Mini Croissant Crust Pecan Pies

5.0
(2)

You won't need to make a pastry dough for these easy mini pecan pies. Fresh, store-bought croissants are used to line muffin cups and hold the sweet pecan pie filling. The croissants bake up into a crisp, flaky, buttery crust with a baklava-like texture. Perfect for your Thanksgiving dessert table! Serve topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or just pick them up and eat them like muffins.

Prep Time:
25 mins
Cook Time:
35 mins
Additional Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 15 mins
Servings:
12
Yield:
12 mini pies

While I've never posted a video featuring the technique, I've always been fascinated with the idea of using croissants as a base to other recipes. I've seen them made into crispy cookies, hand-held cheesecakes, and fabulous-looking bread puddings, but as far as I know, this might be the first time they've been used for mini pecan pies. I didn't Google it, but until I hear otherwise, I'm taking credit.

This was supposed to be pitched as a great way to make little pecan pies without having to make a pastry crust, and that's still the main selling point, but texturally and taste-wise, these turned out to be a truly unique and amazing dessert. Although, paired with a nice big cup of coffee, I think we're fine calling this a breakfast also.

There are no secret tips and tricks here, other than to use high-quality, real butter, professionally made croissants. Also, try to find some nice big ones. Mine were a little on the skimpy side, and while they still worked beautifully, I would have loved another quarter-inch of crust around the outside (around the outside, around the outside). So, with that in mind, I'll finish by saying, I really do hope you give these a try soon. Enjoy!

mini pecan pie on a white place with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top
Mini Croissant Crust Pecan Pies. Chef John

Ingredients

Pie Filling:

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter

  • 1 cup light brown sugar

  • 1 cup light corn syrup

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 2 tablespoons bourbon whiskey (Optional)

  • 4 large eggs

  • 3 cups pecan halves, coarsely chopped

Croissant Crust:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

  • 6 large croissants

Directions

  1. Combine butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, vanilla, and bourbon whiskey in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer, then whisk mixture and boil for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes.

  2. Add eggs and whisk quickly to combine. Stir in pecans. Set aside until mixture thickens a bit and cools down, about 5 minutes.

  3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Use the butter to generously grease a 12-cup muffin tin.

  4. Cut each croissant in half, then turn the halves and slice open like you're making a sandwich. Place each piece into a prepared muffin cup and press it down and into the sides to fit and line the cup. Remove any pieces that stick up over the edge of the muffin cup and patch those in where needed to cover the sides.

  5. Spoon the pecan filling evenly into the muffin cups, stirring between each spoonful to ensure you get an even amount of nuts and sauce. Use your fingers to press pecans into the cups and even out the tops so they don't burn. Clean up any syrup that dripped onto the pan.

  6. Bake in the center of the preheated oven until golden brown, about 25 minutes, with a pan on the rack underneath to catch any drips.

  7. Remove from the pan and let sit in the pan for 5 minutes. Turn each pie a bit, then lift out and place on a plate to continue cooling. Let cool completely before serving.

    mini pecan pie on a white place with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top
    Mini Croissant Crust Pecan Pies. Chef John

Chef's Note:

In the video I only made 6 pies but this recipe will yield 12.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

547 Calories
34g Fat
58g Carbs
7g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 547
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 34g 44%
Saturated Fat 10g 49%
Cholesterol 100mg 33%
Sodium 616mg 27%
Total Carbohydrate 58g 21%
Dietary Fiber 4g 13%
Protein 7g
Potassium 201mg 4%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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