Pecan Praline Pumpkin Pie

This freezer-friendly and make-ahead pecan praline pumpkin pie combines my tried-and-true flaky pie crust, smooth and spiced pumpkin pie filling, and a sweet/salty crunchy pecan topping. It’s salted pecan pie meets pumpkin pie— in the best way possible! Use my helpful video tutorial to walk you through each step.

slice of pecan praline pumpkin pie on a plate

As far as Thanksgiving desserts go, pumpkin pie is an icon. And this pecan praline pumpkin pie is a fun twist on my traditional pumpkin pie recipe. I won’t call this rendition an “upgrade” since you can’t mess with perfection, but the crunchy praline topping definitely adds a tasty contrast to the smooth and spiced filling below. If you ever craved a little crunch with your pie, this recipe is for you!

pecan pumpkin pie with whipped cream dollops

3 Parts to Pecan Praline Pumpkin Pie

  1. Pie Crust
  2. Pumpkin Pie Filling
  3. Pecan Praline Topping

For the ultimate finishing touch, I recommend topping this pecan pumpkin pie with fresh whipped cream and a sprinkle of sea salt. The crunchy salt helps cut the praline’s sweetness and whipped cream is ALWAYS a good idea with pie. Agreed?


Praline Pumpkin Pie Video Tutorial


slice of pecan praline pumpkin pie on a pie server

Partially Blind Bake the Pie Crust

Like my traditional pumpkin pie recipe, today’s version includes partially blind-baking the pie crust which means that we are pre-baking the crust before adding the filling. Do you know how to blind bake pie crust? Let’s review:

  1. Make pie dough ahead of time, then refrigerate or freeze until you’re ready to make the pie. Pie crust must chill for at least 2 hours before rolling out. You can use my favorite pie crust or my all butter pie crust recipe. I prefer the shortening/butter blend in my pie crust because the shortening promises that prized flaky texture. If needed, you can use a graham cracker crust or gingersnap crust instead. See recipe note.
  2. Roll the dough out, then fit into a 9-inch pie dish. Crimp or flute the edges. My trick to beautiful edges– don’t trim the excess pie dough. See step 2 in the recipe below.
  3. Chill the shaped pie crust for at least 30 minutes. This prevents shrinking. Remember that pie dough must be cold when it hits the oven. You can chill the shaped crust before or after you fill with pie weights (next step).
  4. Fill with pie weights. As the pie dough bakes, its fat will melt. The melting fat causes the pie crust to shrink down the sides of the pie dish. To prevent the pie dough from completely losing its shape, weigh it down with pie weights. Carefully line the pie dough with parchment paper first, then pour in pie weights or even dry beans. (Note: 2 packs of these pie weights* is needed.) *affiliate link!
  5. Bake until the edges are relatively set, about 12 minutes.
  6. Remove pie weights, then pour in the pumpkin pie filling and bake.

Some recipes, like my coconut cream pie and banana cream pie, require a fully blind baked pie crust because the filling doesn’t go into the oven. With this pecan pumpkin pie, however, we’re only partially pre-baking it. (Which is even easier!)

2 images of pie crust before baking and pie crust after blind baking

Pumpkin Pie Filling + Secret Ingredient

If you’ve made my beloved pumpkin pie recipe before, you know how good this filling is! To make room for the pecan praline topping, I reduced some of the ingredients so the filling doesn’t overflow. Instead of 3 eggs, we’ll use 2. I also reduced the sugar and liquids, too. This recipe uses an entire can of pumpkin, which is always convenient. I kept the spice amount the same, so we’re getting extra spice flavor in each bite.

Speaking of spices, I add a pinch of fresh ground black pepper to pumpkin pie filling. I got this tip from King Arthur Flour and pumpkin pies are NEVER the same without it. The black pepper brings out the pumpkin pie spice flavors and no one ever realizes it’s hiding in there. (They’ll just ask you why your pie is so good!)

pumpkin pie filling in a glass bowl

Don’t Forget the Egg Wash

You don’t have to wait for the partially blind baked pie crust to cool down before pouring in the filling– it can still be warm! To prevent a pale and lackluster crust, brush the partially blind baked pie crust with egg wash. Egg wash, a mixture of egg and milk, promises a golden sheen on the edges of your pie.

Pie Crust Shield: Do you notice the edges of your pie crust browning too quickly? Sometimes the crust edges are finished baking before the filling. A pie crust shield helps prevent over-browning. (I link to my favorite one in the recipe notes below.) You can also use aluminum foil. Fold a 12-inch piece of aluminum foil in half, then cut a semi-circle out from the folded edge. Unfold the foil to reveal a circle. Remove the cooking pie from the oven, then carefully place the foil on top so the center is exposed and edges are covered. Return pie to the oven.

