A Whole Foods Thanksgiving – Pecan Pie

by Deliciously Organic on November 10, 2010

I love pecan pie. It’s always been my favorite but of course, it contains corn syrup as a necessary ingredient. I only make it on Thanksgiving day so in the past I’ve bought a bottle of organic corn syrup (to avoid the genetically modified alterative) and baked my pie. But this year while testing the recipes for my cookbook I learned a little secret. If you simmer maple syrup until it reaches 225ºF it “acts” like corn syrup. Truly! Now pecan pie can be made with 100% unprocessed ingredients. I contemplated this recipe for months, finally gave it a whirl last week, and was delighted when the pie tasted just as good as my Mom’s. I also baked the pie using a gluten free crust and wow, it was amazing!

Now, my friends, you can have your pie and eat it too.

Pecan Pie

Serving Size: Makes 1 9-inch pie

Pecan Pie


  • 1 unbaked pie shell
  • Click here for the Gluten Free Pie Crust Recipe. (After your dough has chilled, proceed with instructions below.)

  • Click here for the Whole Wheat Pie Crust Recipe. (After your dough has chilled, proceed with instructions below.)
  • For the filling:

  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon maple syrup

  • 3/4 cup organic whole cane sugar or sucanat

  • 2 tablespoons butter

  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

  • 1 cup whole pecan halves


Unwrap dough and place a new sheet of plastic wrap on top. Roll out dough in between the sheets of plastic into a 12-inch disk. Remove the top sheet of plastic wrap and then carefully place the dough into the pie dish and peel off remaining plastic. Fold the overhanging dough under itself and then crimp with your fingers or press against the lip of the pie dish with a fork. Place crust in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling.

Preheat oven to 400ºF and adjust rack to lower-middle position. Heat maple syrup over medium heat in a medium saucepan. Simmer until syrup reaches 225ºF. While syrup is simmering place whole cane sugar and butter in a medium mixing bowl. As soon as the syrup reaches 225ºF immediately pour syrup over sugar and butter mixture. Let mixture sit for 1 minute and then whisk together. Whisk in eggs, vanilla and sea salt. Pour mixture into prepared pie crust and top with pecans. Bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350ºF and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes. The filling will be slightly less set in the center than the edges but will set as it cools. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Maria November 10, 2010 at 6:43 am

I would love a slice of your pie!


alana (at) the food November 10, 2010 at 6:53 am

oh boy that pie looks unreal!!!!


susan November 10, 2010 at 7:18 am

Pecan pie is always a favorite on our thanksgiving table. yours looks perfect and I am certain tastes better than perfect!!


Kristen November 10, 2010 at 7:30 am

That is one beautiful pecan pie, Carrie!


Gail November 10, 2010 at 10:16 am

This recipe looks amazing and I really want to try it….but first I just need to build up my pantry with more organic ingredients so it’s not a bank-breaker when I want to bake a pie. Ha! Yesterday I bought the ww pastry flour….now I just need to work on converting my sugars. Looks delish though!


Deliciously Organic November 10, 2010 at 10:58 am

I’m glad you bought some ww pastry flour! That’s a step in the right direction! Keep it up! :)


Nicole November 10, 2010 at 10:20 am

This is wonderful! Thanks for sharing :)


Brooke@foodwoolf November 10, 2010 at 10:51 am

Wow. This little trick has me thinking I’m going to need to add this to my list of things to make this thanksgiving. I’m excited that you discovered this ingenious trick! Yipee!


Deliciously Organic November 10, 2010 at 10:57 am

Thanks Brooke. I did a little dance when I had my first bite, called a friend, told her the news and we celebrated together. :) It’s amazing what we cooks get excited over. :)


Natasha@ Saved bythe Egg Timer November 10, 2010 at 11:25 am

I love this whole food, healthy, delicious pie. You can have your pie and be healthy too!


Jennifer3 November 10, 2010 at 1:06 pm

Oh, I am so excited to try this! I love pecan pie, but never make it because of the corn syrup. This made my morning!


++MIRA++ November 10, 2010 at 1:36 pm

thanksgiving….ah..what a lovely reminder…yum


marla {family fresh cooking} November 10, 2010 at 5:31 pm

Wow! I would much prefer the maple reduction over the corn syrup any day. Your pie is just gorgeous. Everyone would swoon over this dessert if we had it at Thanksgiving! xo


Katie ~ Simple Organic November 10, 2010 at 7:30 pm

Carrie, I am just loving all these recipes you’ve been posting for healthy Thanksgiving food with GLUTEN-FREE VERSIONS! It makes me sooooo happy. :) Everything looks amazing and I can’t wait to make them. Thank you, thank you, thank you!


Marcy November 11, 2010 at 7:29 am

Hmmm — I love my mom’s pecan sticky buns, also made with corn syrup for the topping. I tried another recipe that used plain maple syrup and it wasn’t quite right — might have to try this simmering trick.


Duffi November 11, 2010 at 1:40 pm

Is there a method for the pastry other than with a food processor (since I don’t have one)? This looks so good’ my daughter can’t have corn, and neither of us can do gluten. This looks very promising!


Deliciously Organic November 11, 2010 at 7:11 pm

You can use this method and recipe for the crust: http://www.mytartelette.com/2010/08/recipe-peach-blueberry-lemon-thyme.html I hope you and your daughter can enjoy pecan pie this Thanksgiving!! By the way, if you aren’t familiar with Helen’s blog then you must take a look! Her recipes are all gluten free. I bet you’ll find some new favorites on her site.


Amy November 13, 2010 at 6:06 pm

What a wonderful idea and I’m definitely trying this the next time I make a pecan pie (which is usually in December for my mom’s birthday). Thanks for sharing!


fiendishfrenzy November 18, 2011 at 8:48 pm

my local coops have had other variations of this around but im glad someone is putting it on the web. another version, just to have options, is you can also substitute with rice syrup or agave we did that the last few years and it turned out fantastic. look forward to reading more of your posts


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