Maple syrup can replace corn syrup in this deliciously simple maple pecan pie recipe! Top with a little sea salt to balance out the flavors.
The most common question about pecan pie is: can I make pecan pie without corn syrup? My answer was always: yes, but the filling won’t really set or it won’t taste like pecan pie. So… no, you can’t. But that’s changing today. Introducing Maple Pecan Pie.
How to Make Pecan Pie Without Corn Syrup
Corn syrup is the glue that holds pecan pie filling together. Thicker than other liquid sweeteners, corn syrup works with the eggs to help ensure your pecan pie filling will set. The problem is that more and more modern bakers are looking for an unrefined substitution for the corn syrup. My goal was to find a solution to not only find a corn syrup substitute, but to guarantee the pecan pie filling will SET and TASTE DELICIOUS.
Taking a note from my pecan pie bars, I reached for pure maple syrup. This is a thinner liquid than corn syrup, but has the most remarkable flavor, as you know. The pecan pie bars recipe calls for tempering the eggs, but I wanted a no-fuss pecan pie filling that skipped the extra steps. Enter the magical ingredient:
- 1 tiny Tablespoon of flour
Maple Syrup + Flour Replaces Corn Syrup
Mixed with melted butter, 1 Tablespoon of flour thickens the pecan pie filling just as corn syrup would. The flour allows us to use a thinner liquid sweetener. Isn’t that incredible? So all you’ll need to prepare this maple pecan pie are eggs, pure maple syrup, flour, butter, brown sugar, salt, vanilla extract, and pecans. Simple, delicious, pure flavors gives us a maple infused + buttery sweet + deliciously thick slice of pecan pie.
Don’t Make My Mistake.
I ran into 1 problem during my recipe testing. The pecan pie filling seeped through the bottom pie crust, lifting the entire bottom pie crust up into the center of the pie. It was the strangest thing. Frustrated, I almost gave up completely. Since the maple pecan pie filling is a little thinner than my regular pecan pie filling, I decided that pre-baking the pie crust was necessary. I shared an entire in-depth tutorial on how to blind bake pie crust earlier this year, complete with a video and all my tricks. Use that to help you. You only need to blind bake the pie crust for about 15 minutes in this recipe. Easy.
You can use my new all butter pie crust recipe or old faithful, my buttery flaky pie crust which uses a combination of shortening and butter. For the pictured pie, I used my buttery flaky pie crust. Brush the edges with egg wash before baking.
Tell me about the sea salt! To balance out the flavor of this notoriously sweet pie, sprinkle a little sea salt on top prior to serving. I always recommend this! You’ll love the sweet and salty flavors, plus added crunch sea salt flecks are a nice bonus.
How to Freeze Pecan Pie
Before I leave you with the recipe, let me share my tips for freezing pecan pie. This is a wonderful dessert to make ahead of time to freeze for Thanksgiving. The baked pie freezes well for up to 3 months, tightly wrapped in a couple layers of plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving. You can also freeze the pie after you pour the filling into the cooled blind-baked pie crust. Freeze for a couple hours to set the filling, then tightly wrap the entire pie in 2-3 layers of plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then freeze for up to 1 month. When ready to bake, remove from the freezer, unwrap, and bake for about 20 minutes longer.
If you’re looking for more inspiration this fall season, here are all of our favorite Thanksgiving pies.Print
Maple Pecan Pie (Without Corn Syrup)
- Prep Time: 3 hours
- Cook Time: 55 minutes
- Total Time: 6 hours
- Yield: 8-10 servings
- Category: Pie
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: American
Maple syrup can replace corn syrup in this deliciously simple maple pecan pie recipe! Top with a little sea salt to balance out the flavors.
- Homemade Pie Crust or All Butter Pie Crust (my recipes both make 2 crusts; freeze the 2nd half for later use)
- optional egg wash: 1 large egg beaten with 1 Tablespoon milk or water
- 2 and 1/2 cups (250g) shelled pecans (pecan halves)
- 5 Tablespoons (72g) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
- 1 Tablespoon (8g) all-purpose flour*
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup (240ml) pure maple syrup*
- sea salt for sprinkling
- optional: Homemade Whipped Cream for topping
- The crust: Prepare the pie crust or butter pie crust through step 5.