2 images of pouring pumpkin pie filling into pie crust and brushing pie crust with egg wash before baking

Let’s almost fully bake the pie before we add the praline topping. Why? First, the topping would burn if it’s in the oven that long and second, we could risk under-baking the filling if it’s hiding under the topping the whole time.

Pumpkin Pie Praline Topping Ingredients

As the pie bakes, make the 3 ingredient praline topping. You need:

  • Chopped Pecans: This is a pecan praline topping, which is reminiscent of my favorite pecan pie filling. If you don’t like pecans, feel free to substitute with chopped walnuts or pistachios. Or instead of using 1 cup of chopped pecans, try 1/2 cup chopped pecans and 1/2 cup pepitas. Yum!
  • Brown Sugar: Praline is the mixture of cooked sugar and nuts, so we can’t have a praline topping without sugar! I recommend brown sugar, which pairs with the brown sugar in the pumpkin pie filling.
  • Honey: We need a sticky liquid sugar for this praline topping. The honey cooks and melts down, creating a delectable sticky crunch. If needed, you can substitute the honey with light corn syrup or even maple syrup.

Top the pie with the praline topping, then return to the oven for about 15 more minutes.

2 images of praline topping for pumpkin pie in a mixing bowl and on top of the pie

sliced praline pumpkin pie

How to Make Ahead + Freeze Praline Pumpkin Pie

Pecan praline pumpkin pie is perfect for entertaining because (conveniently!) it needs to cool completely before serving. I always make pumpkin pie the day ahead of time, let it cool, cover it with aluminum foil, and refrigerate overnight. You can bring to room temperature before serving or serve cold.

Freezing: You can also freeze the baked and cooled pie. If freezing, I recommend baking your pie in a disposable aluminum pie dish because its thin weight will help prevent ice crystals from forming on your pie. Cool the baked pie completely, then wrap the whole thing– pan included– in plastic wrap or Press & Seal, followed by a layer of aluminum foil. This is how to freeze cakes, too. Freeze for up to 3 months, then keep pie in the wrapping and thaw in the refrigerator before topping with whipped cream and serving.

  • You can also freeze the semi-baked pie before adding the praline topping. To maintain the praline topping’s crisp texture, this is what I recommend. Follow the recipe below through step 7, cool the pie, follow the freezing and thawing instructions above, then bring the pie to room temperature. Continue with step 8 in the recipe below. This way your praline topping is fresh!

slice of praline pecan pumpkin pie on a plate

I honestly don’t know which is the best: the crunchy sweet/salty topping, the creamy pumpkin filling, or the flaky pie crust. But who has to pick favorites? LET’S EAT IT ALL.

Print
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slice of pecan praline pumpkin pie on a pie server

Pecan Praline Pumpkin Pie

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 50 minutes
  • Cook Time: 70 minutes
  • Total Time: 7 hours, 10 minutes (includes pie crust)
  • Yield: one 9-inch pie
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This pecan praline pumpkin pie combines flaky pie crust, smooth and spiced pumpkin pie filling, and a sweet/salty crunchy pecan topping. For recipe success, read my recipe notes and watch the helpful video tutorial above before you begin.


Ingredients

Crust

Filling

  • one 15oz can (about 2 cups; 425g) pumpkin puree*
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup (200g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon (8gcornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger*
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg*
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves*
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 2/3 cup (160ml) heavy cream*
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) whole milk*

Praline Topping

  • 1 cup (130g) finely chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons (30g) honey*
  • for garnish: sea salt and whipped cream

