These pumpkin spice carmelitas are so decadent and delicious, with a homemade pumpkin caramel, buttery cookie, and luscious chocolate!
Okay, I think this is my last pumpkin recipe of the season. Probably. Unless I see another recipe that I just have to make immediately and post on the blog. But I totally saved the best for last! These pumpkin spice carmelitas are absolutely amazing. I’ve made regular carmelitas lots of times before, and they are fantastic, but I think these ones are even better! They have so much delicious flavor and are so decadent.
The star ingredient of these carmelitas is the homemade pumpkin spice caramel, sandwiched between two layers of buttery and crisp oatmeal cookie, and loaded with chunks of chocolate. They’re almost like a cross between a cookie and a candy, and so rich that I can only eat a small square before I go into sugar overload, but they are so so good!
I get lots of comments on my original carmelita recipe about the cookies not setting up, but I really think it’s because people aren’t waiting long enough before they try to serve them. They have to cool all the way, probably for several hours, for the caramel to set and be ready to serve. When they come out of the oven, the caramel is pretty much just molten lava, and it really needs some time to cool.
If you’re hoping to make these for a party or event, I would definitely recommend planning ahead and starting them hours before you need them. They keep really well over several days, so it might be a safer bet to just make them the day before. I’ve made these cookies dozens of times, and never had a problem with them setting up, so I really think the key factors are baking them until the top is browned and crispy, and letting them cool all the way before serving.
This was actually my first time making carmelitas with homemade caramel, and I was surprised at how much of a difference it made. If you really don’t want to make your own, you could melt a bag of caramel bits with a few tablespoons of heavy cream, and then mix in a teaspoon or so of pumpkin pie spice to get a little of that pumpkin spice flavor. But it’s definitely worth the effort to make your own! These pumpkin spice carmelitas are the best!
Pumpkin Spice CarmelitasPrint Recipe
for the caramel:
- 1/2 cup salted butter cut into pieces
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 7 ounces sweetened condensed milk 1/2 can
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
for the cookies:
- 3/4 cup butter melted
- 3/4 cup brown sugar packed
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 6 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
- To make the caramel, melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, and salt, and stir using a rubber spatula. Add the sweetened condensed milk slowly, stirring well to incorporate. Stir in the pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice. Bring the mixture to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture reaches 235 degrees on a candy thermometer. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. Let the caramel cool while you make the cookie layer.
- Preheat the oven to 350. Line a 9 x 9 baking dish with parchment or foil, and spray with cooking spray. To make the cookies, in a medium bowl, combine the melted butter, brown sugar, flour, oats, and baking soda. Pat half of the oatmeal mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake 10 minutes, then remove from the oven and sprinkle with the chocolate chips. Pour the caramel over the top in an even layer. Sprinkle the remaining oatmeal mixture over the top. Bake 20-25 minutes, until the top is browned and crisp, and the caramel is bubbling. Allow the caramelitas to cool completely over several hours before slicing and serving.