It's no surprise that my husband's Grandmother is an exceptional cook and baker with a repertoire of recipes that would put Julia Child to shame - like this Old Fashioned Chicken and Rice recipe and this White Beans and Ham recipe. But it's her desserts that my husband loves best and these Pecan Pie Surprise Bars are one of his favorites. The bars have two layers, similar to a pie, but the bottom crust layer is much thicker and has a cakey taste and texture. It's like eating a cake that tastes exactly like a pecan pie, but it's all in the shape of a brownie. It might sound confusing, but I promise you this dessert is incredible.
1 package (18 1/2 oz) Pillsbury Yellow Cake Mix - divided and reserve 2/3 cup
1/2 cup margarine, melted
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups dark corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
There are two parts to these Pecan Pie Surprise Bars - the "crust" and the "filling."
Generously grease the bottom and sides of a 9 x 13 inch pan. Divide the cake mix and reserve 2/3 cup for the filling. Combine the remaining cake mix, 1 egg, and the margarine until it's crumbly. Press the mixture into the greased pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until it's light brown.
Meanwhile, while the crust is baking, combine the reserved cake mix, brown sugar, dark corn syrup, vanilla, and eggs. Beat eggs together before adding them to the mixture.
Once the crust has finished baking, remove it from the oven and pour the filling over top of the partially-baked crust. Sprinkle the top with the pecans. Also, don't have an adorable kitchen helper?
Bake for an additional 30-35 minutes or until the filling is set.
Allow the Pecan Pie Surprise Bars to cool and then cut them into bars.