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Pecan Pie Bars Recipe (VIDEO)

Pecan Pie Bars are one of the best pecan recipes you’ll try and they are easier than pie. It’s a cross between a classic Pecan Pie and a cookie.

Loaded with pecans in a homemade caramel sauce filling and baked over a shortbread crust, these pecan squares are a crowd-pleasing, easy dessert. Add these to your holiday cookie platter!

Pecan Pie Bars stacked on each other

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We love dessert casseroles from Strawberry Pretzel Salad to Classic Tiramisu and ofcourse Baklava. If you are looking for a crowd-pleasing party or potluck dessert that fits into a 9×13 casserole, this Pecan Pie Bars recipe is a must-try!

Pecan Pie Squares Video

Watch Natasha make these Pecan Pie Bars. You will be surprised at how easy it is. We will never stop loving this Pecan dessert. Now go forth and bake!

Easy Pecan Pie Bars Recipe

The first time I tried this was at a wedding in Washington. My husband’s cousin’s wife, Tanya, made them for the dessert buffet and after trying them, I just knew I had to recreate them.

I made a batch of these and sent some home with my sister. Her words exactly – “that’s the best pecan recipe I’ve ever tried!” She was smitten. These pecan bars have that effect on people. Here’s why you’ll love this recipe.

  • Amazing Texture – Pecan Pie Bars are gooey, chewy, and crunchy with a soft caramel filling that doesn’t get stuck to your teeth.
  • Quality Ingredients – This recipe uses all-natural ingredients (no corn syrup).
  • Big Batch – This recipe fills a 9×13 casserole dish and you can cut anywhere from 16 to 28 pieces which is great for holiday parties and feeding a crowd.
Piece of pecan bar

Ingredients for Pecan Pie Bars

These have just the right balance of textures and flavors, and are so satisfying. The ingredients are simple and consist of the crust and the filling.

For the Crust:

  • All-purpose flour – creates the perfect sturdy base for the crust. I recommend unbleached, organic flour if you can get your hands on it.
  • Powdered sugar – lightly sweetens the crust (most of the sweetness comes from the caramel topping).
  • Salt – fine sea salt balances the sweetness
  • Butter – use unsalted, cold butter which creates a rich buttery crust

For the Pecan Filling:

  • Light Brown Sugar – has molasses which adds rich color and flavor to the caramel
  • Honey – creates a soft caramel base
  • Unsalted butter – adds richness to the caramel and buttery flavor
  • Heavy whipping cream – make sure to use HEAVY cream which has a higher fat content to help the filling thicken up properly
  • Salt – we use a bit of fine sea salt to balance the sweetness
  • Vanilla extract – we recommend homemade vanilla extract for the best flavor.
  • Pecans – coarsely chopped pecans add great crunch and texture to the filling
Ingredients for Pecan Bars

Pro Tip: If you don’t have pecans on hand or have an allergy, you can substitute pecans with walnuts or cashews which have a similar crunchy and chewy texture.

How to Make a Shortbread Crust

You can use either a food processor or a bowl and pastry cutter to make the crust. You want the butter to cut into the flour until it looks like a coarse meal with some pea-sized crumbs forming.

Press the crumbs into a parchment-lined 13×9 baking pan and press the crumbs evenly into the bottom then bake at 350˚F until set and lightly golden at the edges. Transfer to a parchment-lined

Step by step how to make shortbread cookie crust

Pro Tip: Lining the pan will make it much easier to lift the bars out of the pan and serve. Once it has cooled, I transfer it to a cutting board and cut into squares or bars.

How to Make Pecan Pie Bars

  1. Prep – preheat the oven to 350˚F and coarsley chop the nuts if they aren’t pre-chopped.
  2. Prepare the crust – see instructions above. While crust is baking, I make the filling.
  3. Make the Caramel – In a large saucepan, combine brown sugar, honey, butter, cream and salt. Bring to a boil then simmer 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and pecans.
  4. Spread pecan filling over your warm baked crust.
  5. Bake – return to the oven for another 20-25 minutes or until the top is bubbling and turns caramel color.
  6. Cool and Serve – once the bars are fully cooled to room temperature, remove from the pan, cut and serve.
Step by step how to make pecan filling for bars

Common Questions

How To Buy Pecans?

You can use pecan halves or coarsely chopped pecans. I would buy whichever is less expensive and if you buy them pre-chopped then you can save yourself the step of chopping nuts.

Do Pecan Squares need to be refrigerated?

Since there aren’t any highly perishable ingredients in the baked pecan pie bars, you can store them in an airtight container at room temperature for several days.

Can I make this in a pie dish?

You will need to cut the recipe in half to fit a traditional pie pan or use the recipe to fill 2 pie pans. I also suggest lining the pie pans with parchment paper for easier serving and removal from the pan.

Can I double the recipe?

Yes! You can double the recipe, divide into two separate pans and bake them side-by-side in the oven.

Pecan Pie Bars cut into squares on parchment paper

Make-Ahead

  • Storing: Once these pecan bars are cooled completely to room temperature, transfer to an airtight container and store at room temperature for 3-4 days.
  • Freezing: You can freeze for longer storage. Transfer to a freezer safe zip bag, remove any excess air and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving. 
Baked Pecan Squares stacked on a serving plate

Pecan Pie Bars are such a decadent treat for the holidays and are a dessert everyone loves. Make them once and they will probably make it to your holiday rotation.

More Pecan Recipes to try

If you love these Pecan Pie Bars, then you won’t want to miss these recipes with pecans. Pecans are so versatile for sweet or savory dishes.

Pecan Pie Bars Recipe

5 from 97 votes
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Pecan Pie Bars cut into squares and stacked
These easy Pecan Pie Bars are loaded with pecans in a homemade caramel over a shortbread crust. Add Pecan Squares to your holiday cookie platter!
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Skill Level: Easy/Medium
Cost to Make: $18-$22
Keyword: pecan pie bars, pecan squares
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Calories: 261
Servings: 28 people

Ingredients

For the Crust:

For the Filling:

Instructions

To Make the Crust:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a 9×13 baking pan with foil or parchment paper (leave some paper hanging over the sides of the pan for an easier lift later. Spray with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.

  2. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse together the flour, powdered sugar, and salt and pulse a couple of times to combine. Add diced cold butter and pulse until the mixture resembles a coarse meal with some pea-sized pieces forming. Transfer the mixture to your prepared pan, pressing the crust evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake at 350˚F for 18-20 minutes or until the crust has set and the edges are just lightly browned. Remove from the oven and set aside while you finish the filling.

Make the Pecan Pie Bars:

  1. In a large saucepan, combine the brown sugar, honey, butter, cream and salt. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and pecans, mixing until incorporated.
  2. Pour hot pecan filling over your warm crust. Return to the oven and bake for another 20-25 minutes until the top is bubbling and turns caramel color. Set the baking pan on a wire rack and cool completely to room temperature before cutting.

  3. Once the pecan squares are at room temperature, loosen the edges if needed and use the parchment paper or foil to lift the bars out of the pan. Transfer to a cutting board and cut into 2-inch squares. Serve at room temperature.
Nutrition Facts
Pecan Pie Bars Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 261 Calories from Fat 171
% Daily Value*
Fat 19g29%
Saturated Fat 7g44%
Trans Fat 0.4g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Cholesterol 28mg9%
Sodium 46mg2%
Potassium 76mg2%
Carbohydrates 22g7%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 13g14%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 338IU7%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 20mg2%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

Read more posts by Natasha

Read comments/reviewsAdd comment/review

  • Oweka
    December 3, 2022

    These were delicious and very easy to make. Thank you for the wonderful recipe.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      December 3, 2022

      You’re welcome! I’m so happy you enjoyed it, Oweka!

      Reply

  • Pamela
    December 2, 2022

    I made these for a group of hunters coming to ranch. I used a cookie crust for the bottom layer, pecan sandies. They were a great hit. Will try your bottom layer next time.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      December 2, 2022

      Hi Pamela! That’s great. I hope you love the shortbread crust too!

      Reply

  • Pierre Cipolletta
    December 2, 2022

    Well even though I forgot to put in the heavy whipping cream in the mix, they still turned pretty good. Great flavor and crunchy!! Next time I won’t forget the cream. Lol

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      December 2, 2022

      Thank you for sharing, Pierre! I’m glad they were still good.

