If you love butter pecan, give my gluten free butter pecan cookie recipe a try. They are full of incredible buttery pecan flavor. They are easy to make in about 20 minutes! 

Butter pecan cookies on a cookie sheet.

Butter pecan is one of my favorite ice cream flavors. Do you have a favorite flavor of ice cream that would be fun to create a cookie around?

If you love caramel as much as my kids, this gluten free caramel apple cake and these gluten free caramel cupcakes are definitely worth trying too!

Try these and try a few more gluten free cookie recipes too.

What sets my recipe apart:

  • There is something about the creamy goodness mixed in with that butter, and the nutty pecan flavor makes me love this recipe.
  • The caramel bits take the flavor over the top!
  • You can freeze these easily so that you can have them anytime!
  • Make it in just 25 minutes!

Allergen Information:

These homemade cookies are gluten-free, soy-free, and oat-free. Make them nut-free by omitting the pecans. Make them dairy-free by swapping plant butter for regular butter.

If you prefer a classic cookie recipe, you will want to make these Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies too!

A mason jar filled with gluten free flour sitting on the counter.

Flour Blends Tested:

1. King Arthur Measure for Measure—This blend works really well in muffin recipes. I don’t have to let the flour blend rest in the batter.
2. Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Blend—This blend also works well, but this flour blend does benefit from resting the batter for 15 minutes before baking the muffins. The rest allows the rice flour in this blend to soften, so you don’t have gritty muffins.

Ingredient Notes:

For the full list of ingredients and amounts, please go to the recipe card below.

  • Gluten Free Flour Blend – If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain Xanthan Gum or Guar Gum, please add 1 teaspoon.
  • Pure Vanilla Extract – I do not recommend using imitation vanilla.
  • Butter – Use unsalted butter. Use vegan butter if you want these cookies to be dairy-free.
  • Caramel – I used caramel that is gluten free. You can read more about what caramel is gluten free. Check my gluten free caramel list.
  • Pecans – This recipe features pecans, but any nut is fine if you can’t find them at the store. You can omit the nuts to make this recipe nut-free, but then there are more caramel cookies.

Step-By-Step Photos and Directions:

A photo of the dry ingredients in a metal mixing bowl.

Step 1: Add the dry ingredients to a large mixing bowl and whisk to blend. Pour the pecans in and mix well so they are evenly dispersed.

The whisked wet ingredients in a bowl.

Step 2: Add the wet ingredients, including the softened butter, to a smaller bowl and whisk to blend. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry ingredients, mixing well.

The butter pecan cookie dough in a mixing bowl.

Step 3: The gluten free butter pecan cookie dough is a little more firm than other cookies I have made. Let the dough sit for 5 minutes to absorb the liquid. I like to chill my cookie dough for 30-45 minutes, but this is optional.

📢 Sandi says: Every gluten-free flour blend has a different starch-to-grain ratio. The brand of gluten-free flour you use will affect the moisture of the batter. If your cake batter is too runny, add more flour, and if it is too thick, add more liquids.
Read Why Gluten-Free Flour Blends Vary to learn more about this.

The pecan cookie dough balls on a cookie sheet.

Step 4: Use a cookie scoop to drop the dough balls onto a cookie sheet. Either spray light oil on the cookie sheet or use parchment paper. You can pat the cookies down if you prefer a flatter cookie. 

Step 5: Bake the cookies for 10 minutes at 350º F. Remove them from the oven and move them to a cooling rack. Be careful and use a spatula so you don’t get burned by the hot caramel.

(*Note to be careful when you take these out of the oven. The melted caramel is HOT!)

A stack of three cookies on a plate.

Why are my cookies flat, aka spread too much?

This is one of the most common questions I get from my readers. There are several reasons for flat cookies, including:

  • Check to see how long you chilled your cookie dough. If you use partially melted or softened butter, you must chill it to prevent spreading.
  • How did you measure your flour? Measuring your flour accurately is important. I don’t often weigh my ingredients because every flour blend has a different weight, and my readers all use different gluten-free flour blends. I recommend using either the Spoon Method by using a spoon to add flour to the measuring cup. Use a knife to level along the top to remove the extra flour. Leveling Method by putting the measuring scoop into the flour and filling it with flour. Do not pack the flour. Use a knife to scrape along the top to remove the extra flour.

Why do my gluten-free cookies taste gritty?

This grit you experience is from the rice flour in the gluten-free flour blend. Not all companies mill their flour extra fine. To eliminate the grit, I recommend letting the cookie dough rest for 15 minutes. This extra time will allow the rice flour to soften, eliminating the grit.

How do you make cookies the same size?

The best way to ensure your cookies are the same size and look uniform is to use a cookie scoop. I really like my XOXO brand medium-sized cookie scoop. It is the only scoop I have used that has lasted a long time and hasn’t broken. Check out all of my favorite gluten-free cookie tools.

For more cookie troubleshooting, read my Gluten-Free Cookie Troubleshooting Guide.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can you make this butter pecan cookie recipe dairy-free?

