Traditional Pecan Pie

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Traditional Pecan Pie is a southern classic recipe you’ll make time and time again. It’s perfect for holidays, special occasions, and everything in between.

traditional pecan pie on a green towel that reads 'family is everything.'
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Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Do you have a favorite pie that takes you back to childhood? Traditional Pecan Pie has everything you remember about holidays and family get-togethers. Here are a few of its amazing features…

  • easy to prepare
  • can be made several days in advance
  • tastes great cold or heated
  • keeps well for a long period of time
  • delicious with a scoop of ice cream or whipping topping
pecan pie cooling on a pie rack.


To make this Traditional Pecan Pie, you’ll need only 7 ingredients. Quantities are listed in the recipe card at the end of this post.

  • refrigerated pie crust
  • pecans
  • salted butter
  • granulated sugar
  • light corn syrup
  • large eggs
  • vanilla

Recipe FAQS

How do you keep a pecan pie from being runny?

If you cook the pie until it’s not jiggly in the middle, it won’t be runny. Make sure you bake it until it reaches 200 degrees Fahrenheit. If it’s still doesn’t set after cooling for 2 hours, you may need to put it in the refrigerator or let it sit out overnight on a counter for best result.

Is light or dark corn syrup better for pecan pie?

Either one will work in this recipe. Light corn syrup is sweeter and adds a touch of vanilla flavor. Dark corn syrup is more robust and adds a darker color to the pie.

How to Make Pecan Pie

Press a refrigerated pie crust into a 9 inch deep dish pie plate. Crimp edges.

pie crust with lattice weave edging.

Add pecans until the bottom crust is covered. Make sure they are facing up.

large pecans lining the bottom of a pie crust.

Mix melted butter, sugar, Karo corn syrup, eggs and vanilla together in a bowl and pour over pecans. Add more pecans on top in a design as shown.

Bake at 350 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes. Check pie with a thermometer. It should reach 200 degrees F when done.

pecan pie decorated before going into the oven.

How to Create a Design on Top

To create a design on the pie as shown below, add pecans on top of the ones that have risen, which act as a base.

Start by creating a ‘flower’ with pecans in the middle of the pie, then add pecans around the edges in a circle, or randomly as desired.

Make sure pecans are facing up for best results. Drizzle entire pie with a little karo syrup to create a nice sheen. Bake as usual.

To achieve the crust pattern, cut slits all around the edge of the dough before placing in pie plate. Once dough is in plate, cross one strip over the other all around the pie.

pecan pie with a lattice edged crust on a green towel.

Helpful Tips

  • For best results, mix ingredients by hand.
  • Use the meatiest pecans you can find.
  • Salted butter works best in this recipe.
  • Cover the crust with a pie crust shield during baking to prevent burning.
  • If you’d like to make a substitution for Karo corn syrup, try this recipe.
  • You’ll know when the pie is done if it’s set in the middle (just a little jiggle).
  • Bake pie until it reaches 200 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Let pie cool overnight on a counter (or in the refrigerator) to ensure it sets properly.

More Pecan Desserts

If you love pecan pie, try these other yummy desserts that celebrate pecans!

Recipe Card

pecan pie made the traditional way with a criss cross crust.

Traditional Pecan Pie

Traditional Pecan Pie is a southern classic recipe you'll make time and time again. It's perfect for holidays, special occasions, and everything in between. 
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: Southern
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8
Calories: 591kcal

*See notes in blog post for detailed tips, photos and instructions.


  • mixing bowl
  • spoon
  • Pie Plate


  • 1 refrigerated pie crust 9 inch deep dish
  • 2 ½ cups pecan halves reserve 1/2 cup to decorate top of pie
  • 3 Tablespoons salted butter melted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Press an unbaked refrigerated pie crust into a 9 inch deep dish pie plate. Crimp edges.
  • Add pecans until the bottom crust is covered. (2 cups)
  • Whisk melted butter, sugar, corn syrup, eggs and vanilla together in a bowl. 
  • Pour mixture over pecans. Add extra pecans on top of pie to make a design.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 50 to 60 minutes until middle is set. It should reach 200 degrees F. when done. There should not be a jiggle in the middle. 
  • Cool pie for at least 2 hours before serving, or place in refrigerator to speed up the process. 
  • For best results, let pie sit out on the kitchen counter overnight. 


  • Pie can be made several days in advance and kept in the refrigerator until ready to bake.
  • Store leftover pie in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • Freeze leftover pie for up to 3 months. 
  • All ovens are different and high altitude may affect this recipe. 


Calories: 591kcal | Carbohydrates: 73g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 34g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Sodium: 175mg | Potassium: 173mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 59g | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition info is an auto generated estimate.

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    1. Hi Bonnie! You can use a frozen pie crust if you’re not trying to form it in a different pan. Just use it in the aluminum pan it comes in and it should work out fine! 🙂

  1. 5 stars
    I made this for Thanksgiving. It was such an easy recipe it seemed too good to be true. It turned out fabulous! Even people who said they ‘don’t really’ care for pecan pie loved it. My husband wants me to make it again for our Christmas family gathering. 😊

    1. Wonderful, Jan! So happy to hear that everything worked out and your family enjoyed the pecan pie!

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