Maple Pecan Pie

Maple Pecan Pie

Pecan pie is not my favorite fall pie. That spot is permanently taken by pumpkin pie. But it becomes boring to have only one type of pie around, especially during the holidays. I vary my options with apple pie, lemon meringue pie and, as in this case, pecan pie.

Corn syrup is the traditional base for a pecan pie, but I didn’t want to use it in mine and looked for alternatives. While it provides a pleasing consistency to this type of pie, corn syrup is just too sweet and too one-dimensional for my tastes. It doesn’t add all that much to the pie, and lack of depth is one of the things that I don’t like to see in a pecan pie. I found one promising recipe in an old issue of Gourmet that used maple syrup instead of corn syrup. Maple and pecans go amazingly well together, so this recipe sounded like a winner right off the bat. The ingredient list is short and the method here is dead easy. The only real change I made to the original recipe was in the nuts. I used more nuts than the recipe called for and used pecans that had been previously roasted and salted. Pecan pie is definitely a sweet dessert, but salty-sweet is better in my book and using slightly salty pecans gives the pie a nice balance.

The combination of all the elements worked out beautifully. The hint of saltiness that the roasted/salted pecans added to the filling really took the edge off the sweetness of the syrup base, just like sea salt does to a caramel. The maple syrup gave the pie a fantastic fall flavor and made for a much more interesting dessert than a corn syrup-based pie. My standard maple syrup is “Grade B” because it has a richer color than the “Grade A” or “light amber” syrups. That said, any type of real maple syrup (not maple-flavored pancake syrup, which is just corn syrup) will work for this recipe. For the crust, I used my standard all-butter recipe. It doesn’t take long to make and only needs about 30 minutes to chill before working it. To save time, however, you can start with a frozen pie crust that has been defrosted.

Maple Pecan Pie
Pie Crust
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
6 tbsp butter, chilled in about 6 pieces
3-4 tbsp ice water

Whisk together flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Rub in butter with your fingertips until mixture is very coarse, but no pieces bigger than a large pea remain. Using a fork, stir in ice water until dough almost comes together into a ball. Press dough into a ball with your hands and wrap in plastic. Chill for at least 30-60 minutes before using.

Maple Pecan Pie
pastry for 9-inch pie crust
1 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 tbsp butter, melted and cooled
1 tbsp all purpose flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups coarsely chopped roasted and salted pecans

Preheat oven to 350F.
Roll out pie dough to fit a 9-inch pie plate. Transfer dough to pie plate and press lightly into place, crimping edges to fit. (If using a frozen pie crust, thaw first)
In a large bowl, whisk together maple syrup, sugars, eggs, melted butter, flour, vanilla and salt until smooth.
Spread the pecans into the bottom of the pie shell and pour maple syrup mixture over the top. Carefully transfer pie to oven.
Bake for 60 minutes, until puffed and set.
Cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

Serves 8-10

21 comments

  1. I have never had pecan pie. I guess I have ‘tasted’ a slice of someone else’s piece but never cooked or eaten my own.
    I really should try to bake one it sounds and looks like the perfect pie for fall. Beside pumpkin of course!!

  2. The most recent issue of Bon Appetit has a recipe for Maple Hazelnut Pie, which I made today. I haven’t tasted it yet, but will for dinner tonight. Post up about it sometime this week. It looks amazing and certainly smelled amazing, but it did have corn syrup in it in addition to the maple syrup.

  3. I have been looking for a corn syrup free pecan pie recipe! Excellent….I ‘ll have to try this one out.

  4. This does sound good, but have you tried the Karo made with real brown sugar? I made the best Pecan Pie I’ve ever had with that. Much, much better flavor than plain Karo.

  5. Pecan pie in any form with any ingredients works just fine for me. Unfortunately for me, pecan pie is one of those things that I could wake up in the middle of the night for – the best.

  6. This is one of my favorites. It has been way too long! Thanks for the recipe.

  7. BTW any idea where I can get more pecan pie recipes along these lines?

  8. This is my favorite kind of pecan pie, I make it every Thanksgiving for my husband. I use the recipe from Williams Sonoma Pie and Tarts cookbook (I think the one I have is now about 15 years old)

  9. You can also try to make pecan pie with Steen’s cane syrup
    Recipe @ http://www.steensyrup.com/recipes260.html

  10. i, like baking blonde, have never had pecan pie. however, you make this look really good so i plan to give it a try sometime soon.

  11. i like cakes

  12. Pies rock…cakes suck…looks like my kind of pie.

    I will be concocting my own recipe using our home-grown produce, including maple syrup, to represent our work unit in a corporate “fall baking contest”.

  13. I love love love pecan pie, but little people with nut allergies live here so no nuts in the house. Maybe in a few years I can give this recipe a try.

  14. To cut down on the calories, I’m wondering if Log Cabin sugar-free maple syrup could be substituted?

  15. I’ve made this a few times now and it tastes great!!! But, twice I baked it for an hour and it looks done but once cooled and we cut the first piece its gooey & runny inside. I read that Pecan Pie filling is actually a type of custard and can break if over heated…. so you make take it out sooner if your’s looks done before time is up.

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  18. I have a grandson with Celiac Disease and a son-in law allergic to processed sugar (including corn syrup and both white and brown sugar), so I made this without a crust at all (heavily buttered the pie pan) and with fructose (fruit sugar). Not identical to the pecan pies I grew up with in Texas, but plenty close enough. And the whole family can eat it.

  19. Tried this last week, what a great pie recipe! Thanks so much, DH & I enjoyed it & I have a keeper. Way better than pecan pie with corn syrup.

    I love maple syrup, but it can overwhelm some dishes. Not this one, it was perfectly maple flavored without being cloying.

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