Why Ree Drummond Says Texture Is So Important In Pecan Pies

Thanksgiving has come and gone, and you might be thinking that you've fulfilled your pie-baking duties for the year, having perhaps supplied your get-together with a delicious pumpkin, sweet potato, or apple pie. But during the last month of the year, days are traditionally filled with holiday potlucks, dinners, and celebrations of all stripes. No one has had their fill of pie quite yet — which means there's still ample time to whip up a few more tasty tarts this season.

And if you're going to bake more pies, why not go for pecan? Pecan pie is one of our very favorites of the genre, offering up a flaky crust filled with a candy-sweet, pudding-like mixture of eggs, corn syrup, and plenty of crunchy nuts. There are tons of ways to make pecan pie, from embellishing the filling with chocolate to spiking it with bourbon. But Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman, has a method we've rarely seen before — and one she says results in a way better texture.

Ree Drummond recommends chopping those pecans up fine

A well-made pecan pie is often a sight to behold, with that beautiful surface of pecan halves bobbing in a sea of shiny, custard-like filling. Most pecan pie recipes call for pecan halves precisely to create that jaw-dropping visual effect. But have you ever noticed that it can be hard to cut an even slice of pecan pie, as you try to force your knife through those large chunks of nuts?

Ree Drummond sure has. The Food Network sensation and creator of rich, down-home recipes such as chicken-fried steak and doughy cinnamon rolls is no stranger to pecan pie, either, but she has a particular spin on it that we're intrigued to try. Eschewing pecan halves, Drummond instead chops her pecans finely, noting that the smaller pieces of nuts distribute through the pie filling more evenly and create a more desirable texture.

"This could be considered a sacrilege to those who love the appearance of toasted pecan halves all over the top. But pecan halves bug me!" Drummond writes on her website. "When you cut into the pie, it's hard to get nice, even, neat pieces because the big, bulky pecan halves get pushed into the perfect filling ... I've found that chopping the pecans makes such a difference and results in a nice, crunchy pie with flavor that'll rock your world." We're about ready to try out the technique for the next holiday party on the calendar.