Chai Pumpkin Spice Thumbprint Cookies

When I came across a recipe on Pinterest for cookies with chai in the name, I was immediately intrigued. I pinned it and thought, “I’ll make those, but leave the orange colored kisses off.” Then I realized the kisses were the pumpkin spice part and heard they were fairly tasty, so I had to give them a fair chance. I searched high and low for the pumpkin spice kisses, and I finally found them buried in a corner of the Halloween candy section at Target. Victory! They are available for a very limited time during the fall.

I made these recently for a party and the most common reactions to them were, “These taste like fall!” and “I hope you don’t mind I ate three of them…” Everyone gobbled the cookies up quickly. Here’s the recipe as I made it:

Chai Pumpkin Spice Thumbprints

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup chai concentrate
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 and 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chai spice mix
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cardamom
    • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1/4 teaspoon cloves
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ~24 pumpkin spice Hershey’s Kisses
  1. Combine the butter and sugar in the bowl of your stand mixer and cream at medium speed until fluffy, or with a hand mixer, for about 2-3 minutes. Add the egg, chai concentrate,  and the vanilla, mix until combined. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt, scraping down the sides of the mixing bowl as necessary. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  3. Using your hands, roll the dough into 1-inch round balls. Place the dough balls on parchment paper lined baking sheets and sprinkle chai spice mix lightly over cookies.
  4. Bake the cookies for 12-15 minutes. Meanwhile, unwrap kisses.
  5. Remove the cookies from the oven and immediately place pumpkin kisses in the center of each cookie. Cool completely. (Do not attempt to handle or eat one until completely cooled unless you’re like me and need to taste test one warm. See above photo for demo.)

These cookies are airy and spongy, not dense in the least. Their lightweight texture is delicate, so the kiss acts as an anchor in the middle of each one.

If you’re looking for a fun Thanksgiving dessert recipe, here’s your answer. They have all the beloved flavors of pumpkin pie, but some additional spunk from the chai spices.  These make a great dessert to bring to a party, especially because the pumpkin spice kisses are new to so many.

About Nina

Nina lives in Buffalo, NY. An adventurous home cook, she loves to eat, cook, bake & enjoy life. She writes/blogs about food, tweets adventures & other passions.

10. November 2012 by Nina
Categories: Desserts, Holiday Dishes, Recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 comments

4 Responses

  1. Rachel says:

    Just found these pumpkin spice kisses at Tops on Elmwood (near Hertel) in Buffalo- can’t wait to try this recipe, thanks!

  2. Caitlin says:

    I’m so devastated! I was all set to make these as a thanksgiving dessert (we aren’t big on pies in my family) and I have looked EVERYWHERE for these Hershey’s kisses and can’t find them. Any substitute ideas? Obviously it won’t taste like pumpkin pie, I was just hoping for something that would work because I already bought everything else for the recipe.

    • Nina says:

      I’m so sorry to hear that! Did you try the Target closest to you? That’s where I finally found mine. You could skip the kiss altogether (chai spice cookies!) or try a toasted walnut or pecan in the center if you don’t have any nut allergies to worry about.