I’ve never been a fan of pecan pie. I didn’t like nuts growing up. Love them now. Didn’t care for pie any pie at all because I only cared about cake or brownies. I can now appreciate pie because I think my cake quota has been filled. Onto the next one.
I ate pecan pie at Thanksgiving with my boyfriend and it was so good and so rich and so sweet — and then I actually did pass out on the sofa. We’re not sure how long I was out, but he did put up an entire Christmas tree and decorate his living room.
When I came to, he told me that the pie was basically just made of corn syrup and sugar. Great! So, I thought “Ok, pecan pie is good, but maybe a smaller portion would be better.”
So I thought, “Duh, I’ll make tarts.” That way, you get a small, but full, rich satisfying dessert that doesn’t put you into a sugar coma. Perfect.
Mini Pecan Pie Tarts with Homemade Crust // RECIPE & INSTRUCTIONS
The original recipe link above above makes 12 cupcake-sized pies, but I made mine smaller because I plan to distribute these as part of a Christmas cookie dessert buffet bag of sorts that will include tons of cookies. I had a lot of extra filling because I had smaller cups, so I froze the rest and will use it for the next batch. You could halve the filling and probably come out ok.
For the dough:
- 6 oz cream cheese, softened
- 2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
For the filling:
- 1 cup pecans, chopped
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
- 3/4 cup light corn syrup
- 2 tbsp butter, melter
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- At medium speed, beat together softened cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl. Gradually add flour and salt mixture until well combined.
- Divide the dough in half. Flatten each half into an inch-thick circle, wrap in plastic wrap and let it chill out for at least an hour. Ina Garten lets her pie crust chill overnight. Just sayin’.
- Make 24 (or 12) evenly sized dough balls and press into your muffin or mini-muffin cups.
- Add chopped pecans to each dough crater.
- Whisk together your beaten eggs, brown sugar, corn syrup, butter and vanilla until well combined.
- Use a small spoon (I used a measuring spoon with a flat edge) to pour the mixture into each pecan dough crater until full.
- Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes.
It goes without saying that these were delicious. The serving size was just right. I did not have a sugar coma. I served mine slightly warmed up with a scoop of double vanilla ice cream over top. I’d planned to make these cupcake-sized to keep in my freezer for dessert after dinner, but I think this size was adequate.
I may go eat one now. Thanks.