Pecan Butter Pie

side image pecan butter pie | comfort food | hearth health happiness

I’m sharing a little slice *pun intended* of my past with you, and I couldn’t be more excited! Growing up, my mother would make peanut butter pie when the weather was warm and we wanted a frozen piece of delicious sweetness. I decided to try this with pecan butter, to give it more of a fall twist and it turned out to be WONDERFUL! Consider making this pecan butter pie while the weather is still a little warm, but it can be enjoyed any time of year.

Pecan Butter Pie with a Flexitarian Approach

As most of the recipes on Inspired Epicurean tend to take a healthier approach to comfort food on a flexitarian diet, you might be wondering where exactly this fits into the bigger picture. I’m so glad, if you are! This recipe addresses 2 key categories that are important to me: 

Using ingredients that contain fewer preservatives and chemicals. For example, you can use Cool Whip to replace the whipped cream, but I elected to use ingredients that might be more fattening instead of going for the lower-fat, higher-chemical option. Since the pecan butter is also homemade, I can control those ingredients. The only exception is the store-bought graham cracker crust, but you are welcome to use your own, if desired. 

Everything in moderation. The approach that has worked best for Cliff and I over the years is eating healthful foods 80-90% of the time, and indulging every so often. This helps us stay on track. However, you need to listen to what works best for you and make any necessary adjustments for your particular needs.

pecan butter pie ingredients before combining | comfort food | hearth health happiness
homemade pecan butter beside whipped cream | comfort food | hearth health happiness
bowl of pecan butter pie filling

Ingredients

Homemade Pecan Butter

  • Pecans: Traditionally, 1 cup of raw pecan halves will produce 1/3 cup pecan butter when processed. Some of this does depend upon the size of the nuts – a universal issue with nuts of all types. For this recipe, I used raw Mammoth pecan halves that offer a generous amount of kernel. If you use a smaller pecan, like an Elliott, keep an extra 1/4 to 1/2 cup nearby for processing. This particular recipe calls for 1 1/4 cup pecans, so please note the extra 1/4 cup is for garnish…an optional step. 
  •  Salt: Just to add a little extra flavor – only a pinch of kosher salt is needed! 

Pecan Butter Pie Filling

  • Plain cream cheese: I prefer the full fat version, but have successfully used the “1/3 less fat” option. You only need 3 ounces, so will have some left over if starting a new package. 
  • Pecan butter: Make the homemade version, or store-bought. Feel free to use other nut butters or peanut butter instead of the pecan butter as well. You can really make it to your liking! 
  • Powdered sugar: Use a good quality powdered sugar that you trust. In baked and no-bake items alike, powdered sugar can create a bit of a metallic taste if it is a cheaper or stale version. We just want the sweetness here! 
  • Whipped cream: About half of the whipped cream will be added to the base pie filling and the rest for the topping. Heavy whipping cream is the preferred ingredient for a luxurious taste and guaranteed volume. 

Special Additions

  • Graham cracker crust: This is the one short-cut I take with the recipe – using a store-bought crust, that is. If you purchase the Keebler brand, pay attention to the size. If you end up purchasing the option that offers “2 additional slices,” increase the volume of the pie filling ingredients by an additional 1/3. 
  • Coarsely-chopped pecans: Toast these before chopping, like you will do for the pecan butter. No additional oil needed in the pan. 

Stabilized Whipped Cream

  • Heavy whipped cream: I recommend going for the good stuff here – it’s worth it! 
  • Pure vanilla extract: For a little sweetness…perfect this dessert. 
  • Powdered sugar: Just a bit, and remember, use a good quality. 
pecan butter pie ingredients with labels | hearth health happiness
pecan butter pie overhead image | comfort food

Pecan Butter Pie

Melanie Lorick
A dreamy twist on the classic peanut butter pie, this pecan butter version is simply extra special. The rich, nutty undertones of pecans turned into a delicious pecan butter that provide the foundation for a delicious treat. Mixed with comfort food favorites like cream cheese and heavy whipped cream, this isn't for a diet, but is perfect for a special occasion. The heavy whipped cream is stabilized with cornstarch to make a more natural version of Cool Whip, which is an added bonus!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8 people

