Maple Brown Sugar Cookies

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.

maple brown sugar cookies with maple icing

We’re approaching a new season, so a new cookie recipe is in order. 🙂

I may say this a lot, but nothing has been truer than in this very moment… (dramatic? who me?) … these maple brown sugar cookies are the best cookies I’ve ever made. And that statement holds big weight considering I authored an entire cookbook of JUST cookies.

Maple brown sugar cookies > every other cookie.

I know a good one when I bite it!

stack of maple cookies with maple icing

These Maple Brown Sugar Cookies Are:

  • Not cakey
  • Brown sugared and buttery
  • Unbelievably chewy and soft in the center
  • Crisp on the edges
  • Filled with pure maple syrup
  • Topped with luscious maple icing

The maple icing sets, so these are perfect for stacking and transporting. Because, trust me, you’ll want to bring these everywhere you go. Football game? Bring them. Party? Bring them. Bake sale? Sell them. No occasion at all? Make them.

maple brown sugar cookies on a white plate

10 Ingredients in Maple Brown Sugar Cookies

  1. All-Purpose Flour: All-purpose flour is the structure of the cookie. I played around with different amounts. 2 and 1/4 cups wasn’t enough and 2 and 1/2 cups was too much. 2 and 1/3 cups was the perfect amount to hold up to the liquid maple syrup.
  2. Baking Soda: Baking soda provides lift.
  3. Salt: Salt adds flavor and offsets the sweetness.
  4. Butter: 1 stick (1/2 cup) is plenty for the maple cookies and be sure you use room temperature butter. It should be cool to touch and not melted in the slightest.
  5. Dark Brown Sugar: Ditch basic white sugar. For optimal flavor and texture, reach for brown sugar instead. I highly recommend dark brown sugar for extra flavor, but light brown sugar works too. You need 1 packed cup.
  6. Egg: 1 egg provides structure, stability, and richness.
  7. Pure Maple Syrup: We can’t make maple cookies without pure maple syrup. Avoid “breakfast syrup” which doesn’t have the same robust maple flavor that pure syrup contains. I played around with different amounts and 1/3 cup is plenty. And, as a bonus, the pure syrup helps create slightly crisp edges. So good!
  8. Vanilla Extract: Adds flavor. Have you tried homemade vanilla extract yet?
  9. Maple Extract: Pure maple syrup isn’t enough to guarantee mega maple flavor. Without the crutch of maple extract, the cookies were lacking. Pure maple extract is difficult to find, so reach for imitation. I prefer McCormick brand because the flavor doesn’t taste fake.
  10. Pecans: Nuts are an optional ingredient, but they add awesome (and complementary!) flavor and texture.

Which Pure Maple Syrup is Best?

Grade A is good, but Grade B is darker and more flavorful because it’s produced later in the season. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with either here!

2 images of maple cookie dough in a glass bowl and in a cookie scoop

maple brown sugar cookie dough balls on cookie sheet

How to Make Brown Sugar Maple Cookies

Minimal effort, mega results. ♥

  1. Whisk the dry ingredients together.
  2. Cream the butter and brown sugar together.
  3. Beat in the egg, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and maple extract.
  4. Mix dry and wet ingredients together.
  5. Add the pecans.
  6. Chill the cookie dough. This cookie dough contains an additional liquid (maple syrup), so chilling the dough is crucial. Set aside 2 hours to chill this cookie dough. Without chilling, the cookies will spread into a greasy puddle.
  7. Roll cookie dough into balls. Each dough ball is about 1.5 Tablespoons.
  8. Bake until the edges are set. Cookies are done in about 13 minutes.

Then we’ll obviously drizzle maple icing all over the tops!

2 images of maple cookies without icing and maple icing in a glass bowl

maple brown sugar cookies

That Irresistible Maple Icing!!