Instructions

  1. For best success, read the recipe in full before beginning.
  2. Pie crust: I like to make sure my pie dough is prepared before I begin making pecan praline pumpkin pie. Make pie dough the night before because it needs to chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before rolling out and blind baking (next step).
  3. Roll out the chilled pie dough: On a floured work surface, roll out one of the disks of chilled dough (use the 2nd pie crust for another recipe!). 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 9×2 inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is completely smooth. To make a lovely thick edge, I do not trim excess dough around the edges. Instead, fold the excess dough back over the edge and use your hands to mold the edge into a nice thick rim around the pie. Crimp the edges with a fork or use your fingers to flute the edges. You can see me do this in the video tutorial above. Carefully line the inside of the pie with two pieces of parchment paper, as shown in the photos and video above, then pour in the pie weights. Make sure the weights are evenly distributed around the pie dish. Chill the dough in the refrigerator or freezer for at least 30 minutes– this helps prevent the crust from shrinking. (You can actually fill with pie weights before or after chilling, it doesn’t make a difference.)
  4. Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  5. Pre-bake the crust: Bake the cold pie crust (with weights!) for 12 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for a few minutes as you prepare the filling. You can pre-bake the crust up to 3 days ahead of time. Cover cooled crust tightly and refrigerate until ready to fill.
  6. Whisk the pumpkin, eggs, brown sugar, cornstarch, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, black pepper, cream, and milk together in a large bowl until completely combined and smooth. If desired, you can use an electric mixer for this step.
  7. Remove pie weights (and parchment) from crust. Pour filling into warm crust. Brush edges with egg wash. Bake for 50-55 minutes or until the center is no longer jiggly. It can still be a little sticky in the very center on top, just as long as it no longer jiggles when you slightly tap the pan. During bake time, if you find the edges of the pie crust are browning too quickly, apply a pie crust shield or a ring of aluminum foil to protect it.
  8. Topping: Remove pie from the oven and add the topping. I like to make the topping as the pie bakes so I have it ready. Using a fork, mix the pecans and brown sugar together. Drizzle in the honey and mix until combined. Spoon on top of the pie, then *very* gently press it down with a spoon or fork so it sticks on the filling.
  9. Return pie to the oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes. Use a pie crust shield to protect the crust from over-browning, if needed.
  10. Remove the pie from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool completely, at least 3-4 hours. If not serving right away, cover cooled pie and store at room temperature for 1 day or in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
  11. Serve room temperature or cold with a sprinkle of sea salt and whipped cream. I used Ateco 849 piping tip for the whipped cream, but you can just use a spoon to top each slice with a dollop.
  12. Cover and store leftover pie in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: See post above for detailed make-ahead and freezing instructions.
  2. Special Tools (affiliate links): Pastry Blender, Rolling Pin, Pie Dish, Parchment Paper, Pie Weights, Pastry Brush, Pie Crust Baking Shield
  3. Pie Crust: Both linked pie crust recipes make 2 crusts. You only need 1 crust for this pie, so freeze the 2nd half for another use. If using store-bought pie dough, you still need to pre-bake it. If needed, you can use a graham cracker crust or gingersnap crust instead of traditional pie crust. Pre-bake the cookie crust at 350°F (177°C) for 10 minutes. No need for pie weights if using a cookie crust.
  4. Pumpkin: Canned pumpkin is best in this pumpkin pie recipe. If using fresh pumpkin puree, lightly blot it before adding to remove some moisture. The bake time may be longer.
  5. Spices: About 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice can be used instead of ginger, nutmeg, and cloves.
  6. Heavy Cream & Milk: Do not substitute a lower fat milk– the fat in whole milk is needed. Feel free to use 1 cup of half-and-half instead of heavy cream + whole milk.
  7. Honey: If needed, you can substitute the honey in the praline topping with light corn syrup or even maple syrup.

Keywords: pumpkin, Thanksgiving, pie

213 Comments

  1. Super excited to make this. I’ve been looking for a thanksgiving dessert and I think I just found the one. I wanted something very “thanksgiving” but not the same old same old, that everyone else will be bringing. This fits the bill perfectly. I already have a go too pastry recipe for the crust. If I use that instead of your recipe, would I follow the blind baking the same or would I have to modify it a little.

    1. Hi Hannah! Follow the same blind baking steps 🙂 Happy baking!

  2. OOOOKKKK so a couple of weeks ago I commented on your Pumpkin Pie video on Facebook saying how I want to make it but my mom ALWAYS does pumpkin for Thanksgiving, and I ALWAYS make pecan (your recipe, obvy.) Well now you’ve gone and created a hybrid and I have never felt more torn, lol! I think to avoid a Civil War I will just make one this weekend as a Thanksgiving “pre game” pie. This looks incredible girl! And one more thing- I always am so distracted in your videos by your kitchen. Your cabinets are everything.

    1. This recipe was meant to be for you!! Love your idea of making it this weekend 🙂 Happy baking!

  3. Hi Sally,
    I love your desserts, all desserts I make come from your site. I love your recipes! Thanks!

    1. Thank you so much, Grace!

  4. This praline pumpkin pie looks so delicious! I love the idea of combining praline with pumpkin – sounds so good!

    1. Thank you so much Natalie! It’s such a delicious combo 🙂

  5. Hi Sally!
    I am so excited to make this recipe! It looks so good! I was wondering if you could do any leftovers Halloween candy recipes?

