With big flavor, crisp edges, and mega chewy centers, these maple brown sugar cookies are a definite favorite. Top with maple icing for the ultimate fall cookie! Chilling the cookie dough is imperative, so set aside 2 hours or prepare the cookie dough the day before.
- 2 and 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup packed dark brown sugar*
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup Lincoln County Reserve 100% Pure Maple Syrup*
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon maple extract*
- 1 cup chopped pecans*
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup Lincoln County Reserve 100% Pure Maple Syrup
- 1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar*
- Pinch salt, to taste
- Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and brown sugar together on medium speed until smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Add the egg and beat on high until combined, about 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the maple syrup, vanilla extract, and maple extract, then beat on high speed until combined.
- Pour the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, then mix on low until combined. Add the pecans, then beat on low speed until combined. Dough will be creamy and soft.
- Cover and chill the dough for 2 hours in the refrigerator (and up to 3-4 days). If chilling for longer than a few hours, though, allow to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before rolling and baking because the dough will be quite hard.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
- Roll cookie dough into balls, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie. Bake each batch for 12-13 minutes until lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft.
- Remove from the oven. If your warm cookies look puffy, lightly bang the pan on the counter when you remove it from the oven. That will help slightly deflate the cookies, creating lovely cracks as you see in the pictured cookies. Cool cookies on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Make the icing: In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the butter and maple syrup together, whisking occasionally. Once the butter has melted, remove from heat and whisk in the sifted confectioners’ sugar. Taste. Add a pinch of salt, if desired. Drizzle over cooled cookies. Icing will set after about 1 hour.
- Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.
- Make Ahead Instructions: You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue with step 5. Baked cookies, with or without icing, freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well for up to 3 months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw.
- Brown Sugar: I recommend dark brown sugar for a deeper flavor, but you can use 1 cup light brown sugar instead if needed.
- Maple Syrup: Avoid “breakfast syrup” which doesn’t have the same robust maple flavor that pure syrup contains. Grade A is good, but Grade B is darker and more flavorful because it’s produced later in the season. You can’t go wrong with either in these cookies.
- Maple Extract: Pure maple syrup isn’t enough to guarantee mega maple flavor. Without the crutch of maple extract, the cookies were lacking. I use McCormick maple extract. You can find it in the baking aisle.
- Pecans: The pecans are optional, but add wonderful flavor and texture. I recommend unsalted, un-roasted pecans but feel free to use salted roasted pecans. Or feel free to leave them out or replace with chopped walnuts.
- Confectioners’ Sugar: To avoid any lumps, sift the confectioners’ sugar.