A buttery shortbread, dotted throughout with aromatic, toasted pecans. these Chocolate Dipped Pecan Sandies are a classic Christmas cookie that are perfect for gift-giving and cookie exchanges.
I believe the secret to making the best pecan sandies ever lies within the toasting of the pecans.
Usually, when I toast pecans, I spread them on a baking sheet whole, then chop them after toasting for 5 to 7 minutes. One day, I absentmindedly chopped the pecans FIRST and THEN toasted them. The result was the most aromatic, crunchy, delicious pecans I have ever tasted. This is how I toast pecans for all of my cookies now!
They're delicious plain or dipped and drizzled in chocolate. I think it dresses them up a little for a Christmas plate to have them dipped,but you create your own version! Do what you love. Either way, these are the best cookies ever!
- Butter - use the best quality butter at room temperature, but cool and not overly softened.
- Powdered sugar
- Granulated sugar
- Vanilla extract - I like to use pure vanilla extract for the best flavor.
- Pecan - test for freshness before toating the pecans as they are a main ingredient and you want the tastiest, freshest pecans.
Step by Step Instructions
Chop pecans and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper. I like to chop the pecans half chunky and half finely chopped for variety in each bite. You can do whichever you prefer. Bake in 350°F oven for 5 to 6 minutes, opening the oven door once to stir them a little. Set aside to cool while you prepare the cookie dough.
In a large mixing bowl with electric mixer, or bowl from stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, on medium speed, mix together butter (cut in cubes), granulated sugar and powdered sugar. This should take about two minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl often, then add in vanilla and mix just until combined.
On low speed, stir in the flour mixing just until combined.
Stir in the pecans by hand then scrape down the sides of the bowl to ensure everything is mixed together.
Divide dough in half and on a piece of parchment paper, roll into a 7-inch log. You may need to press in the end to get the right size and re-roll it a little.
Repeat with second piece of dough. Wrap in plastic wrap or parchment paper and place both logs in the refrigerator to chill for at least 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.
Slice cookie dough logs into ½-inch thick slices. We like them a little on the thicker side. You could cut them a little thinner if you like. Place two inches apart and bake in 350°F oven for 12 minutes. If desired, press a pecan into the centre of some of the cookies.
Cool on cookie sheets for five minutes before transferring to cooling racks. Enjoy
In a small bowl, melt the chocolate chips with shortening in the microwave, 30 seconds at a time. Stir until almost completely melted, then stir again until completely melted.
Dip one side of cooled cookie into melted chocolate and place on parchment paper to set. Alternatively, you can drizzle the chocolate over top of each cookie. If desired, sprinkle a few chopped pecans on the melted chocolate.