer an irresistible, seasonal take on a classic cookie. Enjoy everything you love about fall, in cookie form, with these fall cookie recipes.
Copycat Dulce De Leche Milano Cookies
For a cookie that’s sure to impress, look no further than our homemade take on Milano Cookies with a buttery-sweet dulce de leche filling. We tested using Nestle brand canned dulce de leche, but you can also make you own if you have a can of sweetened condensed milk in the pantry. For other favorite fillings, try our DIY take on classic Milanos as well as our Copycat Mint Chocolate Milano Cookies.
Hello Dolly Bars
Pumpkin Chai Snickerdoodles
Perfectly crispy on the outside, while light and fluffy on the inside, these festive, fall treats are your new favorite cookie. Rolled in a chai-spiced sugar mixture, these cookies are basically all of your favorite latte flavors mixed up into one perfect cookie. Best served after a dunk in coffee, if we do say so ourselves.
Cranberry Cookies With Orange Glaze
Oh, so festive! These cakey cranberry cookies are a perfect Christmastime snack, dessert, or even breakfast.
Marbled Sugar Cookies
Beautiful Marbled Sugar Cookies will make a festive addition to your fall table.
Almond Joy Cookies
Maple-Walnut Spice Cookies
Store these frosted cookies between layers of parchment paper or wax paper to keep them from sticking together. You can bake and freeze the cookies up to a month in advance; bring the cookies to room temperature before frosting them.
Almond-Currant Linzer Cookies
We like the more updated look of off-center cutouts, but you can go more traditional by keeping the cutouts centered.
Spiced Pecan Pie Bars
Two pantry staples—ground cinnamon and ginger—give the traditional pecan pie filling an unexpected and flavorful twist. For an impressive dessert, serve each bar on a plate with a scoop of ice cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce. Or just enjoy them right out of the pan!
Chocolate Crème-Filled Sandwich Cookies
Use this recipe to make your favorite chocolate sandwich cookies at home.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Acorns
Creating these chocolate "nuts" couldn't be easier; it's a great assembly-line project for kids (though we can't promise they won't sneak a little chocolate!).
Pumpkin Pie Cutout Cookies
Bake the cookies up to five days ahead, and store in an airtight container. To make our wind cookies and leaf cookies, we used round cutters and swirly piping to represent the wind, and various sizes of leaf-shaped cutters for fluttering foliage. For more on decorating cookies, visit southernliving.com/cookietips.
Cashew Butter Cookies
This deeply satisfying, gluten-free take on the classic peanut butter cookie is amazingly toasty and nutty. Swapping rice flour in for all-purpose helps these cookies achieve a delightful textural balance between chewy and sandy.
Chocolate Peanut Butter-Fudge Bars
Your favorite candy can also be your favorite bar. These Chocolate Peanut Butter-Fudge Bars are perfect for bake sales, Valentine's Day, and a regular Tuesday night. Allow enough time for the top layer of melted chocolate to firm up before slicing these triple-decker bars. Leftovers can be covered and stored in the refrigerator up to three days, perfect for drop-in guests or last-minute dinner parties.
Olive Oil Chocolate Chip Cookies
You’ve probably heard of olive oil cake, and if you’ve ever tasted one, you know how much rich character olive oil can bring to a dessert. And that’s certainly the case for these anything-but-average chocolate chip cookies. With their crispy edges and perfectly gooey center, they’re downright dreamy. Fruity olive oil subtly shines, complementing the melt-in-your mouth chocolaty factor in this distinctly delicious twist on the cookie jar classic. Although it’s tempting to go straight from the bowl to the oven, it’s important that the cookie dough is thoroughly chilled before baking. Not only will this step make scooping the cookies easier, but refrigeration solidifies the oil, which keeps the cookies from spreading too fast and becoming too thin. Being that olive oil is the star ingredient in this chocolate chip cookie recipe, be sure to use a good quality oil.
