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Brown sugar pecan cookies next to a coffee cup.

High Altitude Soft and Chewy Brown Sugar Pecan Cookies

Heather Smoke
An easy, high altitude recipe for soft and chewy brown sugar pecan cookies, coated in sparkling sugar and spiced with a little cardamom.

All recipes on Curly Girl Kitchen are developed for high altitude at 5,280 feet.

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Chill Time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 18 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings2 dozen cookies


  • Electric Mixer (Stand or Hand-Held)


  • 6 tbsp unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • ½ cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • ½ cup granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp Lyle's golden syrup (or substitute dark corn syrup)
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ tsp corn starch
  • ¾ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp coarse Kosher salt (if using table salt, use half the amount)
  • tsp ground cardamom
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, fluffed, spooned and leveled
  • ½ cup pecans, finely chopped


  • In a bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter, brown sugar, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, egg, golden syrup, vanilla, corn starch, baking soda, salt and cardamom for 2 minutes, until fluffy.
  • Add the flour and chopped pecans, and use a spatula to fold everything together to form a dough.
  • Use a small cookie scoop with a release lever to portion the dough into 24 portions. Roll the dough into balls, then coat in the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar. Flatten the dough balls slightly with the palm of your hand or the bottom of a glass.
  • Cover the flattened dough balls and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 F, and position a rack in the center of the oven. Line a baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper.
  • Place the chilled cookies 3 inches apart on the baking sheet, and bake for exactly 8 minutes. Cool the cookies for 2 minutes on the baking sheet, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
    Note: When the cookies are hot from the oven, they'll be slightly puffed, but the centers will settle down and flatten a bit as they cool.


Store the cookies in an airtight container for up to 3 days, or freeze for 3-6 months.
Keyword Brown Sugar Cookies, High Altitude Cookies, Pecan, Soft Sugar Cookies
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