60 Sweet and Festive Pecan Desserts
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that Southerners are crazy for pecans. The pecan is the South’s signature nut, and we sneak it into lots of sweet and savory recipes. But we can’t resist pecan desserts. We grew up snacking on Pecan Pralines and we know that no Thanksgiving dessert spread is complete without a classic Pecan Pie. After all, the smell of roasting butter pecans is the signature scent of Southern holidays.
One of the best traits of pecans is their versatility. They pair beautifully with bittersweet chocolate and bourbon, like in our Kentucky Derby Pie, but they also complement the sweetness of fresh fruit like peaches (have you tried our Pecan-Peach Cobbler? Now’s the time). From Carrot Cake Cheesecake to Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, pecans play the supporting role in fresh twists on our favorite seasonal recipes. We’ve compiled our favorite classic and inventive pecan desserts to spice up your holiday table this year.
Butter Pecan Layer Cake with Browned Butter Frosting
Switch up your holiday cake rotation with this dreamy three-layer cake. A tip from the test kitchen: When browning the butter for the frosting, pour the butter into a bowl as soon as it turns golden brown, or it will continue to cook and get too dark.
Spiced Pecan Pie Bars
Recipe: Spiced Pecan Pie Bars
If you’re preparing Thanksgiving for a crowd, swap out the Pecan Pie for these portable, pre-portioned Pecan Pie Bars.
Pecan Snowball Cookies
Recipe: Pecan Snowball Cookies
Rolled in powdered sugar, these Pecan Snowball Cookies look like they've been coated with a fresh dusting of snow.
Recipe: Pecan Pralines
Make a batch of these indulgent candies and they’ll have disappeared by the end of the weekend.
Recipe: Pecan Tassies
A cross between a cookie and a slice of pecan pie, these cute-as-a-button tassies will be the star of the holiday cookie swap.
Mini Pecan Pies
Recipe: Mini Pecan Pies
The spirit of Thanksgiving distilled into tiny bite-sized pie crusts.
Cranberry-Apple Pie with Pecan Shortbread Crust
This Apple Cranberry pie is so fresh and versatile, we’re cooking it all fall long.
Chocolate-Caramel Cookie Cups
Recipe: Chocolate-Caramel Cookie Cups
These precious cookie cups are the best bite-sized dessert for your party spread.
Recipe: Oxbow Bakery Pecan Pie
You can’t go wrong with the classics. If you really want to impress at Thanksgiving this year, bring this perfect pecan pie.
Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Recipe: Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies
Brown butter and pecans add new dimension to the classic chocolate chip cookie in this indulgent recipe.
Kentucky Bourbon Pie
Recipe: Kentucky Bourbon Pie
Make Derby day every day with this decadent pie that combines chocolate, bourbon, and pecans.
Carrot Cake Cheesecake
Recipe: Carrot Cake Cheesecake
A base layer of carrot cake meets a fluffy stripe of cheesecake topping in this best-of-both-worlds dessert.
Utterly Deadly Southern Pecan Pie
Once you’ve made a pecan pie in a cast-iron skillet, you may never go back to a pie plate. Simply press a refrigerated pie crust into the skillet, sprinkle with sugar, top with the pecan mixture, and bake. Serving it in the skillet is also easy and makes the dish even more Southern.
Bourbon Chocolate Truffles
Recipe: Bourbon Chocolate Truffles
Roll these chocolate truffles in crushed pecans and gift them to your neighbors, your friends, or just about anyone!
Tropical Carrot Cake
Recipe: Tropical Carrot Cake
Warm spices like cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger combine with pineapple and coconut in this Hummingbird-carrot cake fusion.
Coconut Pound Cake
Recipe: Coconut Pound Cake
Use a ridged Bundt pan to achieve the gorgeous shape of this unique pound cake.
Recipe: Millionaire Pie
This pink pie will be the belle of the ball at your next potluck.
Mini Bananas Foster Sticky Buns
Recipe: Mini Bananas Foster Sticky Buns
These sticky buns may technically be breakfast, but they’re so divine, we’ll eat these for dessert, too.
Banana Nut Shortcake
Recipe: Banana Nut Shortcake
Toasting the pecans brings out their earthy sweetness, complementing the light whipped cream and banana toppings.