Ingredients
  

Stabilized Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Pecan Butter Pie

  • 9 inch graham cracker crust I use store-bought
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup pecan butter
  • 3 ounces plain cream cheese I prefer full fat, but have successfully used "13 less fat" from the store

Homemade Pecan Butter

  • 1 1/4 cups raw pecans reserve 1/4 cup pecans for pie topping
  • pinch kosher salt

Instructions
 

Homemade Pecan Butter

  • Add pecans to food processor and start blending. Every few minutes (or less), use a rubber spatula to scrape the edges of the bowl, in a downward motion. Depending upon how the pecans are behaving, alternate between pulsing and letting the processor run continuously for a minute or two at a time.
  • The pecan butter will become smooth after 10 - 15 minutes of processing.

Stabilized Whipped Cream

  • Chill mixing bowl in freezer for a few minutes before whipping.
  • Add cream, pure vanilla extract, and powdered sugar to cream and whip on medium speed until stiff peaks form.
  • Just before finishing, add cornstarch and whip just until incorporated.

Pecan Butter Pie

  • Blend the cream cheese, pecan butter, and powdered sugar in a bowl (using a spoon) until all ingredients are completely merged. Put a little muscle into it, but it does come together relatively quickly.
  • Once blended, add half of the stabilized whipped cream and stir until it is smoothly incorporated. The mixture will become lighter, fluffier, and much more malleable.
  • Spoon mixture in a graham cracker pie crust (I use a store-bought crust), or other crust of your choice. Spread until even.
  • Top with the remaining whipped cream and spread until it completely covers the pie. Sprinkle with ¼ c. chopped, plain pecans.
  • Freeze for several hours, or overnight. Enjoy!

Notes

Remove from freezer about 15-30 minutes before serving and cut with a knife that has been warmed with hot running water for a few seconds.
If you use a larger pie crust, like Keebler's "Two Additional Slices" variety, increase the whipped cream and pie filling ingredients by an additional 1/3.
Keyword comfort food, cream cheese, dessert, pecan butter, pecan pie, pie
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Pro Tip:

Drizzle a little dessert sauce on the plate before adding the slice of pie. It will lend a fun flavor addition without overshadowing the pie itself. If you pour a dessert sauce over the top of the pie, you risk melting the whipped topping too quickly. 

overhead image of pecan butter pie and pie slice

A few tips for the ideal pecan butter pie

Who doesn’t love a recipe that is practically fool proof? You could make this with your eyes closed (not recommended) and still end up with a delightful finished product. Despite it’s ease, though, here are a few tips that will make it even better. 

  • Don’t let the mixing of the pie filling ingredients intimidate you. At first, it will feel like the process will take an eternity to thoroughly combine, but it will come together much faster than you can imagine. The powdered sugar is not much of a match to the cream cheese and pecan butter, and each item does blend well. Of course, use the back of the spoon or spatula to break up any clumps of powdered sugar that prove to be stubborn. 
  • The most perfect texture is best attained when the pie is kept frozen, but allowed to thaw just a bit (15-20 minutes). Warm a knife under some hot water, dry it, and use to easily slice the pie. 
  • Be sure to chill the mixing bowl in the refrigerator or freezer before whipping the cream, to save time. 
  • Taste the whipped cream before adding it to the pie and add 1/2 – 1 tsp more vanilla extract if you feel it need to be a little more sweet. 
pecan butter pie pinterest pin | flexitarian diet

If you’re like me and enjoy pecan butter as much as I do, I think you’ll also love these homemade pumpkin spice pecan butter cups that are popular any time of year!

I can’t wait to see your pecan (or other nut) butter pie success and until next time, cheers to your hearth, health, and happiness! 

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1 thought on “Pecan Butter Pie”

  1. Pingback: Triple Chocolate Pecan Butter Spread - hearth health happiness

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