      Reply

  • Pennie Wilhelm
    December 2, 2022

    I made the Pecan Pie Bars for Thanksgiving and they were a big hit! The only thing I did, partially, wrong, was that I didn’t incorporate the butter enough into the flour, making the crust fall apart a bit. I plan on making them again for Christmas, and make one batch gluten free. They are my go-to dessert now!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      December 2, 2022

      Hi Pennie! I’m so glad they were a hit! I hope the next batches are perfect. I would love to know how the GF batch turns out. 🙂

      Reply

  • Laya Cornell
    December 2, 2022

    Hi Natasha❤️ I have loved ALL your recipes that I’ve tried. SO good! I NEED to make your PECAN BARS right now, and I only have 18% cream😔. Can I skip the HEAVY CREAM part?
    Thanks Natasha.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      December 2, 2022

      Hi Laya! I have not tested this recipe without cream. The heavy cream helps the filling thicken up properly.

      Reply

  • Pierre
    December 2, 2022

    I forgot to add the heavy whipping cream!! I am so upset. So I hope they come out ok without it. 😩😩

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      December 2, 2022

      Oh no! I’m sorry. I hope you get to try this recipe again without the error.

      Reply

  • Ira
    November 30, 2022

    hello,
    can i use regular sugar instead of brown sugar?
    thank you

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 30, 2022

      Hi Ira! The brown sugar has molasses which adds rich color and flavor to the caramel but you can test it with regular sugar.

      Reply

  • Kris
    November 28, 2022

    I have never commented on a recipe before but had to after making these for Thanksgiving. They are AMAZING!!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 28, 2022

      Hi Kris! I’m so glad you loved them. Thank you.

      Reply

  • Gayle Bullock
    November 27, 2022

    Made these today and my husband and I ate two because they are so delicious. Thanks for all the great recipies. Gayle

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 27, 2022

      You’re welcome, Gayle! Great to know that the recipe was a huge hit.

      Reply

  • Nora
    November 27, 2022

    These were delicious yet a little too buttery for me…Almost like baklava. I think I’ll try 8-10 tablespoons for the crust and 6-8 for the topping next time.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 27, 2022

      Sounds good, feel free to experiment according to your preference. Thanks for sharing!

      Reply

  • AnnMarie
    November 25, 2022

    Made these for thanksgiving and they were super easy and delicious . Big hit. Recipe
    Is a keeper!!!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 25, 2022

      So glad to hear that!

      Reply

  • Carl
    November 24, 2022

    Superb. Had so many doubts they’d become “bars”. They are the best. Great recipe

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 24, 2022

      Thank you! I’m glad you loved the recipe. 🙂

      Reply

  • Sahiba
    November 24, 2022

    It was delicious 😋 I made these for this Thanksgiving 😋 and my family loved it ❤️ thanks a million

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 24, 2022

      You’re very welcome! I’m so glad they were loved. Happy Thanksgiving!

      Reply

  • Kvitka
    November 24, 2022

    I did make these with GF cup for cup flour. The only problem was I made a few days ago for Thanksgiving… These bars are so DELICIOUS that I am making another batch today as they were hit pretty hard by taste testers when I was not watching! Super easy recipe and I don’t think I will ever make another pecan pie — it’s pecan bars going forward. Another flawless Natasha’s recipe…

    Reply

    • Natasha
      November 24, 2022

      I am so happy to hear that! Thank you for sharing that they work great with Gluten Free cup for cup flour. That’s wonderful to hear and I’m sure will help someone who is wondering about making these GF pecan pie bars. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

      Reply

  • Anna
    November 23, 2022

    I like a lot of your recipes, but these turned out too buttery for me like the crust part was too buttery and kind of crumbly don’t know if I did something wrong or that’s just how the recapie is. The feeling turned out great though.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      November 24, 2022

      HI Anna, it seems unusual that the filling would be too buttery – it’s should be like a coarse meal when you pulse in a food processor and when it’s asked up, it has a cookie consistency but I wouldn’t say overly buttery. Any less butter and the crust would not hold together. Did you possibly not add enough flour? Watch the video for hints of where things started to look different. I hope that helps!

      Reply

  • Leisa
    November 22, 2022

    Made these and they turned out fabulous. Thanks. Do they get stored in the fridge and can they be frozen? I thought I read about both but now can’t find it. TIA.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 22, 2022

      Hello Leisa, thank you for your awesome review! Yes you can make this 3-4 days ahead. Please read the part in the recipe “Make-Ahead” as I provided some tips there.