Buttery Toasted Pecans
Recipe: Buttery Toasted Pecans
Once you taste these simple pecans, you’ll want to keep a bowl of these nuts on your countertop at all times.
Overnight Eggnog-French Toast Casserole
This extravagant French toast bake will feed a crowd—it’s perfect for holiday mornings or family brunches.
Recipe: Seven-Layer Cookies
Graham crackers, coconut, pecans, chocolate, and butterscotch all mingle together in these decadent vintage cookies.
Recipe: Hummingbird Pancakes
A twist on the beloved hummingbird cake that we can pass off as breakfast? Count us in.
Coconut Dream Bar
Recipe: Coconut Dream Bar
Pecans form the crust for this dreamy tropical bar that can be eaten on-the-go.
Tenntucky Blackberry Cobbler Sundaes
It’s creamy, it’s crunchy, and it’s absolutely decadent. This sundae hits all the right notes.
Pecan Pancakes with Caramel Apple Topping
This sheet pan pancake is the best way to feed a hungry holiday morning crowd.
Slow-Cooker Cinnamon Roll Casserole
Recipe: Slow-Cooker Cinnamon Roll Casserole
Once you’ve put pecans in your cinnamon rolls, you’ll never go back to the plain kind.
Recipe: Buttermilk-Pecan Pralines
Buttermilk adds a creamy, smooth shine to these classic Southern candies.
Recipe: Fruitcake Bark
Tired fruitcake is completely transformed in this utterly snackable (and giftable!) chocolate bark.
Coconut-Butter Pecan Sheet Cake
Recipe: Coconut-Butter Pecan Sheet Cake
Sheet cake is our favorite way to serve dessert to a crowd—and if there are leftovers, we bet you can find some way to make them disappear.
Mama's German Chocolate Cake with Coconut-Pecan Frosting
You’ll be requesting this indulgent layered chocolate cake every year for your birthday.
Pumpkin Spice Magic Cake
Recipe: Pumpkin Spice Magic Cake
They call this cake magic for a reason. With surprising layers and flavor combinations, this cake is a standout on any spread.
Salted Chocolate Matzo Madness Toffee
Take a crack at this Southern spin on a traditional Passover treat. But it’s not only relegated to the holiday. In fact, you can make this sweet snack year-round using saltine crackers for a crispy, salty base that makes the chocolate and pecans pop in your mouth. So do yourself a favor and indulge!
Sweet Potato Casserole Hotcakes
Recipe: Sweet Potato Casserole Hotcakes
Make these flapjacks the day after thanksgiving or a few months after, when you’re still dreaming of Nana’s sweet potato casserole.
Pecan Pie Bars
Recipe: Pecan Pie Bars
These chewy, bite-size bars require just 20 minutes of prep time.
Upside-Down Caramelized Apple Cake
You’ve heard of pineapple upside-down cake, but have you ever tried swapping in apples? Spoiler alert: it’s delicious.
Banana Pudding Cheesecake
Recipe: Banana Pudding Cheesecake
Banana pudding and cheesecake, all in one bite? We must be dreaming.
Amy Grant's Banana Nut Bread
Recipe: Amy Grant's Banana Nut Bread
When you have company, always have a loaf of this favorite breakfast or dessert bread on hand.
Rum-Glazed Sweet Potato Cakes
Recipe: Rum-Glazed Sweet Potato Cakes
These miniature cakes are just oh-so-cute! Plus, you can never go wrong with a little rum glaze.
Double-Chocolate Pecan Pie
Recipe: Double-Chocolate Pecan Pie
Amp up your pecan pie this holiday season with a double dose of chocolate.
Hummingbird Bundt Cake
Recipe: Hummingbird Bundt Cake
No Southern dessert spread is complete without some variation of the Hummingbird cake, and this one is in Bundt form.
Recipe: Pumpkin Roll
Serve this elegant pumpkin roll with chocolate-dipped pecans for a festive touch.
Recipe: Pecan-Peach Cobbler
Two Southern favorites, pecans and peaches, come together in this ultimate summer dessert.
Sweet Potato Soufflé
Recipe: Sweet Potato Soufflé
This inventive way to incorporate sweet potatoes into a dessert will impress all the dinner party guests.
Toasted Oatmeal Cookies
Oatmeal cookies are healthy, right? The butterscotch-pecan combination in this cookie is something we can get behind.