Why This Recipe Works
This recipe can be canned and given as a gift to a party host or in place of a cookie exchange. It is naturally gluten-free and can be made easily dairy-free.
Made on the stovetop, stirring over low heat prevents the eggs from scrambling. Once fully cooked it can be used in a variety of ways from filling mini tart shells to canning for use later in the year!
This recipe can also be used to make pecan pie bars or a pie when used with your favorite pie crust recipe!
Pecans- I like to use a mix of halves and pieces.
Dark Corn Syrup - There are recipes that use light corn syrup, but I love the richer flavor that dark corn syrup brings to the pecan pie filling.
Light Brown Sugar - I like to use light brown sugar to offset the richness of the dark corn syrup. If you only have dark brown sugar that will work too! I do not recommend substituting granulated sugar, but dark coconut sugar will work.
Unsalted Butter - Melted to keep the filling smooth and creamy. If you use salted butter, reduce the salt by half. Use vegan butter for dairy-free.
Vanilla Extract - A touch of vanilla adds warmth and flavor depth to the filling.
Optional Pecan Pie Filling Add-Ins
This delicious pecan pie filling recipe definitely doesn’t need any changes, but here are a few ways it can be adjusted to fit your needs:
Dairy-Free Pecan Pie Sauce - Use dairy-free butter in the filling.
Bourbon - Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of bourbon along with the vanilla.
Walnut - I know. It’s a pecan pie. But you can totally just swap out with your favorite nuts, but walnuts are the most common.
Chocolate Pecan- Add 1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips as the sauce is cooling.
How to Make Stove Top Pecan Pie Filling
Melt- Add all the ingredients, except the vanilla extract, in a saucepan. Heat on low heat and constantly stir until the sugar is dissolved and the butter is melted.
Boil- Gradually increase the heat until the pecan mixture reaches a low boil. Stir every minute to ensure the eggs do not scramble. Once the mixture has thickened add the vanilla extract.
Cool- Cool to room temperature before using.
See below for storage and canning instructions.
How to Use Cooked Pecan Pie Sauce
Beyond using this filling for pie (or mini pies), you can use this pecan pie sauce on cheesecakes, stir it into yogurt for a snack, or make an ice cream sundae!
You can also use it on top of pancakes or waffles
Cooked pecan pie filling can also be used in pastry treats like homemade pop tarts or hand pies or as a cake filling.
How to Make Pecan Pie Filling for Baking
Par Bake- Blind bake your crust for at least 15 minutes at 425 F degrees.
Melt- Melt your butter and cool slightly so as not to cook the eggs.
Combine- Whisk in the corn syrup, brown sugar and salt. Add the beaten eggs and vanilla.
Bake- Add your pecans to the pie shell (if you want a pretty design) and pour over the sauce or add them directly to the sauce and pour it into your pie shell. Bake until the center is just set.
Cool- This easy pecan pie recipe needs to cool on a baking rack for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight.
Failing to cool your pecan pie properly will result in a running center. The filling needs time to set up properly.
Using room-temperature eggs will reduce the chances of the eggs scrambling creating an unwelcome texture.
Cool the sauce completely and store it in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Serve at room temperature or warm. You can reheat the sauce in the microwave on 50% power stirring every few minutes. Or reheat in a saucepan on the stovetop over low heat.
This recipe can be frozen in a sealed container for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating.
If baked in a pie, store the pie in its original pie plate at room temperature and cover it with foil or plastic wrap.
Leave one inch of headspace in your jar when canning to prevent jar overflow in the canner. Once the sterilized jars are filled and the lids are attached, the pecan pie filling is canned in a water bath canner for 25 minutes.
Remove from the heat and allow the jars to sit for an additional 5 minutes before carefully removing them from the water. Let sit for 24 hours before checking the seal.
Pecan Pie Sauce
In a medium saucepan over low heat, stir together the chopped pecans, corn syrup, brown sugar, butter, eggs, and salt. Stir constantly until the sugar has dissolved.
2 cups pecans,1 cup dark corn syrup,½ cup brown sugar,4 tablespoon unsalted butter,¾ teaspoon salt,3 eggs
Increase the heat and bring to a slight boil, just so the edges of the pan bubble. Reduce to a simmer. Cook for 8 minutes or until thick. Stir in vanilla.
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Let cool to room temperature before using.
Pecan Pie Instructions
1. Par bake crust for 15 minutes at 425 F degrees. Use pie weights or dry beans to weigh down.
2. Melt the butter in the microwave or in a saucepan. Allow to cool slightly but not solidify. Whisk together the cooled melted butter, corn syrup, brown sugar, and salt until well combined and frothy. Add the eggs and vanilla. Whisk until combined. Stir in pecans.
3. Pour into the pie shell. Bake at 350 F degrees for 35 to 40 minutes or until the center is just set and reaches 200F degrees.
4. Cool the pie on a baking rack for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Use this pecan pie filling as a sauce for ice cream, cheesecakes, etc, or to make deconstructed pecan pie in a cup.
Cool completely and store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Serve at room temperature or warm.
This recipe can be canned or frozen in a sealed container for up to 3 months.