Classic Pecan Pie and the Epic Piecrust Disaster

Classic Pecan Pie

My Dad’s favorite pie has always been Pecan Pie, and after tasting this classic recipe, I can understand why. It was just the right level of sweet, the filling tasted almost caramelized and set perfectly, the topping was crunchy and bursting with toasted pecan flavor. It was worth waiting until 10 PM to take our first bite.

How could we possibly have waited so long? Do we have that much self-control or did we eat that much stuffing?! Well it’s kind of a funny story, or at least it may be a funny story in 10 years…

Classic Pecan Pie

I am a bit of an obsessive organizer anyways but you can bet that when the new in-laws are coming into town for my first time ever hosting Thanksgiving, I am going to kick the obsessiveness up a notch.

Classic Pecan Pie

Two days before Thanksgiving I made my cranberry chutney, my pie-crusts, my homemade chicken stock. The day before I rolled out my crusts, baked my pumpkin pie, prepped all the ingredients for the stuffing, made the dough for the rolls and nestled them in their baking dish, readied my turkey for the oven, and reviewed my master timeline to make sure I hadn’t forgotten anything (I hadn’t).

I had the day-of cooking and preparation timed down to the minute. I had a timeline of events by Preparation, Oven, and Stovetop so that the kitchen would run like a well-orchestrated theater production.

Classic Pecan Pie

So when I pulled my pre-baked piecrust out of the oven for my pecan pie at 10:00 AM and saw that the crust had shrunken excessively and looked too greasy, I almost lost it. I can make this piecrust recipe in my sleep! How could this have happened on Thanksgiving of all days? This was unacceptable. The piecrust and the pies would have to be remade. I don’t tolerate subpar pie-crusts. Must. Not. Panic. 

Classic Pecan Pie

I shoved the turkey in the oven and set to re-making all the pie-crusts. This particular vodka crust needs to spend at least 5 hours, preferably overnight, in the refrigerator before you can roll it but we would have to make do. As soon as the last side dish came out of the oven, the pumpkin pie was shoved in. As soon as the pumpkin pie was safely cooling on a rack, in went the pecan pie.

I shouldn’t have worried because the crust is not the star of this pecan pie. The filling is so sensational that you hardly care if there is crust. Here the perfectly flakey crust becomes a backdrop for the main event.

Because of the Epic Piecrust Disaster the pecan pie filling sat over a simmering double boiler for 10 hours waiting for a crust. I think it might have actually made it better. I might make it that far in advance every time.

Classic Pecan Pie

I’ll leave you with the words of my husband, “This pie is stupid good.”

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Classic Pecan Pie

  • Yield: 1 Deep-dish 9\\\\\\\” Pie 1x


This Classic Pecan Pie is sensational! The perfect amount of sweet, the filling tastes almost caramelized, the top is crunchy and bursting with toasted pecan flavor.


  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • ¾ cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups pecans, toasted and chopped course
  • 1 partially baked deep-dish pie crust (Click here for instructions on how to pre-bake a piecrust, and here for my absolute favorite, no fail piecrust recipe!)


  1. After you partially bake the crust, reduce the oven temperature to 275°. The crust must still be warm or hot when you fill it, in order to ensure a crispy crust.
  2. In a medium, heat-proof bowl positioned over a simmering double boiler, melt the butter. Remove the bowl from the heat and stir in the sugar and salt until they are completely absorbed into the butter. Whisk in eggs, then the corn syrup and vanilla until smooth.
  3. Return the bowl to the double boiler and stir until a thermometer reads 130° or the mixture is shiny and hot to the touch.
  4. Remove from the heat and stir in pecans.
  5. Pour pecan mixture into the warm, partially baked crust. Bake until the filling looks set but yields like Jell-O when gently pressed with the back of the spoon.
  6. Let pie cool complete on a wire rack before cutting.


Note: Per my experiences this Thanksgiving, you can make this filling several hours ahead through step 4 and then keep it warm over the gently simmering water until it is needed. I stirred the filling every hour or so until my crust was ready. Simply pick up the instructions right back at #5 when you are ready.


  • Serving Size: Serves: 8-10

It should be noted that the piecrust recipe really is foolproof unless you forget to triple just one of the ingredients!

More Tempting Holiday Dessert Recipes:

All-Butter Pie Crust with Video Tutorials!

All Butter Pie Crust Video Tutorials for 5 different methods! Get a perfect flakey crust every single time!

Traditional Pumpkin Roll

Pumpkin Roll with Cream Cheese Filling

Easy, Foolproof Pumpkin Pie

Classic Pecan Pie

Salted Caramel Butter Bars

Salted Caramel Butter Bars

Maple Caramel Pecan Bars {These are soooooooo gooood!}

Maple Pecan Caramel Brown Butter Blondies

Salted Caramel Chocolate Pecan Pie

Salted Caramel Chocolate Pecan Pie

Heritage Bourbon Sweet Potato Pie

Mary Randolph's Sweet Potato Pie


  • Kayle (The Cooking Actress)
    December 1, 2013 at 4:21 pm

    ugh isn’t that always the case?! Just when you need to impress people, something just doesn’t work for some reason! I’m glad you managed to pull it through and make SUCH a delicious pie!

    • Lindsey
      December 1, 2013 at 5:03 pm

      I know!!! It really does. But all’s well that end’s well, right? I know you must have had some fabulous pie at your Thanksgiving!

  • Miss Kim @ behgopa
    December 2, 2013 at 3:25 am cool that you discovered something awesome through a disaster. That’s how most brilliant discoveries are made…unexpectedly. The pie really does look stupid good lol. I want some! I love your passion for perfect pie crusts.

    • Lindsey
      December 2, 2013 at 10:02 am

      I really do think I am going to make this filling at least 5 hours before baking the pie. It was just so much better than any other pecan pie I’ve ever had! I wish I could give you some!

  • Phillip
    December 2, 2013 at 9:25 am

    I have more than one family member whose favorite dessert is pecan pie. I’ve always used the recipe that is on the Karo Syrup bottle. It is so easy to do and they love it. It also freezes well so I go ahead and make several to have during the holidays.

    • Lindsey
      December 2, 2013 at 10:04 am

      I’ll have to try freezing it next time! I almost made the one on the Karo Syrup bottle but then this one had more butter and vanilla and I couldn’t resist! 😉

    • Lindsey
      December 2, 2013 at 10:04 am

      ps – is the fruitcake done yet?!

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  • Pamela
    November 17, 2016 at 8:35 am

    Yum! I haven’t enjoyed pecan pie for years, (dental issues) but this year, finally!!!! I was wondering, I have had some pies in the past that have such bland fillings, some pretty good, and some quite deliciously strong. I love the really strong ones, do you know what makes them that way?

  • Trudy
    October 23, 2018 at 5:56 pm

    Going to try!

    • Lindsey
      November 11, 2018 at 6:25 pm


  • Jen
    November 27, 2019 at 7:32 pm

    I am shocked that this pecan pie recipe doesn’t give a cook time. 10 minutes? 20? 60? I have no idea. A ballpark would at least keep me from opening the oven door constantly wondering. And I can’t really tell if it’s Jell-O like beneath the pecans. So I have no clue when to pull this thing out of the oven.

    • Lindsey
      February 10, 2020 at 5:54 pm

      Oh Jen, I’m sorry to have let you down. It really depends on the oven but usually around 30. The trick to telling if it’s done is to touch the center like you would a cake and when it provides a little resistance then that means it is done!


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