We lost count at how many folks have told us what a relief it was to find a pecan pie that didn’t call for corn syrup. We’re not going to argue. The filling retains all the gooey sweetness of classic pecan pie and there’s the bonus of a slight nuttiness of oats in the crust. Whatever your reason for reaching for a different bottle of syrup, we think you’ll find an immense amount of satiation in what results from this recipe.–David Leite
What type of maple syrup should I use in this pecan pie?
For the maple syrup, use the darkest variety that you can find. It will impart the most maple flavor to your pie. Save the lighter maple syrup for pancakes.
Maple Pecan Pie
For the crust
- 1/4 cup rolled oats, (not instant oats)
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for the work surface
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 8 tablespoons (4 oz) unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces
- 3 tablespoons ice water
- 1 large egg yolk
For the filling
- 1 1/2 cups chopped unsalted pecans
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup maple syrup, preferably a darker grade
- 4 tablespoons (2 oz) unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon table salt
Make the crust
- In a food processor, process the oats and sugar until the oats are reduced to a fine powder, about 2 minutes. Add the flour and salt and pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse 4 or 5 times, until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- In a small bowl, stir together the ice water and egg yolk. Add the egg mixture to the food processor in a slow stream and pulse until the crumbs begin to cling to the side of the processor bowl and hold their shape when pressed together.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Using your hands—and a little muscle—form the dough into a 5-inch disk. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 1 hour or as long as 24 hours.
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll the dough into an 11-inch circle. Working quickly and carefully, transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie dish. Tuck the dough into the pie dish, using your fingertips to make sure that the edge of the pie is smooth and even. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (176°C).
- Remove the pie dish from the refrigerator. Line the crust with aluminum foil or parchment paper, making sure to cover the edges, and fill it with dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes. Rotate the crust and bake for another 15 minutes, or until the sides are somewhat firm and hold their shape.
- Remove the foil and weights and bake for 6 minutes, or until the bottom of the crust looks dry and the crust is a very pale golden color. Let the crust cool while you make the filling. Leave the oven on.
Make the filling
- Spread the pecans on a rimmed baking sheet and toast until they’re brown and fragrant, about 8 minutes. Transfer the nuts to a plate to cool for 10 minutes.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs and maple syrup.
- In a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water, melt the butter. Add the sugar and salt and stir to combine. Add the egg mixture and stir gently until the mixture is hot to the touch. Remove the bowl from the top of the pan and stir in the cooled pecans. Pour the filling into the piecrust.
- Bake the pie for 15 minutes. Rotate the dish and bake for 20 more minutes, or until the filling is set in the middle.
- Transfer the pie dish to a wire rack and let the pie cool completely before slicing and serving. Originally published October 31, 2012.
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Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
Hooray! A tasty pecan pie recipe not involving corn syrup! Seriously, every pecan pie I’ve ever made uses corn syrup, which I always figured was the norm. I liked the use of maple syrup and sugar here—I didn’t miss the corn syrup at all! The inside of the pie was still full of pecans and that gooey pecan pie filling that we all love.
I liked the idea of grinding oatmeal into a powder for the crust as well; I think it gave off a nuttier flavor.
Overall, I really enjoyed the process of making this pie and it was delicious. I served it with some frozen vanilla yogurt, which really topped everything off well. I can see using bourbon whipped cream as a topping for this pie as well.
As a resident of New York State, I thought it my duty to test this recipe. It caught my eye due to the fact that I reside in upstate New York where the majority of this lovely syrup comes from! It’s as delicious as any Vermont syrup; of course, I may be biased, but I do believe it to be some of the best. My neighbors all tap their trees and then a giant feast is had when bringing in the harvest to the sugar shack. I took this lovely pie as my contribution and it was definitely a big hit.
I found the recipe to be straightforward. The addition of maple syrup instead of the usual Karo syrup was very nice indeed. The darker, richer grade B also made a significant difference. I found the crust very nice and slightly rustic, lending a homeyness to the pie. All the instructions were for your basic pie recipe with the addition of the maple syrup. I’d caution all the readers to watch the browning of the nuts in the oven. It’s very easy to forget them as you get going on other things and soon you’ll be wondering what that smell is…”oh no, the nuts!” I suggest a timer to save you the expense and time of having to do them again.
I found the pie quite sweet, so instead of whipped cream I served it with crème fraîche, a more soured French cream. I do believe ice cream would be wonderful as well, especially if the pie is still slightly warm. It really is a wonderful pie, and is especially great with the New York State syrup!
The flavor is great. The crust turned out very well, even with the oats and tons of butter. Because it took a long time to bake, I ended up covering the edges to prevent them from overbrowning as given that amount of butter and egg yolk there’s so much fat that the crust around the edges has a very high chance of overbaking.