I am waiting patiently for the cooler weather and the allergy season to be over. Still have some wonderful pecans left in my refrigerator that I want to use; I grabbed them for this recipe.
I freeze my bags of pecans, which stay good for one year. However, they only stay fresh for a couple of months after you take them out of the freezer. So, I decided to put a twist on Butter Pecan Cookies; I thought of fall and maple syrup.
Table of contents
About My Ingredients
I have been using Escuminac Maple Syrup for quite a while and enjoy the taste they give my cookies. You can also purchase it from Amazon Escuminac Extra Rare. You do not have to buy this maple syrup to enjoy these cookies, but I recommend using a brand syrup that has been graded from the Best Maple Syrup Brands of 2022: Completed List as Grade A | Golden Color and Delicate Taste.
I had on hand some grocery store-bought half pecans. So I roasted them in the oven to create a full-flavored pecan for these cookies. There are many types of pecans, but the most common is the Stuart pecans. It is a fantastic all-around pecan and works great in all kinds of baked items. So if you are buying packaged nuts, it is a Stuart pecan.
There are just so many brands of vanilla. Some people buy vanilla bean pods in bulk and make their own. I am not that disciplined. So I have to rely on taste tests of different brands to pick what I like. This month I am using Nielsen-Massey Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract because I thought it would go well with the pecans. But honestly, if you are happy with the vanilla extract you are using, use it. I try and show the brands I use to get the results I obtain.
The century-old war is whether to use salted or unsalted butter for your cookies. LOL! Here is what I use and why I use it. My brand of choice is Land O Lake Unsalted Butter, simple because I have found it to be consistent in flavor, weight, and ingredients for all my baking needs. I want to know the brand and amount of salt that is going into my cookies.
Speaking of salt, I use Diamond Crystal Salt, which is Kosher salt. Here is an article from bon appetit on What is Kosher Salt. This article will explain the differences between kosher salt and table salt.
The takeaway from the salt debate is if you have a recipe that uses unsalted butter and kosher salt, you may need to adjust the salt amount you add based on the butter used.
Do I Really Need a Kitchen Scale
Kitchen scales have come a long way and are not that expensive. Scales have many features, but I use the grams weight and the Tare button 99% of the time. For bakers, these two functions are a must. On average, you can find scales priced anywhere from $10.00 to $100.00.
I will say I am not a fan of the total battery-operated scales that do not also have an AC adapter option. The reason is that if you are in the middle of weighing out ingredients and the batteries fail, you have to find batteries for a replacement to continue.
Another disadvantage of total battery-operated scales is that if the batteries start to get low, the weight may become inaccurate. Low batteries are the leading cause of scale malfunction.
I use the My Weigh KD-8000 with AC adapter, which I purchased on Amazon in 2018. This workhorse of a scale is still going strong, and I have never had any issues with it. The best part is the price has changed very little over the past four years.
The Today show did a segment on kitchen scales on January 2022 that lists different options for scales. The prices are based on the time of the article, but I don't think they have changed that much.
How to Make Maple Butter Pecan Cookies
You ask if you have to roast the pecans the quick answer is yes. Although the pecans are good, roasting them brings out a deeper nutty flavor. This way of roasting nuts is quick and easy, so give it a try.
Roasting the Pecans
Heat the over to 350°F (175°C or 180°C). I use a small quarter-size cookie sheet pan to roast my nuts.
Take the pecan and spread them out in a single layer on your pan. Bake for 4-6 minutes. If you open the oven, you should smell nuts. Pull them out and add them to a cutting board.
It only takes a few minutes until they are not hot anymore. Then, taking about a quarter of the pecans at a time, roughly chop them. I like relatively big pieces in this cookie. Pecans are soft and easy to chew, so having bigger pieces will not make your cookies hard and crunchy.
Once the pecans are roughly chopped, time to move on to prepping the other ingredients.
Prep and Mix Butter Pecan Cookies
Using a scale or measuring, add the sugars to a bowl and set it aside. In another bowl, weigh or measure the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon, whisking to blend.
You can use a stand or hand-held mixer for this next part.
Add the butter and sugars to your mixer bowl and mix on medium speed for 3 minutes. Next, add the vanilla extract and maple syrup and blend. Now, add one egg at a time and incorporate it into the cookie dough.
Scrape down the sides, turn the mixer back on at a low speed, and gradually add the flour mixture. Take the bowl off the stand and add the pecans to the cookie dough.
I use a spatula to mix the pecans into the dough since pecans are a softer nut, and I don't want the mixer attachment to break them into small pieces. Using a spatula also allows me to make sure all the flour is incorporated without over-mixing the flour.
Chill Scoop and Bake Cookies
Cover the mixer bowl loosely and chill for 30 minutes.
Prepare two cookie sheet pans by lining them with parchment sheets.
Using a medium cookie scooper, add twelve scoops to a pan. I keep mine about 2" inches apart.
Bake at 350°F (175°C or 180°C) for 11-13 minutes. After baking, move the cookies to a wire rack to finish cooling.
The maple syrup gives these cookies a great taste, and I hope you enjoy them!
Store in an air-tight container. They will keep for 5-7 days. I buy the containers at the grocery store from the makers of Rubbermaid and Glad. I use both!
Other Pecan Cookies
Maple Butter Pecan CookiesBarbara Hall
- 1 cup (227 g) Butter unsalted room temperature
- ½ cup (110 g) Light brown sugar
- ½ cup (100 g) Sugar white
- 2 Tablespoon (2 Tablespoon) Pure maple syrup
- 2 (2) Eggs
- ½ teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) Vanilla Extract
- 3 cups (375 g) All-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon (2 teaspoon) Baking powder
- ½ teaspoon (0.5 teaspoon) Kosher Salt
- 1 teaspoon (1 teaspoon) Ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ cup (148.5 g) Pecan halves roasted
- Turn the oven on to 350°F (175°C or 180°C). Add the pecan halves to a small flat baking sheet pan and bake for 4 -6 minutes. Place them on a cutting board right out of the oven. I do a rough chop, so they are pretty large pieces. You can use pecan pieces, but I like my pecans chunky. Set them aside. Measure your light brown and white sugars into a bowl and set that aside. I then weigh or measure the flour, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder into a bowl and whisk to blend.
- In a stand or hand-held mixer, add the butter and sugars blending on medium speed until it is light in color. The butter and sugar should look thoroughly mixed. Next, I turn the mixer off and scrape the sides and across the bottom. Add the maple syrup and vanilla extract to the butter-sugar mixture mixing on a medium-low mixer speed. You can do this whichever way you want, but I always break one egg into a small bowl and then add it to the cookie dough. It never fails that when I crack an egg on the side of the mixer bowl, some eggshell always ends up in the dough. So add one egg and mix, then add the second egg and incorporate.
- Turn the mixer off and scrape down the sides and across the bottom. Turn the mixer to a low speed and gradually add the flour mixture. Take the bowl off the mixer stand, add the pecans and fold them into the cookie dough. Cover loosely and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Line 2 cookie sheet pans with parchment paper and using a medium cookie scoop, place 12 scoops of cookie dough onto a pan about 2 inches apart. Bake for 11 - 13 minutes. Transfer to a cooling rack once they come out of the oven. Enjoy!
I am not a certified Dietitian or Nutritionist. The nutrition amounts given below are provided through a program and are only a guideline.