You only need 3 ingredients for this super easy maple icing: butter, maple syrup, and confectioners’ sugar. To avoid any lumps, sift the confectioners’ sugar. If desired, a pinch of salt adds exceptional depth of flavor. The wonderful thing about this maple icing is that it eventually sets, so these cookies aren’t sticky or difficult to store.

You have my full support to use this maple icing for anything and everything. Some ideas: banana scones and pumpkin scones, obviously.

By the way! Today’s cookies differ from the Soft Glaze Maple Cookies in Sally’s Cookie Addiction. Those are ultra cakey (think pancakes!) with moderate maple flavor. These are more similar to chewy chocolate chip cookies in terms of texture.

maple brown sugar cookies with maple icing

Loving These Cookies Too

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maple brown sugar cookies

Maple Brown Sugar Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 13 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
  • Yield: 28-30 cookies
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


With big flavor, crisp edges, mega chewy centers, and maple icing, these maple brown sugar cookies are a definite favorite. Chilling the cookie dough is imperative, so set aside 2 hours or prepare the cookie dough the day before.


  • 2 and 1/3 cups (290g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (115g; 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) packed dark brown sugar*
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) pure maple syrup*
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon maple extract*
  • 1 cup (130g) chopped pecans*

Maple Icing

  • 2 Tablespoons (30gunsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup (112g) sifted confectioners’ sugar*
  • pinch salt, to taste


  1. Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line 2-3 large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  6. Roll cookie dough into balls, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie. This cookie scoop is helpful. Bake each batch for 12-13 minutes until lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week.


  1. 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. Click here for my tips and tricks on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Brown Sugar: I recommend dark brown sugar for a deeper flavor, but you can use 1 cup (200g) light brown sugar instead if needed.
  3. 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.
  4. 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.
  5. 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.
  6. Confectioners’ Sugar: To avoid any lumps, sift the confectioners’ sugar.
  7. Be sure to check out my top 5 cookie baking tips AND these are my 10 must-have cookie baking tools.

Keywords: cookies, maple syrup, fall dessert


  1. I made this for my roommates and they’re a huge hit! One of them said they’re her favorite thing I’ve ever baked. Great, easy recipe!

  2. I am obsessed with Sally’s baking addiction, but this recipe wasn’t my favorite. I’m obsessed with maple and pretty much all your recipes, so maybe my expectations were too high, but this recipe fell a little short for me. I wanted these cookies to scream maple, but they didn’t. Great cookies, but didn’t blow me away like most of the recipes on here do :/ Hate to comment anything except positive things, but I do feel like this recipe could use a little improvement and then it would truly knock people’s socks off. Once again, love this blog and all things Sally’s baking addiction.

    1. I added a bit of the maple extract to the icing to give the cookies more maple flavor.

  3. The maple flavour was not strong enough in the cookies. The glaze was really good though.

  4. Dorothy Clippingdale says:

    Sally, how about coming up with cookie recipe with no brown sugar, only maple syrup for sweetening. Brown sugar has too much salicylate (the stuff of aspirin) but maple syrup is safe for those of us who are really salicylate sensitive. I made oatcakes but used some white sugar (no salicylate) mixed with maple syrup. It was okay, barely.

    1. Hi Dorothy! Thank you so much for sharing. Coconut sugar is usually a fine replacement for brown sugar. Here are all of my recipes using maple syrup if you’re interested. You’d enjoy these breakfast cookies, which use maple syrup.

      1. Have you ever tried maple sugar? Coombs Family Farms is the only brand I’ve ever seen.. I used it with these and it’s delicious

    2. Dorothy Clippingdale says:

      Thank you, I really appreciate the recipes and will try them. Unfortunately, coconut is very high in salicylates so it’s either white sugar or pure maple syrup for me.

      1. Maybe try subbing the brown sugar for maple sugar? It’s on the spendy side, but might be a good option for you! I actually was reading over this recipe hoping that it called for maple sugar.

      2. As others have suggested, maple sugar is an option. Also, depending on your tolerance, light brown sugar has only a very slight more salicylate content than white sugar . Could you mix that with some white and create a similar texture?

