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The best ever Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies. Homemade brown sugar cookies, made with browned butter, sweet maple, and a secret ingredient that really makes these cookies better than the rest. There are vanilla-toasted pecans, salted pretzels, and plenty of sweet chocolate chunks that melt in your mouth. There’s really nothing not to love! Perfect for holiday baking, gifting, and of course, snacking between meals.

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |

I’ve created more cookie recipes than I care to really sit down and count, but these are special. They’re definitely in my personal top 5 for most delicious, I just love these. They remind me so much of the holidays, but most importantly they’re just delicious!

Salty, sweet, swirled with the wonderful flavors of brown sugar and vanilla, and full of chocolate. Oh, and they’ve got lightly crisped edges and chewy centers.

These really might just be the perfect holiday cookie.

Let me back up a little here and explain. Every single November without fail, I share at least one new cookie recipe with the idea of snacking on the cookies throughout Thanksgiving Day.

My mom grew up enjoying what she called, Aunt Debbie’s Turkey Cookies, on Thanksgiving. She’d even get to enjoy a few before dinner. And from all the stories I’ve heard about these cookies, she really loved them!

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |

I’ve never been given that recipe, so instead, I made my own variation. I love butter pecans, chocolate, and vanilla paired together. So this year, my heart was set on a butter pecan cookie.

I wanted to make them special – really delicious to the point of calling them

So I added pretzels, and oh my goodness, that was the key.

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |


I start out by toasting the nuts with the pretzels. I love tossing them with maple, vanilla, cinnamon, and sea salt. They turn out so delicious. I then give the nuts and pretzels a nice chop.

While those are toasting, brown the butter. When the butter has browned, let it chill a bit before mixing up the dough. The rest goes really quickly.

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |

To make the cookies

Take the brown butter and beat it together with dark brown sugar, maple syrup, apple butter (that’s the secret ingredient you must trust me on), an egg, and some vanilla. Mix, mix, mix, then stir in the dry ingredients, flour, baking soda, and salt.

For the apple butter, I use my homemade maple apple butter. This is one of my favorite things to keep in the fridge. You can use my recipe or pick some up at Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, Thrive Market, or via Amazon. I will say that the homemade recipe works a little better for the cookies, but either is great! Just make sure your apple butter is spiced for best flavor.

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |

Mix in the pecans, the pretzels, and plenty of chocolate chunks. Then, to make the cookies really sparkle, roll the dough balls through coarse sugar.

Bake the cookies, and smell the wonderful scents as they bake. Trust me, after the first bite you’ll be making batch after batch. These cookies are delectable and just perfectly set on the edges. Soft and gooey in the center with just the right amount of chew and salty pretzel CRUNCH.

It’s not even December yet and I feel like these are the perfect holiday cookie. I’m getting so excited for this year’s cookie box!

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |

Looking for holiday cookie recipes? Here are a few ideas: 

Brown Sugar Maple Cookie Pie

Soft Pumpkin Sugar Cookies with Cinnamon Brown Butter Frosting

Chocolate Bourbon Chai Latte Cupcakes with Butter Pecan Frosting

Glazed Brown Sugar Maple Cookies

Pumpkin Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

Brown Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Lastly, if you make these Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
chill time 15 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings: 24 cookies
Calories Per Serving: 173 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.



  • 1. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss the pecans and pretzels with 2 tablespoons maple syrup, 2 teaspoons vanilla, cinnamon, and a pinch of salt. Bake 8-10 minutes, until toasted. Once cool, roughly chop.
    2. Add the butter to a small saucepan set over medium heat, cooking until the butter begins to brown, 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to a heatproof bowl. Stick in the freezer to chill, 10-15 minutes, but no longer.
    3. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
    4. In a bowl, beat together the browned butter, brown sugar, maple syrup, apple butter, egg, and vanilla until combined. Add the flour, baking soda, and salt. Fold in the chocolate chips, pecans, and half of the pretzels.
    5. Roll the dough into tablespoon size balls, then roll through the course sugar and place 3 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. Insert your desired amount of pretzels to each cookie.
    6. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and tap the baking sheet gently on the counter to flatten. Return to the oven and bake another 2-3 minutes or until the cookies are just beginning to set on the edges, but still doughy in the center. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet. They will continue to cook slightly as they sit. Eat warm (highly recommend), or let cool and store in an airtight container for up to 4 days. 


Apple Butter Replacement: use an equal amount of apple sauce or molasses. In a pinch, use additional maple. 
If you’re Cookie Dough is Dry: reduce the flour to 2 1/4 cups and add 1-2 tablespoons of additional maple syrup 
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Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies |

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  1. 1 star
    Unfortunately these turned out very thick and cakey instead of chewy. I even added less flour (2 cups) and increased the apple butter.

