Delicious and buttery butterscotch pecan cookies loaded generously with large chopped pecan nuts and butterscotch chips for the perfect butterscotch pecan cookies.
I made these butterscotch cookies during the last school holidays. They were made quite impromptu. I had no plans of baking the cookies during the holiday. My plan was more on the doughnuts and banana cake, but these cookies came as a special request from my second boy.
He did not specifically ask for butterscotch pecan cookies. What he asked for was my M&M cookies. He knew I do not quite approve M&Ms all the time because of the coloring so he said it would be nice if I could make similar cookies like the M&Ms cookies but may be replace the M&Ms with something else that I would more readily approve like chocolate chips or nuts. He also said that he particularly liked the taste of the cookies and wished that I could make something like that.
And so that was how these butterscotch pecan cookies came about. I used the same dough recipe as the M&M cookies but replaced the M&M candies with butterscotch chips and chopped pecans. And if you are wondering how I settled on butterscotch and pecan, that was simply because I had these ingredients in my fridge waiting for their turn to be used up. I purchased them during one of my shopping trips to the bakery supplies store a couple of months back and when I purchased them, it was not for any specific recipe, I picked them up because they looked so tempting. I do this all the time and at the time I baked these cookies I still had a bag of blue poppy seeds and dried cranberries that were also purchased on impulse, waiting for my next baking adventure.
This was my first try at this recipe, and because the dough has been tried before with my M&Ms cookies, I was pretty confident that the cookies would be perfect. And true enough, they were a hit at home.
This recipe yields rich, buttery and crunchy cookies and I made them into flat round cookies with their diameter just slightly larger than Oreo cookies. The recipe below yielded about 35 cookies.
I used plain flour for the recipe and added baking powder as the leavening agent. It was not too much so the baked cookies were only slightly puffed from their original size. That was good for this cookies because the way I shaped them, I really wanted the shape to hold after baking (more on how I shaped the cookies below).
For the sugar, I used soft brown sugar, and it was only half the measurement of the flour. I did not want to add anything more to the cookies as the butterscotch chips were also sweet and did not want the cookies to be overly sweet.
Butter was also slightly lesser compared to the flour which is pretty normal for cookies as we do not want the cookie dough to be too soft to be shaped. I used salted butter just like in all my other recipes that use butter, but if you prefer to use unsalted butter, you may want to increase the amount of salt in the recipe slightly more.
While the rest of the cookie dough ingredients in this recipe as the same as my M&Ms cookies recipe, I doubled the amount of butterscotch chips and pecan nuts in the recipe as compared to the amount of M&Ms I used in the original recipe. This was purely a guessing game, and I was not sure how the cookie dough would handle the double volume of the extra ingredients, but it was a relieve to see the cookies come out so proportionately well, both in terms of taste and composition. The pecan nuts I had were whole unroasted ones, so I chopped them into large chunks (into halves and thirds) and oven roasted them for a few minutes. I let them cool down before adding them to the cookie dough.
Shaping the cookies
The texture of this cookie dough is soft but not sticky. It is a little too soft to be rolled and cut with cookie cutters, but was definitely perfect to be shaped by hand.
Having said that, I did not want to shape the cookies into boring round shapes, so I decided that I would shape them with a round cutter. Here is how I shaped them:
And then I placed the scooped dough into my round cutter and pressed it down with my thumb. In doing that, I made sure I flattened the dough as level as I could.
And then I carefully pushed the dough out onto prepared baking trays (lined with parchment).
I placed the cookies slightly apart on the baking trays lined with parchment to give allowance for any increase in size during baking.
And this was how the cookies looked like after baking. All perfectly rounded sides.
And that was pretty much how I made my butterscotch pecan cookies. Here is the full recipe: