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Turtle Cookies AKA The Red Deer Cookie

This is my interpretation of the Award Winning and Officially Designated Red Deer Cookie (Red Deer, Alberta, is my hometown). I have significantly changed the flat presentation by using the mini- muffin cups and garnishing with a pecan as well as inserting homemade caramel instead of a rolo chocolate. I have also doubled the nuts in the dough and toasted them.
Course Cookie
Cuisine Canadian
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 3 hours
Servings 80
Author Valerie Lugonja


  • 1 cup butter creamed
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • ¾ cup cocoa
  • 1 cup pecans , toasted and finely chopped
  • 80 rolo chocolates (10 packages)
  • 80 whole pecans
  • Sanding sugar or sparkling sugar (optional)


  1. Toast your pecans, first
  2. Cream white butter and sugar together until fluffy; add brown sugar, and continue to cream until fluffy
  3. Add two eggs, one at a time; continue to beat
  4. Add vanilla
  5. Sift together dry ingredients over wet ingredients, add finely chopped toasted nuts; combine well
  6. Roll a ball of dough around each rolo chocolate or preferably around some homemade caramel; roll each ball in sparkly sanding sugar
  7. Place in mini tart pan, and bake for 10-12 minutes at 350°F
  8. Sit on cooling rack, still in pan for 7 minutes, losses edges gently, and flip pan to release cookies (They will be very soft, so wait 10 to 15 minutes to move them for final decorating step
  9. "Glue" a pecan half onto each with a bit of icing sugar and water mixed together