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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 classic that goes back to the late 1800s with southern origins since pecans grew in the southern states. The pie became popular when a recipe was published on the Karo syrup bottle. And, now, this delightful gooey, nutty pie has become a tradition for holiday desserts and gatherings.
Here are the simple ingredients for making this easy pecan pie recipe:
- Granulated Sugar
- Corn Syrup
- Flaked Sea Salt
- 9″ Pie Crust
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.
How To Make A Bourbon Pecan Pie
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…
Pecans: 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.
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.
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.
Bourbon Pecan Pie
- 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.
- In a medium bowl lightly beat the eggs and milk until combined, 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.
What’s your favorite part of a pecan pie, the crunchy pecans on top, the sweet caramel custard filling?
Don’t forget to stock up on your pie-making ingredients.