It’s hard to resist an old-fashioned classic dessert like a Southern Pecan Pie. But for this recipe, we’ve taken that sweet and salty flavor up a notch with the addition of a warm spicy bourbon that for even more flavor and I promise this Bourbon Pecan Pie will be a favorite dessert.
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Hi, my name is Tim Nelson, and I’d like to thank Jere’ for allowing me to share a recipe here on One Hot Oven. I’m a barbecue enthusiast from northwest Ohio, and when I’m not working my IT day job, I dedicate most of my time to grilling and smoking. Check out my blog BBQ Smarts for recipes, tutorials, and gear reviews!
Because I fell in love with cooking through barbecue, I never bothered much with desserts…until I tried the pecan pie from Goode Company while traveling through Texas. That inspired me to make my own, and I have been experimenting with different recipes for a few years now. I usually try to change one ingredient or technique each time I make a pie, and I have settled on a recipe that I think is pretty darn good. This is my recipe for Bourbon Pecan Pie.
Pecan Pie is a that goes back to the late 1800s with southern origins since pecans grew in the southern states. This pie became immensely popular when a recipe was published on the Karo syrup bottle. And, now, this delightful gooey, nutty pie has become a holiday classic dessert. Seriously, Thanksgiving and Christmas without a pecan pie just wouldn’t be right.
More easy recipes with pecans
Pecans are a favorite nut to bake with and these Pecan Blondies are moist and buttery. The pecans are cooked in browned butter that makes this nutty bar cookie extra delicious.
These Pecan Tarts are like baby pecan pies and are always a hit for the holidays or any party. I consider these the perfect and most delicious bite-sized dessert.
- Granulated Sugar
- Corn Syrup
- Flaked Sea Salt
- 9″ Pie Crust
This recipe, like almost all pecan pie recipes, is really simple. It basically comes down to mixing everything together, but there are a couple of decisions to be made along the way…
Bourbon is a relatively sweet liquor that lends itself well to desserts, and its subtle smokiness adds a layer of richness that works surprisingly well in pecan pie. Depending on the brand, the bourbon may also have some vanilla, caramel, and cinnamon notes.
With that being said, you don’t need to be worried about the bourbon overpowering the other ingredients. While its flavor is noticeable, it is most definitely mellow – this isn’t a particularly boozy dessert.
When it comes to choosing a bourbon for your pie, anything works. My advice would be to use whatever you have on hand. If you’re not much of a whiskey person but still want to give this recipe a go, consider grabbing a mini/airplane-sized bottle from the liquor store.
The spice and smokiness of the bourbon pair well with the sweet pecans. It’s a culinary flavor match.
To chop or not to chop? Personally, I like to give them a quick, fairly rough chop. I prefer the texture, and it makes it easier to get clean slices since you’re cutting between the pieces rather than through them. If you want to use whole pecans, this recipe will still work perfectly fine, so feel free!
Some folks recommend that you toast the pecans before baking your pie, but I don’t think it makes much of a difference in the final product. I figure that’s because the pecans spend about an hour in a hot oven anyway.
Corn Syrup: When you’re shopping for corn syrup, you’ll have to choose between light and dark. There honestly isn’t a huge difference in taste once everything is mixed together and baked, but I prefer dark because it has more of that rich, molasses flavor that you would expect from pecan pie. If you can only find the light variety or already have some at home, it’s completely fine to use that instead of dark.
Corn syrup adds sweetness and does not crystalize like granulated sugar and this helps with the creaminess of the pie filling.
Pie Crust: The last thing you might be wondering about is the crust. Making a pie crust is not a complex process. Right here on the One Hot Oven blog is a great recipe for How To Make A Flaky Pie Crust, and it walks you right through the steps for making a flavorful pie crust that will be perfect for this easy pecan pie.
🥧Let’s make a pie
Step 1. Prepare a pie crust for a single-layer pie (not a deep dish.) Roll out the dough and place it in the pie plate and crimp the edges.
Step 2. Make the filling in one large mixing bowl. Add the eggs and lightly beat with a fork.
Step 3. To the bowl, add the sugar, corn syrup, melted butter, vanilla, bourbon, and salt then mix until thoroughly combined.
Step 4. Add the chopped pecans to the mixing bowl and stir well.
Step 5. Pour the pie filling into the prepared pie shell and bake for 55 – 65 minutes in a 350 degree F. oven.
Step 6. When the pie is done remove it from the oven and let cool completely before cutting, this usually takes about two hours.
🌡️Baking Temps and Tips
I’ve seen a range of baking temperatures recommended in various pecan pie recipes, and some will even tell you to start high (400 – 425 F) and then finish baking at a lower temp (325 – 350 F). I like to keep things simple and go with 350 the entire time. A higher temperature will, not surprisingly, give your pie more of a crispy, caramelized top.
As your pie bakes, check on the color of the crust occasionally. If it gets too dark, you can wrap it in foil to stop the browning. When your pie is done, the edges should be firm, but the middle will spring back or even have a bit of jiggle – it will continue to set as it cools.
Serving and Storing
When your pie has finally cooled and it’s time to serve, consider sprinkling some flaky sea salt on top. Visually, it gives a beautiful layer of texture, and the bursts of salt contrast so well with the sweet pie.
If you have leftover pie, make sure to store it in the refrigerator since it contains eggs. It should be good for 4-5 days.
During the baking process the alcohol burns off and you are left with just the flavor of the bourbon.
Yes, just make sure the pie is completely cooled and wrap it well in plastic wrap then aluminum foil, and place in the freezer for several months. To freeze slices of pie it’s best to place the slices in a freezer container and freeze.
Let thaw in the refrigerator before serving.
Yes, you can use the same amount of whiskey instead of bourbon. Depending on the brands the flavor will be somewhat different, but still very tasty.
More favorite pies and tarts
Bourbon Pecan Pie
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- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. F.
- Prepare the pie crust. If making your own. Roll out the dough and place in a 9" pie plate, crimp the edges. Make sure this is not a deep dish pie plate.
- In a large bowl lightly beat the eggs, then add the sugar, corn syrup, melted butter, vanilla, bourbon, and salt; stir well until the mixture is combined.
- Stir in the pecans then pour the mixture into the prepared pie crust.
- Bake for 55-65 minutes. The pie should be almost completely set but still bounce bake in the center.
- All the pie to cool for 2 hours on a wire rack. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt before serving, if desired.
- Cover the pie with plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to three days.
First published: Aug. 19, 2019, Last updated: Sept. 20, 2021 for better readability.
What’s your favorite part of a pecan pie, the crunchy pecans on top, the sweet caramel custard filling?
Thanks so much to Tim Nelson from BBQ Smarts for sharing this luscious Bourbon Pecan Pie. Make sure you check out his site for some great grilling tips and tricks, and of course, his delicious recipes.
From learning to cook on a farm in Indiana to culinary school in California, my passion for food is never-ending. Turning on my oven to bake something for friends and family is my happy place, and I am glad to be here at One Hot Oven sharing both sweet and savory family-friendly recipes for your cooking and baking inspiration.