Join me as we swan dive into this amazing Pecan Pie Cobbler! There’s a pool of caramel hiding beneath a buttery, sticky, cloud-like surface and a shower of brown sugar toasted pecans.
DID I MENTION THE CARAMEL POOL?
This easy dessert recipe truly is magic!
I realize that calling a pecan pie cobbler (or any dessert) “magic” might not have the same persuasive oomph coming from someone who is prone to superlatives (for the record, this Vegan Apple Crisp really is the best fruit crisp EVER. This Dutch Oven Peach Cobbler is the best easy fruit dessert; the Pumpkin Pecan Pie is the best pumpkin pie, etc.).
This pecan pie cobbler, however, possesses magic of a different kind.
In addition to the mesmerizing taste and texture—to eat it is to slip into a fall dessert fantasy—the very cooking process is something of a culinary wonder.
If you’ve tried my Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler, you have a hint of this recipe’s process.
- To make this amazing pecan pie cobbler, you layer the ingredients—melted butter, easy batter, brown sugar tossed pecans—in a baking dish one on top of the other without stirring, which feels completely outrageous. AND THEN…
- You dump hot water onto the whole shebang.
It looks like a royal mess going into the oven, but when it emerges?
- An oozing pool of caramel floods the bottom of the dish.
- A moist, buttery cake rises to the top.
- The pecans emerge on the surface, toasted and crisp.
This is an old-fashioned trick, sometimes called a pudding cake. It wows every time!
Ready to wave your wand?
At the holidays, I like to focus on desserts that feel traditional and comforting, but are still a little fresh and unexpected.
I also want them to be easy to make, even for beginner bakers.
Many of my favorites are Southern!
- Old Fashioned Sweet Potato Pie is silky and warmly spiced. I’m hoping you’ll trust me and try it this year, instead of pumpkin.
- Buttermilk Pie is a favorite dessert of my childhood. The pie filling is made with nothing but a bowl and a hand mixer. It’s an easy holiday dessert that delights.
- Bourbon Balls. People get very excited when you show up with these.
And, in case you aren’t feeling any of those? That’s where gooey pecan pie cobbler comes in!
- Pecan pie cobbler has the same flavors as pecan pie, without a scrap of fuss.
- There’s no pie crust to roll, no filling to temper.
- This pecan cobbler recipe is made with no corn syrup, and if you like, you can use other wholesome ingredients too.
How to Make Pecan Pie Cobbler
Pecan pie cobbler is an “impossible” dessert, meaning that it makes its own crust as it bakes.
The caramel pudding that forms on the bottom of the dish has the flavor of pecan pie, and the batter rises to the top, creating the “crust” (though it’s more like a sticky sponge cake).
I’ve seen a few recipes floating around for pecan pie cobbler with Bisquick and pecan pie cobbler with cake mix—NOT NECESSARY. Pecan pie cobbler is easy.
Here’s how to make amazing Pecan Pie Cobbler.
- Butter. It’s the holidays! Butter is key to forming the caramel pudding at the bottom of the pecan pie cobbler. This recipe uses a moderate amount compared to any pecan pie recipe, but the cobbler still tastes gloriously rich.
- Flour. I opted to use a blend of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour, because (even at this decadent time of year), I like sneaking in whole grains. Further, I find the mild, nutty taste of whole wheat flour a nice pairing with pecans. If you prefer to keep it holiday classic, you can use entirely all-purpose flour.
- Brown Sugar. The second half of our caramel magic. Pecan pie is usually made with corn syrup (and many classic cobbler recipes like Dixie’s pecan pie cobbler call for it too), but I found that using brown sugar resulted in just as rich of a flavor, without corn syrup.
- Milk. I recommend 2% milk to make sure the caramel isn’t too thin. As you might suspect, whole milk would be quite nice too.
- Pecans. Nutty, crunchy, and oh-so-toasty. (If you’re a pecan fan, you’ll also love these Pecan Pie Bars.)
- RUM! A splash of booze makes this gooey pecan cobbler extra festive. You could also make the pecan pie cobbler with bourbon, brandy, or leave it out entirely and use additional vanilla extract instead.
- Add the butter to your baking dish, and place it in the preheated oven to melt. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, stir together the dry ingredients for the cobbler. Then, add the wet ingredients for the batter, stirring just until the flour disappears.
- In a third, final bowl, stir together the brown sugar and pecans.
- Slowly pour the hot water over the top, and DO NOT STIR.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper, and set your baking dish on top. Bake at 350 degrees F uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Set the baking dish cool on a wire rack to cool (it will thicken as it cools). Serve warm with desired toppings, and ENJOY!
Pecan Cobbler Recipe Variations
- Walnut Pecan Pie Cobbler. Use a mix of half walnuts and half pecans.
- Pecan Pie Cobbler with Toffee Bits. Sprinkle ½ cup brickle toffee bits over the top of the brown sugar and pecans, prior to adding the hot water.
- Gluten Free Pecan Pie Cobbler. Replace both flours with Gluten Free 1:1 Baking Flour.
Storing Pecan Pie Cobbler
Does pecan pie cobbler need to be refrigerated? Yes.
Like traditional pecan pie, this cobbler should be refrigerated to keep it fresher longer.
- To Store. Let your cobbler cool completely, then cover it and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
- To Reheat. Gently reheat your cobbler in the oven at 325 degrees F until warmed through.
- To Freeze. Cool completely, then tightly cover your cobbler, and place in the freezer for up to 2 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
The only thing more miraculous than how easy pecan pie cobbler is to make (and eat!) might be how delicious a serving would taste with a scoop of vanilla ice cream melting over the top.
Let’s work some magic!
Pecan Pie Cobbler
For the Cobbler Batter:
- 4 tablespoons 1/2 stick unsalted butter
- ½ cup Bob’s Red Mill Organic All Purpose Flour
- ½ cup Bob’s Red Mill Organic Whole Wheat Flour or additional all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup 2% milk
- 2 tablespoons dark rum or an additional 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon additional milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the Topping:
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar light or dark
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 1/2 cups very hot water
- Vanilla ice cream or sweetened whipped cream
- Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place the butter in an 8×8-inch ceramic baking dish or similar 2-quart baking dish. Pop the dish into the oven until the butter melts, about 5 minutes. Set the dish with melted butter aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, prepare the cobbler batter: add the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, light brown sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. With a fork, stir to combine. Pour in the milk, rum, and vanilla extract, then stir with the same fork, stopping as soon as the flour disappears.
- In a small mixing bowl with a clean fork, stir together the topping ingredients: brown sugar and pecans.
- With a small spoon, dollop the batter over the melted butter. Use the back of the spoon to gently smoosh it into an even layer. DO NOT STIR. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the cobbler batter. It will feel like an excessive amount, but keep going (this is pecan pie cobbler after all!).
- Last, slowly and evenly pour hot water over the entire cobbler, covering the whole surface. It will look like a wet mess. Again, DO NOT STIR.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet large enough to hold the dish with parchment paper for easy clean up (This will catch any delicious molten caramel that bubbles over). Carefully set the pan on top and slow and gently transfer to the oven, being careful not to splatter. Bake uncovered in the center of the oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and looks dry on top. Transfer the baking pan to a wire rack and let cool for 20 to 25 minutes (the cobbler will continue to thicken as it cools). Serve warm, topped with vanilla ice cream.
- TO STORE: Let your cobbler cool completely, then cover it and store in the refrigerator for up to three days.
- TO REHEAT: Gently reheat your cobbler in the oven at 325 degrees F until warmed through.
- TO FREEZE: Tightly cover your pecan pie cobbler and place in the freezer for up to two months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
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