Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (2024)

Published: Last Updated: by Marye 1789 words. | About 9 minutes to read this article.

This old-fashioned southern pecan pie recipe is the holiday classic that everyone loves with plenty of crunchy pecans surrounded by gobs of sweet goo. AND you'll learn the secret to never over or under-baking this classic southern dessert again!

Prep Time 5 minutes mins

Cook Time 1 hour hr

Total Time 1 hour hr 5 minutes mins

Jump to Recipe

What would Thanksgiving dinner be without this Southern classic? Next time be sure to try the sweet potato pie or the chocolate chess pie!

Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (1)
Table of Contents
  • it’s SO delicious
  • 🗝️ Key takeaways
  • 🧾 Ingredients
  • 🔪 Instructions
  • 🎥 Video
  • 🥫 How to store leftover pecan pie
  • 💭 Things to know
  • 👩‍🍳 FAQs
  • 📚 Related recipes
  • 📞 The last word
  • 📖 Recipe
  • 💬 Comments

it’s SO delicious

I couldn’t find my usual pecan pie recipe and used this one. There is no going back, it’s SO delicious!

Mallory

🗝️ Key takeaways

  • This classic dessert is so good and my technique means more pecans in every bite without sacrificing the goo.
  • Perfect for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and anytime you want the best pecan pie ever.
  • With my tips, you'll know exactly when to take it out so it's not overcooked or underdone!

This old-fashioned southern pecan pie recipe will have the sweet smells of Thanksgiving pirouetting around your kitchen like a four-year-old with a poufy new dress.

Toasting brings out the roasty flavor of pecans held together with a glorious amount of lush, sweet pecan pie goo - and it's all snuggled together within a buttery homemade pie crust that is so flaky it melts in your mouth with every dreamy bite.

🧾 Ingredients

Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (2)

How in the world can I improve on a classic pecan pie, you ask? The ingredients are the same but, oh my friend, I have a delicious secret that makes everyone wonder what kind of pixie dust I sprinkle in the oven.

First, the ingredients -

  • Light Karo corn syrup is used as a sweetener and to help create the perfectly thickened pecan pie goo. Some people prefer dark corn syrup.
  • Large eggs
  • Granulated sugar adds more sweetness without changing the actual flavor.
  • Brown sugar in a small amount gives just the right caramelly depth.
  • Butter adds smooth richness to the goo as well as flavor to the pie overall.
  • Vanilla extract enhances the sweetness and gives a little pop of extra flavor. I use real vanilla extract.
  • Kosher salt helps cut the sweetness of the pie.
  • Pecans should be halves, this is important - you'll find out why later.
  • 9-inch unbaked pie shell like my homemade one or just use one from the refrigerator section of your store if you're in a hurry.

🔪 Instructions

Note: This is an overview of the instructions. The full instructions are in the green recipe card below.

  • Preheat the oven to 350F and place your unbaked pie crust in the freezer. You can use a homemade crust or a store-bought one.
  • Toast the pecans for a few minutes in the oven.
  • Mix the eggs well, and add the Karo syrup and butter.
  • Add the sugars, vanilla, and salt. Beat well.
  • Add in the pecans and pour into the icy cold crust.
  • Bake for 1 hour at 350F. You may need to let it bake for 5 more minutes. The pie will still be jiggly - it will register 200F on an instant-read thermometer when done.
  • Refrigerate overnight.

🎥 Video

🥫 How to store leftover pecan pie

Cover the pie with plastic wrap or put in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

You can freeze homemade pecan pie, too! Let it come to room temperature, cover tightly with plastic wrap then with aluminum foil and freeze for up to 3 months.

Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator and you're ready to go!

💭 Things to know

Expert Tip: NEVER over or under-bake your pecan pie again! Simple poke an insta-read thermometer slightly off center and when the internal temperature reads 195F to 200F take it out of the oven - it's done!

This is really such a simple pie to make! Old fashioned and delicious - your family and friends will want to know your secret to taking this classic pecan pie recipe over the dang top.

Just tell them "pixie dust".

In reality, (besides pixie dust, of course) the secret to this pie is simply toasting the pecans, using more than are usually called for in a pecan pie, AND using them in three different sizes.

