Tag: baking

Pecan Pie Bar Recipeimg_5781

I’ve been doing a lot of planning for Thanksgiving Dinner decor and putting together our menu. I’m hosting a total of 22 people in my home this Thursday, which means two things:

1. We need a lot of food, and
2. It’s about to go down!

I finally figured out the seating, place settings and decor, and now all that’s left is the menu!! I do know one thing for sure: I will most definitely be making Pecan Pie Bars, one of my favorite recipes from my grandmother Mamaw Anderson. She is such an amazing cook! One of the things I love to do with my kids is let them bake with me, and it’s one of their most favorite activities. It can be tricky letting kids help in the kitchen, so there are a few things I always do to help the process.



I like to prep all of the ingredients beforehand. Eggs cracked, sugar measured, butter cut up…you get the drift! This way they get to help with the fun stuff and don’t have to wait around for me to do the boring work.



If you have more than one child, I’m sure you know that you can NEVER have uneven fun. If Laila gets something Carson doesn’t and vice versa, it’s a holy-freaking-nightmare meltdown. I give each of them a job to do in turns, that way it’s always even and they’re both happy.



It seems so silly, but their jobs are literally to dump out the measuring cups and help me stir. That’s honestly all they can do at these ages. Sometimes they get to help me hand mix and they always have a blast doing it! I’ve even sat down on the floor with them and let them make brownies on the ground so they don’t have to get on stools. Laila still talks about that day!


I’ve never had a really big sweet tooth, but Pecan Pie has always been my #1. After years of begging for her recipe, my grandmother finally shared it with me as a present at our
engagement party, along with all of the kitchen tools and dishes to make it. And as a Thanksgiving gift, I’m sharing it with you! I make these every year during November, and I hope you enjoy it as much as we do. Let me know if you made them and how they turned out!


Mary Ruth Anderson’s Pecan Pie Bars


 – 2 c. all-purpose flour

1/2 c. sugar

1/8 tsp. salt

3/4 c. firm butter, cut up into cubes

1 c. firmly packed brown sugar

1 c. light corn syrup

1/2 c. butter

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

2 1/2 c. finely chopped pecans

1 tsp. vanilla extract


Combine the flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Cut in 3/4 butter thoroughly with a pastry blender until mixture resembles very fine crumbs. Press mixture into a greased 13″ x 9″ pan, using a piece of plastic wrap to press crumb mixture firmly into pan bottom and 1 1/2″ up sides. Bake at 350 17-20 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool while making the filling.

Combine brown sugar, corn syrup, and 1/2 c. butter in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, while gently stirring. Remove from heat, stir 1/4 mixture into eggs to temper; add remaining to hot mixture and mix in vanilla and pecans. Pour filling over crust and bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes until set. Cool completely, cut into squares, and enjoy!



This weekend I officially started my holiday baking. October-December is really the only time that I bake…and now that I’ve typed that out I realize that I don’t really know why! I guess because baking is a “cozy” thing for me to do, and I really only get the inclination to bake when it’s the holiday season because that’s when I feel all warm and cozy inside! Anywho…I’ve been eyeballing this recipe on Pinterest for over a year now, so I finally broke down and made it on Sunday. I’ll post below too, because I altered it just a tad. I’m obsessed with my Young Living Essential Oils, so I substituted the Orange Extract for Orange Oil…so much better!


Is my nail polish ever NOT chipped?


I have the best intentions when I start…nice neat work space and ingredients…


…and the reality of being the messiest chef ever sets in once I’m underway.

By the way, am I the only person who has to have TV on in the kitchen? I never really sit down and watch TV normally, but I live on my ipad when I’m cooking. I typically have either Friends on or some sort of holiday movie. Right now I’m working through the X-Files series again. I want to believe.


For Dough:
  • 3 (.25 ounce) packets active dry yeast (2 and ¼ Tablespoons)
  • 1 and ¾ cups warm water (approximately 110 degrees)
  • ½ cup honey
  • ½ cup melted butter
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 4 to 6 cups flour, plus more if needed
For filling:
  • ½ cup (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
For glaze:
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ½ cup heavy cream (more as needed to reach desired consistency)
  • 3-5 drops Young Living Orange Essential Oil (to taste)
  1. Preheat oven to 170 degrees, and then turn it off. You want a warm oven to help the dough proof.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the warm water and yeast. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes until yeast begins to bubble.
  3. Add the honey, melted butter, salt and eggs. Use a whisk to combine.
  4. Using the dough hook on your stand mixer, slowly add 4 cups of flour and beat to combine. Mixture will be wet.
  5. Then add ½ cup at a time until dough pulls away from sides of bowl but is still slightly sticky. This will be a wet dough, so don’t add too much flour. Your finger should stick to the dough but shouldn’t pull any dough away with it.
  6. Move dough to a well-oiled or buttered bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and place in warm oven. (Make sure the oven is off now!)
  7. Allow dough to double in bulk, which will take about 45 minutes.
  8. After dough has risen, punch it down and roll it in to a large sheet, approximately 16×24 inches.
  9. Spread filling (see below) over the dough, then tightly roll into a jellyroll shape, starting at the long end of the dough.
  10. Using string, floss or a sharp knife, cut into 1-inch pieces and place into a buttered 9×13 pan.
  11. Cover with a towel, and place back into warm oven. Allow to rise for a second time, about 20 minutes.
  12. Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
  13. Drizzle glaze (see below) over the top of the warm rolls, and enjoy!
For filling:
  1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Spread evenly over rolled dough.
For glaze:
  1. With a whisk, combine all ingredients until smooth. Glaze should be thin enough to pour, but thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. If necessary, add more cream or sugar to achieve desired consistency.

Take it from me: do NOT sub Heavy Cream with Coconut Milk!

I sent Michael to the store, but he forgot the heavy cream! Silly me thinks “Well coconut milk should be a good substitute”. NOT. The glaze totally did not turn out, although the flavor was awesome! These rolls were one of the more involved recipes I’ve ever attempted…I don’t think I’ll be doing them again, although they’re very good! What is your favorite thing to bake during the holidays?