Brown Sugar Pecan Christmas Tree Cookies

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Do you want a festive addition to your holiday cookie tray? These Brown Sugar Pecan Christmas Tree Cookies are not only fun but delicious.

One brown sugar pecan Christmas tree cookie on a white plate with sprinkles in a bowl.

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When I received my sprinkles from Sprinkle Pop for this event I was immediately in love. I wanted to really make something fun and I think these cute brown sugar pecan Christmas trees nail it.

Brown sugar pecan Christmas tree cookies partially assembled on a cooling rack.

While I made this delicious brown sugar pecan cookie, which is delicious by itself, you could substitute this shortbread cookie. It’s an easy cutout cookie so you would just need two different sized round cookie cutters.

One brown sugar pecan Christmas tree cookie on a white plate.

To make the buttercream swirl I used Adams Extract food coloring. The set from their line that is free from artificial dyes. They are made with spices and vegetable juices. A couple of things to note about them.

First, they do not alter the flavor of the buttercream in any way. You may think they would, given the spices and juices but they do not. That’s a good thing in the event you wanted to add a flavor, such as peppermint, to the icing.

Second, and again because they are made with natural colorings, the colors will not be as vibrant. I used about a quarter of the bottle to achieve the pale green color in the photo. I’m happy with it because it shows off the sprinkles from Sprinkle Pop well. Lastly, these food colors need to be refrigerated once opened.

These cookies are fun, rich, and delicious. They would be adorable on a dessert buffet. Decorated, they will keep a day or two before the buttercream begins to soften the brown sugar pecan cookie.

Another option would be to make the cookies and decorate a day or two later for your party or event. The cookies by themselves would keep, covered, for 3 – 4 days longer.

Brown Sugar Pecan Christmas Tree Cookies make a fun dessert for anyone! #ChristmasCookiesWeek

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Brown Sugar Pecan Christmas Tree Cookies

5 from 5 votes
Course: cookies, Dessert
Servings: 8 trees

Ingredients

Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

  • 1/2 cup Crisco
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, I used Adams Extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped pecans

Buttercream

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, I used Adams Extracts
  • Drops of Green food coloring to desired color
  • Sprinkle Pop Sprinkles

Instructions

Cookies:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with a Silpat.
    Beat shortening, butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla in medium bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until creamy. 
    In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking soda and salt. Gradually add flour mixture to creamed mixture, carefully so as not to make a mess, beating at low speed until blended, then increasing speed as ingredients are incorporated. Don’t over mix, though. Stir in pecans until distributed.
    Using 2 different size cookie scoops, that are graduated in size, scoop half of dough, using one size, onto one prepared baking sheet. Using other size cookie scoop do the same with the remaining dough, making sure you have equal numbers of larger and smaller cookies. These will be stacked to make the trees. I used the small and medium scoops.
    Bake 12 to 14 minutes depending on size, until golden brown around the the edges. Cool on baking sheet 3 – 4 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
    Once cool, make buttercream and pipe using tip 1M a circle of buttercream on the larger cookie. Decorate with fancy Sprinkle Pop sprinkles. Top with smaller cookie and pipe buttercream in a circle. Decorate with sprinkles. Let buttercream set for about an hour before storing trees in covered containers.

Buttercream

  • Beat softened butter on medium speed with a stand mixer. Beat for 3 minutes until smooth, creamy and lighter in color. Add powdered sugar, cream, and vanilla extract. Mix on low to incorporate then increase to high speed and beat for 3 minutes until light and airy. Note: If the frosting is too thick, add a little more cream. Just add one tablespoon at a time, then mix thoroughly until you get the consistency you like.

Brown Sugar Pecan Christmas Tree Cookies

Sweet and festive, brown sugar pecan Christmas tree cookies are a dessert in themselves.
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time12 minutes
Assembly Time10 minutes
Total Time37 minutes
Course: Ellen’s Christmas Cookie Extravaganza
Cuisine: American

Ingredients

  • ½ cup Crisco
  • ½ cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1 ¼ cups firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract I used Adams Extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • cup finely chopped pecans

BUTTERCREAM

  • 2 sticks of unsalted butter softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract I used Adams Extracts
  • Drops of Green food coloring to the desired color
  • Sprinkles

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two rimmed baking sheets with a Silpat.
  • Beat shortening, butter, brown sugar, egg, and vanilla in a medium bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until creamy. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add flour mixture to creamed mixture, carefully so as not to make a mess, beating at low speed until blended, then increasing speed as ingredients are incorporated. Don’t over mix. Stir in pecans until distributed.
  • Using 2 different size cookie scoops, that are graduated in size, scoop half of the dough, using one size, onto one prepared baking sheet. Using other size cookie scoops do the same with the remaining dough, making sure you have equal numbers of larger and smaller cookies. These will be stacked to make the trees. I used small and medium scoops.
  • Bake 12 to 14 minutes depending on size, until golden brown around the edges. Cool on baking sheet 3 – 4 minutes then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  • Once cool, make buttercream and pipe using tip 1M a circle of buttercream on the larger cookie. Decorate with fancy Sprinkle Pop sprinkles. Top with smaller cookie and pipe buttercream in a circle. Decorate with sprinkles. Let buttercream set for about an hour before storing trees in covered containers.

Make the Buttercream:

  • Beat softened butter on medium speed with a stand mixer. Beat for 3 minutes until smooth, creamy and lighter in color.
  • Add powdered sugar, cream, and vanilla extract. Mix on low to incorporate then increase to high speed and beat for 3 minutes until light and airy.
  • Note: If the frosting is too thick, add a little more cream. Just add one tablespoon at a time, then mix thoroughly until you get the consistency you like.

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