December 19, 2016

Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

Tis the season for holiday goodness, or should I say holiday goodies. The cookies, the cakes, the brownies and the fudge - I love it all! My favorite holiday goodies are the ones that have a story, or that bring back a memory. And nothing brings up those warm and cozy holiday feel-goods like a family recipe.

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.

Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

1 package (18 1/2 oz) Pillsbury Yellow Cake Mix - divided and reserve 2/3 cup
1/2 cup margarine, melted
4 eggs
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups dark corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chopped pecans

Preparation Instructions: 
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.

The crust of the Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

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.

Mixing ingredients for the filling of the Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

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?

Pecans on top of the Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

Bake for an additional 30-35 minutes or until the filling is set.

The finished product - Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

Allow the Pecan Pie Surprise Bars to cool and then cut them into bars.

Pecan Pie Surprise Bars

What are your favorite holiday recipes? Please share links and recipes in the comments below because I love to try new favorite recipes.

Be Blessed,
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  1. These look amazing! One of my favorite Holiday cookie recipes are for Starlight Cookies! They are cookies with white chocolate, craisins, nuts and oats! Yummy!! I love holiday cooking!

    1. Oh wow I've never heard of starlight cookies before but it sounds incredible!!!

  2. Uh, yum! This looks delicious!

  3. Wow! These may have to find their way into our kitchen over this next week...! My baking is done for this week, but there are still 11 days after Christmas to continue baking with no worries. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Yes I love to continue baking for the 12 days of Christmas! This is great for holidays because it's so different from pie and cookies which are so common in most households. I hope you enjoy it!