- After the pie crust has chilled, adjust the oven rack to the lower third position and preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
- Roll out the chilled pie dough and blind bake: On a floured work surface, roll out one of the discs of chilled dough (you can freeze the 2nd for later use, see note). Turn the dough about a quarter turn after every few rolls until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough into a 9-inch pie dish.* Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. Flute or crimp the edges of the crust. Brush edges with egg wash. Chill for 20 minutes in the refrigerator or freezer. (Crust will shrink otherwise!) Line the chilled pie crust with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Fill with 2 sets of pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 15 minutes. Remove pie from the oven and carefully lift the parchment paper/aluminum foil (with the weights) out of the pie.
- The filling: Carefully spread pecans evenly inside warm pie crust. Set aside. Whisk the melted butter, brown sugar, and flour together in a large bowl until combined and thick. Whisk in the vanilla extract, salt, eggs, and pure maple syrup until combined. Pour evenly over pecans.
- Bake the pie for 40-50 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned. After the first 20 minutes of bake time, place a pie crust shield on top of the pie to prevent the edges from browning too quickly. You can also tent a piece of aluminum foil over the whole pie if the top is browning too quickly. Remove finished pie from the oven and sprinkle sea salt on top. Place on a wire rack to cool completely. The pie filling will set as it cools.
- Slice and serve pie at room temperature. Top with whipped cream, if desired. (I used Wilton 8B Piping Tip.) Cover and store leftover pie at room temperature for 1-2 days or in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.
- Make Ahead Instructions – 1-5 Days Ahead: You can get started by combining all the filling ingredients (except the pecans) one day ahead of time. Keep it covered tightly in the refrigerator until ready to assemble the pie. You can also make the pie dough 1-5 days in advance since it needs to chill. If you want to bake the pie 1 full day in advance, bake it as directed, allow it to completely cool, then cover tightly and keep at room temperature until ready to serve the next day.
- Make Ahead Instructions – Freezing: The baked pie freezes well for up to 3 months, tightly wrapped in a couple layers of plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving. You can also freeze the pie after you pour the filling into the cooled blind-baked pie crust. Freeze for a couple hours to set the filling, then tightly wrap the entire pie in 2-3 layers of plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then freeze for up to 1 month. When ready to bake, remove from the freezer, unwrap, and bake for about 20 minutes longer.
- Special Tools: Glass Mixing Bowls | 4-cup Glass Measuring Cup | Pastry Cutter | Marble Rolling Pin | Glass Pie Dish | Pie Weights | Pastry Brush | Pie Crust Shield | Reusable Piping Bags or Disposable Piping Bags | Wilton 8B Piping Tip
- Freezing Extra Pie Dough: You can freeze the 2nd pie dough for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.
- Optional Egg Wash: For a golden brown sheen on the pie crust edges, feel free to brush with egg wash as noted in step 3.
- Cornstarch: 2 teaspoons of cornstarch work as a substitute for 1 Tablespoon of flour. Make sure the cornstarch is completely mixed in with the melted butter and brown sugar.
- Pure Maple Syrup: Use pure maple syrup, not breakfast syrup. Any variety of pure maple syrup is great, from golden to dark amber. Use what you love best.
- Pie Dish: I strongly recommend a glass pie dish so you can see when the crust on the sides is browning, which signals that the pie is finished.
- Room Temperature Ingredients: Make sure you use room temperature eggs. Cold eggs will solidify the butter and you’ll be left with random chunks of butter in your filling.
- Try Adding Bourbon: Pie is delicious with a little bourbon. I recommend adding 2 Tablespoons, but make sure you reduce 2 Tablespoons of maple syrup from the recipe. (Use 3/4 cup + 2 Tbsp of maple syrup.) Whisk 2 Tbsp of bourbon in with the maple syrup.
Keywords: maple pecan pie
Reader Comments & Reviews
I love so much your recipes. And what I love more is not manipulating the feedbacks. Are real! Theres people that like it and other dont but you never manipulate. Theres vlogs that have allways 5star rating but thats not true. People have different tastes and is impossible have 5 star allways in their recipes. Thats why I trust in Sally. Thank you sally!!