  • You can add 1 tablespoon of bourbon to the filling when you add the vanilla extract.
  • Make sure everything is at room temperature except the pie crust.
  • Freeze the pie crust while you are making the filling.
  • By using a combination of finely chopped pecans, coarsely chopped pecans, and pecan halves there were plenty of pecans in every bite.
  • I mixed the pecans in with the sugar and egg mixture just before putting it in the pie crust. I was not sure that they would float to the top but they did just fine.
  • Toast the pecans to get the most flavor.
  • Use light brown sugar so it adds flavor but doesn't overpower the flavor of the pie.
  • I prefer light corn syrup for my pecan pie but dark corn syrup is fine - it gives a more pronounced flavor.
  • Once you put the filling together bake it immediately or it will sort of separate when baking.
  • If the crust starts to get too brown cover it with aluminum foil.
  • An overcooked pecan pie gets hard and grainy.
  • Make the pie a day ahead of time for best flavor and texture. If you do not chill it overnight it will likely be runny.
  • Store finished pie in the refrigerator but let it come to room temperature before serving.

👩‍🍳 FAQs

Here are the questions I am most frequently asked about this recipe.

Should you refrigerate pecan pies after baking?

Yes, unless you plan on serving it within two hours. Always let it come to room temperature, cover, and refrigerate.

How tell when pecan pie is done?

It will register 200F on a insta-read thermometer or you can tell by jiggling the pie plate a little. The center of the pie will still jiggle slightly and the top with be golden brown.

Can pecan pie be made a day ahead?

You can safely make it up to 2 days ahead of time and the flavor and texture actually gets better as it sits.

Can you freeze pecan pie?

You can! To freeze it, wrap cooled pie tightly in plastic wrap then aluminum foil. Use within 2 months. To thaw it, leave the wrapped pie in the refrigerator overnight.

Why does my pecan pie crust stick to the pan?

Usually, it's because you've over-filled the crust and the filling bubbles over, seeping behind the crust. (1) Spray the pie pan with non-stick spray before putting in the the crust. (2) Place the pie plate in shallow VERY hot water (just so the bottom is covered - it melts the sugary glue) for a few minutes before cutting and serving. (3) Make sure you are not over-filling the crust.

Oh my gosh, I love pie! Here are some of my favorite pie recipes for the holidays -

  • Buttermilk pecan pie is a unique spin on the classic.
  • Southern coconut pie is a lot like pecan pie but with coconut.
  • What would the holidays be without pumpkin pie?
  • I love the color of this candy apple pie and the flavor is out of this world!
  • No bake chocolate pie? Yes please!
  • Pumpkin cheesecake takes the dessert table to a new level.

You must use the category slug, not a URL, in the category field.

Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (3)

📞 The last word

I have to tell y'all that making that first pecan pie ever was not a roaring success.

In fact, I pretty much started buying them after failure number 50... SO when I say y'all can MAKE THIS I am serious.

This is truly the best pecan pie recipe ever because once I got it right?

It was perfect. It's my favorite recipe and I'm pretty sure it's about to be yours, too.

This delicious Southern dessert is the centerpiece of any holiday table! Buttery, sweet, and sinfully rich!

Serve it as is or go for broke with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or dollop of whipped cream on top of the pie.

Don't save it for special occasions.

You'll also want to try another Southern classic - buttermilk pie.

If you click on the number of servings in the recipe card you can adjust the measurements up or down for the exact number of servings you need.

If you love this recipe please give it a 5 star rating.⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖 Recipe

Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (4)

4.80 from 196 votes

Southern Pecan Pie

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This old-fashioned southern pecan pie recipe is the holiday classic that everyone loves with plenty of crunchy pecans surrounded by gobs of sweet goo. AND you'll learn the secret to never over or under-baking this classic southern dessert again!

Course Dessert- Pie

Cuisine American - Southern

Prep Time: 5 minutes minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour hour

Total Time: 1 hour hour 5 minutes minutes

Servings:8 servings

Calories:421

Author:Marye Audet-White

Ingredients

  • 1 cup corn syrup, white or light - I used Karo
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch kosher salt
  • 1-½ cups pecans , finely chop 1.2 cup, coarsely chop ½ cup, and leave ½ cup in halves
  • 1 9-inch pie crust, unbaked

I earn a commission from Instacart from qualifying purchases.

Instructions

  • Fit the pie dough into a 9-inch pie pan.

  • Preheat the oven to 350F.

  • Toast the pecans for a few minutes in the oven being careful not to scorch them; set aside.

  • Mix the eggs well, add the corn syrup and melted butter.

  • Add the white sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and salt; beat well.

  • Stir in the pecans.

  • Pour the pecan pie filling into the pie shell.

