Pecan Cream Cheese Cookies: Easy& Frosted

Easy Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies. A plate of festive Christmas cookies decorated with red and green sugar crystals and topped with pecan halves.

There’s something truly magical about the aroma of freshly baked Christmas cookies wafting through the house. It evokes memories of childhood joy and sets the stage for warm holiday gatherings. Among the many treasured cookie classics, Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies hold a special place. These melt-in-your-mouth delights are surprisingly easy to make, bursting with rich cream cheese flavor, and adorned with festive red and green sugar crystals that add a delightful pop of color.

Why You’ll Love These Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies

These cookies are more than just a pretty face (or should we say, a festive one!). Here’s what makes them a guaranteed crowd-pleaser:

  • Simple Ingredients, Delicious Results: No need for hard-to-find specialty ingredients. This recipe relies on pantry staples that come together beautifully.
  • Creamy Dream: The cream cheese base adds an undeniable richness and depth of flavor that elevates these cookies beyond the ordinary.
  • Festive Fun: The vibrant red and green sugar crystals transform these cookies into little edible ornaments, adding a touch of Christmas cheer to any plate.
  • Perfect for Sharing: The recipe yields plenty of cookies, making them ideal for gifting, cookie exchanges, or simply filling your own holiday cookie tins.

Ingredients You’ll Need

Gather these ingredients to whip up a batch of Christmas magic:

  • 1 cup softened butter
  • 1 (8 oz) package softened cream cheese
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (2.25 oz) container green sugar crystals
  • 1 (2.25 oz) container red sugar crystals
  • 1 cup pecan halves

Step-by-Step Instructions: Baking Up Holiday Cheer

Follow these easy steps to create these delightful Christmas cookies:

Creaming the Perfect Base:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and cream cheese until light and fluffy. This will take a few minutes of mixing with an electric mixer.
  2. Gradually add the granulated sugar, beating well after each addition until the mixture is smooth and light.

Shaping the Dough Logs:

  1. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract until fully incorporated.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined. Don’t overmix!
  3. Fold in the chopped pecans using a rubber spatula.

Adding a Touch of Christmas Color:

  1. Divide the dough in half. On a clean surface, roll each half into a long log, about 2 inches in diameter. Wrap each log in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or until firm.

  2. Preheat your oven to 325°F (163°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper.

  3. Prepare two separate shallow dishes: one with the red sugar crystals and one with the green sugar crystals.

  4. Unwrap one chilled dough log and roll it in the red sugar crystals, coating it evenly. Repeat with the remaining log and green sugar crystals.

Baking and Decorating for Perfection:

  1. Using a sharp knife, carefully cut each dough log into 1/4-inch thick slices. Pro Tip: To avoid color transfer between the red and green cookies, wash your knife and cutting board well after cutting each log.

  2. Place the sliced cookies on the prepared baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches of space between each cookie. Gently press a pecan half onto the center of each cookie.

  3. Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies are golden brown. Don’t overbake! Let the cookies cool completely on the baking sheet before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Pro Tips for Perfectly Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies

  • Room Temperature Ingredients: Ensure your butter and cream cheese are softened at room temperature. This will allow them to cream together smoothly, resulting in a lighter and more even dough texture.
  • Chilling is Key: Don’t skip the chilling step! It allows the dough to firm up, making it easier to handle and preventing the cookies from spreading too much while baking.
  • Slice with Confidence: A sharp knife is essential for clean, even slices.
  • Storage Savvy: Store your cooled cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. They also freeze well for up to 2 months.

Storing and Sharing Your Holiday Treats

These Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies are perfect for sharing the holiday spirit. Here’s how to store and gift them:

  • Room Temperature Storage: For short-term storage (up to 3 days), place the cooled cookies in an airtight container at room temperature.
  • Freezing for Later Enjoyment: If you’re planning ahead or want to enjoy these cookies throughout the holiday season, they freeze beautifully. Allow the cookies to cool completely, then arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Flash freeze them for 1-2 hours, then transfer them to an airtight freezer-safe container or zip-lock bag. Frozen cookies will keep for up to 2 months. Thaw them at room temperature before enjoying.

Presentation is Key:

These cookies are already festive with their vibrant red and green sugar crystals, but you can elevate them further for gifting or a special occasion. Here are some ideas:

  • Layer them in a decorative tin: Arrange the cookies in a decorative tin, separating layers with parchment paper to prevent sticking.
  • Wrap them individually: For a charming touch, wrap each cookie in cellophane or festive wax paper and tie them with a colorful ribbon.
  • Create a festive centerpiece: Arrange the cookies on a platter with other Christmas cookies, pinecones, and sprigs of rosemary for a beautiful and delicious centerpiece.
Print
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Easy Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies. A plate of festive Christmas cookies decorated with red and green sugar crystals and topped with pecan halves.

Pecan Cream Cheese Cookies


Description

Whip up festive cheer with these easy Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies! Rich, creamy dough gets a pop of color with red & green sugar crystals and a delightful pecan finish.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (2.25 oz) container green sugar crystals
  • 1 (2.25 oz) container red sugar crystals
  • 1 cup pecan halves

Instructions

  1. Cream together butter, cream cheese, and sugar. Add in egg and vanilla and stir well. Add 1 cup of flour to wet ingredients at a time, stirring each time. Then add salt and stir. Fold in chopped pecans.
  2. Divide batter in half. Roll into 4 logs each about 2″ across. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator to firm up for at least 2 hours.
  3. Preheat oven to 325˚F. Place red crystals on a plate or tray, and green sugar on a separate plate. Roll 2 logs in red sugar and remaining logs in green sugar. Using a very sharp knife cut each log into slices 1/4″ slices. If reusing same tray, knife, and other tools wash and dry them well between colors to avoid accidentally mixing the red and green.
  4. Place on lined baking sheet 2″ apart. Place a pecan half in the center of each cookie and bake for 15-18 minutes or until bottom of cookies begins to brown slightly. Do not overbake.

Frosted Pecan Cream Cheese Christmas Cookies are more than just a delicious treat; they’re a way to spread holiday cheer to your loved ones. With their simple ingredients, festive flair, and melt-in-your-mouth goodness, these cookies are sure to become a cherished tradition in your home. So, put on some Christmas music, preheat your oven, and get ready to bake up a batch of holiday magic!

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