    1. Hi Zoe! Here’s one of my favorites: https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/candy-bar-blondies/

  6. Earl C Williams says:

    Really appreciated the video. Thank you.

    1. You are welcome!

  7. Brandi Wilson says:

    Can’t wait to make this as I have been dreaming up ways to make a pumpkin pie with a crumble topping and this is beyond what i could have come up with! Trying this on thanksgiving and cannot wait.

    1. I’m so happy you will be making this for Thanksgiving!! YAY! 🙂

  8. Could you use sweet potatoes instead of pumpkin? I have a family member highly allergic to pumpkin.

    1. Hi Susan! Yes, using sweet potato in place of pumpkin would be just fine. You’ll want to boil and mash them as I do with my sweet potato pie.

  9. Sally, I have made your regular pumpkin pie recipe every year since you posted it and I am so happy that you added something so perfect for the top!! I can’t wait to make this because I know it will be beyond perfect. Thank you!!

    1. LOVE reading this, Wendy!! I hope you love this one just as much as my classic version 🙂

  10. Julie Maguire says:

    Sorry if I’m missing it but what is the alternative recipe for the month? I don’t like pumpkin pie (I know cray right?) but want to participate!! Thanks

    1. Yep! Right above the recipe– Pie Crust Designs.

  11. Wow! What an awesome combination. This is why I love your blog and recipes!

    1. Thank you so much, Kristen! 🙂

  12. I have been making your recipes for about 4 years now! I receive so many compliments. My family jokes around saying Sally is my best friend lol! I am making a few pies today! Can’t wait to make this one!

    1. So sweet! Let me know how this one turns out. Thanks Stacey!

  13. Heather Boynton says:

    Could you use flax eggs to replace the real eggs in the pumpkin part?

    1. Hi Heather! I wish I could help but I have no experience baking pumpkin pie without eggs and that would require testing. Let me know if you try it!

  14. Looks delicious but no nuts allowed in my house….any ideas?
    Thanks.

    1. Hi Cynthia! You can try using all pepitas (1 cup) and reducing the brown sugar down to 1/4 cup and honey to 1 Tablespoon. 🙂 The pepitas are smaller and won’t “catch” as much of the sugars, so that’s why I recommend reducing the sugars down.

  15. Success! I made this yesterday and the combination is brilliant! Pumpkin pie generally is nice, but can get a bit dull after a few bites, and pecan pie is amazing, but can get too rich. So this pie is the perfect! I’m not sure why, but my pumpkin filling took FOREVER to set, and unfortunately I already added the topping so it browned a bit more than I would have liked. Any idea where I went wrong there? Either way, the end result was delicious, and when I make it for Thanksgiving I’ll just be a bit more careful with timing when I add the topping. I confess, I had a small slice for breakfast with my coffee this morning and I have no regrets!

    1. Hi Millie! I’m so glad you love this pie! I wonder if your oven’s temperature was going up and down as you checked the pie for doneness/opened the oven? (Assuming you did so!) Either way, a pie crust shield helps OR tenting a piece of foil on top of the pie as it cooks will help too. Thank you so much for trying it!

  16. Sally this pie is delicious, but I kick it up a notch by adding a streusel to the pecan topping.

    1. I’m so happy you loved this pie!

  17. Hi Sally, just curious, can you explain why it has to be whole milk+heavy cream? What would happen if you use all whole milk or even skim milk? Just trying to understand. Thanks for always sharing great recipes!

    1. Hi Emily! You need the fat in whole milk + heavy cream (or the half-and-half substitution) in order for this filling to set. The filling won’t set with only whole milk or lower fat milk.

  18. Love your recipes Sally! My friend and I quadrupled this recipe (two for each of our families), and now I have enough leftover filling to make another pie later this week. Can I leave the filling in the fridge for a week, or would it be better to freeze it? Thanks!

    1. Hi Sashi! So fun. The filling is fine covered in the refrigerator for a few days, but 1 week is pushing it. I would freeze it, then thaw and use in the recipe when you’re ready to make the pie.

  19. This is good. It combines my husband and my favorite pies. I used your crust recipe as well which also turned out well. I decided to make pumpkin spice whipped cream as well…because why not? 🙂 I had to wait until it cooled to eat it, but really my favorite is cold pumpkin pie….so..I may or may not have another piece later after its been in the fridge. 😉

    1. I’m thrilled that you both enjoyed it! And pumpkin spice whipped cream sounds amazing!

  20. Thank you for this great pie recipe! This is my second baking challenge and both times I’ve baked things that I had always been too scared to tackle. This was my first run at homemade pie crust. It didn’t look perfect, but my husband and I can confirm that it was very delicious. He said it was one of the best desserts I’ve made. I honestly had only thought pumpkin pie was okay before this recipe, but this proved me wrong. Thank you so much for these challenges and your guidance – It’s rewarding, fun, and delicious to bake new things.

