These crisp, buttery Pecan Sandies are loaded with pecan pieces and absolutely melt in your mouth! They’re so easy to make (no chilling necessary!) and the recipe can easily be doubled!
I feel like we’re having a Christmas (Eve?) in July moment right now.
Traditionally, I always expect at least a few Pecan Sandies on my cookie tray every December (and they’re definitely worthy a spot on my Best Christmas Cookies list!). But… but, we’re all adults here, right? We can make Pecan Sandies any time of the year that we like, and this summer they’ve been super popular in my kitchen.
They’re such an easy cookie to make with just a few ingredients, no chilling, and a brief baking period. If you’re going to bake cookies in the summertime, why not make it these??
Pecan Sandies have a delicate crispness at first bite (beneath that snowy powdered sugar coating) and a deliriously buttery, melt-in-your-mouth interior. They’re similar to my shortbread cookies, or even more similar to my snowball cookies, only disc-shaped rather than snowball shaped, and loaded with pecan chips rather than chocolate ones.
This recipe for Pecan Sandies varies a little bit from others you might have tried or tasted in the past.
Rather than sticking strictly to powdered sugar, we’re using a blend of powdered and just a touch of brown sugar. The brown sugar enriches the cookie, adds a subtle but oh-so-good depth of flavor, and just plain puts them over the top. I’ve also notched up the vanilla extract just a tad, and added cornstarch to keep those cookie centers insanely soft.
Tips for Making Pecan Sandies
- You can absolutely 100% chop your own pecans, but recently I’ve been lazy and have been buying pre-chopped “Pecan Chips”. Saves a few seconds of prep time!
- If you’re opting to chop your own pecans, you might want to go the extra mile and toast them, too. Toast your pecans before chopping them, spread pecan halves evenly over a baking sheet and cook on 350F for about 5 minutes or until you can smell the nuts roasting. Let them cool completely before chopping and adding to your cookie dough. Toasted pecans add even more flavor to pecan sandies!
- The sugar on top is optional. In the grand scheme of things, this recipe really doesn’t use that much sugar, so I didn’t think that these cookies would be sweet enough without a generous dusting of powdered sugar. However, my picky taste testers (AKA Zach and my siblings) liked the un-sugared cookies just as much as the sugared ones. Do your own taste-testing and decide which you like best!
Can You Freeze Pecan Sandies?
Yes! These pecan sandies can be frozen. My personal preference is to freeze the dough rather than the baked cookies (because who doesn’t love warm out of the oven cookies). Scoop, roll, and flatten the dough and then freeze in an airtight container. You may need to bake an additional minute or so if baking from frozen.
If you’d like to freeze the baked cookies, that will also work so long as you freeze in an airtight container. I don’t recommend adding the powdered sugar before freezing, though, wait until after thawing to do so.
More Recipes You Might Like:
- Butter Pecan Cookies (soft and chewy!)
- Thumbprint Cookies
- Or find more favorite cookie recipes!
Let’s bake together! Be sure to check out my video at the bottom of the recipe where I’ll show you exactly how I make these Pecan Sandies in my own kitchen! If you enjoy watching, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel where I’ve already uploaded over 150 recipe videos that you can watch for free!
- 1 cups unsalted butter softened¹ (226g)
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar (65g)
- 3 tablespoons light brown sugar firmly packed
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups all-purpose (plain) flour (250g)
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans or pecan chips (118g)
- Additional powdered sugar for dusting
- Preheat oven to 375F (190C) and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Place butter in a large bowl and use an electric mixer to beat until creamy.
- Add powdered sugar, brown sugar, cornstarch, vanilla extract, and salt and beat until creamy and well-combined.
- Gradually add flour and stir until combined.
- Stir in pecan pieces.
- Scoop dough by about 1 ½ Tablespoon portions and roll into a ball. Gently flatten and place on prepared baking sheet, spacing cookies about 1” apart.
- Transfer to 375F (190C) oven and bake for 12 minutes or until edges are just beginning to turn light golden brown.
- Allow to cool completely on baking sheet. If desired, toss in additional powdered sugar until cookies are completely coated with sugar (alternatively you can sift sugar over cookies).
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered an estimate only. Actual nutritional content will vary based upon brands used, measuring methods, cooking method, portion sizes, and more.
Apparently my goal this Christmas season is to bake as many of your recipes as possible 🙂
These cookies were so easy and absolutely delicious! Thank you for sharing.
These cookies Good with powdered sugar or without, however I tried putting cinnamon sugar on them and they are fantastic too.
After numerous success’ I have had my first disaster with these. I followed recipe and use a scale to measure dry ingredients. First of all they were impossible to scoop and roll between palms. So, i tried cooling them in fridge like many other recipes. It allowed me to roll them but after 8 minutes in oven they were very spread out and runny. I threw them out and am stumped. I left the butter out 21/2 hours, think it got runny/oily? edit//It was the butter! Tried again, and as usual delightfulness ensued. Thanks
O no! Sorry I didn’t see this earlier. I’m glad you figured it out. You definitely don’t want your butter to be too soft. 🙂
Outstanding. These are the best Pecan Sandies I have ever had.
I refrigerated the dough for about 30m.
The dough was quite dense after adding the pecans so I put on my plastic gloves and mixed it, worked great!
Again awesome cookies.
I’m so glad you enjoyed them so much, Cindy! 🙂
Cynthia Garity Kueck
These cookies are fabulous. Not overly sweet.
I’m so glad you enjoyed them, Cynthia! 🙂
Are these crispy? I’m looking for a homemade version of the Keebler Pecan Sandies.
Sugar Spun Run
Hi, Susan! These are a buttery, crispy cookie. I hope that you give the recipe a try. 🙂
Sam…These are terrific. I made a double batch and divided into plain, THEN I went crazy and kneaded in 1/4 cup baking cocoa (Kroger) powder. I had to wrap and refrigerate a few hrs to run errands.
RESULTS: O-M-G. Texture of both identical. I added 2 tsp cocoa powder to powdered sugar dusting on choc , plus also so we could tell choc from plain once sugar coated. Plain is rich & buttery traditional awesomeness and the chocolate is bold rich and smoothe (can i use that to describe it)
Sugar Spun Run
The addition of the cocoa powder sounds delicious, Mitch. I am so glad that you enjoyed the recipe. Thanks for commenting. 🙂
If I wanted to make a larger cookie (like 1.5 the amount of dough), how much longer would I need to bake it?
Hi Jules! Probably just another minute or two. Just keep an eye on them. 🙂
Your recipe is superb just made me a batch, loved them. Made with fresh Georgia pecans! I also made your key lime pie for the in laws coming in, they said it was the just best they ever had.
love all your recipes, thanks for all of them.
Thank you so much, Eric! I am so glad you enjoyed the cookies and the pie! 🙂
Is it powdered sugar sifted before measuring?
Hi Brenda! No need for sifting here. 🙂
Thank you, Kay!! So glad you liked them 🙂