  2. 5 stars
    These cookies are phenomenal. I made them twice in two weeks, which I never do as I like to try new recipes each time. They came out more like shortbread the first time and more like the photo (chewy) the second time. I don’t even care; they were delicious and I just bought 4 cups of pecans to make them again and again. I used applesauce as directed.

  3. 4 stars
    Just another comment about the instructions. We are first told to toss [together] the pecans and pretzels and then roughly chop. But in Step 4 only half the pretzels are to be added to the dough. So we’re supposed to go through the chopped mixture and separate the pecans and pretzels? And then in Step 5 add the pretzels back in? Also, in the photo it looks like (unchopped) pretzel sticks are used, not pretzel twists…

    Anyway, baking is an art not a science and all bakers should be able to adapt as needed, but the misleading instructions are frustrating. 🙁

    Delicious cookies though!

  4. I got the recipe from my daughter ejo told me these cookies were fantastic. How ever they didn’t flatten out even with tapping .I added more syrup to help with this issue but no go! Flavorful for sure just didn’t flatten out to get chewy gooey texture.

    1. Hi Barbie,
      Thanks for giving this recipe a try and sharing your feedback! More syrup is not going to help flatten these:) Next time, I would just gently press the dough balls down with your palm before baking and then do the tapping during the baking process as well. I hope this helps! xx

    1. Hey Lauren,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you, thanks so much for giving it a try! Have a great weekend:)

  5. 3 stars
    This recipe is tough. You have to have some baking knowledge in order to execute it properly, as full complete technical instructions are neither in the long form description nor the recipe (for example, you should sift together the dry ingredients before adding them to the wet ingredients). And the substitutions are confusing. Apple butter (of unknown recipe) OR apple sauce OR molasses is such a range. I used apple sauce because I was in a rush and figured the substitution would be fine. It was not. . I imagine you have to actually use apple butter or molasses. I should have remembered that using apple sauce would require using less egg. Anyway so as you can guess, using apple sauce and one whole egg caused my cookies to turn out dry and cake-like. I had high hopes based on the photos, but it turned out nothing like them.

    1. Agreed. Tieghan is a prolific recipe poster but is a little fast and loose with instructions. The same caution applies to cooking, not just baking. If you’re a beginner there isn’t always enough information and/or if you follow recipes to the letter they won’t turn out well (e.g., very mushy vegetables). I’m still a fan but I’m more cautious now.

  6. I made the Chewy Brown Butter Pretzel Pecan Cookies and have a few questions. When you use the maple syrup and vanilla for the pecans and pretzels, do you then reduce that amount from the dough? I was a bit confused on how much to us in the batter. Also, my cookies came out more cake like then gooey. Not sure what I did wrong.

    Thank you,

    1. Hey Aimee,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try! You are going to use 2 tablespoons maple syrup and 2 teaspoons vanilla in step 1. Then in step 4 you will use 1/4 cup maple syrup and 1 teaspoon of vanilla. I would try tapping your baking sheet on the counter for a flatter cookie. I hope this helps! xx

      1. I really wish you would have clarified that in your instructions! These were a lot of work to not turn out correctly. Very frustrating

  7. 5 stars
    5 stars for taste and texture! This is a yummy cookie although mine weren’t very pretty they were delicious! I gave them out as gifts and people loved them.

    1. Hey Angela,
      Awesome!! I love to hear that this recipe turned out well for you and appreciate you giving it a try! xT

  8. Made these today and cut the flour to 2cups, after reading the previous comments. Also used applesauce instead of apple butter. They still did not flatten out, and were drier than I hoped for. 😕

    1. Hi Karen,
      Thanks for giving these cookies a try and sharing your feedback, sorry to hear that they were dry. Is it possible they were over-mixed? Let me know how I can help! xx

  9. Hi! I made these last night and am trying to figure out what I did wrong 🙂 instead of flattening out (I did follow the step to take them out of the oven!), they stayed in round balls…they were still delicious, but wondering what I’m missing??

    1. Hey Liz,
      Thanks so much for giving these cookies a try!! Was your dough super cold? That could prevent them from flattening. If not, you can press them down gently with your hand before baking. I hope this helps! xx

  10. 3 stars
    I made these for a holiday cookie swap and they did not turn out like the pictures at all. Followed all the directions and they still turned out super dry and crumbly, not chewy at all. 2 1/4 cups flour, 1 cup pecans, and 1 cup pretzels is a lot of dry goods for only 1 egg, 1/4 cup syrup, and 2 sticks browned butter.

    Additionally, the pretzels burn a lot quicker in the oven than the pecans, so I don’t recommend putting them in at the same time.

    1. Hi Annabelle,
      Thanks for giving this recipe a try and sharing your feedback, sorry to hear these were not enjoyed! Please let me know if there is anything else that I can help with! xT