    1. I absolutely love reading this, Elizabeth! Thrilled these challenges are helping you step outside of your baking comfort zone 🙂 I appreciate you participating in this baking challenge!

  21. Everything about this (pumpkin + pecan, make ahead) pie makes it the perfect addition to my Thanksgiving table! I cannot wait to try this mashup recipe! One pie crust question: after I form my pie crust to be perfectly aligned along the edges of the pie plate, it always seems to slump down while baking, leaving me with uneven edges and filling that flows over the crust. It is so frustrating! Do you have a solution to this problem? Thanks Sally!

    1. Hi Mercedes, the two best tips to avoid pie crust shrinkage are to make sure the pie crust is VERY cold when it goes in the oven, and use pie weights! See steps 3 and 4 in the section “Partially Blind Bake the Pie Crust” above. This should help!

  22. Hi Sally! I am excited to try this recipe. Is this recipe for a deep dish pie plate? Thanks!

    1. Hi Christine! I recommend a 1.5 – 2 inch deep pie dish. (2 inch is best.)

  23. This pie is perfection! I’ve made your regular pumpkin pie before (although the word “regular” doesn’t do it justice!) and this is an amazing upgrade. I loved the combination of the slightly salty and flaky crust, the smooth spiced filling, the sweet crunchy topping and the creamy whipped cream. All of those textures and flavors pair together wonderfully! Because I love maple syrup, I used that instead of honey. I also sweetened the whipped cream with maple syrup. Delicious!

    1. Thank you so much for your positive feedback, Tessa! Thrilled you loved this pie- and your maple whipped cream sounds divine! 🙂

  24. I used this recipe in making mini pumpkin pies. It was amazing! I brought my mini pecan praline pies into work and everyone raved about them! Everyone was asking for the recipe so of course I sent them a link to the recipe on your site 🙂 I will definitely make this recipe again!

    1. I’m thrilled they were such a hit, Sarah!

    2. Did you make your own crust for the minis?

      1. Hi Emilee – Because of the pan I was using (the pan was mini pumpkin shapes) it was easier to make a graham cracker crust for the minis. I used Sally’s recipe and it was perfect for these! https://sallysbakingaddiction.com/how-to-make-a-perfect-graham-cracker-crust/

  25. it was very very good

    1. So happy you loved it, Eva!

  26. Selina Varughese says:

    Hi Sally, I’m hosting thanksgiving for 16 people and wondered if I could convert this recipe into a slab pie or is baking 2 pies my only option. Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Selina! I recommend my pumpkin slab pie recipe. You can 1.5x this praline topping to fit that pie.

  27. Ashley Thomas says:

    Just took my first bite of my homemade Pecan Praline Pumpkin Pie and it was delicious! Definitely a perfect pie for Thanksgiving. I used Sally’s Flaky Pie Crust recipe and it was perfect. She mentions in the video that once you make homemade pie crust, it’s hard to go back to store bought, and I totally agree! I’ve never been one who likes eating the crust on a piece of pie (I usually leave the top part of the crust leftover on my plate, but I ate the whole thing, crust and all, with this piece of pie. The crust definitely beats anything store bought. Overall, it was delicious! Also, I don’t have pie weights so I used uncooked rice instead and it worked well. However, I will be asking for pie weights for Christmas this year, because now I can see myself making more homemade pie crusts in the future. 🙂

    1. I’m so happy you loved this recipe, Ashley! Thank you so much for your positive feedback and for participating in this month’s baking challenge 🙂

  28. Sonia Lightsey says:

    Hi Sally, I don’t seem to have access to your tutorials? Are they on your blog? I don’t know how to join it; thanks.

    1. Hi Sonia, If you look above in the text there is a line that says “Praline Pumpkin Pie Video Tutorial” and immediately after it is a photo with a small triangle in the center. Click on the triangle and the video will play!

  29. Sonia Lightsey says:

    Thank you Sally but there is no triangle in the center of the photo right after it says “Pumpkin Pie Video Tutorial” I using the firefox browser.

  30. Would it be possible to use buttermilk instead of heavy cream? Have some extra lying around

    1. Hi Steve, no I don’t recommend buttermilk in this filling. Here are 80+ recipes using buttermilk if you’re interested.

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