Pecan Sands

From Carrie Morey's Hot Little Suppers cookbook

These cookies remind me of good times and good food that my grandmother always brought to the party and that my mother continues to bring. 
Pecan Sands


  • • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold butter, cut in cubes
  • • 4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • • Optional: 1 tablespoon iced water
  • • Powdered sugar, sifted

My Grandmama would make these every year around Christmas time. I can picture her home in Gaffney and these cookies on her dessert table. During my teenage and college years, my mother hosted a Christmas Eve party and Grandmama would come, bringing her pecan sands with her. These cookies remind me of good times and good food that my grandmother always brought to the party, and that my mother continues to bring. So I want to share the Pecan Sands, or Pecan sandies to some, in the hopes it will bring good food and good memories to your house!


  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the flour and white sugar in a large bowl. Add the butter and use your hands to mix together. Work in the vanilla and the pecans, adding ice water if needed for the dough to come together.
  3. Shape the dough into balls, using 1 teaspoon batter for 1 bite cookies and 1 tablespoon batter for 2 bite cookies. Place on the baking sheet 1/2 inch apart.
  4. Bake for 10-12 minutes. The dough will not brown.
  5. Transfer the cookies, still on the parchment paper, to cooling rack. When cool enough to handle, roll the cookies in sifted powdered sugar. If baking multiple batches on the same kind of baking sheet, make sure the baking sheet cools before you put the dough on it. Store the sands in an airtight container.

Hot Little Tip

Kiddos LOVE working with powdered sugar in the kitchen! Don't be afraid to get a little dirty and let them play in the dough. It gets them in the kitchen measuring (math!) and keeps baking enjoyable for them!