You can make these cookies dairy-free by using vegan butter. I haven’t found dairy-free caramel chips, so you would need to substitute them with something like Enjoy Life dairy-free chocolate chips.

Can you freeze these cookies?

Yes!! We often make a double batch to freeze some of the cookies! Just let the cookies fully cool, then add them to a freezer bag. Zip the bag closed, squeezing as much air out as possible.

How do you store butter pecan cookies?

These cookies will keep fresh for up to 4 days in an air-tight container or up to 4 months in the freezer.

A pecan cookie with a bite taken out.

More Gluten Free Cookies:

Love This Recipe?

If you made and enjoyed this recipe, I would be incredibly grateful if you could leave a comment below. Please include which flour blend you used. This will help others know this recipe is delicious. Thank you!

Gluten Free Butter Pecan Caramel Cookies

Sandi Gaertner
Easy gluten free butter pecan caramel cookies
5 from 6 votes
gluten free allergy icon
soy free allergy icon
vegetarian icon
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Gluten Free Cookies and Bar Recipes
Cuisine American
Servings 18 cookies
Calories 165 kcal

Equipment

  • Mixing bowls
  • Whisk
  • Cookie scoop
  • Cookie sheet

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ½ cups gluten free flour blend * see note
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup toasted pecans unsalted
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup Kraft caramel bits

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350º F.
  • Spray coconut oil onto a cookie sheet.
  • In a large bowl, add dry ingredients and whisk to blend.
  • Add all wet ingredients, pecans, and caramel bits.
  • Mix well.
  • Use a cookie scoop to drop cookie balls onto a baking sheet.
  • Bake 10 minutes until done.
  • Cool on a cooling rack.

Notes

  1. I have tested this recipe with King Arthur Measure for Measure GF and Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 GF blend. That doesn’t mean others will not work, I just have not tested other flours.
  2. If your gluten free flour blend doesn’t contain Xanthan Gum or Guar Gum, please add 1 teaspoon.
  3. To make this recipe dairy-free, substitute the butter for vegan butter.
  4. These cookies will keep up to 4 days in an air-tight container, or up to 4 months in the freezer.

SPECIAL NOTE

Please know that every gluten free flour blend has a different starch to grain ratio. If you use a blend I didn’t test, you may need to adjust your moisture levels in your baked goods.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 165kcalCarbohydrates: 22gProtein: 2gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 86mgPotassium: 63mgFiber: 1gSugar: 14gVitamin A: 184IUCalcium: 37mgIron: 1mg
Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @FearlessDining or tag #FearlessDining!

Nutrition Disclaimer

Nutritional information is an estimate provided to you as a courtesy. You should calculate the actual nutritional information with the products and brands you are using with your preferred nutritional calculator.

(*Note this post was updated from an older March 2015 post. Here is the old photo below

5 from 6 votes (6 ratings without comment)

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14 Comments

  1. Hi Sandi. I am getting ready to try this recipe and wondered about the butter. The printed recipe says melted, but above with the pictures, it says softened. Which is correct? Or does it matter, since we will chill the dough?

      1. Hi Sandi, the cookies were delicious! But I need to figure out why the texture is not the same as your pics. Mine were almost smooth on top. I really love the way yours look ‘rough’, which reminds me of a shortbread cookie. I did use your flour blend and will probably retry them with BRM 1:1 next time, to see if that’s the issue. (I have been using your blend without any issue so far.) Do you think this could be affected by organic butter? I really prefer using this butter, but I know it feels differently in texture. BTW, is it true that with GF flour, we don’t need to worry about over-mixing, the way we are warned with wheat based flours?

      2. Hi Mary, I am so glad you loved the cookies. I am wondering if the rough tops are because I didn’t clean my cookie scoop as I was scooping, so it got rougher? A tiny bit more flour will probably help with this. I only use organic butter. As for your question, cookies I don’t worry about over-mixing. I never over-mix cake, cupcake, or muffin batters. Those I mix until just barely mixed. For biscuits, scones, and pie crust you want to be careful more because you don’t want to melt the butter in the dough…overmixing can do that.

  2. We are GF for the most part, however, I choose to bake with Organic Wheat flour. Could That be substituted, in this recipe?

  3. I’ve been on a huge pecan kick lately!! Can’t wait to give these a try using your dairy-free suggestions. I think I saw some vegan caramel chips on amazon the other day. I’ll have to check them out 🙂

  4. If you want to use a premade flour such as Mama’s Gluten free almond flour or cup for cup, would you use 3 cups plus the Xanthan gum (if the mix doesn’t have it) ?

    1. Hi, you definitely want to add 1 teaspoon xanthan gum if your gluten free flour blend doesn’t have it already. Cup4Cup has dry milk in it. This will work for this recipe, but it doesn’t work for any of my baked recipes with lemon juice…just an fyi. Thank you for taking the time to write 🙂

    1. This is a gluten free recipe. Are you asking if you can use a different gluten free flour Julie? I used Authentic Foods Gluten Free Flour Blend, I assume other blends will work as long as they don’t contain bean flour. Also check if you use a different blend that it has xanthan gum. If it doesn’t you will want to add a teaspoon. Good luck. Sandi