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Pecan Date Cookies

These Pecan Date Cookies are bursting with flavor. Such a wonderful traditional cookie ideal for the holiday season!

Pecan Date Cookies piled on a white plate

Crunchy, Chewy Pecan Date Cookies

Some times, old habits die hard. For me, no baking spree is complete without a cookie like this. Simple, traditional and, more importantly, full of pecans. I first came across this recipe while I was getting my hair cut. Sitting under the dryer is a great time to flip through magazines. This particular magazine was Southern Lady, and there were so many appealing recipes that I went to the bookstore and bought my own copy.

I picked this particular recipe because it seemed so much like a holiday cookie. With cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves, these couldn’t be more perfect for this time of year.

Pecan Date Cookies served on a white plate

Besides my beloved pecan, these cookies also feature another of my favorite ingredients – dates. I have a sentimental attachment to them because of my mother’s wonderfully delicious Date Balls. Of course, they’re just good, too. Not being a big fan of raisins, I often substitute dates for them in recipes. To quote one of my culinary heroes, Alton Brown, why would you want to eat anything raisins have to be in?

These cookies turned out to be extremely good. The spices offer a wonderful combination of flavors. The pecans offer crunch, while the dates add chewiness. Quinn has proclaimed these his favorite cookie. I’m a little partial to them myself. In fact, we liked them so much that we kept most of them for ourselves.

overhead view of Pecan Date Cookies on a white plate

Pecan Date Cookies

Yield about 48 cookies
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

With chewy dates, crunchy pecans, and a blend of warm spices, these Pecan Date Cookies are always a favorite!

Pecan Date Cookies piled on a white plate


  • 3 cups (360g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 & 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 & 1/2 cups (300g) chopped pecans
  • 2 & 1/2 cups (372g) chopped dates
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone liners.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Set aside.
  3. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, 1 cup sugar, and brown sugar until combined. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, mixing well after each addition. Mix in the vanilla.
  4. Reduce mixer speed to low. Gradually add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix just until dry ingredients are moistened. Stir in the pecans and dates.
  5. Drop the dough by rounded tablespoonfuls onto the prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle the cookies with the remaining 2 Tablespoons of sugar.
  6. Bake, one pan at a time, for 16 to 20 minutes or until lightly browned.
  7. Cool the cookies on pan for about 2 minutes. Then, transfer to wire racks to cool completely.


Recipe slightly adapted from Southern Lady.

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    13 Comments on “Pecan Date Cookies”

  1. Yum!!! My mom makes something similar with walnuts instead of pecans…and you have me *so* missing them right now!

  2. I’m crazy about dates!

  3. They look fantastic, Jen – I have never baked with dates, what a great way to start!

  4. I always have dates on hand and eat them everyday. I LOVE the spices in these cookies too. Your holiday baking is driving me nuts! I’m dying to get some more cookies under my belt too:)

  5. Thanks, everyone!

  6. It doesn’t mention when to put in the eggs? And the cooking time seems long, is it correct?

    • Hi, Cheryl. I’ve clarified the directions a bit. The cooking time is longer because the oven temperature is a bit lower than normal. You can, of course, check on them sooner in case yours bake faster.

  7. Made these without cloves, added in 1 cup chopped pecans, 1/2 tbsp of dough instead of 1 tsp, baked at 160C for 13 min. In the end I got 120 delicious and soft cookies. The dates made them really nice and moist. Thank you for this yummy recipe!

  8. i made slight changes to the recipe using cold butter and cold eggs. it just works in the temperature and humidity here (i live in the tropics). i also omitted spices and replaced nuts with chocolate chips.
    the dough is really great to work with, excellent proportions of ingredients. one of the best cookies i baked this year – and i have probably made dozens of recipes.
    thank you!

  9. Do not follow this recipe as written. I just did this exact recipe and it ended up as cake balls. The cookies did not spread out because there was not near enough butter in them or too much flour. Also probably too many nuts and dates are interfering with the dough holding together. Taste is fine but you don’t get flat cookies. If I do this again, I am just making Toll House dough and adding the spices, nuts, and dates.

  10. I just made these. Delicious! I cut the white sugar in half to 1/2 cup and did not sprinkle sugar on top. I also divided the batter and made half with sunflower and pumpkin seeds so my son could take them to camp where he works since there is a no nut policy. A new family favourite. Thanks so much!

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