Pumpkin Spice Cookies with Coffee Glaze
Full of warming fall flavors, these easy Pumpkin Spice Cookies are just about the perfect after-dinner treat to pair with a cup of coffee. After all, they’re basically everyone’s favorite seasonal latte delivered in cookie form. If you plan to share these pumpkin spice cookies at any sort of fall potluck and nut allergies are a concern, you can certainly leave the ground pecans out of the batter—simply replace them with 1/3 cup more all-purpose flour.
If you’d rather skip the booze in the coffee glaze, try replacing it with 2-3 tablespoons of cold coffee. Or you can opt for a different glaze altogether; the maple glaze used here or this toasty tahini glaze would both work great for these pumpkin cookies.
Hungry for more? Check out our 25 Best Pumpkin Spice Recipes next.
Garbage Disposal Cookies
Affectionately named, these thick, loaded peanut butter cookies are kind of like kitchen sink cookies, only better. Why? Because they’re packed with Oreo cookies, Reese’s cups, and white chocolate, obviously. These are the cookies you make after a garbage day (or week), because you’ll feel exponentially better off after biting into a warm one fresh from the oven. Pro-tip: Sharing your batch of Garbage Disposal Cookies with a neighbor or friend is guaranteed to make you feel even better.
Orange Sugar Cookies With Orange-Cream Cheese Frosting
Orange zest lends a delicate floral, citrus flavor to this delightfully crisp and light shortbread cookies. Finished with a vibrant orange and cream cheese frosting, they’re the perfect treat to deliver a taste of sunshine on a chilly winter day.
Sesame-Almond Lace Cookies
This cookie has a lot going on in the best possible way. The melt-in-your-mouth, toffee-like cookie is accented by creamy chocolate and pops of salinity from sea salt. If you prefer dark chocolate over semisweet, melt and drizzle that instead. You can also use chopped pistachios, walnuts, or peanuts instead of almonds. These cookies will spread out as you bake, so keep them small—other ways they’ll be too thin.
Cappuccino Swirl Bars
Snickerdoodles are already a classic cookie, but add chai and they become irresistible. Cinnamon, cardamom, and a touch of black pepper intermingle beautifully to create a warm, buttery cookie that tastes like the beloved winter drink. Try dipping them in coffee or tea, or leaving them out with some milk for Santa.
Pumpkin-Orange Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
If you're a fan of pumpkin desserts, look no further than these festive cookies. Fresh-squeezed orange juice and orange zest give these naturally colored pumpkin cookies a bright and crisp edge to compliment the deep fall flavors found in pumpkin, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The milled flaxseed in this recipe provides a binder in place of using eggs and also provides some healthy omega-3's. These cookies are gluten-free, egg-free, dairy-free, and can easily be made vegan by using vegan chocolate chips, and just as well can also be made nut-free by subbing the almond milk for water or regular milk.
Junk Food Cookie Bars
The next time you're at the end of an exceptionally rough week, we'd definitely recommend whipping up a batch of these kitchen sink cookie bars. The perfect decadent balance of salty and sweet, these chewy treats are here to satisfy all junk food cravings. We loaded them up with peanut butter, chocolate chips, pretzels, Oreos, potato chips, and M&M’s, but feel free to experiment with swapping in some of your favorite snacks and flavors.
Pie-Crust Leaf Cookies
These delicate little cookies crumble easily over fruit as part of our Deconstructed Pie recipe, but they're nice on their own, too. You'll need leaf-shaped cookie cutters (we used a 3-in. size).
This recipe goes with: Deconstructed Pie
Look for five-spice powder on the spice aisle or with the Asian foods in your grocery store. We love the sparkle of sanding sugar used to coat the outside of the cookies; you’ll find it in craft stores. Supermarket turbinado works well, too.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies with Brown Butter
Brown butter takes these rich, seasonal pumpkin chocolate chip cookies to the next level, adding a nutty, fragrant flavor that is absolutely perfect for fall. Canned pumpkin puree lends moisture to these fluffy, cake-like treats while warm chocolate chips fill every bite. Make these for a Halloween party or a fall dinner party, and be sure to store any leftovers in an airtight container.