    3. I was excited to make these since my Dad is obsessed with anything maple. Unfortunately, I just tried one and feel they’re nothing to write home about. They’re not bad, I just wouldn’t make them again. Too many better cookie recipes out there.

      1. Hello! Loved the idea. When mixing my wet and dry ingredients, the dough ended up fairly crumbly, rather than creamy. Any suggestions to fix this?

  5. I liked these cookies. I left out pecans and icing, and they are good just like that. Soft and chewy. Thank you Sally.

  6. Made these cookies for Christmas, delicious! I think they may be my new favorite cookie.

    1. I’m so happy you enjoyed them, Pam!

  7. I made this recipe with the exception of the maple extract. Man they are delicious!!!!!

  8. Hi Sally,
    I love your recipes! I’m wondering if I can use the icing to frost sugar cookies. If so, will the icing set enough so they will be stackable after some time? Thank you!

    1. This maple icing does eventually set, so your cookies won’t be sticky or difficult to store.

      1. Thank you!

  9. My new favorite cookie recipe!! I didn’t have any maple extract but used dark maple syrup and the flavor still came through. Loved them!

  10. These are incredibly good!!! They’re in my boyfriend’s top favourite treats ever 🙂 I’ve subbed the maple extract for maple butter and they’ve turned out great. The only issue I seem to have is I have to flatten the cookie dough before baking/let them warm up a little or they remain very balled up after cooking.

  11. Just made these for the first time.. another SBA recipe that was a hit with my family! They came out thick, chewy, and super mapely! I toasted the pecan pieces before adding to the dough and chilled it for 24 hrs to let the flavor intensify. Yum!!

  12. These cookies turned out great! Definitely going to be in heavy rotation.
    Wondered if subbing honey or agave nectar for maple syrup would work? (Have maple extract for maple flavor.)

  13. Made these cookies last night. I didn’t make the frosting for them as I didn’t have confectioner’s sugar and I’ve been eating a lot of baked goods during my quarantine. These are the most amazing cookies! I can only imagine how delicious they’d be with the frosting. Highly recommend them even without though :).

  14. I was honestly surprised at how great these turned out! The cookie base is absolutely PERFECT. Crispy edges and super soft middles. They had the perfect subtle maple flavor thanks to the extract – if these were any more mapley, it would’ve been too much. But the glaze is what makes these taste like the last piece of pancake that’s been soaking in syrup. But don’t make the glaze ahead of time!!! I did and it hardened before I could finish applying it. Lol oops.

  15. Hi Sally! I love your recipes–so far I’ve made your carrot cake muffins, chocolate zucchini and lemon cake!
    Do you think this recipe will work with honey instead of maple syrup? I know it’s a different taste but thats what I’m looking for!

    1. You can certainly try it. Let me know how they turn out. Glad you are enjoying my recipes!

  16. I was having a maple donut craving and didn’t want that hassle lol so I found this recipe and boy am I glad I did!! I made it just as written with adding maple extract to the icing. These were amazing. I was so worried about eating them all so I delivered to 3 sets of family members (one being grandma whose famous line is “they are good sis buuuuuut”) She also is a huge maple donut fan and she loved them and no but!! I will be saving this recipe. Have been catering and baking for 30 years and very rarely do I keep a recipe (only cause there are so many out there) Thanks Sally!

  17. Maureen Lynch says:

    Delicious cookie I love both brown sugar and maple. My only change is on the icing I ran out of maple syrup so I used a teaspoon of maple extract and a few drops of milk it turned out very tasty. Thanks for sharing this great recipe.

  18. Chris Gartner says:

    this is the ABSOLUTE BEST cookie recipe I’ve ever made. it is such a delicate flavor and soft and moist, but somewhat chewy. Stays fresh for so long! All of my friends loved it.

