I have been searching for the perfect pecan pie recipe for ages. After trying out countless recipes, I’ve come up with what I think is the perfect pecan tart. Most of the recipes I tested out used corn syrup — but not this one. I use maple syrup, brown sugar and salted butter to create a rich caramel sauce. Crunchy chopped pecans and sea salt are stirred into the caramel sauce to add the finishing touch to this decadent dessert. It’s a sweet ending to your holiday meal!
*A word about the crust: the base of this tart is a buttery, crunchy, shortbread-like crust. You can use pie weights to blind bake the crust to prevent it from puffing up — although I never do. I realize this probably a huge baking faux-pas. I just use my fingers to gently press the crust down to even it out once it comes out of the oven. Don’t judge me.
For the crust:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2/3 cup powdered sugar
- 3/4 cup cold salted butter, cubed
For the filling:
- 2 cups pecans, roughly chopped
- 2/3 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup salted butter
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 3 tbsp heavy cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease a nine-inch tart shell with removable bottom.
- Place pecans on a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 5 minutes. Set aside.
- Make the crust: using a food processor, pulse together the flour, powdered sugar and butter until the mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs.
- Press the mixture into the prepared tart pan.
- Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, until the edges are a light golden brown. Place on a wire rack to cool while you prepare the filling.
- For the filling: in a sauce pan, stir together the brown sugar, butter, maple syrup and heavy cream. Bring the mixture to a boil.
- Once the mixture boils, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, sea salt and pecans. Gently pour the mixture into the tart shell.
- Bake the tart for 22-25 minutes. Cool completely before slicing.