Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies

Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies - Photo by Taste As You Go
Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies

Have you ever lazily flipped through a food magazine only to have a recipe practically jump off the page and lodge itself into your brain until it becomes such a huge obsession that you have to clear your schedule to try it out? Well, that's what happened to me not too long ago when I came across a recipe in Martha Stewart Living for Cinnamon-Swirl Cookies. Just looking at the photo of the cookies in the magazine made my mouth water, so I ripped the recipe out and saved it for later.

Filling for Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies - Photo by Taste As You Go
Filling for Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies

As much as I wanted to follow Martha's recipe to the letter, I couldn't resist the urge to tweak it. Partly because I didn't have as much unsalted butter as I thought I did and partly because I always want to tweak recipes to test my skills. As with most cookie recipes, Martha's version called for unsalted butter, both for the dough and the filling. I only had enough unsalted butter for the filling, so I used salted butter for the dough and just omitted the salt called for in the original recipe.

Dough and Filling for Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies - Photo by Taste As You Go
Dough and Filling for Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies

As you can see from the photo I took of the filling in the bowl, which I sampled of course, and from the photo I took of the dough and the filling before I rolled it all up, my cookies have pecans in them rather than the walnuts Martha used. I'm just not a walnut kind of girl and I love the combination of cinnamon and pecans, so I made the cookies to cater to my personal tastes. Why not, right? And, see that dough? I don't have a rolling pin (*blush*), so I rolled it out with a bottle of vinegar and the cookies turned out just fine!

Sliced Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies - Photo by Taste As You Go
Sliced Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies - Photo by Taste As You Go

After allowing the dough to chill and then slicing the log of dough right before baking, I found it very difficult not to just eat the pre-baked cookies. I dug deep and waited patiently for all of the cookies to finish baking before trying one (I know, right?). And, wow! Nutty and sweet with a hint of orange from the zest in the dough! They were very, very good... But with that said, I'm not sure they were really worth all of that effort. My friend Kristen over at Dine and Dish recently made Martha's Cinnamon-Swirl Cookies, too, and was left feeling the same way I did. Have you made Martha's Cinnamon-Swirl Cookies? If so, what did you think about them?

And, have you entered the Amazing Taste® Seasoning Packet Giveaway yet? Don't forget -- the deadline to enter is 11:59pm EST on Saturday, March 14, 2009, so make sure you leave a comment on the giveaway post and get your entry in before the deadline. And, if you blog about the giveaway on your blog, come back and leave another comment on the giveaway post providing the link to your post because you'll earn a bonus entry by spreading the word! Good luck!

Cinnamon Pecan Swirl Cookies
Adapted from Martha Stewart's Cinnamon-Swirl Cookies | Printable Recipe


For the Dough
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  • 1 large egg
For the Filling
  • 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  1. Sift flour, baking soda, and cinnamon into a large bowl. Beat butter, sugar, and orange zest with a mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 90 seconds. Beat in the egg. Reduce the speed to low. Add the flour mixture gradually and beat until just combined. Shape the dough into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight for 1 hour or overnight.

  2. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let rest on the counter for 5 minutes. Turn the dough onto floured parchment. Roll into a 10x12" rectangle, then trim the edges straight. Transfer rectangle of dough on parchment to a baking sheet and refrigerate until firm but pliable, about 10 minutes.

  3. Mix all of the filling ingredients in a small bowl until well combined. Crumble mixture evenly over rectangle of dough. Starting on a long side, roll the dough into a log and wrap it in the parchment. Refrigerate the log for 1 hour or overnight.

  4. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the log from the refrigerator and cut crosswise into 1/4"-thick slices. Transfer slices to parchment-lined baking sheets, and bake until the edges are golden brown, about 10-15 minutes. Let cool on sheets on wire racks.

  5. Cookies will keep, covered, for up to 3 days.

Food Tip: Brown sugar can harden when exposed to air for an extended period of time. If you bake on a regular basis, store brown sugar in an airtight container. For prolonged storage, store brown sugar in the freezer.

Cinnamon on Foodista

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Anonymous said…
Mmmm, yummy! :)
Christie - I can't deny that they were tasty... I just wish I could figure out a way to get that taste in a more "low-maintenance" type of cookie! :)
Anonymous said…
oh those are just lovely! and lots of fun to make, too, i'll bet. yay. :D

Jessie - The finished cookie looks really appetizing and delicious. Who doesn't like a cookie with a swirl? But, there were a lot of steps involved, so I'm not sure whether I'd say they were "fun" to make. ;-)
Anonymous said…
Yummy! I love cinnamon and pecans.
The ingredients are one my favorites cinnamon and pecan :)

Your cookies certainly sound terrifically tasty, I want them for teatime!

Michelle I've an award for you on my blog :)

All the best,
5 Star Foodie - Isn't the combination of cinnamon and pecans just the best? :-)
Gera - I just love the combination of cinnamon and pecans. Definitely more than cinnamon and raisins! ;-)

And thank you SO MUCH for the award!! This is the first award anyone's ever given me/my blog, so I'm really, really touched.
Yum Yucky said…
They buttery good.

1 stick butter = happiness
Yum Yucky - Butter always brings happiness into my life, too! :)