Keyword: Dessert Recipes, Fall Recipes, Pecan Pie, Pecans, Slices, Thanksgiving
Prep Time: 30minutes
Cook Time: 1hour10minutes
Cooling/Chilling time: 8hours
Total Time: 1hour40minutes
Author: Dini @ The Flavor Bender
Fudgy Pecan Pie Bars - Classic pecan pies in the form of a bar or slice! A buttery shortbread crust and a fudgy flavorful pecan pie layer. A decadent and easy Thanksgiving dessert, or for any time of the year!
Line an 8 x 8 inch pan with parchment paper (I line the whole pan with parchment paper to prevent the pecan pie filling from sticking to the sides). Set aside.
Place the butter, sugar and salt in a bowl, and using a hand mixer (or whisk), cream everything together until light and fluffy.
Add the flour and stir in until mixed in with the butter and sugar. Stir to form a very sticky and soft dough.
Dollop the shortbread crust dough into the parchment paper-lined pan, and spread the dough evenly on the bottom of the pan. Be gentle and careful since the dough is soft and sticky. You can use the back of a spoon to spread it, and then an extra piece of parchment paper to evenly smooth out the crust.
Refrigerate the pan for about 30 minutes to let the crust set and become firm. Preheat oven to 350°F, while the pan is chilling in the fridge.
When the crust is chilled and the oven is preheated, bake the crust in the oven for about 20 - 30 minutes - just until the edges of the shortbread crust start to turn golden brown. Then remove from the oven.
Pecan Pie Filling
While the shortbread crust is baking, start making the pecan pie filling.
OPTIONAL - place the chopped pecans in a baking tray, and toast in preheated oven for about 5 - 10 minutes (i.e. while the shortbread crust is baking as well). The pecans should be toasty, but not burnt, so keep an eye on them. Remove from the oven and set aside until needed.
Place the brown sugar, maple syrup, butter and salt in a saucepan or microwave-safe bowl. Heat over medium heat and stir frequently until the sugar has completely dissolved and the butter has melted. You can heat and melt the sugar in the microwave as well.
When the sugar has melted, remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool for a few minutes.
In a separate bowl - whisk the 3 eggs and vanilla together until well mixed.
While whisking the eggs, pour the sugar-butter mix into the egg mix. Once the sugar-butter and egg mix are thoroughly mixed, stir in the chopped nuts (toasted or not toasted).
Pour the pecan pie filling over baked shortbread crust.
Return the pan to the oven and bake for a further 30 - 40 minutes. The filling should be set around the edges, but slightly jiggly in the middle (not runny).
Remove the pecan pie slice from the oven, and let it cool down completely in the pan. Loosen the pecan pie slice from the pan, and let it chill completely in the fridge overnight, covered in plastic wrap (you can leave it in the pan, OR transfer it to a different tray).
The following day - remove the whole pecan pie slice from the pan, and cut into squares/bars, using a sharp knife. You can cut it into 16, 2 x 2 inch pieces, or 25, 1.5 x 1.5 inch pieces.
Store the pecan pie bars in an airtight container, in the fridge. Serve at room temperature.