Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

Published December 21, 2017. Updated October 21, 2018

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Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies are sure to satisfy those sweet tooth cravings! They are a decadent cookie brimming with buttery toasted pecans and topped with a luscious penuche or caramel-like frosting. I mean who could resist??

Pecan Cookies

Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

Are you cookied out yet because I’m definitely not :). This is my final cookie recipe for the holiday season – and my last of the year too. I can’t believe 2018 is almost here, this year went by fast and was filled with lots of tasty cookies and treats.

More Cookie Recipes I Shared This Month

In case you missed it this past month here’s other cookie recipes I’ve shared:

In other words too many to choose from so I thought I’d make it harder with one more :).

And now with the beginning of the new year I’ll be back to healthy dinner recipes (and some desserts as always), but this December with treats galore has been so delicious!

Pecan cookie icing in a medium stainless steel saucepan

Ingredients Needed for This Recipe

  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Unsalted butter
  • Brown sugar
  • Egg
  • Vanilla
  • Pecans
  • Half and half
  • Powdered sugar
  • Pecans

Scroll below for full printable recipe.

How to Make Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

  • Preheat oven and prepare baking sheets.
  • Whisk dry ingredients.
  • Blend butter and brown sugar then mix in egg and vanilla.
  • Blend dry ingredients into butter mixture.
  • Shape into balls and place on baking sheet.
  • Bake and cool.
  • Prepare icing in a saucepan by boiling brown sugar, half and half and butter.
  • Remove from heat then stir in powdered sugar then let cool slightly to thicken.
  • Spread icing over cookies and top with pecans.

Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

I’m pretty sure whomever it was who started the cookie sharing during the holiday season she/he and I would be best friends.

The gift of cookies is one of the best gifts ever. Made with love and sure to please – because we all love cookies!

I mean if my husband made me a batch of cookies and wrapped them up in a little red tin it would be better than him wrapping up a pair of diamond earrings in a 24 carat golden box with a dazzling bow. Okay really I’d maybe pick the earrings – but a batch of cookies would mean a lot coming from him because he doesn’t like to bake so I’d be perfectly grateful for either.

In his defense though he does do a great job with gifts. He may not make cookies but he’s a pro with remodeling.

What I’m trying to say here though is that effort big and small means a lot to people, a kind gesture goes a long way and that’s one thing I really love about this season.

So if you haven’t done your baking yet or weren’t planning on doing any at all it’s not too late.

A pile of pecan cookies on a blue plate with christmas lights shown around plate and milk in the background.

16 Quick & Easy 30 Minute Recipes! (plus weekly recipe updates)

Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies
5 from 1 vote

Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

A chewy cookie brimming with toasted pecans and covered with a caramel or penuche-like frosting. Such a delicious holiday cookie! 
Servings: 28 cookies
Prep30 minutes
Cook25 minutes
Ready in: 1 hour


Brown Sugar Icing

  • 3/4 cup (160g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp (90ml) half and half
  • 3 Tbsp (42g) unsalted butter, diced into 3 pieces
  • 1 1/2 cups (186g) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 28 pecan halves (toasted or untoasted) , for topping


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
  • In a medium mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking soda an salt for 20 seconds, set aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment cream together butter and brown sugar until well blended. 
  • Mix in egg and vanilla. Add in flour mixture and mix just until combined then mix in pecans.
  • Scoop dough out and shape into balls, about 1 1/2 Tbsp each (or using a medium cookie scoop). Drop onto prepared baking sheets spacing them 2-inches apart.
  • Bake in preheated oven until nearly set, tops should appear under-baked, about 9 minutes.
  • Cool on pan several minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Frost with brown sugar icing and add a pecan to each immediately after frosting each one before the frosting starts to set. Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.

For the brown sugar icing:

  • In a small saucepan bring brown sugar, half and half and butter to a boil stirring constantly. Continue to boil, whisking constantly, 3 minutes. 
  • Remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar. Let cool several minutes until it starts to thicken, stirring occasionally. Thin with 1 tsp hot water a time as needed.
  • Recipe source: adapted from Southern Living via The Recipe Rebel
Nutrition Facts
Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 225 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Cholesterol 28mg9%
Sodium 72mg3%
Potassium 58mg2%
Carbohydrates 28g9%
Sugar 19g21%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 260IU5%
Calcium 23mg2%
Iron 0.7mg4%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.


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  • Terry Stenson

    OMG!!! These cookies are the best I’ve had in a really long time! On Sunday, I always make the guys I work with some kind of desert. I was looking for something new when I came across these. I tried one cookie and almost fell permanently off the Keto bandwagon. I’m not kidding. I did add some maple extract to the second batch. If your a fan, you should check it out next time you make these. Wish I could give these a much greater rating than 5 stars!!

  • Bruce Deniger

    This seems really tasty, especially the brown sugar icing.I think i can use this to top on any cookies.

  • Leslie

    These look divine! Yum! I love the frosting on top and the pecans, they look so dressed up for any occasion.

  • Margaret

    What is half and half as mentioned in the icing please? Never came across this.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      It’s pretty much just a blend of 50% milk and 50% cream. So a combo of those two would work or just cream and maybe add a little extra.