Prepare to dive into a slice of this easy old fashioned southern Pecan Pie recipe. Learn how to make this pie made with Karo syrup Corn syrup to make a homemade caramel like filling, and topped with pecan halves.
This easy southern pie is perfect for the Holidays, especially Christmas and Thanksgiving. It's a family tradition in our home to make it every year. Some may even believe that pecan pie is better than pumpkin pie. But we'll let you decide on that!
This pie is my Dad's favorite pie and he even requests it for his Birthday. Enjoy this Texas-inspired dessert along with our other southern-styled pies like Buttermilk Pie, Black Bottom Pie, Water Pie, Chess Pie, and Sweet Potato pie.
Below is a list of ingredients needed for this homemade recipe. Most can be easily found in the baking section of traditional grocery stores.
- Pie crust: Use a prepackaged crust or your favorite homemade crust recipe.
- Pecans: Use shelled halves or pieces. Using halves is our favorite for appearance. We have found that pecan pieces, though not as pretty, make cutting the pie easier.
- Corn syrup: This ingredient gives the pie filling a wonderful caramel texture and taste, especially when the brown sugar is added. We love using Karo Syrup. While testing the recipe, we found varied results in using different corn syrups. We have found this one is better with real Karo Syrup for that yummy chewy texture (not sponsored).
- Sugar: You will need both white granulated sugar and brown sugar. The brown sugar will give it that caramel/caramelized taste.
- Brown Butter: Unsalted butter is best for this recipe. If you use salted, be sure to adjust the salt accordingly. We tested this recipe over and over and found it lacking that perfect taste and texture. It was good, but not great. My mom told me to try brown butter and it made all the difference!!
- Eggs: Use room temperature eggs for best results when baking.
- Vanilla: Vanilla extract is a great way to balance out those flavors.
See recipe card for quantities.
How to Make Pecan Pie
Follow these step by step instructions for best results. Use the photos to help make this recipe amazing.
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Brown the butter (directions in recipe card) and let cool 5 minutes. Add all ingredients to a medium mixing bowl. Don't add the pecans.
2. Mix together until a smooth mixture is formed. There shouldn't be any clumps.
3. Add pecans to the bottom of a prepared pie crust. They can be overlapping.
4. Pour the egg and corn syrup mixture on top of the pecans. The pecans will float to the top.
5.Bake the pie with tin foil covering the edges for 50 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Hint: Instead of lining the crust with tin foil, make a tent over the top of the pie and cut an x. Fold back the tin foil to uncover the crust but keep the crust protected.
Try making this with a maple twist by adding 1 tablespoon of pure maple extract to the egg and sugar mixture. You could even try adding 1 tablespoon of maple syrup.
Caramel is often used to describe the filling of a Pecan pie. But you can add even more caramel flavor by adding melted caramels to the pie crust before baking. Giving it a rich caramel taste in every bite. If you don't want to add caramels to the inside, you can drizzle caramel on top when serving. Try this Caramel Pecan Pie recipe for a tasty variation.
It's important to cover the edges of the pie with tin foil when cooking. This helps it from burning as the pie cooks. We found it hard and tiresome to cover the edges, so we came up with a quick fool proof trick. Before baking cover the whole pie with tine foil. Cut an X shape with a sharp knife and fold back the tin foil. Make sure the edges are still covered but the center is not.
Cutting this pie into nice slices can be difficult because of the texture and pecans. To cut a nice clean slice, make sure to use a sharp knife. You may have to push down the pecans while slicing.
Learn From Us
When I make custard pies I'm used to having a little wobble or jiggle. The first time I made pecan pie I pulled it out of the oven too soon. I thought I wanted it to jiggle. It was too watery and the next time I baked it until it was completely set.
How to Serve
Serve this tasty Thanksgiving pie with a side of vanilla ice cream or topped with whipping cream or cool whip. Or you can drizzle with caramel. It's always fantastic on its own.
How To Store Pecan Pie
Store cooked pecan pie in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Make sure it's covered.
You can even freeze the pie for up to 3 months. Make sure it's in a freezer-friendly container. I like to put a 9-inch pie or any leftovers in a freezer-gallon bag. You can even freeze individual slices for easy serving.
Leave out a handful of pecans when placing them on the bottom. This way you can arrange some pecans to look the way you want them too. This also helps if you have issues with the pecans sinking to the bottom of the filling.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
- 1 pie crust prepackaged or your favorite homemade
- 1 cup pecans halves or pieces
For the Filling:
- 1 cup corn syrup Karo is recommended
- ⅔ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup brown sugar
- 6 Tablespoons butter browned
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Lightly spray a 9" pie plate and put pie crust in pie pan. Spread pecans along the bottom of the crust evenly.
- Brown the butter by placing in a small saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, turn it down to medium low heat. Stir occasionally and wait for butter to turn golden and start simmering. After simmering 3-4 minutes the butter should turn brown and smell nutty. Allow to cool 5 minutes.
- Whisk together the corn syrup, sugar, brown sugar, cooled browned butter, eggs, vanilla and salt. Pour over top of the pecans. Bake for 50-70 minutes. Pecan pie can be a little finicky and you must make sure that it is properly baked or it will be a little watery. There should be no jiggle when you give it a firm jiggle. At 20 minutes in, I like to tent my pie (see process photos above) with aluminum foil to keep the crust from cooking too much. At this point I also like to Move my oven rack down just one level below the middle and finish the bake. This will also help it bake through correctly.
- Make sure to move the oven rack down one level when tenting the pie at minute 20. This will ensure that it cooks correctly and will help prevent it from being watery.
- Allow it to cool to slightly warm or room temperature before serving.
- Serve with ice cream or whipped topping, if desired.
- When placing pecans at the bottom of the pie, feel free to leave out a small handful. After pouring the filling in, place the leftover pecans neatly on top and cover them in the filling for a more aesthetic pie.
- I like to tent my pies instead of lining the crust with foil. It is much easier for me and is more effective. Cover the entire pie with a piece of tinfoil and tuck it around the edges. Make an x with a knife through the top and peel back the foil, careful not to expose the crust.
- I'm used to making pies where you want either a bit of a wobble or a tiny wobble when jiggled. The first time I made a pecan pie I pulled it out of the oven when it still had a tiny wobble. Oops! It made it a little watery. The best way to ensure your pecan pie isn't watery is to bake it until it's completely set up.
Yes! Like most pies, you need to refrigerate pecan pie. You can refrigerate it, lightly covered with plastic wrap for 3-4 days. Do not leave the pie on the countertop for a long period of time. If you make this pie ahead for Thanksgiving or Christmas, make sure you freeze or refrigerate it.
Yes! Pecan pie can be frozen for up to 3 months. Make sure to have it in an airtight freezer-friendly container or gallon freezer bag. You can even slice it into individual slices and then freeze it for easy serving when you're ready to serve the pie again.
It is a mixture of corn syrup, eggs, sugar, and butter to make a custard like filling that also resembles caramel.
This pie is done when it no longer wobbles in the center. You don't want any wobble or jiggle to the pie because then it won't set properly and will be too watery.
Corn syrup is used to create the perfect texture. It holds the other ingredients together and makes the pie nice and thick and chewy.