Butter Pecan Cookies

Total Time

Prep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch


4 dozen

Updated: Aug. 18, 2023
When my daughter was a teen, these butter pecan cookies earned her blue ribbons from two county fairs. Then a few years ago, her own daughter took home a blue ribbon for the same cookie. Needless to say, these mouthwatering morsels are winners! —Martha Thefield, Cedartown, Georgia
Butter Pecan Cookies Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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  • 1-3/4 cups chopped pecans
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 cup butter, softened, divided
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, separated, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 cup pecan halves


  1. Preheat oven to 325°. Place chopped pecans and 1 tablespoon butter in a baking pan. Bake 5-7 minutes or until pecans are toasted and browned, stirring frequently. Set aside to cool.
  2. In a large bowl, cream brown sugar and remaining butter until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in egg yolk and vanilla. Gradually add flour and mix well. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour or until easy to handle.
  3. Preheat oven to 375°. Roll dough into 1-in. balls, then roll balls in toasted pecans, pressing nuts into dough. Place 2 in. apart on ungreased baking sheets. Beat egg white until foamy. Dip pecan halves into egg white, then gently press 1 into each ball.
  4. Bake at 375° until golden brown, 10-12 minutes. Cool for 2 minutes before removing to wire racks.

Butter Pecan Cookies Tips

Can you brown the butter when making butter pecan cookies?

Yes! To do so, heat butter in a large saucepan over medium heat until golden brown, about 7-9 minutes (do not let it burn). Pour the brown butter into a glass dish and allow it to cool in the refrigerator until solidified. Follow the rest of the recipe as directed. Here's more on how to brown butter.

What can you use instead of self-rising flour?

If you don't have self-rising flour on hand, you can easily make your own. As a substitute for each cup of self-rising flour, place 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a measuring cup. Add all-purpose flour to measure 1 cup.

Can you make butter pecan cookies ahead of time?

Yes, these butter pecan cookies freeze well. Store baked cookies in a freezer bag or a sealed container in the freezer for up to 6 months. To freeze the dough raw, form the dough into balls as directed and freeze in a single layer on parchment. Once they are solid enough, transfer the frozen dough balls into freezer bags or a sealed container and freeze for up to 3 months. When you are ready to use the dough, remove it from the freezer and thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Continue with the recipe as directed. Learn more about how to store cookies to keep them fresh.

What else can you add to butter pecan cookies?

Give these butter pecan cookies extra texture by rolling them in granulated sugar, and then rolling them in the pecans. If you love a sweet and salty dynamic, sprinkle the hot cookies with flaky sea salt right after they come out of the oven. For another brown butter cookie variation, try our Original Brown Butter Refrigerator Cookies.

Sarah Fischer, Taste of Home Associate Food Stylist

Nutrition Facts

1 cookie: 115 calories, 9g fat (3g saturated fat), 15mg cholesterol, 97mg sodium, 9g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 1g fiber), 1g protein.

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