Have you ever tasted a hot pie that combines a subtle hint of toasted oak and nutty flavors reminiscent of Tennessee Whiskey, along with the sweet taste of caramel and the signature savory and salty taste of bacon?
Well, I would like to introduce you to this smoked, whiskey maple bacon pecan pie.
I have taken an ordinary pecan pie and created a melt in your mouth, decadent, smoked dessert that is irresistible!
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Flavor: The warm nutty flavors with a hint of toasted oak pulled from the Tennessee whiskey, the sweet taste of caramel, enhanced by the savory and saltiness of the candied bacon will have you reminiscing of putting your feet up while sitting next to a warm fire on a cool fall evening.
- Smoke: By cooking this pie on the smoker you provide a kiss of smoke that will enhance the nutty flavors coming from the Whiskey and pecans.
- Bourbon or Whiskey: The Bourbon or Whiskey impart unique autumn flavors such as toffee, caramel and a hint of corn when combined with the vanilla, cinnamon and buttery crust. This provides a depth of flavors that is both sweet and savory.. You can use either bourbon or whiskey in this recipe, but I prefer whiskey. The bourbon tends to have more of a sweeter flavor, whereas the whiskey has strong complex flavors that tends to pull more of the smokey notes from the pie.
What You Will Need:
- Bourbon or Tennessee Whiskey: I prefer to use Jack Daniels Whiskey in this pie, but have also used Jim Beam Bourbon. Both turned out amazing but will impart a slightly different flavor.
- Homemade Pie Crust: Let’s face it, anytime you can make something from scratch instead of buying something pre-made from the store is going to be way better! By making this pie crust you will have a decadent bite that infuses more flavors into your palate from the vanilla, cinnamon, sugar and butter.
- Thick cut Bacon: Who doesn’t love bacon? In this recipe, we are going to candy the bacon (otherwise known as giving it a sugar coating). Thick cut bacon is best for this to maintain the integrity of the bacon without overcooking or charring the bacon.
- Wood: This is the last ingredient but the first flavor and you definitely don’t want it overpowering. Thus, I highly recommend using pecan wood pellets from B&B Charcoal. This will infuse a lighter flavor of smoke, than if you were to use Hickory, Mesquite, or Oak that tend to have a heavier smoke flavor.
Tips and Tricks:
- HOW to make smoked Pecan Pie: Instead of using an oven, we are going to use a pellet grill to make this pecan pie. By doing so, it will kiss the pie with a hint of smoke flavor. You can cook this pie on any smoker, but I recommend using a pellet smoker because the smoke flavor infused into the pie from a pellet smoker is generally more mild than that of other smokers that are fueled by charcoal and hardwood. The key to this recipe is balanced flavors and you certainly do not want to overpower the pie with a heavy smoke flavor. With a pellet grill, you can easily fill the pellet hopper with pecan wood pellets (my personal favorite is B&B Charcoal brand Pecan Pellets, or the Jack Daniels Tennessee wood pellets) then set the temperature to 350 degrees F and let it do its thing! If you do not have a pellet smoker or just prefer to use another smoker such as an offset smoker, that is fine. You will just need to be more diligent in managing the fire to ensure it is maintaining a consistent temperature and not producing too much smoke
- Does Pecan Pie Need to be Refrigerated? Yes, pecan pie needs to be refrigerated due to its egg base filling. After it comes off the smoker, you may keep it on the counter for up to 2 hours, but after that, cover and place in the refrigerator.
- Can you freeze pecan Pie? Yes, you absolutely can bake then freeze your pecan pie. All you need to do is make sure the pecan pie is completely cooled after baking. Then, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, trying to cover completely without any air pockets. Place in freezer and when ready to eat, allow to thaw in refrigerator, then enjoy. If your looking to have warm pie, pull from freezer and bake for 10-12 min at 325 degrees F, just till warm.
- How to tell when the Pecan Pie is Done: Pecan pie is done when the top looks lightly caramelized and when gently shaken, the center has a slight jiggle. It should be stable but slightly wiggly in the center and the edges are set. If a knife or toothpick is inserted into the center, it should come out clean. Do not overbake, it will dry out the pie. Remember that once taken off the smoker, it will continue to bake for a few minutes.
Whiskey Maple Bacon Pecan Pie
Crust: Vanilla Cinnamon Sugar Pie Crust
- -1 ¼ cup flour
- -1 stick unsalted butter cubed and frozen
- -1/4 teaspoon salt
- – 2 tablespoon sugar
- -1 teaspoon vanilla
- – 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- -4-6 tablespoon ice cold water
- -5 tablespoon butter
- -2/3 cup brown sugar
- -3 eggs
- -2 tablespoon Tennessee Whiskey
- -1/2 cup pure maple syrup I use Vanilla Bean infused
- -1/2 teaspoon Himalayan pink sea salt
- -1 teaspoon Kosmo’s Q Sweet Honey Pecan rub optional
- -2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- -1 ½ cups pecan pieces
- -8 slices thick cut bacon
- -1/8 cup maple syrup
- -1 tablespoon brown sugar
For the Crust:
- Mix the flour, sugar, salt, vanilla and cinnamon together in a large bowl. Add the cubed butter on top. Using a pastry cutter, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until all flour is coated. (You’re looking for pea-sized bits of flour coated butter).
- Add 4 tablespoon of ice water. If it needs additional cold water, add one teaspoon at a time. (It should look crumbly, but if pinched it will hold together). Do not over mix the dough, you want to keep it nice and flaky. (Overmixing will cause it to become tough while baking.)
- Pull everything out of the bowl and quickly form a ball and wrap in plastic wrap.
- Place in fridge for at least 30 minutes to chill.
- On a clean lightly floured surface, roll out the dough slightly larger than pie tin.
- Carefully place the dough into your pie tin.
- Cut edge of dough off, around pie tin and crimp edges. Using fork poke holes a few times in bottom of pie crust.
- Place in freezer 30 min while preparing filling.
For the Filling:
- In a small saucepan over Medium Heat, melt 5 Tablespoon butter, then add brown sugar and stir until smooth and creamy. (About 2 min). Remove from heat and let cool.
- In separate bowl combine eggs, whiskey, maple syrup, sea salt and vanilla.
- Mix to combine.
- Add in cooled brown sugar mixture. Mix well.
- Place Pecans in bottom of frozen pie crust and pour filling mixture over pecans.
To cook the Whiskey Maple Bacon Pecan Pie:
- Place on smoker at 350 degrees F for 1 hour. Preheat your pellet grill to 350 degrees F, or use Pecan wood in your offset or wood fired smoker and bring it up to 325-350 degrees. (if using a wood fired smoker, try to keep the temperature in between 325-350 degrees F so that your pie will cook evenly)
- Check the pie after 45 min. If you notice the crust starting to get too brown, cover the edges with foil.
- Bake the pecan pie for about 1 hour, or until you can stick a toothpick in the center and it comes out clean.
- Remove from grill.
- After you’ve checked on the pie after 45 min, chop bacon into small pieces and cook in a preheated skillet till almost crisp. Add in maple syrup and brown sugar. Stir to coat well. Place candied bacon evenly on top of warm pie.
- Serve with whipped cream* and enjoy!
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