Some of you may remember that last year I picked my dad’s name for Secret Santa. At the suggestion of my Mom, I created a fun cookie of the month club for him and take him cookies every month. My mom thought I would just make him some simple chocolate chip cookies every month. Ha! She should have known better. Each month has been something different including his favorites and new recipes like the coconut caramel crunch cookies, which I’m pretty certain is a new favorite.
I was actually been struggling with what to make my dad this month. At first I thought about a play on chocolate chip cookies using Halloween candy and then I thought about something with pumpkin but apparently he doesn’t like pumpkin (this whole big family thing can make it hard to remember who likes what!). Then, the other night I made Ina Garten’s apple pie bars. Holy smokes! Those suckers are delicious! Sidney and I polished them off way too quickly. The bars are just a shortbread crust topped with apple pie filling finally topped with a bit more of the shortbread crust mixed with cinnamon and pecans. And that topping is what got the gears moving. My dad has always like Pecan Sandies and that’s exactly what the topping reminded me of.
I used the basic shortbread recipe to create the homemade version of the Pecan Sandies and the cookies do not disappoint. They’re buttery with tender insides and golden brown edges. The flavors are simple but not lacking and the dough comes together easily without a long ingredients list. In short, go make some! Here’s how…
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 cups all purpose flour, spooned and leveled
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Mix in vanilla.
- Add flour and salt to butter mixture and mix until just combined. Fold in pecans.
- Refrigerate dough for 30 minutes.
- Scoop onto parchment lined sheet pan. Press the cookies with the bottom of a floured glass until about 1/2 inch thick.
- Bake cookies for 8-10 minutes until edges begin to brown.
Notes: I used a small juice glass dipped in a little flour to press the cookies. Refrigerating the dough helps it not stick to the press and press out more evenly.
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