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You’re going to love this pecan sugar cookie recipe. The brown sugar pairs with molasses, maple syrup, cinnamon, and more, for a deliciously rich flavor in every bite. Whether you’re looking for melt in your mouth cookies to make for the holidays or you just love sugar cookies and pecans, this recipe might just tick all your boxes. You won’t regret making these!

A plate of pecan cookies with icing and pecans.

Brown sugar pecan cookies are soft, sweet and gently spiced. This is an extra special cookie boasting toasted pecans, vanilla extract, dark brown sugar and more, for a rich and festive flavor.

Want to experiment with different nuts? This amaretto cream pie with almond crust with almond crust or easy chocolate pistachio eclairs might be just what you’re looking for. This easy monkey bread is also fun to make… and to eat!

A plate of pecan sugar cookies with icing and pecans on it.

Why You’ll Love Them

Delicious:  There are plenty of tasty sugar cookie recipes but they all have one thing in common, and that’s they are all delicious!
Festive: The warm spices in these sugar cookies make them perfect for the holidays, whether you plan to gift them, enjoy them or both!
Simple to make: You don’t need any special skills or special equipment to make these pecan sugar cookies. It’s basically just about mixing the ingredients together, cutting out the cookies, baking them, and then adding a glaze or frosting if you want to.

A hand reaching into a stack of pecan cookies.

Ingredients for Pecan Sugar Cookies

To make these wonderful cookies with toasted pecans, you are going to need butter, brown sugar, powdered sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, egg, flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and pecans.

A tempting display of pecan sugar cookies arranged on a table.

For more detailed instructions with weights and measurements, jump to the printable recipe card.

Start the cookie batter:  Mix the butter, both kinds of sugar and maple syrup, then add the vanilla and egg.
Add the dry ingredients: Whisk the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, and pecans together in a medium bowl, then combine this with the butter mixture.
Chill the dough: Gather the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic and chill for half an hour at least.
Cut out the cookies: Roll the dough out on a floured surface about 1/4-inch thick, then cut the cookie dough into cookie shapes with a cookie cutter.
Bake the cookies: Bake cookies on a baking sheet in a preheated oven until golden brown at the edges, then let them cool completely and glaze or frost if liked.

A stack of brown sugar cookies with pecans.

Substitutions and Variations

You might like to add a pinch of apple pie spice (here) or nutmeg to the dough, or use royal icing on top, brown butter icing or your favorite kind of frosting from the store. You don’t have to frost, glaze or top these unless you want to.

A stack of pecan sugar cookies with icing and pecans.

If you don’t have salted butter, use unsalted butter with a pinch of salt in your cookie dough instead.

Glazed pecan sugar cookies adorned with pecans.

How to Serve Pecan Brown Sugar Cookies

If these aren’t frosted, you can spread some strawberry jam on top before serving. If you’re serving a selection of cookies you might also like frosted cranberry cookies or baci di dama Italian cookies. You can pair these with your beverage of choice.

A plate of pecan sugar cookies with icing.

Oh, and if you’re a pecan fan, you might also be interested in using them in savory recipes. These roasted Brussels sprouts with pecans is a great side dish.

How to Store Sugar Cookies with Pecans

Store:  These will keep for about a week at room temperature in an airtight container.
Freeze:  Freeze them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet for a couple of hours, then transfer them into a freezer-safe Ziploc bag and enjoy within 3 months.

Glazed pecan sugar cookies on a cooling rack with icing.
How do you make a tasty glaze for these?

If you don’t want to use homemade or store-bought frosting, or leave these plain, you can mix a cup of powdered sugar with 2 tablespoons of milk or cream, adding a splash of vanilla extract too if you like.

Is the dough supposed to be very thick?

Yes it is, which is why you might like to use a dough whisk. Another idea is to work on the dough using your hands, like you would with bread dough, since sugar cookie dough is pretty thick and can be hard to work with.

Glazed pecan sugar cookies adorned with pecans.

Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies Recipe

5 from 48 votes

Pecan Sugar Cookies

By: Bella Bucchiotti
These brown sugar pecan sugar cookies are brown sugar cookies topped with frosting and pecans. They are perfect for Christmas baking!
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Cooling time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 42 minutes
Servings: 24 Cookies


  • 12 Tablespoons salted butter, stick, room temperature
  • ½ Cup light brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ Cup powdered sugar
  • ¼ Cup maple syrup
  • 1 Teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 2 ¼ Cups all purpose flour, unbleached
  • ½ Teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ Teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ Teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ Cups pecans, chopped


  • In a large mixing bowl, using a hand mixer, cream the butter, light brown sugar, powdered sugar, and maple syrup together.
  • Once the mixture is light and fluffy, add the vanilla extract, and the egg. Mix until incorporated. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, ground cinnamon, salt, and chopped pecans.
  • Add the dry mixture to the butter mixture. Mix well in between each addition.
  • The dough will be thick, I would suggest using a Danish dough whisk or a mixing spoon.
  • Once you have a dough ball, no more dry flour, wrap it in a plastic film, and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Put 1-2 tablespoons of flour on a working surface and roll the dough, ¼ inch thick.
  • *NOTE* If, like me, you have a hot kitchen, separate the dough in half and keep the other half in the refrigerator.
  • Using a cookie cutter, cut the dough and place it on a cookie sheet.
  • Place the cookies on the cookie sheet and bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. The edges will be set and slightly golden.
  • Cool in the pan for 1to 2 minutes and transfer to a cookie sheet to cool completely.
  • Repeat steps 8 to 11 until you have used all the dough.
  • Keep the cookies unglazed or once the cookies are cooled, you can glaze them.


Glaze recipe
  • 1 cup powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of milk (or cream).
  • You can add a vanilla extract.


Calories: 163kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 52mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 188IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg
Like this recipe? Rate and comment below!

Pecan brown sugar cookies offer all the wonderful flavor sugar cookies are known for along with a pecan hint. The texture falls somewhere between shortbread and a classic sugar cookie. They are easy to make and you can choose whether to frost or glaze them. Maybe you want to make a second batch of these delicious sugar cookies with toasted chopped pecans and give them as a gift. They also freeze well. Whether you choose to add these to your regular cookie rotation or make some as a festive treat, everyone is going to love the rich, sweet taste.

Other Recipes to Try

Bella Bucchiotti

Bella Bucchiotti is a Canadian-based syndicated food, travel, and lifestyle writer, photographer, and creator at xoxoBella. She founded xoxoBella in 2015, where she shares her love for food, dogs, sustainability, fitness, crafts, outdoor adventures, travel, and philanthropy to encourage others to run the extra mile, try new recipes, visit unfamiliar places, and stand for a cause. Bella creates stress-free and family-friendly recipes for weeknight dinners and festive feasts.


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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    The pecan and the sugar is such a wonderful combo. The best cookies I’ve made recently.

    1. Glaze recipe
      ● 1 cup powdered sugar and 2 tablespoons of milk (or cream).
      ● You can add a vanilla extract.