If you didn’t know, pecan sandies are crisp shortbread cookies full of toasted pecans that melt in your mouth with the most satisfying crunch. It’s a very easy recipe with dough you can freeze months ahead for on demand cookies later!
What You’ll Need for This Recipe
Pecans: You can use pre-chopped pecans which tend to be a bit less expensive and save you a step as well.
Unsalted butter: If you’d like to use salted butter then eliminate the added salt.
How to Make Pecan Sandies
1. Cut your cold butter into small pieces and add them to the bowl of your mixer along with the salt and both sugars. Beat on medium speed until worked into a paste. Scrape the bowl down once before beating in the vanilla.
2. Add the flour and mix on low until almost combined then add the toasted pecans and mix on low until distributed. Finish the dough off by hand with a spatula, making sure to fold in any pockets of unmixed flour or butter.
3. Roll the dough into a log then wrap in plastic or parchment paper and chill for at least an hour. You can roll two thin logs for smaller cookies or one larger log if desired.
4. Preheat oven to 350F then cut the dough into coins anywhere from 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick, thinner cookies will bake faster and be more crisp. Place cookies 2 inches apart on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake for about 12 minutes. Allow to cool on the baking sheet.
Pro Tips for this Recipe
- Measure your flour correctly! Adding too much flour to the recipe is the most common mistake. The best, and easiest way to measure flour is by using a scale. If you don’t have one then fluff your flour with a spoon, sprinkle it into your measuring cup, and use a knife to level it off.
- Save your paper towel cores! An easy way to get nice round cookies is to cut a cardboard roll down the middle lengthwise and place your cookie dough log inside while it chills.
- From my recipe development I have to say parchment paper works better than silicone mats for lining the baking sheet when baking this particular cookie.
- If your cookies get a little droopy in the oven then use a round cookie cutter to corral them back into shape with small circular motions just after coming out of the oven.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why are they called Pecan Sandies?
They’re called sandies because of their crumbly shortbread texture and of course because they are full of pecans.
Can I make them with all powdered sugar?
You can definitely use one full cup of powdered sugar to make these cookies and omit the granulated sugar if desired
What flavors can I add?
Any of your favorite spices will go well in this cookie. Try, cinnamon, allspice, cardamom, or cloves. You can also sub the vanilla out for bourbon or rum for an extra kick.
How long do they keep for?
Your sandies will last for a week if kept in an airtight container. You can freeze the dough or baked cookies for up to 3 months.
If you’ve tried this Pecan Sandies recipe then don’t forget to leave a rating and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you!
- Baking Sheet
- Parchment paper
- 1 cup butter unsalted, cold, 226g
- 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar 70g, plus more for dusting
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar 100g
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract 5mL
- 2 cups all-purpose flour plus 3 tbsp, 267g
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 tbsp water optional
- Chop pecans and place on a baking sheet. Then bake at 350F for about 6 minutes or until fragrant. Move them around after 3 minutes to ensure an even toasting. Set aside to cool.
- Cut the cool butter into small pieces and transfer to your stand mixer then add the salt, powdered and granulated sugar. Mix on medium speed until creamed into a paste, scraping the bowl down as needed.
- Mix in the vanilla then add the flour and beat on low until almost combined then add the nuts and mix on low until incorporated. Use your spatula to scrape the bowl down and finish mixing any stray bits of flour and butter. If your dough looks very crumby you can drizzle in a tablespoon of water at this point to help it come together.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a log. Depending on the cookie size you want you can roll two narrow logs or one larger log. Wrap in parchment paper or plastic and chill for at least an hour.
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper then slice coins between 1/2 and 1/4 inch thick. Place on coins on baking sheet about two inches apart and bake for 12 minutes or until slightly golden on the edge, rotating pan halfway through bake. Allow to cool completely on baking sheet then enjoy!