Pecan Pie Bars for a crowd! These easy shortbread pecan bars bake in a sheet cake pan for the ultimate dessert for pecan lovers.
Have you tried any of the slab pies we’ve shared lately? There’s pumpkin for fall and strawberry rhubarb for summer. We love them because they feed a crowd, giving everyone a taste of delicious pie without needing an entire piece.
Pecan pie is a classic favorite loved by all, so you’ll be sure to want to serve up this Pecan Pie Bars AKA Pecan Slab Pie at your next gathering!
Why you’ll love this recipe:
- sweet and chewy
- delicious shortbread crust that balances out the sweetness
- firmer than pecan pie so you can hold the bars in your hands without a mess
- loaded with caramel-y pecans
What does pecan pie taste like?
Pecan pie is rich and gooey and sweet. Although these bars aren’t quite as gooey as a whole pecan pie, they still have the same caramel-y brown sugar flavor.
What you need to make pecan bars:
- Butter: The salted butter helps cut through some of the sweetness in these pecan pie bars. If you only have unsalted butter, add in an additional ¼ teaspoon of salt into the filing.
- Cornstarch: This helps the crust stay soft.
- Granulated Sugar and Brown sugar. You’ll put granulated in the crust and brown sugar in the filling.
- Light corn syrup: For a slightly healthier option, you can replace the light corn syrup with honey.
- Heavy cream: The heavy cream can be substituted with half and half or whole milk.
- Pecans. Make sure the pecans you buy aren’t salted.
What is the best way to cut pie bars?
In order to avoid a mess, it is important that you wait for your pecan pie bars to cool. As they cool, they will harden enough to make cutting much easier. Use your parchment paper to lift the bars out of the pan and on to a flat cutting surface. This will make it much easier to make straight lines.
Can I add anything to my bars?
Although the nutty bars taste great on their own, they serve as a great base for other additions. Some suggestions include:
- Chocolate chips: because these bars are plenty sweet, I recommend using semi sweet or dark chocolate chips to help cut through some of the sweetness
- Toffee bits
- Caramel filling
- Nutella or peanut butter
- Different nuts for a different type of flavor. Try macadamia nuts, peanuts, or walnuts.
How do I store pecan bars?
These pecan bars will last at room temperature for an additional 5-7 days. They can also be made ahead of time and frozen. Freeze for up to 2-3 months for best quality. Make sure to store your pecan pie bars in an airtight container.
Pecan Pie Bars
- 1 cup salted butter (cold and cut into cubes)
- 1 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup salted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
- 1 ½ cups brown sugar (lightly packed)
- 2/3 cup light corn syrup
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 cups pecans (chopped)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Make crust by combining all the ingredients in a medium sized bowl.
- Cut into the ingredients with either a pastry cutter or two knives until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
- Line a 9×13 inch pan with parchment paper (or grease well) and press crust firmly into the bottom of the pan.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
- While crust is baking prepare filling (start about 10 minutes before crust has finished baking). In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine butter, brown sugar, light corn syrup, and heavy cream.
- Stir frequently until mixture comes to a light boil. Boil mixture for 1 minute while stirring constantly before taking off heat. Stir in pecans.
- Remove the crust from the oven and pour hot pecan mixture over the crust. Carefully smooth topping to the edges.
- Return pan to oven and bake for an additional 20 minutes. Mixture should be bubbly with a little bit of wobble.
- Let the pecan bars cool completely before cutting into bars. Enjoy!