Autumn Surprise Pumpkin Cookies

This recipe makes enough cookies to share with friends for a fun autumn surprise.

1 boxed spice cake mix

1 small can (15 ounces/425 g) pureed pumpkin (not pumpkin-pie filling)

1 bag (12 ounces/340 g) semisweet chocolate chips, regular- or mini-sized

small paper sacks

crayons, markers, or stickers

ribbon or string

  1. 1.

    Wash your hands.

  2. 2.

    Preheat the oven to 325˚F (163˚C).

  3. 3.

    Pour the cake mix into a large mixing bowl. Add the pumpkin, and mix until the two ingredients are combined.

  4. 4.

    Stir in the chocolate chips.

  5. 5.

    Use a teaspoon to scoop a spoonful of batter. Use your finger to drop the batter onto a cookie sheet.

  6. 6.

    Bake the cookies for 20 minutes.

  7. 7.

    While the cookies are cooking and cooling, decorate some small paper sacks. You could draw and color autumn leaves or use stickers to decorate them. Then put some cookies in each sack and fold down the top of the sack. Punch two holes at the top. Thread ribbon or string through the holes and tie a bow. Now take the sacks to some neighbors for an autumn surprise.

Pumpkin Trivia

  • Antarctica is the only one of the seven continents where pumpkins do not grow.

  • Pumpkins are a kind of squash. Most parts of the pumpkin are edible—the seeds, meat, leaves, and flowers.

  • In China, pumpkin leaves are used in soups. In Thailand, custard is cooked inside small pumpkins and served as a dessert.

  • In 1997, the largest pumpkin in the world weighed in at 1,689 pounds. That’s one big squash!

Illustration by Becca Scholes