Pecan pie bars made without corn syrup! Use maple syrup to make these delicious gooey pecan pie bars that are so much easier than pie in an 8×8 pan.
I partnered with ALDI to bring you these pecan pie bars.
Pecan Pie Bars
If you’ve been around here a while, you’ll know that my husband and I moved frequently our first few years of being married. Four states in 6 years, to be exact. And each time we moved, before we even started looking for a house to live in, I would check out the local grocery store options.
Having a great quality grocery store near me is really important! Not only do my husband and I both love to cook, but I’ve been running this blog for over 9 years now. I go through many, many bags of flour and sugar in a month.
Over the years, I’ve determined that ALDI is the best place to shop for high-quality ingredients with great prices. Since the holidays are coming up, I’ve been stocking up on baking ingredients. I have a long list of recipes that we make each year to celebrate baking season, I mean holiday season, heh.
For Thanksgiving, it’s all about pumpkin and pecans in our house. My dad usually makes the pecan pies and the turkeys, while my Mom makes the pumpkin pies and all of the side dishes. Normally, I make a few things to bring, but considering I have a newborn baby, I get this year off. However, my husband and I decided we just couldn’t wait until Turkey Day to have a slice of pecan pie.
Pecan pie made without corn syrup:
Enter these pecan pie bars, with their pecan shortbread cookie crust and gooey pecan pie filling. Don’t tell my dad, but I just might like these more than pecan pie because of the cookie crust! Plus, the pecan shortbread crust is so easy—no rolling required! Just press the crust into the pan with your fingers and press it up the sides to hold the pecan pie filling.
These pecan pie bars have a double hit of pecans: not only are they in the custard filling, floating on the top with their gorgeous crispiness, but they’re also ground up in the crust! If you’re a fan of those pecan sandies cookies, you are going to love this recipe!
While most pecan pie recipes call for corn syrup, I’m using maple syrup today. The flavors of toasted pecans, brown sugar and a hefty pinch of salt in the filling means that you won’t exactly taste the maple syrup. I don’t have anything against corn syrup, it’s vital in so many recipes, but I do love using maple syrup because I always have it on hand.
Pie bars in an 8×8″ pan:
I love that this recipe makes just an 8×8” pan of bars. It’s enough bars to share (you’ll get about 9 large bakery-size bars), but it’s not a giant 9×13” pan of treats with tons of leftovers. I also love that the shortbread cookie crust comes together in the food processor. The food processor takes all of the guess-work out of knowing when your crust is ready—when it clumps together into a ball, it’s ready to be pressed into the pan.
This recipe calls for toasted pecans; to do this, place them on a baking sheet in a 350-degree oven and toast until fragrant, stirring every 5 minutes or so. It should take 10-15 minutes. You will be rewarded with unbelievable toasted pecan flavor in your final pecan pie bars.
I hope these pecan pie bars grace your table before the big day, and throughout the holiday season. Maybe I’ll see you in the baking aisle at ALDI 🙂
- FOR THE PECAN SHORTBREAD CRUST:
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and diced
- 6 tablespoons Simply Nature Organic Cane Sugar
- 1 cup + 2 tablespoons Baker’s Corner All-Purpose Flour
- 1/3 cup Southern Grove pecan halves, toasted
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- FOR THE PECAN PIE FILLING:
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup Specially Selected 100% Pure Maple Syrup
- 1/2 cup Simply Nature Organic Light Brown Sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup Southern Grove Pecan Halves, toasted
First: make the crust: Preheat the oven to 350. Line an 8×8” pan with parchment paper in both directions to ensure all sides are covered.
In the bowl of a big (at least 5-6 cup) food processor, add the diced butter, the sugar, flour, pecans and salt. Pulse until the mixture clumps together into a large ball.
Press the crust mixture into the pan into an even layer. You can lightly grease your hands or use a measuring cup to press it firmly into the corners and up the sides. Press it up the sides at least 1” to hold the filling.
Bake for 30 minutes, but half-way through the bake time, use a wooden spoon to press down any puffy places in the dough.
When the 30 minutes is up, remove the crust from the oven and again, press down any puffed up places.
Let the crust cool completely.
Meanwhile, melt the butter in the microwave. Pour the butter into a large bowl, and add all remaining ingredients, except the pecans. Whisk very well to blend and make sure to break up the eggs thoroughly.
Finally, stir in the toasted pecans. Pour this mixture over the crust, and bake for 30 minutes. When the pecan pie bars are done, the filling won’t jiggle all over, just very slightly in the center.
Let the bars cool completely before attempting to slice. I like to chill them overnight in the fridge before slicing and serving.
I really recommend pecan halves, not pieces for this recipe.
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