  19. I just made these and wow, amazing cookies! I saw some reviews say that these aren’t maple-ish enough, I have to disagree. I think they’re the perfect amount of maple, especially with that icing on top. Any more of a maple taste would be overkill. A couple things I did differently: 1. my butter was not quite room temperature when I started making the dough 2. I only let the dough chill for 30 minutes (since my butter was more firm, the dough wasn’t too soft or anything), 3. I skipped the maple extract since I didn’t have any. They came out absolutely amazing. Perfect shape, perfect slight crisp on edges, soft and chewy inside, perfect level of sweetness. I’ll be adding this recipe to my recipe rotation, thanks!!

  20. I had been looking for a great Maple cookies recipe and this it it! I love the cookies!

  21. I made these yesterday. Did not glaze them or use nuts and they are absolutely delicious. I am sure the glaze is wonderful and I might make it another time.
    I used half whole wheat flour and an extra half teaspoon of maple extract. I chilled the dough for 2.5 hours and baked on parchment. My first batch didn’t turn out quite as “pretty” as the second but they are equally delicious and have a lovely texture. My husband, who is stingy with any sort of compliment, actually volunteered that he liked them. They are a definite new favorite here.
    If I need a baking idea, I find I generally like your recipes the best!

  22. Ok, something went horribly wrong with my cookies. Flavor is amazing, but they completely flattened out and fell apart. They look nothing like the pictures. Did I do something wrong??

  23. Baking 101 question: are maple extract and imitation maple the same? My grocery store has imitation maple but I couldn’t find maple extract.

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Lyssa, Pure maple extract is difficult to find, so we usually use imitation.

  24. I’ve made these several times and I truly think they may be some of my favorite cookies! I’ve determined mine turn out better when I use Runamok Cinnamon Vanilla maple syrup.
    And just for kicks for my most recent batch, I added crumbled bacon on top of the icing, and HOLY SMOKES! Chewy, deliciously flavored cookie WITH BACON! Does life get any better than this? I submit it does not.

  25. I absolutely love this cookie! I made this one in a friendly competition and I won! They loved the maple, texture and the yummy pecan/walnut bits 🙂 I need to make this again for myself!

  26. These cookies were delicious! Due to quarantine issues, I was only able to find maple oil (used for candy). I used half of the amount called for in the recipe and it turned out great! I can’t wait to try it with maple extract. I had to skip the icing because my guy is kind of a sugar wimp, haha. Next time, I’m going all out! Another perfect recipe from Sally!! Thank you for always sharing the best!!

  27. These cookies are chewy and soft, but the flavor lacked a bit for me. There wasn’t that “oomf” factor of big flavor. I read the comments beforehand and many people said there wasn’t enough maple flavor. I added 1 3/4 tsp maple extract and it still wasn’t a home run. I can’t put my finger on it but there is something missing from this recipe, maybe something more rich like molasses, even though it’s present in the brown sugar. The wow factor wasn’t there for me.

  28. Could I use bacon grease and add chopped bacon to this recipe or would the grease be too soft in order for the cookies to bake correctly?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Valarie, The bacon grease would likely make these cookies too greasy. But you can definitely add chopped cooked bacon to the top of the cookies – YUM!!

  29. Anela Lauderback says:

    Okay…these cookies are incredible! The icing makes them that much better! I did add an additional teaspoon of the maple extract to bring out more of that maple flavor & that did the trick. I will say that I had to flatten my second batch of cookies prior to putting them in the oven as they didn’t flatten as they baked the first time. That is probably the only thing I’m not entirely sure of, but my kids, & everyone in my office are obsessed. I keep hearing “Okay, who made these cookies?!” Safe to say that these will be a yummy treat on the Thanksgiving dessert table!

  30. Maple flavored anything is my favorite and I have to say these are absolutely delicious. I followed the recipe to the tee except I replaced the butter in the batter with butter flavored crisco. It made the cookies thick and extra chewy with no chilling required. I swear my husbands pupils dilated with his first bite. These are a now staple in my cookie collection. Thank you Sally!

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I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally