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Pecan Pie Bars

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close up shot of Pecan Pie Bars stacked on top of each other on a wooden board
Make the best pecan pie bars with this simple recipe, and enjoy the flavors of pecan pie with these square dessert treats.
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Table of Contents
  1. Pecan Pie Bars Ingredients
  2. How To Make This Pecan Pie Bars Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

Everyone’s tried and loved traditional pecan pie, but what about taking it one step further with these pecan pie bars? A buttery shortbread crust topped with a rich and gooey pecan pie filling makes this a treat that will satisfy your craving without all the hard work.

close up shot of Pecan Pie Bars stacked on top of each other

Pecan Pie Bars Ingredients

Pecan Pie Bars raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

For the Shortbread Crust

  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Pecan Pie Filling

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup Karo syrup
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1½ cups pecans, roughly chopped

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

KARO SYRUP: I used light Karo syrup and granulated sugar for these easy pecan pie bars, but you can just as easily use dark Karo syrup or brown sugar as replacements. Just remember that if you make this substitute, your filling will be darker than pictured, but that does not mean it is overcooked, and it will still taste just as good.

MAPLE EXTRACT: You can use ½ teaspoon maple extract instead of vanilla extract if you want to make these delicious treats extra special.

How To Make This Pecan Pie Bars Recipe

STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 350°F. In an 8×8 square pan, place a piece of parchment paper that covers the bottom and up the sides of the pan. 

PRO TIP:

The overhanging parchment paper allows you to easily pull the pecan pie bars out of the pan once they are cooled and transfer them to a cutting board when they are ready to slice.

STEP TWO: In the bowl of a food processor, or a medium bowl using a hand mixer, add the softened butter, flour, sugar, salt, and vanilla extract. Pulse together until the dough begins to come together. You should be able to squeeze the dough together, and it will stay and not crumble.

PRO TIP:

If you do not have a food processor, you can mix your pie crust ingredients in a large bowl, using a handheld mixer on low speed. You will just mix all the ingredients until they are combined and you can squeeze the dough together with your fingers and it stays compact.

butter, flour, sugar, vanilla, and salt combined in a bowl

STEP THREE: Press dough into an even layer in the bottom of your prepared baking pan. Bake the crust for 10 minutes.

Pecan Pie Bars process shot of dough placed into the bottom of a pan

STEP FOUR: Make your pecan filling by adding ¼ cup butter, granulated sugar, Karo syrup, and maple syrup to a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes or until the sugar is dissolved and it is a light golden color. Turn off the heat and whisk in the salt and flour until no lumps remain.

Pecan Pie Bars process shot of ingredients whisked together in a bowl

STEP FIVE: In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla, then very slowly pour the warm sugar mixture into the eggs while continuing to whisk constantly. Whisk until your filling is completely combined.

PRO TIP:

You want to really make sure you go slow with pouring the warm sugar into the eggs so that the heat does not scramble your eggs.

Pecan Pie Bars process shot of ingredients whisked together in a bowl

STEP SIX: Add your chopped pecans to the filling mixture and stir. Gently pour the pecan mixture on top of the hot crust once it comes out of the oven.

Pecan Pie Bars process shot of filling mixture poured in a pan

STEP SEVEN: Return the pan to the oven and continue to bake your pecan pie bars for an additional 30 to 35 minutes or until the top is golden and the center has set.

PRO TIP:

Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to check your pecan bars at the lower end of the recommended baking time.

Pecan Pie Bars process shot of bars baked in a pan

STEP EIGHT: Cool your pecan pie bars on the counter until they are room temperature. If you try to cut your bars before they are completely cool, then the filling may run and not be set up.

How To Serve

If you are a fan of pecan pie, these amazing gooey pecan pie bars will hit the spot every time. If you are looking for an even more decadent treat, add a scoop of vanilla ice cream to your plate, and you’ll have a rich and sweet dessert to enjoy.

If you like this delicious dessert, why not also try our pumpkin cheesecake bars or chocolate chip cheesecake bars?

Storage

IN THE FRIDGE: Once cooled, you can pop these delicious bars in the fridge and keep them there for 3 to 4 days.

IN THE FREEZER: You can freeze these pecan bars for up to three months. Once they are completely cooled, store them in an airtight container and freeze them. To defrost, thaw overnight, and make sure they are at room temperature before serving.

overhead shot of Pecan Pie Bars on a wooden board with a bowl of pecans

These tasty and simple pecan pie squares are a classic Southern recipe in bar form. Not only that, but there are loads of ways you can upgrade them beyond the simple ingredients – mix in some pumpkin, top with chocolate, and more. You will find yourself making this recipe all through fall and beyond.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Can I use a different crust than the shortbread crust?

This pecan bar recipe would also be delicious with a graham cracker crust if you prefer.

How do I store pecan pie bars?

These delicious pecan pie bars can be stored in the fridge for up to four days or in the freezer for up to three months.

What is Karo syrup?

Karo syrup is a brand of corn syrup but does not contain any high-fructose corn syrup.

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close up shot of Pecan Pie Bars stacked on top of each other on a wooden board

Pecan Pie Bars

5 from 1 vote
Make the best pecan pie bars with this simple recipe, and enjoy the flavors of pecan pie with these square dessert treats.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 9 bars

Ingredients
  

Shortbread Crust

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt

Pecan Pie Filling

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup Karo syrup
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • cups pecans, roughly chopped

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. In an 8×8 square pan place a piece of parchment paper that covers the bottom and up the sides of the pan. 
  • In the bowl of a food processor, or a medium bowl using a hand mixer, add the softened butter, flour, sugar, salt and vanilla extract. Pulse together until the dough begins to come together. You should be able to squeeze the dough together and it will stay and not crumble.
  • Press the dough into an even layer in the bottom of your prepared baking pan. Bake the crust for 10 minutes.
  • Make your pecan filling by adding ¼ cup butter, granulated sugar, Karo syrup, and maple syrup to a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes or until the sugar is dissolved and it is a light golden color. Turn off the heat and whisk in the salt and flour until no lumps remain.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and vanilla, then very slowly pour the warm sugar mixture into the eggs while continuing to whisk constantly. Whisk until your filling is completely combined.  
  • Add your chopped pecans to the filling mixture and stir. Gently pour the pecan mixture on top of the hot crust once it comes out of the oven.
  • Return the pan to the oven and continue to bake your pecan pie bars for an additional 30 to 35 minutes or until the top is golden and the center has set.
  • Cool your pecan pie bars on the counter until they are room temperature. If you try to cut your bars before they are completely cool then the filling may run and not be set up.

Notes

  • The overhanging parchment paper allows you to easily pull the pecan pie bars out of the pan once they are cooled and transfer them to a cutting board when they are ready to slice.
  • If you do not have a food processor, you can mix your pie crust ingredients in a large bowl using a handheld mixer at low speed. You will just mix all the ingredients until they are combined, and you can squeeze the dough together with your fingers, and it stays compact.
  • You want to really make sure you go slow with pouring the warm sugar into the eggs so that the heat does not scramble your eggs.
  • Oven temperatures vary and may need to be recalibrated periodically to ensure they are accurate. Make sure to check your pecan bars at the lower end of the recommended baking time.

Nutrition

Calories: 472kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 116mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 535IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 2mg
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