Perfect Pecan Pie

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pecan pie

This traditional pecan pie can be served cooled or warmed. If you want warm pie, cool the pie thoroughly, then cut and warm it in a 250°F oven for 20 minutes.

In our family we don’t just make pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving. There has to be pecan pie too. This Pecan Pie is a parve adaptation of the pecan pie recipe from Cooks Illustrated Magazine. I make it every year even though it is more work than a standard pecan pie. Rather than just stirring everything for the filling together and then pouring it into the crust, the filling is cooked over the stove first. This deepens the flavors and makes the pie so much more delicious. This is especially important when there isn’t the automatic flavor boost of butter to rely on. Every year as I am standing over the stove stirring the filling I question if this step is really worth it, but one bite of the finished pie and I am sold on this recipe once again.

  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 8Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 (10 or 11-inch) store-bought pie crust, unbaked and well chilled
  • 1 large egg yolk, beaten with ⅛ teaspoon water
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted vegan butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon table salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¾ cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) whole pecans, toasted and chopped into small pieces

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Poke sides and bottom of pie crust with a fork and line entire crust with heavy-duty aluminum foil, pressing foil firmly against crust and extending it over the edges. Poke foil with fork and return shell to refrigerator while oven is heating.

2. Bake crust on center rack at 400°F, pressing once or twice with mitt-protected hands to flatten any puffing, until crust is firmly set, about 15 minutes. Remove foil and continue to bake until bottom begins to color, about 10 additional minutes. Remove from oven, brush sides and bottom with egg yolk, and return to oven until yolk glazes over, about 1 additional minute. Remove from oven, and set aside while preparing the filling.

3. Lower oven temperature to 275°F. Place pie shell in oven if not still warm.

4. Melt vegan butter in a medium heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove bowl from pan.

5. Mix sugar and salt into melted vegan butter until absorbed. Beat in eggs, then corn syrup and vanilla. 

6. Return bowl to sit over hot water; stir until mixture is shiny and warm to the touch, and reaches 130°F when a thermometer is inserted. Remove from heat; stir in pecans.

7. Pour mixture into warm shell.

8. Bake pie at 275°F for 50 to 60 minutes, or until center feels set, yet soft, when gently pressed. Transfer pie to cooling rack and let cool completely, at least 4 hours. Serve pie at room temperature or warm*, with cinnamon or vanilla ice cream if desired.

This recipe is adapted from Cooks Illustrated.