# pumpkin pie with pecan praline topping

Hello, my name is Marci and it’s been 13 days since I’ve had a piece of this pie.

I know this, because my stomach has counted the hours…pining for its rich, creamy bite.

Surprisingly, my Thanksgiving obsessions have never included desserts. My focus has always been on the cheese and the sides, but Joe has a favorite. The traditional Pumpkin Pie.

I’ve avoided making pies at high altitude as much as possible. There was this summer fare that cheats with frozen crust made into cinnamon rolls, so it didn’t really count. But Joy makes me feel like I can do anything in the kitchen, so why not? Let’s make the boy some pie.


Sometimes I read over recipes and already begin reworking them in my head. “Oh, I don’t need to buy that ingredient…how much of a difference could it possibly make? I’ll just use X, Y, Z.” Do you do that too? I’ll admit that I totally had that internal convo when looking that this recipe, namely when I skimmed over the word cardamom.

You only need a fraction of a teaspoon and it can be pretty pricey, so I had already written it off when Joe reminded me that the bulk aisle at our store carries cardamom. I could get a minimal amount for $1 and be on my way.

This is why I married a total smarty pants.

It’s here that I will plead with you to find cheap cardamom, however you can, because you will NOT want to make this pie without it. Its ¼ tsp. emits the most incredible floral flavor into the pie, which makes the pumpkin blossom into sweet heaven. I’m not joking. This is where baking meets the divine. Trust me.

As good as the filling was, my crust definitely lacked pizazz. I now know that high-altitude crusts need more liquid. So, yeah, I’ll work on that for next time.

Lumpy, bumpy, but making it work:


The filling, as I mentioned, was where the party was happening. I loved seeing those flecks of spices, revving up each slice with maximum flavor.


I said a quick prayer, and encouraged you all to do the same via Instagram, and threw it in the oven.

When the jiggles were gone, I was pleased that there was just one crack, but as Joy promised, the pie settled and cracks became craters. That’s okay. Pumpkin pies were made to be rustic. (Filed under Things I Tell Myself to Feel Better.) Here’s how I went from “OHEMGEE, no cracks!” to “oh, wait….” in a matter of minutes.




It is here that I must come clean about why I chose this pie. I had about 10 different pumpkin pie recipes to consider, but I chose this because of its topping. #KitchenConfessions

Every piece of pie should be blanketed with a warm, sticky caramel filled with crunchy pecans. It was so good, in fact, that I made a double batch: One for the pie, and one to pour over our Thanksgiving ice cream. Really, there are few things in this world that would not benefit from this sauce being poured on top. If the filling was the party, this topping was the more-exclusive after party.


It’s unfortunate that I’m the most impatient person when it comes to baking, because my pie really needed to chill before I sliced it, much less photographed it. These pictures make it look mushy and under-cooked (not to mention that huge crack, but I assure you it was perfection.



These phone pics, ironically, show the final texture better….which is still a little hard to see because I insisted on drowning each slice in sauce. But, it’s there and it was sublime.



Now that we’re way past Thanksgiving….make this! Haha.



Pumpkin Pie with Pecan Praline Topping

source: Joy the Baker’s Homemade Decadence

Buttermilk Pie Crust
1 ¼ c. all-purpose flour
1 Tbs. sugar
½ tsp. salt
½ c. (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
¼ c. plus ½ Tbs., cold buttermilk

In a bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar and salt. Add the butter and, using a pastry cutter, quickly work into the flour mixture until butter pieces are the size of peas (some will be larger). Make a well in the center and pour in the buttermilk. Using a fork, stir until the dough forms. Turn the dough onto a floured surface. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour.

After the hour, turn out crust on a well-floured surface and roll to 1/8-inch thickness, about 12 inches across. Transfer to a pie plate and fold or trim the edges. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 3 hours.

Pumpkin Pie Filling
2 c. pumpkin puree
½ c. light brown sugar, packed
¼ c. sugar
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. ground ginger
½ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
½ tsp. allspice
¼ tsp. ground cloves
¼ tsp. ground cardamom
¼ tsp. salt
1 ½ c. cold heavy cream
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Place rack in center of oven and preheat to 400-degrees.

Combine pumpkin, sugars, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, cardamom and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, until mixture begins to bubble and become fragrant, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer mixture to a medium bowl. Stir in heavy cream. Whisk in eggs and vanilla.

Transfer filling to your prepared pie crust. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350-dgrees and bake until pie no longer jiggles in the center, about 40-50 minutes. Let pie cool for 30 minutes before topping. (Serve this pie cold – I recommend refrigerating it for a few hours before slicing.)

Pecan Praline Topping
½ c. light brown sugar, packed
6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
3 Tbs. heavy cream
¼ tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract
¾ c. pecans, coarsely chopped

While pie bakes, put brown sugar, butter, cream and salt in a medium saucepan set over medium-low heat. Bring to a simmer and cook until thick, 3-5 minutes. Remove pan from heat and stir in vanilla and pecans. Set aside. If the topping hardens too much when pie is ready, microwave for 20 seconds until pourable. I recommend storing in a mason jar for easy pouring and reheating.


2 thoughts on “# pumpkin pie with pecan praline topping

  1. I’m not a pumpkin pie fan but this one might have me convinced. Also: “…emits the most incredible floral flavor into the pie, which makes the pumpkin blossom into sweet heaven.” I love that!! Oh you and your snazzy writing.

  2. Pingback: Friday Five: Birthday Sweets | hashtag marci

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