I made this today and it was perfect…well, almost. I have never used pie weights before and put them directly on the pie crust. Of course, it fell apart when I tried to remove the pie weights! (I am working on ideas for a pie weight with a handle that is easy on/easy off. Anyway, I decided to simply mix it all together and make it a cobbler/pie. It was delicious and set up perfectly. I did make one change. I substituted 1 TBSP bourbon and used 1 TBSP vanilla. Perfection. Thank you! I always trust your recipes. So glad that I used maple syrup rather than corn syrup.
Greetings Sally et al:
I baked 2 of these pies yesterday, one for my wife’s book club & one for a bicycling buddy (we surprised him after the ride, it was his birthday). The pies drew raves.
The bourbon gives the flavor a nice complexity & edge.
I’d like to tweak the recipe to have more filling & fewer pecans (the pecans, to me, sort of hid the filling a bit). Add an egg? More maple syrup with more flour or whatever? I’d appreciate your thoughts.
Hi Mike, glad you gave this recipe a try! To have more filling and less pecans, I think the easiest change would be to simply reduce the amount of pecans. I haven’t tested this, but it’s where I would start. You can try with about 2 cups (about 200g) of pecans instead.
Why blind bake this crust but your fav pecan pie recipe you don’t
They are same except for corn syrup
Hi Audrey, blind baking is really just an extra step to get a crispier bottom crust. (Or, of course, to fully blind bake a crust for a no-bake pie filling.) It’s preference here. For this particular recipe, I really wanted to make sure the extra liquidy filling didn’t leave a soggy bottom crust. You can absolutely partially blind bake the crust in the regular pecan pie too.
Followed this recipe (and the dough one) to a T and the pie ended up being too runny… was very disappointing as I brought this to friends’ house for thanskgiving and all the filling was just liquid…
Recipe is good, except there are way too many pecans. Next time I’ll drop it down to 1.5 cups instead. You can hardly taste the filling because of the sheer number of pecans.
I love this recipe and have made it a few times now to rave reviews. However tonight something went wrong and I can’t figure it out! I made it according to the instructions like always and even took its temp when it came out so I know it was cooked BUT the filling didn’t set so it all fell apart when I cut into it. Any tips?
Hi Alison, If you took the temperature in the center that is odd that it didn’t set! Did you give it enough time to cool – it may not have fully set if it was still warm. Next time a few extra minutes in the oven (with a pie shield so the crust doesn’t burn) will help for next time, or you can try reducing the maple syrup in the filling. 1-2 Tablespoons of flour or 1-2 teaspoons of cornstarch would help, too.
I have been making this with the pure maple syrup for a couple years……no tweaking needed.
It’s my husband’s favorite pie. I appreciate all your recipes and methods. Everyone raves about my baking.
I made this recipe & the pie looked delicious when I pulled it out of the oven and let it cool on the counter… After several hours I wrapped it up and my husband accidentally put it in the fridge for Just an hour and a half. When I went to serve it and pulled it out it was like a soup base underneath the pecans! What do you think could have possibly happened? It tastes so good but it’s so liquefied hours no form whatsoever… May the crust completely soggy underneath. It was beautiful when it came out of the oven and cooled but I was trying to hold on to it until serving it for Thanksgiving tomorrow. Since you’re recipe said you could bake one day ahead.
Hi Dee, It’s possible that the pie simply wasn’t cooked long enough. Did you use a pie crust shield around the edges? The edges of the crust will brown pretty quickly before the filling can fully cook. A few extra minutes in the oven (with a shield) will help for next time, or you can try reducing the maple syrup in the filling. 1-2 Tablespoons of flour or 1-2 teaspoons of cornstarch would help, too.
Do you keep the oven rack on lower 2/3 rd when baking pie? Or move to middle?
Hi Ann, All ovens are different, but usually the lower third to middle of your oven is the best spot.
I have made this several times, and it is our favorite pecan pie recipe now. We usually do a graham cracker crust for ease, and it is delicious! We are going to try to make it dairy free this year since we are trying to work around some food sensitivities. If you have any suggestions, please share. 🙂
Thank you for a lovely recipe!