  • Bake for 1 hour at 350F. You may need to let it bake 5 more minutes. Pie will still be jiggly - it will register 185- 200F on an instant read thermometer when done.

  • Refrigerate overnight!!!!!

  • Serve or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Notes

  • You can add a tablespoon of bourbon if you want. It gives it a nice flavor twist.
  • Make sure everything is at room temperature except the pie crust.
  • Freeze the pie crust while you are making the filling.
  • I love my homemade all butter pie crust but storebought crust is fine.
  • By using a combination of finely chopped pecans, coarsely chopped pecans, and pecan halves there are plenty of pecans in every bite.
  • I mixed the pecans in with the sugar and egg mixture just before putting it in the pie crust. I was not sure that they would float to the top but they did just fine.
  • Toast the pecans to get the most flavor.
  • Use light brown sugar so it adds flavor but doesn't overpower the flavor of the pie.
  • Once you put the filling together bake it immediately or it will sort of separate when baking.
  • If the crust starts to get too brown cover it with aluminum foil.
  • Don 't over bake this pie. It will register 195 - 200F on a insta-read thermometer when it is done. Overbaking will ruin the gooey filling.
  • An overcooked pecan pie gets hard and grainy.
  • Make the pie a day ahead of time for best flavor.
  • Store finished pie in the refrigerator but let it come to room temperature before serving.

You'll find more helpful tips and variations in the body of the post.

Nutrition Facts

Calories: 421kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 176mg | Potassium: 77mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 58g | Vitamin A: 220IU | Calcium: 30mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is estimated as a courtesy. If using for medical purposes, please verify information using your own nutritional calculator. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

First published January 10, 2011. Last updated November 19, 2023 to add ingredient shots and to improve editorial content.

More Homemade Southern Pie Recipes

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  • How to Keep Pie Crusts from Sticking to the Pan

About Marye

Meet Marye Audet, a wizard in the kitchen and a storyteller at heart. Marye is like your eccentric but fun aunt who knows all the secret recipes and isn't afraid to spill them. She's been around the culinary block more than once, turning simple ingredients into mouthwatering masterpieces. With a sprinkle of humor and a dash of wit, she makes cooking feel like a piece of cake (which she can also teach you to bake perfectly). When she's not conjuring up delicious dishes, you might find her sharing laughs with her family, reading by the fire, or scribbling down her next big recipe idea. Marye believes that a good meal and a hearty laugh are the best parts of life. Marye's a NY Times Bestselling author with 10 cookbooks under her belt and her recipes have been featured in Good Housekeeping, Country Living, Today, House Beautiful, Texas Living, Food & Wine, and many more.

Reader Interactions

Comments

    Leave a Reply

  1. Deborah S

    Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (9)
    Made this pie today and it was delicious!!

    Reply

  2. Deborah S

    Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (10)
    This is a delicious pecan pie.

    Reply

  3. Libbie N

    This is the best pecan pie I have ever had. My husband agrees.

    Reply

  4. Barbie

    Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (11)
    Marye, I always get rave reviews on my pecan pies. Personally, I felt they could be improved just a twinge. Well....now I have it....your recipe!!! Your recipe makes the most delectable pecan pie ever! The toasting of the pecans adds a great flavor. Followed your recipe including the instructions for the various chopping of the pecans. I love there is still plenty of "custard" in the pie even with all the pecans. This is now my go to pecan pie recipe. Thank you for sharing with us Pinterest bakers!

    Reply

  5. Audi Bernal

    Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (12)
    Absolutely going to make this pie! Can't wait to eat it! 🥧

    Reply

  6. Annie

    Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (13)
    This pecan pie recipe is fabulous! I decided to toss my usual recipe this year and try your version, and I am glad I did. It was just the right amount of pecans and the filling was buttery and gooey, just what you’re hoping for with a pecan pie. I also appreciated the hint about the temp of the filling, mine was 190 when I took it out and it was spot-on. Thanks so much!

    Reply

  7. Marianne

    Can I use a frozen deep dish crust for this recipe?

    Reply

    • Marye

      Yes.

      Reply

  8. Emily

    The pecan measurements don't add up.. is it 1.5 cups of pecans or 2.2 cups? Maybe that's why people are having runny pies?

    Reply

    • Marye

      It’s a typo. 1/2, 1/2,and 1/2. People’s pies are runny because they didnt let them set overnight

      Reply

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Southern Pecan Pie Recipe {with Karo Syrup} (2024)
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