      Reply

      • Leisa
        November 22, 2022

        Yes of course. Sorry I knew it was there just looking in the wrong place. Thanks for the reply and amazing recipe. These are better than the pecan pie I make each year. Much better. Happy Thanksgiving.

        Reply

        • NatashasKitchen.com
          November 22, 2022

          That’s great! You’re very welcome, Leisa! 🙂

          Reply

      • Tonya
        November 23, 2022

        Great recipe – very good. One slight issue what causes the cookie layer be so crumbly that it cracked in a lot of places as I cut it. How to prevent that in the future. It was room temperature, but maybe refrigerating could help?

        Reply

        • Natasha
          November 24, 2022

          Hi Tonya, the cracks are normal and nothing to be concerned about. The filling conceals any cracks and doesn’t affect the bars in any way. Heavy cracks can also be an indication of overbaking the crust (make sure you are using conventional oven settings and not convection). I hope that helps!

          Reply

  • Susan AIKEN
    November 22, 2022

    I have been making these delicious Bars tor mygirls every year for the last 5 years! Never tire of them! Got a good thing hgoing
    ,,

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 22, 2022

      I’m so happy to hear these are a favorite, Susan! We absolutely love them too!

      Reply

  • Heather
    November 22, 2022

    Hi Natasha! Fantastic- it was gobbled up so fast. Thank you for another amazing recipe! Question- can I use this filling for a traditional pie as well?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 22, 2022

      You’re welcome! I’m so happy you enjoyed it, Heather! Thank you so much for sharing that with me.

      Reply

  • Nicola Laich
    November 22, 2022

    Just made these Pecan Bars. Turned out great! Looking forward to serving them. Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 22, 2022

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Nicola! They’re perfect for this holiday!

      Reply

  • Don
    November 22, 2022

    These were great. It’s even better than a pecan pie! I added a full pecan on top for each square:-)

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 22, 2022

      I’m so happy you enjoyed that. Thank you for sharing that with us, Don!

      Reply

  • Liz
    November 21, 2022

    Absolutely delicious!! The crust is a bit crumbly so I may not have pressed it down enough. But it’s easy and everyone loved it! Thank you so much for this yummy recipe!! Happy Thanksgiving!! 🦃

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 21, 2022

      Yes, you can try pressing it down more next time but I’m glad you all still liked it!

      Reply

  • Jules
    November 21, 2022

    Hi Natasha I was wondering how I can do step 2 if I don’t have a food processor. Will it work with a hand mixer or magic bullet ?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      November 21, 2022

      Hi Jules, read the section of the post above titled “How to Make a Shortbread Crust” – this has alternate instructions for using a pastry cutter instead of a food processor. I hope you love the pecan pie bars.

      Reply

  • Zamira
    November 20, 2022

    How far ahead can you make this? Wondering if 2 days is to long. Also can you store in refrigerator? Thank you.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 20, 2022

      Hi Zamira, yes you can make this 3-4 days ahead. Please read the part in the recipe “Make-Ahead” as I provided some tips there.

      Reply

  • Marilyn Johnson
    November 20, 2022

    So I have never made pecan pie with honey, I always use corn syrup. Do you think that will work instead of the honey?

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 20, 2022

      Hi Marilyn, I have not tested that to advise.

      Reply

  • Tina
    November 20, 2022

    Is it really 12 TB of butter in the crust AND filling? With the price of butter now a days…

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 20, 2022

      Hi Tina, that’s right. I haven’t tried reducing the butter to advise if that’s okay.

      Reply

    • Heather
      November 22, 2022

      It’s honestly worth it, Tina! So so good. Plus the rest of the ingredients are usually in the pantry anyway (maybe with the exception of the pecans).

      Reply

    • Colin Collins
      November 23, 2022

      The price of the butter?? You must not have shopped for pecans yet…

      Reply

    • Sahiba
      November 24, 2022

      Just tried these for this Thanksgiving my family loved it ❤️
      It was crunchy 😋 and very flavorful ❤️thanks alot ❤️

      Reply

      • NatashasKitchen.com
        November 24, 2022

        You’re welcome! I’m so glad they were a hit! Happy Thanksgiving!

