Pecan Desserts: 10 Must-Haves

If you’re looking for another excuse to eat one of the best pies on the planet, look no further as National Pecan Day falls on April 14 every year and utterly celebrates pecan desserts. Initiated by the National Pecan Shellers Association in 1996, it’s a way to celebrate the diverse uses for the seed native to Mexico and the Southern US. Described as having a rich and buttery flavour, they’re versatile enough to be used in a variety of both sweet and savoury dishes. But being the Dessert Advisor, you can probably guess the side of the fence we’re interested in.

Before we do start talking about its sweet uses and pecan dessert though, why not digress and mention some interesting pecan facts we were able to find. Used for furniture and wood flooring, the pecan tree was declared the state tree of Texas in 1919 – something to keep in mind when considering a state synonymous with barbecued meats. Interestingly, we can use its wood chips for smoking meat! It’s said to provide a sweet flavour stronger than other fruit woods and similar to hickory.

Moving across to the pecan capital of North America, Albany, Georgia, one can find more than 600,000 pecan trees. It used to have a National Pecan Festival every year complete with parades and pecan-cooking competitions, not to mention the crowning of the National Pecan Queen. But you’re not concerned with crowning Pecan Queens and smoked meat, you want to know about desserts!

Well, whether you say PEE-can or Puh-KAHN, we’ve collated a list of our top ten pecan desserts that would be nothing without pecans:


  1. Pecan pie – the classic old-fashioned dessert that needs no introduction
  2. Pecan cheesecake – NYC style cheesecake meets Southern pecan pie
  3. Toffee pecan bars – crispy base with a gooey toffee pecan topping
  4. Apple and pecan cobbler – combines soft spiced apples with buttery little pecans
  5. Pecan coffee cake – classic coffee cake with sweet and crunchy pecans
  6. Pecan praline – creamy melt-in-your-mouth candy with a gentle crunch
  7. Pineapple and pecan cake – cousin to the Southern hummingbird cake
  8. Pecan Sandies – crisp and buttery pecan shortbread cookies
  9. Turtle brownies – rich, chocolate brownies with caramel and pecans
  10. Chocolate pecan tart – an elegant chocolate twist on the classic pecan pie


    Now, quickly, go buy a pecan dessert!
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