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Pecan Pinwheel Cookies

These cookies started with a basic Butter Cookie Dough that could create a variety of cookies.

  • 1-3/4 sticks of unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1-1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons soft butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  1. In large bowl, beat butter, sugar, salt and vanilla until smooth but not fluffy.
  2. Beat in egg.
  3. Add flour and mix until incorporated, using hands if needed.
  4. Chill dough for one hour.
  5. On floured parchment, roll half the dough into a rough rectangle about 10 x 8 inches.
  6. Repeat with remaining half of dough.
  7. Slide rectangles on parchment to baking sheet.
  8. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
  9. Meanwhile mix 3 tablespoons soft butter, 12 cup chopped pecans, and 1/2 tsp. cinnamon in small bowl.
  10. Spread half of this mixture over one of the rectangles of refrigerated dough and distribute well. 
  11. With long side facing you, use parchment paper to help you roll into log.
  12. Repeat for the second rectangle adding the rest of the filling.
  13. Chill until firm.
  14. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  15. Cut logs into 1/4 inch slices.
  16. Place on parchment-lined baking sheets.
  17. Bake until lightly browned, 12-17 minutes.
  18. Let cool on wire racks.
Makes 5-6 dozen cookies.

You can freeze one of the logs for future use if you don't need this many cookies at once. Just wrap them in parchment and put the log into a freezer safe zip loc bag until ready to bake.


  1. Oh my those look good and so elegant! This recipe is going into my cookie file for sure. Yum.

  2. I''ve offered to make cookies for a bake sale next week and I was looking for something special - I think that I've now found my recipe! (Though I will have to modify them to make them nut-free... maybe cinnamon bun cookies?!)

  3. Can you explain why use unsalted butter and then add salt? Can I use salted butter and omit the 1/4 tsp salt.?
    Just curious...

    1. Julia, you can go ahead and try that. Many recipes call for unsalted butter because they want you to be able to control the salt amount yourself. Many people have salt issues because of high blood pressure, etc.


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