Learn how to make the most amazing Vegan Pecan Pie with crispy, flaky crust, and toasty, pecan packed, perfectly gooey filling. Pile on the dollops of whipped vegan cream and dig right in. This is exactly the over-the-top decadent pie you need this holiday season!
Step aside vegan pumpkin pie. There's a new vegan pie in town! This Vegan Pecan Pie is EVERYTHING you need for dessert.
With crispy, buttery, flaky pie crust and sweet (but not too sweet), pecan packed, just the right amount of gooey, brown sugar, maple filling, and a top jeweled with big, toasty, crunchy, pecans, it's impossible to resist, and a texture-lover's dream!
As an added bonus, it's great for making ahead of time, and keeps really well even when cut. The perfect dessert for Thanksgiving...or just a regular weekend treat. Really pie is perfect any time though, am-I-right?
Vegan Pecan Pie Ingredients
We're not talking a super long ingredients list. Let's take a closer look!
You can buy a store bought deep dish pie crust (many are accidentally vegan), or use my vegan pie crust recipe to make your own. Homemade does beat store bought hands down though ;O) To make a pie crust this is what you need:
Use a gluten-free pie crust if necessary.
Then for the complete pecan pie you will need:
And some notes on some of the vegan pecan pie filling ingredients:
- Pecans - These make up the majority of the filling. They should be mostly chopped (this makes slicing the finished pie easier), then we use whole pecans for the top to make it look pretty!
- Dairy-free butter, cornstarch & coconut milk - In this egg-free pecan pie, the combination of these 3 ingredients replaces the eggs which are usually used to set and add richness to pecan pie. The butter and coconut milk help to set the filling and also add lots of delicious flavour and richness. Essential in a dessert like this. Arrowroot can be used instead of cornstarch. (cornstarch is known as cornflour in the UK) but I don't recommend making any other subs.
Dark brown sugar - For maximum flavour! It gives a way better result than light brown sugar so don't switch.
- Maple syrup - This vegan pecan pie uses no corn syrup. Why make it with corn syrup when you can use maple syrup? It's literal liquid gold and so packed with flavour! If you prefer though switch the maple syrup for dark corn syrup (not light).
- Apple cider vinegar or lemon juice - Pecan pies can often fall into too-sweet territory, but adding a dash of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice helps balance things out and keep the sweetness in check, for a not too sweet vegan pecan pie. (A trick I learned from making treacle tarts in England and butter tarts in Canada!).
- Salt - Intensifies the flavour of the pecans and the maple filling. It's just as important in sweet recipes as savoury.
- "Egg"wash - My trustee mixture of a little maple syrup and plant milk browns pie crust perfectly.
- Oil - This is to brush on the base of the pie crust before adding the filling. My special trick to stop your pie getting a soggy bottom! The oil creates a waterproof seal and stops the liquidy filling making it wet.
How To Make Vegan Pecan Pie
This Vegan Pecan Pie recipe is surprisingly easy to make. Here's how it's done:
- Prep the pastry dough then line the pie dish. Let it rest and chill in the fridge while you make a start on the filling. Or run to the shop and buy a readymade frozen pie crust!
- Whisk or stir the filling together in a bowl. No need for a blender!
- Add toasted chopped pecans to the chilled pie crust, then pour over the filling mixture.
- Decorate with whole pecans, sprinkle over some brown sugar, then bake.
There is no need to pre-bake (blind-bake) the pie crust. By baking the pie on the lowest oven rack on a pre-heated baking tray, and using my oil seal trick, we can skip this step and it will turn out perfectly crisp.
Success Tip - For the very best flavour toast the chopped nuts before filling the pie. It only takes about 5 minutes and is so worth it! I simply lay them out on a baking tray and let them get toasty and fragrant in the oven while it's preheating. Then transfer to a plate to cool them down quickly.
Wondering how to serve your vegan pecan pie? Simplicity is key here! I love to sprinkle a little flaky sea salt on top right before serving ( Maldon salt is my fave). The sweet and salty flavour hits are something else, and the flavour of the pecans and the maple is intensified. Then either enjoy a slice on its own or with a dollop of coconut whipped cream, natural vegan yogurt, or vegan vanilla ice cream. I wouldn't say no to some vegan custard either!
Making Ahead & Storing
Vegan Pecan Pie is the perfect dessert for making ahead of time and just the thing when you're on dessert duty as it travels really well, is served at room temperature and can easily be made a couple of days ahead.
To make ahead, bake as directed, allow to cool completely, then cover and keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days. Remove at least an hour before serving so it has time to get to room temperature.
To freeze, bake as directed then allow to cool completely. Wrap tightly with plastic wrap or foil then place in a freezer-safe bag or airtight container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge then allow to come to room temperature before enjoying.
