7 Recipes Perfect For Pecans

The good ol' pecan is the true nut of the underdog. Sure, it doesn't enjoy the all-time classic status of the peanut, and no, it hasn't got the festive charm of the hazelnut. It's certainly not as big as the Brazil nut or as versatile as the macadamia. But do you know what it does have? Chutzpah. And it's got it in spades.

And although it may not be everyone's go-to favorite nut, the humble pecan is surprisingly useful in the kitchen. Just take these recipes, for example. We've got everything from pecan pie (of course) to carrot cake (makes sense) to sweet potato casserole (oh dang, curveball!) and more. So if you find yourself with a craving for a little pecan, or even if you just happen to have a heap lying around, take a look and see. You never know — something might just take your fancy. Godspeed, little nut.

Candied pecans

The benefits of candied pecans are many. They're easy to make, for one, and require just a few ingredients — with the most important being, y'know, the pecans. They'll also take just a little over half an hour to make too, which is never a bad thing. Even better, you can make pretty much as many as you like, just so long as you've got enough nuts to keep you going.

With that in mind, our recipe for candied pecans will be the perfect addition to your next party or game night. Simply whisk a few egg whites, sprinkle in a mix of sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt, and then use the blend to coat your pecans and throw 'em in the oven. Easy peasy.

Pecan pie

Pecan pie is a straight-up honest-to-gosh American tradition. Particularly welcome at Thanksgiving and/or Christmas, this iconic dessert is always worth rustling up in the kitchen rather than buying at your local grocery store. It's incredibly easy to make, too — as you can see with our pecan pie recipe.

With just eight easily-sourced ingredients, a dash of baking skill, and a little over an hour of your time (not including the time it takes to set, naturally), you can have this beautifully rich, utterly delectable pecan pie more or less ready to go. A perfect choice if you need to impress somebody at your next holiday meal.

Cherry pecan bread pudding

If you're tired of whipping out a pecan pie every time you're hankering for a pecan-based dessert (happens a lot, right?), you could always give our cherry pecan bread pudding a go. This is basically bread pudding with a blend of salted pecans and dried cherries, and it's wholesome, wonderfully sweet, and easy to make, to boot.

This recipe is also a great way to dispose of any stale bread you might have lying around, and you can customize it too, throwing in any kind of dried fruit you like (think raisins or dates) in order to complement those pecans. You can even make the whole thing with a different kind of nut entirely. Not that you'd want to.

Pecan baklava

In case you're not already aware, baklava is a legendary Greek dessert with origins dating back nearly 3,000 years. It's basically a layered pastry sweetened with syrup or honey and filled with chopped nuts — and you'll never guess what kind of nuts our very own baklava recipe uses.

Yes, among the few other ingredients needed for this recipe (sugar, honey, lemon peel, butter, and cinnamon) is our old friend the pecan. It's not the easiest dish to make in the world, being kind of like a sweet and pastry lasagna, and the layering stage in particular will take a little skill. Just look at the end result, though. Pure heaven.

Sweet potato casserole with pecan crumble

Sweet potato casserole might not seem like the most obvious place to throw your leftover stash of pecans, but quite honestly, there may be nowhere better. Our recipe for sweet potato casserole is easy to make, requires just a handful of ingredients, and should make the perfect side dish for your next holiday dinner. Even better, you ought to be able to rustle this one up in just 35 minutes, giving you plenty of time to focus on your main dishes and other sides. Crack it out during your next gathering and see — it may just be a hit.

Carrot cake with pecans

The ability to make a decent carrot cake is an invaluable tool in the baker's arsenal, and although it may seem like a simple enough dish to prepare, it also offers ample opportunity for customization. Case in point: our very own carrot cake recipe, which utilizes not just the basics (cake ingredients, ground cinnamon and nutmeg, and, you know, the carrots) but also a sprinkling of chopped pecans to give that cake mix a real flavor punch. Throw in a tangy cream cheese frosting and just a little bit of TLC and you've got the recipe for something truly special.

German chocolate cake with pecans

Funnily enough, this German chocolate cake isn't German at all — it's actually named for Sam German, the baker who first sent the recipe to The Dallas Morning News in 1957. Semantics aside, though, it's a grand old cake, and is basically guaranteed to be a showstopper next time you need to impress someone with your skills in the kitchen.

It takes just over an hour an a half to make, and the finished article is as rich and dark as it is gorgeous to look at. And the star of the show? Why, the toasted pecan-coconut filling, of course. Because what else?