Pecan Pie Bars

4 from 4 votes
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These easy pecan pie bars feature an almond shortbread crust, date caramel and pecan filling, and a sprinkle of sea salt. With a short ingredient list, they’re a simple, quick, and wholesome twist on classic pecan pie!

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Finished pecan pie bars

I like pecan pie more than pumpkin pie! There, I said it. The crunchy texture combined with the comforting flavors of pecan pie is like a giant hug that can’t be beat. While we don’t have many pie recipes on Fit Foodie, we do love bars.

These pecan pie bars are everything we love about classic pecan pie with a wholesome twist, are refined sugar and flour-free, and come together in under an hour. Simply make the almond flour crust, puree dates to make date caramel, assemble, and bake. And, if you’re looking for a pumpkin pie version, our pumpkin pie bars are for you and the same with apple pie bars, too!

What is in pecan pie bars?

There are 2 parts to these flourless pecan pie bars. Here’s what you need:

Crust

The crust for these pie bars comes together with almond flour, butter, maple syrup, and vanilla. The blanched almond flour creates a warm, nutty, aromatic crust that pairs wonderfully with the sweet, cozy pecan pie filling.

Filling

The star of these pecan pie bars is the date caramel which adds the same great pecan pie texture we love without added sugar and preservatives. These are real, whole food pie bars with a simple ingredient list. We use pureed dates as a natural sweetener combined with vanilla for flavor and chopped pecans, of course. A sprinkle of sea salt creates a truly incredible sweet, salty treat!

A hand spreading date caramel over short bread crust

Substitutions for Pecan Pie Bars

With an already short ingredient list, there aren’t too many swaps for these pecan pie bars. Here are a couple to try based on what ingredients you have on hand:

  • Flour: If you don’t have almond flour, use the same amount of all-purpose or white whole wheat flour. The bars won’t be flourless, of course, but will still taste great.
  • Maple Syrup: Replace the maple syrup with the same amount of honey. We love how the maple flavor pairs with the sweet dates, but honey works in a pinch.
  • Nuts: Mix it up and use raw walnuts instead of pecans.

FAQ

Do you have to pre-soak the pecans?

Nope! There’s no need to pre-soak the pecans before using in this recipe.

Are these pecan pie bars vegan?

As written, this pecan pie bar recipe is not vegan. But, it’s a simple swap for vegan pie bars! Simply replace the butter with vegan butter or coconut oil.

Can you double this recipe?

Definitely! Use a 9×13-inch baking pan for a double batch of pecan pie bars. Double all of the ingredients and follow the recipe as written – make sure your food processor is large enough to handle 40 dates! If not, make the filling in 2 batches and mix to combine before spreading on top of the crust. You may need to add a few minutes to the bake time for both the crust and the assembled bars – keep an eye on them!

Stacked easy pecan pie bars with twine
Finished easy pecan pie bars

Storage

Pecan pie bars are a great make-ahead Thanksgiving dessert recipe! Once completely cool, enjoy them immediately or place in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to a week.

Freezing Pecan Pie Bars

Like many of our other bars and brownies, you can easily freeze these pecan pie bars to enjoy later. Once fully cooled, cut the pan of bars into squares, place in a single layer on a baking sheet, and freeze until fully frozen. Remove the bars from the freezer, wrap individually in aluminum foil or plastic wrap to prevent freezer burn, and place into freezer-safe container. Freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to serve, transfer frozen bars to the refrigerator to thaw, then enjoy cold or at room temperature.

A stack of easy pecan pie bars with twine

Serving Suggestions

Homemade pecan pie bars are delicious year-round, but especially during the holiday season! Make a batch to share with friends and neighbors, or add these to your Thanksgiving menu. Serve these naturally gluten free pie bars with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, drizzle of caramel sauce, or dollop of whipped cream.

4 from 4 votes

Pecan Pie Bars

The whole family will love these easy pecan pie bars! They're a wholesome twist on classic pecan pie made with a short list of real ingredients.
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Cool Time: 10 minutes
Total: 55 minutes
Servings: 12
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Ingredients 

Crust

  • 1.5 cups blanched almond flour
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Filling

  • 20 Medjool dates, pitted (soft)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons water*, up to 1/4 cup
  • 1 cup chopped raw pecans, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Instructions 