The best substitute for pecans in a pecan pie is walnuts. Be sure to toast them to get the very best flavour. I'd also add a couple tablespoons of extra sugar to the filling as walnuts aren't as sweet as pecans and can have a touch of bitterness.
If you try this recipe, let me know how you like it by leaving a comment and rating below! And be sure to join my mailing list for more deliciousness!
Vegan Pecan PieAuthor:
Pie Crust (or use 1 frozen 9" deep dish pie crust)
- 2 cups (250 grams) all purpose flour , (plain flour in the UK)
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ cup + 1 tablespoon (120 grams) cold, hard, vegan butter I use Earth Balance. Don't use soft margarine style spreads like tub Becel/Flora.
- about ½ cup (120 mls) iced water
- 2 cups (200 grams) chopped pecan nuts
- ¾ cup (75 grams) whole pecan nuts
- ½ packed cup (100 grams) dark brown sugar , (plus a little more for sprinkling)
- 6 tablespoons (32 grams) cornstarch , or arrowroot
- 1 cup (240 mls) full fat canned coconut milk , give it a good stir before measuring
- ½ cup (120 mls) maple syrup , real maple syrup not pancake syrup
- 6 tablespoons (90 mls) melted vegan butter
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon (15 mls) apple cider vinegar , or lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
- OPTIONAL 2 tablespoons bourbon
"Egg"wash and seal for pie crust
- 3 tablespoons plant milk
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons any neutral liquid oil
- Make the pie crust - To a food processor or mixing bowl add the flour and salt. Pulse/mix to combine. Cut the butter into small chunks and add to the flour. Pulse a few times (or cut in with a pastry cutter) until like coarse breadcrumbs with small chunks of butter still visible. Gradually add icy water a little at a time, pulsing or mixing with a knife after each addition. When it will just squeeze together in your hand it's done. Bring together into a ball, wrap in cling-wrap and refrigerate for 10 to 15 minutes (or up to 3 days).
- Toast the chopped nuts. (not the whole ones). Put the chopped pecans on a baking tray and bake at 350°F (175°C) for 5 to 6 minutes. They should smell nutty & toasty. Remove from the oven, tip onto a plate and allow to cool.
- Leave the oven on. Move a shelf to the lowest level and place a large metal baking tray on it to get hot.
- Roll out the pastry dough on a well floured surface into a circle big enough to fit a 9 inch wide x 2 inch deep pie dish with some overhang.
- Lift over the rolling pin and drape into the pie dish. Let it gently fall into place then tuck in with your fingers. Trim the edge so it's even all the way around but still overhanging, by about 1 inch.
- Turn the overhang edges up and under to double up the thickness, then crimp with a fork or use your fingers to flute. Refrigerate uncovered while you prepare the filling.
- Mix the filling. To a mixing bowl add the brown sugar and cornstarch. Mix together, then add the coconut milk. Stir well to combine before adding the maple syrup, melted vegan butter, vanilla, apple cider vinegar, salt & optional bourbon. Whisk together well. Set aside.
- Make the "egg"wash. Mix up the plant milk and maple syrup to make "egg"wash. Also have the 2 tablespoons of oil and a pastry brush nearby.
- Prepare the pie. Brush a little oil gently over the bottom of the pie crust and a little up the sides. This acts as a waterproof seal so you don't get a soggy bottom. Then, brush the "egg"wash over the top parts of the crust.
- Put the cooled pecan pieces into the crust, pour in the filling, and arrange the whole pecans on the top. Sprinkle a generous handful of brown sugar all over.
- Place carefully on the hot baking tray in the oven. Bake for 55 to 58 mins, or until the crust is golden and the filling is glistening and slightly crusty looking. If you slightly tilt the pie you should still some movement in the middle but it will be a little more stable around the edges. Cool on a wire rack, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours to set.
Quick question. Do you cook the pie at 350˚F? My oven tends to run hot, will it be OK if I leave the oven shelf in the middle position? I'm afraid I'll burn the pie if I put it closer to the heating elements.
Melanie McDonald says
Yes, it's cooked at 350. It goes in the bottom of the oven so the bottom of the pie crust gets crispy but should be ok left in the middle. If your oven runs hot I recommend reducing the temp slightly to compensate. The temperature is quite important with this recipe because too hot and the filling could overflow and even burn because there is so much sugar in it. Use your judgment. How other pies etc have baked will be your guide. You know your oven best.
For future reference, an oven thermometer is a great investment. They are pretty cheap and then you will know exactly by how much to adjust the temperature for recipes after testing with it once (and then periodically after).
Elizabeth Whitman says
This was my first time making a pecan pie and it was entirely inspired by your Instagram posts! I’m thrilled with how it turned out. Next time, I may omit a little of the corn starch for a gooier filling or replace with some chocolate to mix it up. Thank you for inspiring me!