        Reply

    • Natalya
      November 27, 2022

      We made it for thanksgiving dinner and it was very delicious. I am just thinking how to make them not so high in calories. 🙂

      Reply

      • Natasha's Kitchen
        November 27, 2022

        Good to know that you enjoyed this, Natalya. Feel free to do an experiment, I have not modified the recipe yet to advise.

        Reply

  • Denise
    November 19, 2022

    Good evening

    Could you use maple syrup instead of honey?

    Thanks

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 19, 2022

      I think it could work, but I haven’t tested to advise.

      Reply

  • Terissa
    November 19, 2022

    The food processor you used in this video looks different from your link to the one on Amazon.
    Trying to buy a new processor, what one do you own that is your rec ? Thank you for all your wonderful recipes !

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 20, 2022

      Hi Terissa, the kitchen tools and equipment are all added in my Amazon Affiliate Shop and these are the ones that I highly recommend at the moment.

      Reply

  • Katherine
    November 19, 2022

    Can you substitute maple syrup for the honey in this recipe?

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 19, 2022

      Hi Katherine, I think you could but I haven’t tested it.

      Reply

  • Ivy Aguirre
    November 19, 2022

    Hi… Love you by the way💕💕💕💕can I use store bought crust instead of making it??? 💕💕💕💕💕

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 19, 2022

      I think you could but I haven’t tested it. This crust is a shortbread crust, so a bit different than your store-bought pie crust.

      Reply

  • Nancy
    November 19, 2022

    Can you make this pinnable?
    Please? This happens sometimes on your recipes.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 19, 2022

      Hi Nancy, if you sign into your account, you can favorite the recipe by selecting the heart symbol! I hope this helps!

      Reply

  • Diane D
    November 19, 2022

    I would like to add chocolate chips to the pecan mixture. Would this hinder the recipe at all?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 19, 2022

      Hi Diane, without trying this myself it’s hard for me to say if that will work or not. If you experiment, let me know how you liked the recipe.

      Reply

  • munch
    November 19, 2022

    Can you use dark brown sugar instead if light? I’m not sure of the difference? Looks amazing!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 19, 2022

      Hi Munch, we prefer it with brown sugar and I haven’t tested that, but I think it could work with adjustments. If you experiment, let me know how you liked the recipe

      Reply

  • Katie
    November 18, 2022

    Pecan pie is one of my all time favorite treats. I love how bar form makes it that much easier to feed a crowd.

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 18, 2022

      That’s just awesome! Thank you for sharing your wonderful review, Katie!

      Reply

  • Patti
    November 18, 2022

    Haven’t tried recipe tho I hope to they look delicious.
    However, I do not like the new video format! I was going to throw up it went so fast and swirling around.
    Ugh. I’m still nauseous!
    But I plan in making the bars, just without viewing the video again!
    Thanks for the recipe!!!!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 18, 2022

      Hi Patti! Thank you for the feedback. It’s helpful to know. I hope you love the bars! 🙂

      Reply

  • Kristyn
    November 18, 2022

    This has always been such a hit with my family!! Way easier than pie!!

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      November 18, 2022

      That’s so great!

      Reply

  • Erin
    November 18, 2022

    These turned out so amazing! I made them for friendsgiving and we loved them!

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 18, 2022

      That’s great! I’m so glad to hear that.

      Reply

      • Mindy
        November 20, 2022

        Love your recipes! So flavorful!
        Is it possible to use molasses in place of the honey?

        Reply

        • Natasha's Kitchen
          November 21, 2022

          Hi Mindy, I haven’t tested that but I think it will be a good experiment. Let us know how it goes if you test it out!

          Reply

  • Lyn
    November 18, 2022

    Is it possible to use a gluten free flour like almond or coconut?

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      November 18, 2022

      Hi Lyn! I have not tested this to advise. I think it could work with GF flour but you’d have to experiment with it. Let us know how it turns out if you try.

      Reply

      • Kvitka
        November 20, 2022

        I have just made it with GF flour – the cup for cup one and it is amazing!

        Reply

        • Lorraine
          November 21, 2022

          Hi Kvitka, I have some King Arthur Measure for Measure GF flour. Is that similar to what you used and had success?

          Reply

          • Lisa Steele
            November 23, 2022

            Absolutely delicious!
            I’m so excited to be able to share such deliciousness with my family and friends tomorrow. Thanksgiving

          • Natasha
            November 23, 2022

            I’m so happy you loved the pecan pie bars! Thank you and I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving also!

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