I used 2 tablespoons of potato starch instead of 1 tablespoon flour to thicken to make it gf. Baked this using the all butter crust recipe with Bob’s 1 to 1 gluten free flour. This turned out excellent! I’m really impressed. Thank you!
I have made this on at least three occasions now, originally based on a roommate’s request to make pecan pie without the corn syrup. This is a solid pecan pie recipe and a permanent addition to my cookbook.
Can honey be substituted for maple syrup
Hi Marge, we haven’t tried honey here. Best to stick with any variety of pure maple syrup, from golden to dark amber.
I used honey instead of maple syrup because I ran out. I think it works really good!
My first homemade pie (including crust and whipped cream)! SUCCESS! And so very DELICIOUS!
if using a store bought pie crust, should i still blind bake it first? Thank you
Hi Rachel! Yes, you should still blind bake the crust. Enjoy!
I have made this recipe many times and it is always a massive hit!
I have a function upcoming and one of the guests is lactose intolerant. Do you have a suggestion for an egg substitute in this recipe?
Hi Devin, we haven’t tried an egg-free version of this pie, so we’re unsure of the best substitute and how it would alter results. They’re really key for helping the pie to set. If you’re interested, here are all of our egg-free recipes.
If your guest is lactose intolerant they should be ok to have eggs, since they do not contain lactose. You should be looking for substitute for butter in both the crust and the filling.
Everyone really liked this. This isn’t the traditional gooey filling with some pecans on top. This is actual pecan pie – loads of pecans held together in a sweet binding. And it is delightful. I reduced the brown sugar by half using only 1/4c. I reduced the maple syrup by a quarter using only 3/4c. It turned out perfect. Not coma inducing sweet. And I skipped the salt because I don’t like salt in desserts. Thanks for the recipe!
I made this pie for my hubby for his birthday. He absolutely loves it.
I looked at a few recipes and pre cooked my pecans slightly to bring out the flavour more. The maple flavour is delicious with the pecans.. Unfortunately I over cooked my base but it was still amazing.. Great served with fresh cream! 5/5
Can I substitute maple sugar for the granulated sugar?
Hi Sherry, we’ve never tested this recipe with maple sugar but please let us know if you do!
My mother in law has a corn allergy and has been missing pecan pie! Last Thanksgiving I made this for her and she still thanks me to this day. I followed your pie crust tutorial to a T except I forgot to add foil around the pie crust. It didn’t burn though! I have never baked pie crust OR pecan pie before and I must say as a beginner, this was easy to follow thanks to your thought-out instructions. I’m going to make this again this year and make maple syrup whipped cream to go with it. YUM!
I have never made pecan pie before but I’ve had really good results from this website previously. I’m not sure if I did something wrong or if ingredients are different here in the UK. I followed the instructions but my filling curdled when I added the eggs (I had to add another tbsp flour to try and bring it together). The maple syrup also kept settling to the bottom of my bowl as soon as I stopped mixing. When I poured it on the pecans the mixture just sat on top completely hiding them. It cooked ok in 45 minutes but the taste and texture is quite eggy. Has anyone else had this experience? Or does anyone have any tips?
Awful result! Too dry, none of that expected goowy texture. Maple syrup alone did not replace the texture created by corn syrup.
Thank you for this specific technique, as I would like to use maple syrup instead of corn syrup.
Was there any change in sweetness level when you used maple instead of corn syrup? Just wondering if there was any drastic changes.
Hi Mark! This pie sweetened with maple syrup is slightly less sweet than a traditional pecan pie but still sweet!
Fantastic! Love not using corn syrup. I browned the butter and added the bourbon as recommended. I forgot to chop half the pecans but it came out great anyway! PS I also love your ricotta gnocchi, I compared three different recipes and yours is the best, I think because of the egg yolks and the parmesan. Thanks so much!
Just wanted to thank you for all your recipes and tips! My trust in you led me to try making pie crust again, after being renowned for my shoe-leather crusts. It is amazing, easy and delicious. Before I bake anything I look to see if you have baked one and what your tips are. Keep up the great work and Merry Christmas!