Pepita Spice Cookies

pepita spice cookies
Photo: Johnny Miller
8 dozen

Hulled green pumpkin seeds add a delicate flavor and texture to these almond-shaped cookies.


  • ¾ cup hulled green pumpkin seeds (pepitas)

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting

  • ¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon

  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger

  • ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

  • teaspoon ground allspice

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface


  1. Heat a heavy skillet, such as cast iron, over medium-low. Add pepitas, and shake skillet gently to move seeds around so they toast evenly and do not burn. Toast seeds until they are aromatic and barely take on color. Allow them to cool slightly. Pulse seeds in a food processor just until finely chopped.

  2. Beat butter and confectioners' sugar with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, salt, and chopped pepitas, and beat until well combined. Reduce speed to low, and gradually mix in flour, scraping down side of bowl as necessary. Divide dough into 2 disks, and wrap in plastic. Chill 90 minutes or up to 1 day.

  3. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. On a lightly floured work surface, roll 1 disk of dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet, and chill 1 hour. Repeat with remaining disk. Using a 2-inch almond-shaped cookie cutter, cut out shapes. Reroll scraps of dough, and cut more shapes. Transfer shapes to parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing 2 inches apart, and chill 15 minutes.

  4. Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until golden brown around edges, 20 to 22 minutes. Let cookies cool completely on a wire rack. Dust lightly with confectioners' sugar. Cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1 week. Dust again with confectioners sugar before serving, if desired.

Cook's Notes

Pepitas are green pumpkin seeds that have been hulled, or stripped of their white outer shells. Increasingly available in supermarkets, they are also found in health food stores and Mexican markets.

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