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Pecan Sandies

Pecan Sandies

Serves: Makes 7 dozen

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Candied Pecans
1/4 cup egg whites
1 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 cups pecans

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup chopped candied pecans (above)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons vanilla


To make the candied pecans: Heat the oven to 325 degrees.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites until frothy. Whisk in the sugar, salt and pepper until well-combined. Fold in the pecans to coat evenly in the egg white mixture. Spread the coated pecans in an even layer on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake for exactly 8 minutes, stir the pecans, and then return to the oven. Continue to bake, stirring every 5 minutes, until the pecans are dry and there are no shiny spots left on the baking sheet, 10 to 15 minutes total. Let cool completely. 

Measure out and chop 1/2 cup of the pecans to use in the cookies. Save the remainder for another use.

To make the cookies: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or using a hand-held electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. On low speed, gradually beat in the flour, 1/2 cup at a time. Mix in the candied pecans and the vanilla.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured counter and shape into two 1 1/2-inch-thick logs. Wrap with parchment paper and chill until firm, about 1 hour.

When ready to bake, return the oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Slice the dough into rounds about 1/4 inch thick and place on the prepared baking sheets about 1 inch apart. Bake until the tops are slightly browned, about 20 minutes. Let cool on the baking sheets for 5 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough.


About the recipe

A staple of childhood Christmas cookie tins, the original sandie is a melt-in-your-mouth shortbread cookie dotted with pecan pieces. You will have extra candied pecans, but — trust us — you'll be glad you do.