Pecan pie bars turned up in my holiday recipe rotation out of necessity. It was necessary to avoid any further embarrassments served out of my kitchen.
Let me explain. I had a neighbor in Mississippi that thought I was a great cook. This alone should have been enough to keep me happy, but the truth of the matter was his mother also thought I was a great cook. That made me do some internal cartwheels, you really wouldn’t want to see this old body do a real cartwheel.
When I was asked to make some pies for their Thanksgiving dinner I was honored. After all, a true southern family wanted my cooking. In addition to the pecan pie, I think I made them a chocolate pie.
I was so proud to send the pies next door for him to take to his family function. Imagine my horror when the reports came back that it wasn’t set up when they cut into it. I am probably sitting here with that some shocked face I had when I heard it. I was so devastated that I have had a mental kitchen block about pecan pies since then that I have yet to attempt one again.
But, pecan pie is an integral part of holiday meals at my house I had to figure something out. Something besides a store brought one or even the frozen bake and serve variety. Allrecipes was one of my favorite haunts back then and I found a recipe for pecan pie bars that looked pretty doable. Thin enough that there is no way in the world to produce a runny filling, unless of course you forget to bake it or something.
There is one way you can mess this recipe up though, you can overcook it and produce some edges that are guaranteed to crack teeth and even the strongest dental crowns.
While this isn’t a pecan pie, it proudly graces my dessert table in the spot where pecan pies used to shine. I would love to hear any tips for creating a pecan pie that is guaranteed to set up.Print
Pecan Pie Bars
Pecan Pie Bars taste like a pecan pie with a shortbread crust and sets up nicely with no worries about a runny middle. Can be served alone or warmed up with ice cream.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 24 Bars
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Baking
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups white sugar, divided
- 1 cup butter
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups light corn syrup
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 1/2 cups chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Spray jelly roll pan with baking spray.
- Cover baking sheet with parchment paper or non-stick foil.
- Spray again with baking spray.
- Add flour and 1/2 cup of white sugar in a large bowl and mix to combine.
- Add butter to bowl and using a pastry cutter, 2 butter knives, or a fork, cut butter in flour mixture until it is well blended. If your butter is too cold and this seems difficult you can gently rub small portions of the crust mix in between your hands until the mixture holds together when squeezed.
- Place the mixture into prepared jelly roll pan and spread out evenly. With the flat bottom of a measuring cup, or your hand, press crust into pan.
- Place crust into preheated oven and cook for 15 to 20 minutes, just until edges of crust begins to turn light brown.
- Remove from oven.
- Place eggs into a mixing bowl and beat slightly.
- Add sugar, corn syrup, melted butter, and vanilla. Mix until well combined.
- Add pecans and mix well.
- Pour pecan mixture over crust.
- Return pan to oven and bake for 25 minutes. Do not over bake or the bars will be hard.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before attempting to cut.
- If edges are too hard, just cut the edges off prior to cutting into serving sized pieces.
Nutritional data provided for informational purposes only. Let’s face it, if you are eating these, dietary restrictions are not your main focus, but if they are, please visit your favorite recipe calculator for vital details.
- Serving Size: 1 Bar
- Calories: 352
- Sugar: 34 g
- Sodium: 96 mg
- Fat: 18.2 g
- Carbohydrates: 47 g
- Fiber: 1.5 g
- Protein: 3.7 g
- Cholesterol: 51 mg
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