Chocolate Pecan Pie – Classic pecan pie is made even better with the addition of chocolate chips and substituting corn syrup for maple syrup. The resulting pie is velvety and rich in all the right ways!
Oooo yes! We are heading into pie season, alright! And I am fully embracing the pie this year.
If you’re a frequent visitor to the blog, you know how I feel about pie – I love eating it but I hate making it. Most pies require almost an hour to bake and then multiple hours before you can even dig in. That alone tests my patience. But then you add in the anxiety I get about cutting perfect slices (especially that first one!) and then all desire for pie goes out the window.
But then a pie came into my life that changed everything…Chocolate Pecan Pie. I was a fan of this pie from the first bite. But I have to admit, it took about 23 years for that to happen. Pecan pie was not part of my Thanksgivings growing up in Florida – we were all about apple pie during the holidays.
Thank goodness for Atlanta, though! It has introduced me to soooo many yummy foods, including my first chocolate pecan pie. I wasn’t inspired to make my own, however, until I had the best chocolate pecan pie of my life a couple Thanksgivings ago.
This particular chocolate pecan pie which was made with maple syrup instead of corn syrup. Guys…the velvety texture that the maple syrup adds is unreal. It really transforms this classic pie. And the chocolate chips add a richness that’s just icing on the
If I discovered this pie a couple years ago, why wait so long to make my own? Well, as I previously said, making pie wasn’t always in my wheelhouse. However, this summer, I worked on my pie game and perfected my own pie dough. While doing this, I also became more confident forming the pie edges, something that I could never get a handle on in the past.
Now, as we head in to pie season, I wanted to use what I learned and finally attempt the pie of my dreams.
How to make this pie
Pecan pie is one of the easier pies to make. The filling require little preparation, there is no top crust to worry about, and it’s almost impossible to screw it up. Let’s talk through the process in more detail.
The pie crust is made with butter and shortening, The shortening makes the dough perfectly flaky without adding too much butter flavor. I know what you’re thinking – how could butter flavor be BAD? Well, sometimes it can make pie dough too rich and almost greasy. The shortening helps cut that down.
One of my least favorite baking techniques is cutting cold butter into flour. So with my perfect pie dough recipe, I wanted to avoid that process at all costs. Therefore, my dough recipe is made entirely in the food processor, which makes it 1000x easier.
When forming the edge of the pie crust, I always overthought this process way too much. Should I do a fluted edge or crinkle it with the fork? Well, it turns out that my favorite pie edge is actually a smooth, thick, round edge. It requires almost no thought at all but still gives the pies a gorgeous look. Plus, it stays perfectly intact when you cut your pie slices.
Maple Syrup vs Corn Syrup
Another thing to note about the crust in this recipe is that you’ll need to blind bake the crust, which is not typical for traditional pecan pie recipes. This pecan pie recipe uses maple syrup instead of the traditional corn syrup to give it a velvety texture. Because maple syrup is less dense, it can make the pie dough soggy. To prevent this, you’ll need to cook the crust on it’s own a little before adding the filling. So it’s time to bust out your pie weights!
If you’re a little hesitant to try out the maple syrup because it might add an unwanted maple flavor, trust me – you don’t taste it at all! I even quizzed a few people to see if they could tell what the “secret ingredient” was in my pecan pie. No one could detect it at all!
The other thing I changed about a traditional chocolate pecan pie recipe has to do with the pecans themselves. I hate biting into a pecan pie and having to fight through tons of pecans. To combat this, I toasted the pecans before adding them to the filling. This makes the pecans more crispy and less chewy, which makes them easier to bite through.
Also, I used a combination of whole pecans and chopped pecans. I originally wanted to use all chopped pecans. However, I love the occasional whole pecan in my pecan pie. Plus, it adds a great look to the finished pie.
Tips & Tricks
- This pie dough recipe makes two crusts. You’ll only need one for this recipe. You can freeze the other disk of dough for up to 3 months to use for another pie or tart recipe.
- Toasting the pecans is such an important step that doesn’t get enough attention. This process brings out the flavor of the nuts and gives them a perfect texture and bite. So make sure you do this – you won’t regret it!
- The filling is made with pure maple syrup, not the artificial stuff. Make sure you get maple syrup that says “pure” on the bottle.
- Do not even try to cut into this pie until it’s completely cooled. Since the filling is mostly eggs and syrup, it will fall apart everywhere if it’s warm when you cut into. If you want to serve the slices warm, I suggest microwaving each slice after it’s served on a plate for no more than 15 seconds.
Chocolate Pecan Pie
For the pie crust*:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1½ sticks unsalted butter cold
- ⅓ cup vegetable shortening cold
- ½ cup cold water
For the filling:
- ¾ cup chopped pecans
- ¾ cup whole pecans
- 3 large eggs
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- 1 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon butter melted
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
For the pie crust*:
- Add flour, sugar, and salt to the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to combine. Cut the cold butter into cubes. Add to the flour mixture along with the vegetable shortening. Turn processor on and let run for 5 seconds. Then, drizzle in cold water. Keep processing until mixture begins to clump.
- Pour dough mixture onto a clean surface. Using your hands, pull the dough together into one ball. Cut ball in half and form two discs of the same size and shape. Cover each disk in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until cold, at least 2 hours. (see * note below for what to do with the second disc of dough).
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter for 10 minutes to soften up. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Once dough is ready, roll it out into a disk using a rolling pin. The dough should be 10½ to 11 inches in diameter. Gently fold rolled dough in half and place onto 9-inch pie pan. Unfold the dough so that it is covering the dish completely. Let the dough lay into the dish so that it is not stretched or pulled. Fold over excess edges and press into a smooth or fluted edge, ensuring that the whole outside edge is the same thickness.
- Line pie shell with a loose piece of aluminum foil. Fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and remove foil with weights/beans. Continue to bake for another 15 minutes or until the crust just begins to brown. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes. In the meantime, prepare the filling. Keep the oven on.
Assemble the pie:
- Place pecans on a baking sheet and place in preheated oven to toast for 6-8 minutes or until they start to brown and the aroma begins to fill the roam. Remove from oven and set aside. Keep oven on.
- Whisk eggs and brown sugar together until smooth. Add maple syrup, vanilla extra, melted butter, and salt. Whisk until smooth. Add chocolate chips and toasted pecans and gently fold together. Pour filling into slightly cooled pie crust.
- Place pie in preheated oven and bake until the center has set, about 50-60 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool about 3 hours before slicing.
Pin for later:
More recipes you’ll love: