Savor the sweet life with these Pecan Pie Bars—a mere 15 minutes of prep time for a treat that tastes like a labor of love. If you love pecan pie, why not bake a batch of these gooey bars instead!
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Why Pecan Pie Bars Work
Craving the warm, cozy nostalgia of pecan pie but not the time-consuming ordeal of making a crust?
You have to try these Pecan Pie Bars. They have all the mouthwatering allure of a classic pecan pie, minus the hassle. We’ve been obsessed with our pecan pie cheesecake bars for quite some time, it seemed like we needed a more classic version under a belt now.
Here are a few reasons why you should try them.
- They’re Effortless. This dessert may seem like it took hours, but the truth is that it comes together with just 15 minutes of prep. Impress your loved ones with a treat that looks and tastes like you poured your heart into it.
- Decadent buttery taste. Rich, buttery taste and gooey caramel goodness. With only a few ingredients, you’ll be wowed by how much flavor is packed into this simple dessert.
- Great for beginners. Straightforward instructions, even novice bakers can achieve flawless results.
If you love gooey pecan pie, be sure to give our pecan pie brownies a try next. Fudgy brownies with pecan pie topping. Speaking of popular fall treats, our pecan pie bundt cake is always a hit during the fall season.
- Flour – All-purpose flour is ideal for pie crust as it balances a tender texture with enough structure to hold it together. Don’t swap it for alternatives. Otherwise, the crumb may become too soft or dense.
- Sugar – Stick to granulated sugar for the crust. The fine texture easily incorporates into the dough, adds sweetness, and aids in browning during baking.
- Salt – Kosher salt is less salty than table salt, so it’s the best choice for baking.
- Unsalted Butter – Make sure that your butter is cold! The solid fat melts in the oven and creates pockets of steam that contribute to the flaky, tender crust we’re after.
- Light Brown Sugar – Light brown sugar maintains a rich molasses flavor without it being overpowering. You can substitute dark brown sugar, which will intensify the caramel flavor.
- Light Corn Syrup – Light corn syrup is essential to achieve that smooth, gooey texture that’s the star of any pecan pie recipe. It also contributes a neutral sweetness. You can use honey or maple syrup, but the consistency will be thinner, and they will alter the flavor of the finished bars.
- Eggs – Room-temperature eggs can be incorporated more easily than cold ones.
- Pecans – For an even nuttier flavor, toast the pecans before adding them to this recipe.
PRO TIP- We love making our own homemade vanilla extract, but if using store bought, be sure it’s pure extract, not imitation (for best flavor).
Create the Crust:
- In a bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt. Then, use your hands or a pastry cutter to incorporate cubed butter until the mixture turns crumbly.
- Press the dough firmly into the botto, of the prepared baking pan. Bake for approximately 20 minutes until the edges turn a light golden brown.
Prepare the Filling:
- While the crust bakes, mix brown sugar, corn syrup, vanilla, and salt to make the filling. Add eggs and beat until smooth. Then, gently fold in chopped pecans.
- Pour the pecan filling over the warm, pre-baked crust. Return the dish to the oven and bake for an additional 35-40 minutes.
Cool and Serve:
- Once the center of the bars has set, pull them from the oven and allow them to cool completely before cutting.
- Finally, slice and serve!
Tips and Tricks
- Cooling is Key: Allow the bars to cool completely before slicing. This crucial step ensures that the filling sets properly, leading to clean, intact slices with the perfect texture.
- Clean Cuts: For cleaner cuts, use a sharp knife and wipe it clean between each slice. This prevents any excess filling from sticking to the knife, giving you picture-perfect bars.
- Easy Release: Before baking, line the baking dish with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides. After baking and cooling, simply lift the overhanging parchment to remove the bars effortlessly.
- Toast for Flavor: Elevate your bars’ flavor by toasting the pecans before adding them to the filling. A quick toast in the oven or on the stovetop enhances the nutty richness.
- Create Variations: Experiment with the filling by adding a dash of cinnamon, a sprinkle of sea salt, or even a splash of bourbon to the pecan mixture. These variations can introduce delightful layers of complexity.
A Pecan Pie Bar is a dessert that combines the flavors of a classic pecan pie in a convenient bar form. They feature a crust and gooey pecan filling.
Definitely! Pecan Pie Bars can be made a day ahead and stored in an airtight container at room temperature.v
After baking, store the bars in an airtight container on the counter for up to 3 days. Otherwise, you can keep them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days. Allow them to come to room temperature or reheat them in the microwave before digging in.
Yes! To keep them for an extended period, individually wrap each bar in plastic wrap and store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months. Don’t forget to thaw them in the refrigerator overnight before eating. Then reheat in the microwave or allow them to come to room temperature.
More Fall Favorites
- Pumpkin Snickerdoodles
- Sticky Pecan Rolls
- Pumpkin Pie Recipe
- Banana Pudding Recipe
- Sweet Potato Casserole
Pecan Pie Bars
For the crust
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 ¼ cup light corn syrup
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 large eggs, room temperature
- 2 ½ cups chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13×9 baking dish with parchment paper. Set aside.
- For the crust, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Add in cubed butter and mix until crumbly and butter pieces are pea-sized (use your hands or a pastry cutter).
- Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the edges become lightly browned.
- While the crust is baking, make the filling.
- Combine brown sugar with corn syrup, vanilla, and salt. Beat in eggs and fold in pecan pieces.
- Pour pecan filling over warm, baked crust, then return to the oven to continue baking for an additional 35-40 minutes, or until the center of the bars are set.
- Cool completely before serving.
- You’ll want the bars to cool completely before slicing or they may fall apart.
- Make sure the pecan pie filling is set in the middle of the bars before taking them out of the oven. These won’t take as long as a pecan pie to bake because it’s much thinner.
- The pecan pie filling may caramelize around the edges of the pan. Use a thin, sharp knife to help loosen it from the edges.
- Counter: Place the bars in an airtight container, and leave them on the counter for up to 3 days. The crust may start to get soggy after that.
- Refrigerator: Place the bars in an airtight container, and store them in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Bring to room temperature or heat them in the microwave before serving.
- Freezer: Wrap each bar in plastic wrap and store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then reheat in the microwave or bring to room temperature before serving.
- See blog post for more recipe tips and tricks.