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line the bottom of an 8×8-inch pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Make the crust. Place all of the crust ingredients into a medium mixing bowl. Use a spatula (or your hands) and mix until combined. Form the dough into a ball and place into the prepared baking pan.
  • Spread the dough into an even layer in the bottom of the pan using a spatula or your hands.
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the crust has slightly browned.
  • While the crust is baking, make the filling. Place the pitted dates and vanilla into a high powdered food processor. Blend until smooth. Add in one tablespoon of water at a time until the date mixture turns into a paste and is easily spreadable. Add 1/4 cup of pecans and pulse the mixture a few times to break up the pecans. Set aside.
  • Once the crust is done baking, transfer the pan to a cooling rack. Let cool for 10 minutes – do not skip this step. Keep the oven on while the crust cools.
  • Transfer the date filling to the cooled crust. Use a spatula to carefully spread the filling into an even layer over the crust. Sprinkle the remaining chopped pecans over the filling.
    A person effortlessly prepares easy pecan pie bars by pouring a spoonful of pecans into a baking dish.
  • Bake the assembled bars for an additional 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and sprinkle with sea salt. Let cool completely before cutting into small bars.
    Easy pecan bars on a cutting board.

Tips & Notes

  • Storage: Once completely cool, enjoy them immediately or place in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to a week. 
  • Freezing Instructions: Once fully cooled, cut the pan of bars into squares, place in a single layer on a baking sheet, and freeze until fully frozen. Remove the bars from the freezer, wrap individually in aluminum foil or plastic wrap to prevent freezer burn, and place into freezer-safe container. Freeze for up to 3 months. When ready to serve, transfer frozen bars to the refrigerator to thaw, then enjoy cold or at room temperature. 
  • Water: The amount of water varies depending on how juicy your dates are. If your dates are on the drier side, use closer to 1/4 cup of water. If your dates are pretty moist, you’ll need less water – about 2 tablespoons. Use your best judgement – the filling is moist enough when it is easily spreadable. 

Watch It

[adthrive-in-post-video-player video-id=”QvWTZqVb” upload-date=”2018-11-19T02:55:20.000Z” name=”Easy Pecan Pie Bars with Date Caramel” description=”These easy pecan pie bars are a healthy dessert that the whole family will love! They are made with date caramel, pecans, and a delicious almond shortbread crust. This is not your typical granny pecan pie recipe, but it’s healthy and tasty. Make them today!”]

Nutrition

Calories: 383 kcal, Carbohydrates: 66 g, Protein: 5 g, Fat: 15 g, Fiber: 8 g, Sugar: 56 g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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About Linley Hanson

Linley has played an important role in the success of Fit Foodie Finds over the last 10 years. She is an incredible home cook and has an amazing palate. She is the brain behind our recipes and has spent thousands of hours developing, testing, and perfecting the delicious meals you see here at Fit Foodie Finds.

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12 Comments
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Melanie Armstrong
November 28, 2021 8:22 am

Do I need to pre soak the dates in hot water ?

Diana
February 1, 2021 4:53 pm
Recipe Rating :
     

5 stars
Love these! My husband which has a sweet tooth did as well.

Yasmine
October 10, 2020 3:18 pm

Thank u for the recipe! I have 2 questions please.. do u think It is possible to use Baking flour instead of almond flour?
And can i use Vanilla flavor ( the one we use on Latte and cappuccino) instead of vanilla extract? THANK UU

October 11, 2020 8:12 pm
Reply to  Yasmine

I wouldn’t swap the flour out for something else and vanilla flavor sounds fine!

FRan
June 11, 2020 5:10 pm
Recipe Rating :
     

2 stars
Topping was excellent however base did not take.

Kaitlen Arundale
December 11, 2018 12:03 pm

Will these be okay to make ahead? How long will they keep and will they need to be refrigerated?

December 12, 2018 11:31 am

You can totally make them ahead..we did and just froze them! They thaw really easily and quite nicely!

diana
December 5, 2018 5:10 pm

love your blog especially the videos so helpful, but where did you get that beautiful yarn or string, thank you diana from toronto

Rachael
November 27, 2018 10:48 pm

Do you think I could use almond meal in the crust instead of almond flour? I don’t think we really have almond flour in Australia (not that I’ve seen anyway…). Thanks!

December 4, 2018 11:59 am
Reply to  Rachael

Hi! It’s the same thing 🙂 We use those terms interchangeably!

Rachel
November 20, 2018 7:48 pm

Hi! I’d love to make this for thanksgiving but I need to sub the butter in the crust for something that is non dairy. Do you have any suggestions? Coconut oil? Can’t wait to try them!

November 21, 2018 5:59 am
Reply to  Rachel

Yes! Coconut oil will work!