Cream Cheese Pecan Cookies

Buttery cookies with the tang of cream cheese and studded with chopped pecans. Cream cheese pecan cookies are easy to slice and bake for sharing.

A few Cream Cheese Pecan Cookies on a white plate

Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

How many baking days are there left before Christmas? If you are still looking for good cookies to bake for a holiday platter, I urge you to give these cream cheese pecan cookies a whirl.

The cookie recipe is a slight adaptation of an excellent walnut cookie by Martha Stewart, featured in her book, Cookies, a veritable cookie bible. The pecan cookie is like a tangy shortbread cookie, studded with toasted pecans. Eat 'em up yum!

Cream Cheese Pecan Cookies on a white plate

Simply Recipes / Elise Bauer

Cream Cheese Pecan Cookies

Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Freeze Time 4 hrs
Total Time 4 hrs 50 mins
Servings 54 servings
Yield 4 1/2 dozen cookies

You could easily use walnuts, pistachios, or cashews in place of the pecans.


  • 3 cups pecans

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt

  • 2 cups (4 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

  • 6 ounces cream cheese (not whipped), at room temperature

  • 1 1/4 cups sugar

  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract


  1. Toast the pecans:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F.

    Coarsely chop 1 1/2 cups of the pecans and spread them on a cookie sheet and bake for about 10 minutes or until the nuts are fragrant. Set aside to cool.

  2. Whisk together the dry ingredients:

    Add the flour and salt to a large bowl and whisk to combine.

  3. Make the cookie dough:

    Beat together the butter and cream cheese in an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.

    Add the sugar and vanilla and beat for another minute.

    Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the flour and salt until just combined. Do not over-mix. Fold in the toasted pecans.

  4. Shape into logs and freeze:

    Transfer the dough to a work surface and divide the dough in half. Roughly shape each half into a 8-inch log about 2 inches in diameter.

    Wrap each log in plastic wrap and place in the freezer until firm, about 4 hours, but overnight is best. The dough can sit in the freezer for up to 2 weeks and about a month if wrapped and then placed in an airtight container.

  5. Roll the logs of dough in pecans, cut into rounds:

    Preheat the oven to 350°F with racks in the upper and lower thirds. Finely chop the remaining 1 1/2 cups of pecans. Unwrap one of the logs of dough and roll in the pecans.

    Cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Space 1 inch apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper or silicone mats.

  6. Bake:

    Bake the cookies for 18 to 20 minutes, or until the edges are a lightl golden. Rotate the cookies halfway through to ensure even baking.

    Let cool on the sheets for a minute or two before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining cookie dough.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
164 Calories
12g Fat
13g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 54
Amount per serving
Calories 164
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 12g 16%
Saturated Fat 5g 26%
Cholesterol 21mg 7%
Sodium 70mg 3%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 11mg 1%
Iron 1mg 3%
Potassium 41mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.