This easy pecan pie recipe is a must for your holiday dessert table! Made with a flaky, buttery homemade crust and a simple filling made with plenty of crunchy pecans - this pie is perfect for Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Pecan pie is a tradition in many families. I've been making this particular recipe for the last 15 years or so. It's always requested during the holidays.
Pecan pie has a classic flaky crust on the bottom, a crunchy pecan crust on top, and a sweet filling made with eggs, butter, and sugar. It's a great pie for beginners because it's easy to assemble and made with simple ingredients.
You'll love this easy pecan pie because it only takes a few simple steps before your pie is baking in the oven. And if a homemade crust is too involved for your busy holiday schedule - use a store bought crust. It makes this recipe even easier.
Serve this easy pecan pie at your next holiday meal, like Thanksgiving and Christmas. If you love pecan pie, you may also enjoy my cinnamon pecan rugelach.
Ingredients and substitutions
Homemade crust can be substituted with store bought crust to make this pie even easier. All you'll need is a single crust for the bottom of your pie.
- All-purpose flour - I've only tested this recipe with all-purpose flour, so I don't suggest using other types of flour.
- Unsalted butter - Unsalted butter and salt can be substituted with salted butter if desired.
- Salt - Enhances the flavor of your crust without making it "salty".
- Ice water - Ice water is needed to help keep your crust cold and keep the butter from melting. Grab a bowl, add a few pieces of ice, and fill with water. Allow to set for a few minutes while you prepare the rest of your crust ingredients.
- Sugars - We're using a combination of granulated and brown sugars in this recipe.
- Corn syrup - Corn syrup is most often used in pecan pies because it's thicker than other liquid sweeteners, and helps hold your filling together along with the eggs.
- Unsalted butter - Can be substituted with salted butter (reduce the listed salt by half).
- Vanilla extract - Adds depth of flavor to your pie filling.
- Salt - Enhances the flavor of your pie filling and helps cut the sweetness.
- Eggs - The eggs are arguably the most important part of this filling. They thicken when baked and hold your filling together.
- Pecans - I suggest chopping your pecans before adding them to your pie. Chopped pecans are much easier to cut through when serving. I like to add my pecans, then pour the filling over to coat the pecans, which makes a glossy crust when baked.
Should I make pecan pie the night before?
Pecan pie is best served at room temperature, after the filling has had time to set completely. It shouldn't be served hot from the oven.
This makes it a great recipe to make for busy holidays like Thanksgiving because it can be made a day or two ahead of time and stored until ready to serve.
Do you put pecans on top of pie before or after baking?
Pecans are added to the pie before baking, and even before adding your filling. The filling coats the pecans, creating a glossy crust after baking in the oven.
Pecan topping tips and tricks
The topping of this pecan pie is heavenly. I'll let you in on my two secrets to getting this topping just right.
- First, chop the pecans instead of leaving them whole. This creates a crunchy, easy to slice crust that blends with the pie filling.
- Once your pie dough is ready, add the pecans to the pan before the filling. Then, pour the pie filling over the chopped pecans. The filling coats your pecans, creating a crunchy crust after baking.
Pecan pie storage
Pecan pie filling is made with eggs, so the USDA recommends refrigerating your pie if not serving right away. Pecan pie will keep for about 3-4 days in the refrigerator.
To store your pecan pie, first allow it to come to room temperature after baking. Then, cover tightly with foil and store in the refrigerator.
If you prefer a cold pie, your pecan pie can be served straight from the refrigerator. If you like your pie room temperature (like me!), take your pie out of the refrigerator 30 minutes or more before serving.
To reheat a baked pecan pie, preheat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit while your pie comes to room temperature on the countertop. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until warmed to your liking.
Easy Pecan Pie
Pie Crust (or use one store bought pie crust)
- 1 ¼ cups (150 g) all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter, cold
- 3-4 tablespoons ice water
- ¾ cup (149 g) granulated sugar
- ¼ cup (53 g) brown sugar
- 1 cup (312 g) corn syrup
- ⅓ cup (38 g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 1 ¼ cups (143 g) chopped pecans
- In a food processor (or a bowl) add flour and salt. Pulse (or cut) butter into flour mixture. Continue to pulse a few more times until butter is pea sized. Pulse in ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until dough begins to come together. (Test your dough by pinching some together with your fingers. If it holds together, it is ready.) Remove from food processor (or bowl) onto a lightly floured surface.*
- Roll out your pie dough into a large circle and place into a 9" pie plate. Cut away any excess crust and form the edges as desired.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- In a large bowl, add granulated sugar, brown sugar, salt, corn syrup, vanilla, melted butter, and eggs. Whisk until fully combined.
- Pour pecans into empty pie crust and spread into an even layer. Pour pie filling over pecans.
- Cover pie loosely with foil and bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove foil and bake for an additional 20-30 minutes, or until middle of pie is mostly set (it will jiggle slightly). If pie is very jiggly and liquid, continue baking until mostly set. Pie will continue to set as it cools.
- Place pie on the counter to cool for several hours before serving.
- *If making in advance, form dough into a disc and wrap in plastic. Place in refrigerator to chill until ready to use (dough can be made up to 2 days in advance and kept in the refrigerator).
- Optionally, top your pie with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream when serving.
- Leftover pie can be kept in the refrigerator for 3-4 days in a sealed container or tightly wrapped with foil.
- Pecan pie can be made a day ahead to save time on busy holidays. Pie can be served cold, or brought to room temperature on the countertop for 30 minutes before serving.