Sheet Pan Oatmeal Toffee-Orange Cream Bars
These toasty-sweet, sheet pan sandwich cookies are fantastic for potlucks or tailgates—heck, whip a batch up on the weekend and enjoy for after-school snacks or dessert throughout the week. Toffee bits and cinnamon kick up the flavor of a traditional oatmeal cookie, while adding fresh orange zest to the filling adds a special touch or bright flavor to these tasty bars. Be sure the cookie is completely cool (out of the pan) before cutting it, or it will crumble. And to ensure a smooth cut, you’ll want to chill the filled cookie really well before slicing into bars.
Molasses Crinkle Cookies
These soft, chewy, beautifully spiced gingerbread cookies look like they just took a romp in fresh snow—a holiday look that saves you the trouble of having to ice each one. A dual coat of granulated and powdered sugar will help the slightly sticky dough balls hold their shape and get that crinkled texture. Make sure to give the cookies room to spread on the baking sheet and to let them cool at least 5 minutes before removing from the pans
Butternut-Nut Butter Bars
If zucchini and pumpkin can make a name for themselves in the dessert realm—why not butternut squash? These gluten-free cookie bars pack an impressive level of toasty, fall flavor into every bite thanks to a combination of nutty brown butter, roasted butternut squash, nut butter, and a downright addictive creamy cashew butter-cream cheese icing (seriously, you’re gonna wanna spread this on everything—make a double batch) that’s elevated with a crunchy topper of toasted pepitas and cashews. We opt for rice flour over all-purpose because this gluten-free alternative can better absorb moisture from the squash to yield a delightfully tender—not wet or overtly cakey—texture. While roasting fresh squash contributes a depth of caramelized flavor you really don’t want to miss out on, you can find canned butternut squash in some supermarkets and online if you need a speedier swap; in fact, you could even use canned pumpkin in place of the pureed squash. In short, these brown butter butternut blondies will give every bit of convincing you may need need to believe that golden, sweet butternut squash deserves a spot on the holiday dessert table as much as any pumpkin-based treat.
Butter-Pecan Shortbread Cookies
These buttery, salty-sweet slice-and-bake cookies will delight the butter-pecan lover in your life. For extra crunch, evenly coat both dough logs with turbinado sugar before slicing them into rounds. The dough can be made up to two days in advance if stored in the refrigerator.
Tiny Cardamom Orange Cookies
Hints of cardamom, orange, sesame, and pistachio provide a final Eastern Mediterranean flourish to the picnic. They're so small, you can eat them by the handful.
Picnic tip: Pack cookies in an airtight, crushproof container.
Chocolate-Peanut Butter Bugle Bars
Creamy, crunchy, rich, salty, and sweet all at the same time—these no-bake, chocolate-peanut butter bars are everything. Crisp crushed Bugles (one of our staffs’ junk food favorites) make for an fun and amazingly delicious twist on a typical crumb crust. They lend the perfect hit of salty, crispy, buttery goodness in the base of this cookie bar, and topping the assembled bars with a another handful of the the whole chips is a playful touch that lets folks know what’s in store when they bite into this salty-sweet situation. These decadent cookie bars were a huge hit in the test kitchen, and recipe developer Ivy Odom notes that they would be “perfect for tailgates, school parties, or for eating in front of the TV, with wine and the rest of the bag of Bugles, after a long day at work.”
Oak Leaf Cookies
A cookie cutter and some food coloring are all it takes to turn sugar cookie dough into oak leaves. Wear disposable gloves if you like to keep the food coloring from staining your hands.
THICK Chocolate Chip Cookies
The key to making big, thick bakery-style chocolate chip cookies isn’t in secret ingredients or tricky techniques—it’s actually just a matter of shifting the ratios of your ingredients a bit. These dense, thick, decadent cookies have less sugar and more baking powder than your standard chocolate chip cookies, which helps inhibit the cookies’ spreading during baking. While we think that preparing this recipe as six gigantic cookies is sort of an essential part of the experience, you could make twelve smaller cookies if you prefer; you will simply need to adjust your bake times accordingly. For more helpful cookie baking tips, check out our guide to making the perfect batch.
Autumn Maple Cutout Cookies
These adorable cutout cookies are flavored with maple syrup and classic fall spices like cinnamon and nutmeg. Walnuts provide a delicious crunch.